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Talk. Build 's Entries

  • 13 Nov 2018
    Insulation is a common element found in many buildings – whether they are residential or commercial. They are versatile in purpose – they can act as a sound barrier between spaces, a method of maintaining heat and cold temperatures, which in and of itself can benefit clients in terms of energy savings on their bills. When you combine with the functionality of an insulated access panel, they increase the functionality and make it a choice for contractors. Insulation 101 To better understand insulation – it is essential to know that there are two types to choose from. Open cell and closed cell. Open cell insulations typically come in spray foam; however, due to its application, it has a lower R-value in comparison to closed cell insulations. Closed cell insulations are great in preventing moisture built-up, which means avoiding any chances of moulds etc. With closed cell insulation, these have a higher R-value, and when it comes access panels installed on the exterior of a building, clients want to ensure contractors go with a quality closed cell insulation. While it will be slightly higher in costs, the benefits are well worth it. Insulated access panels can provide structural protection; however, pair that with insulation and coating, then one has maximized its ability to be thoroughly functional and versatile. Why insulation? When clients think of insulation, they do not associate it with access panels; however, they are a great addition to access panels. Typically, insulation is believed to be found only between walls, ceilings and roofs; yet, insulated access panels can be located in the exterior access panel, soundproof panels, as well as floor, hatches that people seek to have an airtight seal. Insulation provides this added support and seal. While insulation can come in a batting form or spray, the choice of application and the added layer will indeed depend on the type of access door selected. For example, if your contractor chooses a drywall access panel, the chances are they may ensure that there is batting in and around the area, as well as ensuring that the access panel is insulated once installed. This can mean applying spray insulation around the panel itself. This further enhances the access panels functionality but also improves it as well for the client. Picking the perfect pair of panel and insulation Deciding on an access panel can be hard – as you want to ensure your panel choice matches your needs and functionality. When you factor in insulation and the type of application, it is important to consider what is the best way to install insulation or if it is a combination of both spray and batting. A knowledgeable contractor who is seasoned with insulation will know what the best choice is as well as the client's needs for space. While some think insulation is just meant to keep homes warm, or insulated – the reality is that insulation is sometimes underrated in their purpose. With access panels, they offer a new range of versatility as insulation only increases the functionality of the panel. Imagine a security or floor panel, while access panels are made with everything from plastic to steel, these materials are not known to regulate or insulate. When you include or factor in insulation, now that steel access panel is insulated and is able to do more than just be a security panel, it is an insulated security access panel. Visit: www.accessdoorsandpanels.com
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Insulation is a common element found in many buildings – whether they are residential or commercial. They are versatile in purpose – they can act as a sound barrier between spaces, a method of maintaining heat and cold temperatures, which in and of itself can benefit clients in terms of energy savings on their bills. When you combine with the functionality of an insulated access panel, they increase the functionality and make it a choice for contractors. Insulation 101 To better understand insulation – it is essential to know that there are two types to choose from. Open cell and closed cell. Open cell insulations typically come in spray foam; however, due to its application, it has a lower R-value in comparison to closed cell insulations. Closed cell insulations are great in preventing moisture built-up, which means avoiding any chances of moulds etc. With closed cell insulation, these have a higher R-value, and when it comes access panels installed on the exterior of a building, clients want to ensure contractors go with a quality closed cell insulation. While it will be slightly higher in costs, the benefits are well worth it. Insulated access panels can provide structural protection; however, pair that with insulation and coating, then one has maximized its ability to be thoroughly functional and versatile. Why insulation? When clients think of insulation, they do not associate it with access panels; however, they are a great addition to access panels. Typically, insulation is believed to be found only between walls, ceilings and roofs; yet, insulated access panels can be located in the exterior access panel, soundproof panels, as well as floor, hatches that people seek to have an airtight seal. Insulation provides this added support and seal. While insulation can come in a batting form or spray, the choice of application and the added layer will indeed depend on the type of access door selected. For example, if your contractor chooses a drywall access panel, the chances are they may ensure that there is batting in and around the area, as well as ensuring that the access