Soft Wall Expeditionary Shelters (SWES) are perfect for rapid deployment shelter needs

Military and emergency services personnel engaging in rapid-response activities have no time to waste when it comes to the successful completion of a job. Even though these teams must act quickly, the job may take several days, weeks or even months, and it is essential to have safe living quarters, workspaces and storage enclosures. When time is of the essence, the best way to provide protection for equipment, vehicles and personnel is to use the soft wall expeditionary shelter (swes), that is yet another smart use of our fabric structures.

What Is a Soft Wall Expeditionary Shelter?

An SWES is a temporary fabric structure that can be quickly deployed in emergency field situations. These structures can be little more than tents or hard-walled buildings that break down into small components. The SWES modules from Big Top combine the best elements of hard-walled structures with soft-walled fabric structures.

The Big Top SWES is a tensioned fabric structure with a lightweight yet sturdy frame made of galvanized steel hot-dipped in a protective zinc coating. This frame can be put together quickly on virtually any type of foundation, including uneven ground and sloped surfaces; and it can support a range of optional equipment.

The walls of the SWES consist of a fabric made of PVC that is stretched and secured over the frame. When installed correctly, this fabric structure resists all types of weather with little to no noise and can withstand winds of up to 120 mph. This fabric is available in a choice of colors, but most clients prefer translucent white because of its light-filtering and temperature-control properties.

Mobility Is the Key with Fabric Structures

The key to a well-devised SWES is its mobility, but it must also be strong and durable enough to be used on missions for several years. A Big Top SWES can be erected quickly without any heavy equipment or specialized construction training. It can also be rapidly dismantled and when it is no longer needed at a particular location. If the shelter must only be moved a short distance, it can be lifted as a whole unit by a crane or pulled to a new location with optional wheel mounts.

Our fabric structures are available in a number of prefabricated configurations that range in size from personal units to shelters large enough to park multiple vehicles, including large trucks, airplanes, and ships. They are also compatible with several types of automated systems, such as heating, cooling and full HVAC systems.