The construction and building industry has experienced a change in the past several years. Although the changes may just be starting to emerge, it is best to be aware of the shift and watchful as to the direction the industry is headed.
From Engineering to Design
Traditionally, initial documents were produced by the engineer and then revamped by the contractor. However, companies like Layton demonstrate how this practice is giving way to a more pragmatic in-house approach. The planning and design are conducted in one location, using a collaboration of methods and minds, which saves time and money.
Old traditions eventually pass, and in some cases, this is for the best, especially when it comes to materials. The construction industry is moving toward the use of supplies that are lower maintenance and more durable. Unbreakable heat exchangers, smart windows, and wind turbines are just a few examples of innovation in the world of building. As technology evolves, it may well extend to cladding and other techniques.
Even paint is getting smarter. Researchers at the University College London have developed a nanoparticle coating that will self-clean when water hits it and rolls off like a marble, taking particles of dirt along with it. The paint, which is composed of titanium dioxide, has been through various phases of testing on various surfaces, and it can even withstand being immersed in oil. It adheres to steel, wood, and other materials. Although the product is a new development, it will likely become a mainstay for builders in the future.
Along with other materials, concrete is evolving into a more flexible component. With the addition of cellulose nanocrystals, researchers have discovered that concrete becomes stronger and more flexible while maintaining better resistance to impact. These nanocrystals have the added benefit of causing the concrete to harden faster, which reduces carbon emissions, a big environmental plus. The benefits of this type of treatment for concrete have yet to be fully realized.
The rising concern from consumers over energy consumption has not gone unnoticed by the construction world. Maintaining minimal energy use has become a prime focus of new design and innovation. One example is the development of occupancy sensors. This technology offers a response to the presence of carbon dioxide within a designated area. The sensor knows when a room is occupied by measuring the rise in carbon dioxide levels. It will adjust the room’s ventilation accordingly, reducing the waste of energy in an unoccupied space.
Aedi Construction in Massachusetts sets a great example of building environments that are energy and resource efficient. Aedi was recognized by the U.S. Green Building Council for producing the first LEED multiunit homes in the United States.
Modular construction was long considered a short-term option, especially in commercial projects. However, the method is becoming more normalized as the need for time-efficient construction reaches new heights. A permanent modular can accommodate an add-on with relative ease. The sections, called modules, are constructed and then transported to the final location, where they are placed on the foundation with a crane. The potential of future additions to an existing modular is a very attractive feature for commercial businesses and homeowners alike.
Pre-Fab in Droves
Modular homes and businesses have locked onto an advantage with pre-fab construction. This trend is becoming an industrial giant, since the old problems of bad weather and other on-site delays are virtually nullified. The building is constructed in an atmosphere that is easily monitored in terms of space, schedule, and materials. The convenience of a site exclusively for building where the structure is designed to be relocated to the permanent site is an attractive feature.
As new trends in building and construction emerge and take hold, Hallmaker maintains its loyalty to the use of a fine traditional material: steel. The Northern European market continues to benefit from this mainstay, even though other options may be turning the heads of other companies. Steel remains a staple in its ability to withstand various weather conditions, even those as severe as earthquakes or hurricanes. Steel is cost effective due to its innate recyclable features. Due to its reusable nature, steel is more environmentally friendly than many other materials. There is very little waste in the use of steel, as it does not require an expensive demolition process.
When it is torn down, steel remains clean and without the generation of toxins or pollution, which many other materials create. Prefabricated steel requires a comparatively small amount of storage space, and it offers easy installation. There is generally less waste around a construction site, as opposed to other materials, such as wood or concrete.
Steel has a long lifespan, requiring little maintenance, and it keeps its qualities of strength and durability. Due to its inorganic properties, it is resistant to termites, vermin, and mold.
Steel is long heralded as the icon of toughness in the building world. It has earned this title. The versatility of steel is second to no other building material. It can be added to existing structures or used as a base for virtually any type of building. It can be used as a foundation for other materials, therefore disguising itself in some other form. It is the reliable chameleon of the construction world. Steel can be found in everything from agricultural barns and museums to bridges and skyscrapers. The multiple applications of steel in the world of building are almost endless. Whatever the trend happens to be, steel will bend itself to accommodate the new direction. More interesting update click here