panel is insulated once installed. This can mean applying spray insulation around the panel itself. This further enhances the access panels functionality but also improves it as well for the client. Picking the perfect pair of panel and insulation Deciding on an access panel can be hard – as you want to ensure your panel choice matches your needs and functionality. When you factor in insulation and the type of application, it is important to consider what is the best way to install insulation or if it is a combination of both spray and batting. A knowledgeable contractor who is seasoned with insulation will know what the best choice is as well as the client's needs for space. While some think insulation is just meant to keep homes warm, or insulated – the reality is that insulation is sometimes underrated in their purpose. With access panels, they offer a new range of versatility as insulation only increases the functionality of the panel. Imagine a security or floor panel, while access panels are made with everything from plastic to steel, these materials are not known to regulate or insulate. When you include or factor in insulation, now that steel access panel is insulated and is able to do more than just be a security panel, it is an insulated security access panel. Visit: www.accessdoorsandpanels.com
    Nov 13, 2018 0
  • 06 Nov 2018
    Noisy air conditioning systems in workplaces can help to contribute to excessive background noise and can have a profound, negative impact on employee productivity, increasing stress and anxiety levels. It is serious enough for the Department for Health to warn that elevated workplace or environmental noise “can cause hearing impairment, hypertension, ischemic heart disease, annoyance and sleep disturbance.” Companies across the world are now looking seriously at ways to minimise such noise says Denis Kerr Sales Director at Krantz Limited, who makes an informed case as to why we should choose sophisticated air-distribution systems which minimise or even remove noisy acoustics at work, looking at why the right products can significantly help to improve the office environment. In modern office spaces and further afield, exposed ceilings and soffits are a prominent design trend. Whether developers choose to reveal ceiling beams for aesthetic purposes or turn to design-savvy solutions to keep costs to a minimum, exposed ceilings are a thing of the future for modern commercial spaces.   As exposed soffits are now a common design feature in such environments, it is crucial to manage acoustic levels accurately. Without the correct products to minimise such noise there is the risk of creating a harsh atmosphere, with a cacophony of different sounds ricocheting around the environment. The challenges It is important to keep acoustic levels controlled within these spaces, especially in environments where people work. The combination of higher ceilings, exposed services, computer monitors and human voices create an impractical environment, increasing stress levels in the workplace. With exposed soffits, there isn’t a natural method for the architecture to control or reduce acoustic levels; essentially there isn’t any material for sound absorption. The ceiling is completely revealed to the human eye, with its services (the fans, ductwork and lighting) on view they can directly contribute to the background noise levels resulting in a poor acoustic performance of the space. What are the options? Many elements come into play when managing a space’s acoustics, including the way air-conditioning systems are designed. To create a peaceful, workable and visually-engaging environment, the right air-distribution system must be selected. Some environments often require tailor-made, bespoke solutions to minimise noisy acoustics; there are, for example, these kinds of air-distribution systems in acoustically-sensitive buildings such as the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, Germany. A concert hall on this scale demanded acoustically-advanced solutions; bespoke sound control was completely necessary in this location as noise could interfere with the artist’s focus and the paying audience’s enjoyment. But in terms of air-distribution systems for commercial spaces, products such as the Krantz AVACs system (Air Ventilation And Cooling system) keep acoustic interference to a minimum and can actively improve the space. These systems are designed to great detail and sophistication; they do not contain any moving mechanical parts so the systems cannot generate any noise. Through convective radiant panels, AVACs heat and cool without the use of a fan, completely removing the presence of disruptive sounds. All of the acoustic absorption can be hidden within the panelling, and they are acoustically-designed to reduce noise and improve the reverberation time of the space. More importantly, by selecting a multifunctional system which heats, cools and controls acoustics, the occupants’ comfort is not compromised. These systems distribute fresh air around a space, ensuring thermal and acoustic comfort, which is of particular significance to employee wellbeing and happiness. According to the World Health Organisation, it is estimated that the annual cost to Europe from excessive noise levels is £30 billion. This extortionate sum accounts for lost working days, healthcare costs and reduced productivity. Acoustic control is a complete design necessity in commercial workspaces. Although exposed ceilings are perfect for new build and future retrofits and make maintenance easier, it is important to take all elements into consideration when planning an acoustically-sound space. In terms of air-distribution products, there are sophisticated, multifunctional solutions available on the market which, simultaneously, control acoustics and heat and cool spaces. As commercial office spaces tend to be acoustically-demanding areas, flexible, state-of-art air-distribution technologies should be a priority, particularly as they can assure thermal comfort without any unwanted background noise inconveniencing the occupants. Visit: http://www.krantzuk.com
