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LOOK: The roof at Mercedes-Benz Stadium closes for the first time

Mercedes-Benz Stadium's one-of-a-kind roof had its latest milestone over the weekend, moving from an open position to a closed one. This was the first major test of the roof and it was highly successful.

Steve Cannon, CEO, AMB Group, tweeted out pictures of the progress on Saturday – with the roof partially open and then one closed. Check them out below.

Here is one as the roof is closing:

And in the final closed position:

The Falcons' new home is quite the marvel. The stadium's roof is made up of 27,500 tons of steel, and 3,500 of which make up the roof petals. Each petal will move independently of each other, but all simultaneously which creates the optical illusion camera lens-like effect when it opens and closes (more on that below).

As it stands now, Mercedes-Benz Stadium is on track to open for the Falcons' third preseason game against the Arizona Cardinals on Aug. 26. The Falcons' regular-season home opener is Sept. 17 in a nationally televised game vs. the Green Bay Packers on "Sunday Night Football."

More facts and figures about the roof's mechanization:

  • The stadium roof may appear to rotate open but it's an optical illusion, the roof opens by the movement of eight "petals" that slide open in a straight line. 
  • Each of the moving petals cantilever approximately 200 feet inwards towards the center of the stadium and provide a roof covering when the petals are in the closed position.
  • The moveable petal structures are powered by eight mechanized "bogies" which drive the petals along an inner rail and are attached to the outer uplift rail by six roller mechanisms.  
  • In the closed position the petals lock together to form a water tight seal.  Each petal structure is clad with air-inflated ETFE pillows. 
  • ETFE is a highly durable, lightweight fabric that is translucent, allowing for a light filled stadium, even when moveable petals are in the closed position.
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