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Noisy air conditioning systems in workplaces can help to contribute to excessive background noise and can have a profound, negative impact on employee productivity, increasing stress and anxiety levels. It is serious enough for the Department for Health to warn that elevated workplace or environmental noise “can cause hearing impairment, hypertension, ischemic heart disease, annoyance and sleep disturbance.” Companies across the world are now looking seriously at ways to minimise such noise says Denis Kerr Sales Director at Krantz Limited, who makes an informed case as to why we should choose sophisticated air-distribution systems which minimise or even remove noisy acoustics at work, looking at why the right products can significantly help to improve the office environment. In modern office spaces and further afield, exposed ceilings and soffits are a prominent design trend. Whether developers choose to reveal ceiling beams for aesthetic purposes or turn to design-savvy solutions to keep costs to a minimum, exposed ceilings are a thing of the future for modern commercial spaces.   As exposed soffits are now a common design feature in such environments, it is crucial to manage acoustic levels accurately. Without the correct products to minimise such noise there is the risk of creating a harsh atmosphere, with a cacophony of different sounds ricocheting around the environment. The challenges It is important to keep acoustic levels controlled within these spaces, especially in environments where people work. The combination of higher ceilings, exposed services, computer monitors and human voices create an impractical environment, increasing stress levels in the workplace. With exposed soffits, there isn’t a natural method for the architecture to control or reduce acoustic levels; essentially there isn’t any material for sound absorption. The ceiling is completely revealed to the human eye, with its services (the fans, ductwork and lighting) on view they can directly contribute to the background noise levels resulting in a poor acoustic performance of the space. What are the options? Many elements come into play when managing a space’s acoustics, including the way air-conditioning systems are designed. To create a peaceful, workable and visually-engaging environment, the right air-distribution system must be selected. Some environments often require tailor-made, bespoke solutions to minimise noisy acoustics; there are, for example, these kinds of air-distribution systems in acoustically-sensitive buildings such as the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, Germany. A concert hall on this scale demanded acoustically-advanced solutions; bespoke sound control was completely necessary in this location as noise could interfere with the artist’s focus and the paying audience’s enjoyment. But in terms of air-distribution systems for commercial spaces, products such as the Krantz AVACs system (Air Ventilation And Cooling system) keep acoustic interference to a minimum and can actively improve the space. These systems are designed to great detail and sophistication; they do not contain any moving mechanical parts so the systems cannot generate any noise. Through convective radiant panels, AVACs heat and cool without the use of a fan, completely removing the presence of disruptive sounds. All of the acoustic absorption can be hidden within the panelling, and they are acoustically-designed to reduce noise and improve the reverberation time of the space. More importantly, by selecting a multifunctional system which heats, cools and controls acoustics, the occupants’ comfort is not compromised. These systems distribute fresh air around a space, ensuring thermal and acoustic comfort, which is of particular significance to employee wellbeing and happiness. According to the World Health Organisation, it is estimated that the annual cost to Europe from excessive noise levels is £30 billion. This extortionate sum accounts for lost working days, healthcare costs and reduced productivity. Acoustic control is a complete design necessity in commercial workspaces. Although exposed ceilings are perfect for new build and future retrofits and make maintenance easier, it is important to take all elements into consideration when planning an acoustically-sound space. In terms of air-distribution products, there are sophisticated, multifunctional solutions available on the market which, simultaneously, control acoustics and heat and cool spaces. As commercial office spaces tend to be acoustically-demanding areas, flexible, state-of-art air-distribution technologies should be a priority, particularly as they can assure thermal comfort without any unwanted background noise inconveniencing the occupants. Visit: http://www.krantzuk.com
    Nov 06, 2018 0
  • 29 Oct 2018
    The world of acoustics can be baffling to the untrained. How many of us know the difference between attenuation or frequency for example? And what exactly is the sound absorption coefficient? Such is the complexity, acoustics is a subject that has been frequently described as a ‘dark art’, particularly when it relates to the application within buildings.  In a bid to demystify the definitions and notations for the non-acousticians amongst us, Stuart Colam, Acoustics Advisor of SAS International delves into some of the more basic principles and common acoustic terminologies. Sound absorption is a measure of how much sound is absorbed by a surface or object. When sound comes into contact with a surface, such as a wall or ceiling that is not particularly sound absorbing, it will be reflected back into the space. This can result in a room becoming noisy or reverberant because the sound is ‘trapped’ and continues to ‘bounce around’.  Excessive reverberation results in poor clarity of speech which is problematic in schools and transport hubs, for example. As more sound absorption is introduced into a space, the noise level will reduce and the sound will decay more quickly. A material’s sound absorption properties are described by the sound absorption coefficient (αs), which is a value between 0 and 1.  A value of 0 means total reflection while 1 means all sound is absorbed by the surface and not returned to the room.  Sound absorption of a surface is not the same for all frequencies of sound. For example, a porous surface like carpet is more efficient at absorbing mid and high pitched sound than low pitched sound.  The sound absorptive properties of a material are defined in standard BS EN ISO 11654:1997. Sound insulation (sometimes referred to as sound attenuation) describes the extent to which sound is limited when passing through a building element or elements.  The associated term sound reductionis used to define the drop in sound level after passing through an element such as glazing, partitioning or ceiling. This ‘single pass’ descriptor is abbreviated as Rwwhere ‘R’ refers to reduction and the subscript ‘w’ refers to weighted (a type of average). In short, the Rw figure is a simplified indication of the difference in sound level from one side of a building element to the other. Sound insulation is also quantified in terms of the reduction in level due to a flanking or a double pass route.  The abbreviation Dnfw is used which means a sound level difference via a flanking route that is normalised and weighted. It basically defines how much sound is blocked by passing through the same element twice, such as ceilings, which span more than one room and have a common void. The fact that acoustic terminology can be confusing to the uninitiated has made it increasingly important for specifiers to ask the right questions to ensure they have been completely understood.  Acoustic comfort in the built environment has become a concern to society and a challenge to designers. The acoustic performance of a space within a building will ultimately have a dramatic effect on the performance of tasks taking place in those spaces. Visit: https://sasintgroup.com
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • The world of acoustics can be baffling to the untrained. How many of us know the difference between attenuation or frequency for example? And what exactly is the sound absorption coefficient? Such is the complexity, acoustics is a subject that has been frequently described as a ‘dark art’, particularly when it relates to the application within buildings.  In a bid to demystify the definitions and notations for the non-acousticians amongst us, Stuart Colam, Acoustics Advisor of SAS International delves into some of the more basic principles and common acoustic terminologies. Sound absorption is a measure of how much sound is absorbed by a surface or object. When sound comes into contact with a surface, such as a wall or ceiling that is not particularly sound absorbing, it will be reflected back into the space. This can result in a room becoming noisy or reverberant because the sound is ‘trapped’ and continues to ‘bounce around’.  Excessive reverberation results in poor clarity of speech which is problematic in schools and transport hubs, for example. As more sound absorption is introduced into a space, the noise level will reduce and the sound will decay more quickly. A material’s sound absorption properties are described by the sound absorption coefficient (αs), which is a value between 0 and 1.  A value of 0 means total reflection while 1 means all sound is absorbed by the surface and not returned to the room.  Sound absorption of a surface is not the same for all frequencies of sound. For example, a porous surface like carpet is more efficient at absorbing mid and high pitched sound than low pitched sound.  The sound absorptive properties of a material are defined in standard BS EN ISO 11654:1997. Sound insulation (sometimes referred to as sound attenuation) describes the extent to which sound is limited when passing through a building element or elements.  The associated term sound reductionis used to define the drop in sound level after passing through an element such as glazing, partitioning or ceiling. This ‘single pass’ descriptor is abbreviated as Rwwhere ‘R’ refers to reduction and the subscript ‘w’ refers to weighted (a type of average). In short, the Rw figure is a simplified indication of the difference in sound level from one side of a building element to the other. Sound insulation is also quantified in terms of the reduction in level due to a flanking or a double pass route.  The abbreviation Dnfw is used which means a sound level difference via a flanking route that is normalised and weighted. It basically defines how much sound is blocked by passing through the same element twice, such as ceilings, which span more than one room and have a common void. The fact that acoustic terminology can be confusing to the uninitiated has made it increasingly important for specifiers to ask the right questions to ensure they have been completely understood.  Acoustic comfort in the built environment has become a concern to society and a challenge to designers. The acoustic performance of a space within a building will ultimately have a dramatic effect on the performance of tasks taking place in those spaces. Visit: https://sasintgroup.com
    Oct 29, 2018 0
  • 17 Oct 2018
    Flooring in food and beverage environments must be slip-resistant, easy to clean, durable and hygienic. These factors pose significant challenges to flooring designs; not only do most floors have to be purpose-built, they must be functional, meeting the strict criteria stipulated above. So what kinds of design considerations need to be made to ensure floors meet hygiene standards at the point of specification? Keeping it clean Floor finish is a key design consideration which should fulfill a variety of standards in the European Food Safety Directive. In food preparation areas, flooring must be seamless and easy to clean to meet hygiene levels, particularly as the spread of bacteria must be prevented in food environments at all times. Flooring must also be rinsed thoroughly to remove wash-down residues and any viruses, bacteria or pests that might be present. The finish should also be compatible with certain solvents, including cleaning agents, for the quality of the finish to remain uncompromised. A finish needs to be impermeable and made to a high specification otherwise employee and consumer safety could be put at risk. An excellent finish,often best provided by dense resin-rich systems, will prevent flaking, cracking and discolouration, making sure a floor looks professional and performs to its best. Drainage must be placed in correct areas and never under processing equipment as it obstructs important cleaning procedures. With the assistance of gravity, gradients ranging between 1:100 and 1:80 can be useful for moving any liquids towards drains. Efficient drainage systems are fundamental design considerations as they guarantee cleanliness is maintained at an optimum standard in food environments. Slip-resistanc Floor finishes must also be slip-resistant. Slips and trips are the most common causes of injury at work, accounting for an average 33% of total work injuries. Injuries tend to occur most often in areas where meat, fruit, vegetable, fat and other residues are present. To counteract this, companies can choose flooring that has an optimum combination of grip and wash-ability to keep employees safe and the facility supremely clean. The most common method of providing grip to new flooring is to apply aggregate onto the top of the wet surface before it hardens. Aggregate varies in size and type and can create numerous profiles. The most common types are silica, quartz, flint, and aluminum oxide. Durable designs Flooring in food environments must be able to withstand high-impact shock and abrasions, whether from large mechanical shocks or a drop of a heavy knife. In the food sector, floors will be put under a significant amount of stress given the nature of the environment, therefore cleanliness, durability and safety are complete priorities. Flooring solutions must also be compatible with cleaning agents to ensure longevity. Floors with low chemical resistance not only wear down faster, they also create traps for bacteria and viruses can hide.Be mindful of the volume of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) emitted by various floor, wall, ceiling, and other finishes. Flooring products with low VOC emission means air is kept clean, resulting in safer food production and a healthier working environment for employees. Finding the right flooring system which fulfills a variety of challenging design aspects is difficult, especially in relation to the food industry. With countless years of experience, Sikafloor® systems are created and installed to meet all of these challenging requirements thanks to their flexible design possibilities. From floor finish to drainage system, to durability, Sikafloor® has companies covered.  Visit: www.sika.co.uk
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Flooring in food and beverage environments must be slip-resistant, easy to clean, durable and hygienic. These factors pose significant challenges to flooring designs; not only do most floors have to be purpose-built, they must be functional, meeting the strict criteria stipulated above. So what kinds of design considerations need to be made to ensure floors meet hygiene standards at the point of specification? Keeping it clean Floor finish is a key design consideration which should fulfill a variety of standards in the European Food Safety Directive. In food preparation areas, flooring must be seamless and easy to clean to meet hygiene levels, particularly as the spread of bacteria must be prevented in food environments at all times. Flooring must also be rinsed thoroughly to remove wash-down residues and any viruses, bacteria or pests that might be present. The finish should also be compatible with certain solvents, including cleaning agents, for the quality of the finish to remain uncompromised. A finish needs to be impermeable and made to a high specification otherwise employee and consumer safety could be put at risk. An excellent finish,often best provided by dense resin-rich systems, will prevent flaking, cracking and discolouration, making sure a floor looks professional and performs to its best. Drainage must be placed in correct areas and never under processing equipment as it obstructs important cleaning procedures. With the assistance of gravity, gradients ranging between 1:100 and 1:80 can be useful for moving any liquids towards drains. Efficient drainage systems are fundamental design considerations as they guarantee cleanliness is maintained at an optimum standard in food environments. Slip-resistanc Floor finishes must also be slip-resistant. Slips and trips are the most common causes of injury at work, accounting for an average 33% of total work injuries. Injuries tend to occur most often in areas where meat, fruit, vegetable, fat and other residues are present. To counteract this, companies can choose flooring that has an optimum combination of grip and wash-ability to keep employees safe and the facility supremely clean. The most common method of providing grip to new flooring is to apply aggregate onto the top of the wet surface before it hardens. Aggregate varies in size and type and can create numerous profiles. The most common types are silica, quartz, flint, and aluminum oxide. Durable designs Flooring in food environments must be able to withstand high-impact shock and abrasions, whether from large mechanical shocks or a drop of a heavy knife. In the food sector, floors will be put under a significant amount of stress given the nature of the environment, therefore cleanliness, durability and safety are complete priorities. Flooring solutions must also be compatible with cleaning agents to ensure longevity. Floors with low chemical resistance not only wear down faster, they also create traps for bacteria and viruses can hide.Be mindful of the volume of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) emitted by various floor, wall, ceiling, and other finishes. Flooring products with low VOC emission means air is kept clean, resulting in safer food production and a healthier working environment for employees. Finding the right flooring system which fulfills a variety of challenging design aspects is difficult, especially in relation to the food industry. With countless years of experience, Sikafloor® systems are created and installed to meet all of these challenging requirements thanks to their flexible design possibilities. From floor finish to drainage system, to durability, Sikafloor® has companies covered.  Visit: www.sika.co.uk
    Oct 17, 2018 0
  • 20 Aug 2018
    Our interior spaces have evolved to such an extent ceilings have become a vitally important element in the design and acoustics of commercial space writes Phil Smith, Group Sales Director, SAS International. Gone are the days of dull and functional mineral fibreceiling tiles, and into the mix enters everything from polynodal ceilings to colourful baffles, open-cells to rafts – all of which create aesthetically pleasing features as well as offering a wide range of acoustic, thermal, fire and lighting options. Versatile, sustainable and visually-enigmatic, metal ceilings offer countless design possibilities. Lighting Finding a lighting system which is sustainable as well as seamless is prerequisite for modern commercial buildings. Open office spaces in particular are wide and expansive, requiring a sophisticated lighting design that satisfies the demands of developers and architects. Lighting must be cost-effective, environmentally-friendly and distinctive in equal measure - a challenging balance to strike in large spaces. Integrated-lighting delivers on efficiency and visuals, illuminating a space with its discreet, stunning finish and encouraging optimum light flow. LED lighting is a favoured, sustainable design choice delivering 90% of its peak output after operating for 60,000 hours. Integrated-lighting works in complete harmony with a variety of ceiling plans, including suspended ceilings and baffles. Integrated-lighting exemplifies how seamless, sustainable lighting can be achieved, showcasing the impressive innovation metal ceiling designs are capable of. Acoustic Clever acoustic technology is a key consideration in modern building design, especially as sound reverberation occurs in constructions made predominantly from glass and concrete. Open, agile working environments which enhance employee wellness are gaining in popularity – the days of small office spaces are numbered. Sweeping interiors are prominent in modern commercial buildings; therefore there is a growing demand for ceiling designs to suit these interiors, whilst still controlling sound travel. Although metal seems an unlikely product for ceiling design, it is in fact extremely successful at sound absorption. Metal ceilings assure excellent acoustic regulation, minimising echo and other occupational noise. Perforated metal ceiling tiles can be designed creatively depending on the level of acoustic control desired. These can be inlaid with mineral wool infills to provide acute sound control far more advanced than other ceiling materials. In a time where open-plan designs cannot be jeopardised by noise levels, metal ceilings are a worthy solution. Thermal Maintaining a comfortable temperature in commercial buildings has its challenges, particularly from sustainability and wellbeing perspectives. These two factors are key considerations in modern building design; if a building is too hot it affects employee productivity, and if too much heat is emitted it is costly for both the environment and those renting the spaces.   Thermal mass cooling is a desirable method which controls an interior space’s temperature. It operates most effectively in buildings made from dense materials such as concrete, as these materials guarantee optimum heat absorption. Sunlight is absorbed during the day to heat the building at night, in order to provide cool temperatures when people are at work. Baffles and rafts are examples of metal ceiling solutions which expose the concrete soffit to encourage heat absorption. Both solutions meet practical, aesthetic requirements, showcasing how metal ceilings can draw on unique, natural air conditioning systems to create beautiful, sustainable interior designs.  Fire Fire protection is a design imperative in modern interior spaces, whereby architects and developers must ensure their projects comply with current building regulations. Metal ceilings are naturally resistant to fire due to metal’s atomic structure. Although it is not recommended for suspended ceilings to protect a building’s larger structure, metal ceilings nonetheless provide a unique solution to fire-resistance. Whilst all metal ceilings must be certified in accordance with UK and European standards, the design still assures safety and protection from the plight of fire. Aesthetic Metal is a highly malleable element, meaning the aesthetic possibilities of metal ceilings are limitless. Offering cool, sleek designs which can be shaped to reflect, complement, or heighten a building’s identity, metal ceilings are a favourable choice for developers wanting to put their unique stamp on a project. Whether it is colourful baffles or a distinctive motif, bespoke metal ceilings guarantee complete design flexibility – even the most ambitious of designs can be made a reality. The days of conventional mineral fibreceiling tiles are quickly vanishing, as the rise of metal ceilings grows from strength to strength. It is no wonder metal ceilings are dominating the design world; their ability to combine design versatility, sustainability and striking aesthetics is a secure investment for any developer desiring a high-impact and beautiful interior space.  Visit: https://sasintgroup.com/metal-ceilings  
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Our interior spaces have evolved to such an extent ceilings have become a vitally important element in the design and acoustics of commercial space writes Phil Smith, Group Sales Director, SAS International. Gone are the days of dull and functional mineral fibreceiling tiles, and into the mix enters everything from polynodal ceilings to colourful baffles, open-cells to rafts – all of which create aesthetically pleasing features as well as offering a wide range of acoustic, thermal, fire and lighting options. Versatile, sustainable and visually-enigmatic, metal ceilings offer countless design possibilities. Lighting Finding a lighting system which is sustainable as well as seamless is prerequisite for modern commercial buildings. Open office spaces in particular are wide and expansive, requiring a sophisticated lighting design that satisfies the demands of developers and architects. Lighting must be cost-effective, environmentally-friendly and distinctive in equal measure - a challenging balance to strike in large spaces. Integrated-lighting delivers on efficiency and visuals, illuminating a space with its discreet, stunning finish and encouraging optimum light flow. LED lighting is a favoured, sustainable design choice delivering 90% of its peak output after operating for 60,000 hours. Integrated-lighting works in complete harmony with a variety of ceiling plans, including suspended ceilings and baffles. Integrated-lighting exemplifies how seamless, sustainable lighting can be achieved, showcasing the impressive innovation metal ceiling designs are capable of. Acoustic Clever acoustic technology is a key consideration in modern building design, especially as sound reverberation occurs in constructions made predominantly from glass and concrete. Open, agile working environments which enhance employee wellness are gaining in popularity – the days of small office spaces are numbered. Sweeping interiors are prominent in modern commercial buildings; therefore there is a growing demand for ceiling designs to suit these interiors, whilst still controlling sound travel. Although metal seems an unlikely product for ceiling design, it is in fact extremely successful at sound absorption. Metal ceilings assure excellent acoustic regulation, minimising echo and other occupational noise. Perforated metal ceiling tiles can be designed creatively depending on the level of acoustic control desired. These can be inlaid with mineral wool infills to provide acute sound control far more advanced than other ceiling materials. In a time where open-plan designs cannot be jeopardised by noise levels, metal ceilings are a worthy solution. Thermal Maintaining a comfortable temperature in commercial buildings has its challenges, particularly from sustainability and wellbeing perspectives. These two factors are key considerations in modern building design; if a building is too hot it affects employee productivity, and if too much heat is emitted it is costly for both the environment and those renting the spaces.   Thermal mass cooling is a desirable method which controls an interior space’s temperature. It operates most effectively in buildings made from dense materials such as concrete, as these materials guarantee optimum heat absorption. Sunlight is absorbed during the day to heat the building at night, in order to provide cool temperatures when people are at work. Baffles and rafts are examples of metal ceiling solutions which expose the concrete soffit to encourage heat absorption. Both solutions meet practical, aesthetic requirements, showcasing how metal ceilings can draw on unique, natural air conditioning systems to create beautiful, sustainable interior designs.  Fire Fire protection is a design imperative in modern interior spaces, whereby architects and developers must ensure their projects comply with current building regulations. Metal ceilings are naturally resistant to fire due to metal’s atomic structure. Although it is not recommended for suspended ceilings to protect a building’s larger structure, metal ceilings nonetheless provide a unique solution to fire-resistance. Whilst all metal ceilings must be certified in accordance with UK and European standards, the design still assures safety and protection from the plight of fire. Aesthetic Metal is a highly malleable element, meaning the aesthetic possibilities of metal ceilings are limitless. Offering cool, sleek designs which can be shaped to reflect, complement, or heighten a building’s identity, metal ceilings are a favourable choice for developers wanting to put their unique stamp on a project. Whether it is colourful baffles or a distinctive motif, bespoke metal ceilings guarantee complete design flexibility – even the most ambitious of designs can be made a reality. The days of conventional mineral fibreceiling tiles are quickly vanishing, as the rise of metal ceilings grows from strength to strength. It is no wonder metal ceilings are dominating the design world; their ability to combine design versatility, sustainability and striking aesthetics is a secure investment for any developer desiring a high-impact and beautiful interior space.  Visit: https://sasintgroup.com/metal-ceilings  
    Aug 20, 2018 0
  • 13 Aug 2018
    Each and every day, we experience a symphony of sounds to make our lives richer writes Stuart Colam, Acoustic Engineer, SAS International. From the dawn chorus to the soothing sounds of a gentle stream, and the less desirable noises such as machinery and a baby crying; the auditory stimulus around us is vast and elicits a specific response in our minds. But what specifically issound? How is it made? How does it travel? And why can we hear it? If air was visible then it might make it easier to explain, but sound is essentially bits of air vibrating. These air molecules vibrate and bump into each other, which in turn results in a local increase in air pressure. This chain reaction happens quickly, with the speed of sound in air being about 770mph. One way to illustrate this is by a slinky spring sending pulses backwards and forwards along its length. If nothing makes your eardrum move you will not hear anything. If there is no variation in the air pressure there is no sound.  Air pressure varies with height, decreasing with increasing altitude. In other words, there are fewer air molecules at 8000 metres than at sea level, for instance. This is why at the summit of Mount Everest the air is thinner.   Chain reaction Something needs to happen to make the air molecules move, i.e. for sound to be produced. When this occurs, one molecule will bump into another and this chain reaction results in the molecules being closer together than they would have been. An increase in pressure commences, as the molecules are essentially being squashed together and passing on vibrational energy; molecule to molecule.  The movement of air propagates and that’s what we call sound. As they bump into each other there is an increase and decrease in air pressure. This push and pull of sound waves reaches your ear and vibrates your eardrum. This ultimately results in electrical signals being sent to your brain and interpreted as sound.  Sound travels at different speeds depending on the medium. In steel, sound travels 17 times faster than in air, while in water it travels about four times faster. Think about when you are swimming in the sea and how hard it is to gauge where the noise of a boat engine is coming from. Sound travels more efficiently and faster through water than air. All sound needs is something to vibrate and bump into, which is why in space the absence of molecules makes it impossible to transmit any kind of sound. Sound in the built environment is sometimes overlooked and should be an important consideration.  When designing modern interiors there is much more than meets the eye – we must consider the ear as well.  It’s an issue that has become particularly important due to the proliferation of open and agile working environments. Sweeping interiors are prominent in today’s commercial buildings; therefore there is a growing demand for ceiling designs to suit these interiors, whilst still controlling sound travel.  It’s why metal ceilings have become the go-to solution that ensures these open-plan designs are not jeopardised by noise levels. A client might well place greater emphasis on aesthetics, but a good design must deliver effective sound management and an acoustic landscape which positively impacts on the productivity and wellbeing of building occupants. Visit:  https://sasintgroup.com
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Each and every day, we experience a symphony of sounds to make our lives richer writes Stuart Colam, Acoustic Engineer, SAS International. From the dawn chorus to the soothing sounds of a gentle stream, and the less desirable noises such as machinery and a baby crying; the auditory stimulus around us is vast and elicits a specific response in our minds. But what specifically issound? How is it made? How does it travel? And why can we hear it? If air was visible then it might make it easier to explain, but sound is essentially bits of air vibrating. These air molecules vibrate and bump into each other, which in turn results in a local increase in air pressure. This chain reaction happens quickly, with the speed of sound in air being about 770mph. One way to illustrate this is by a slinky spring sending pulses backwards and forwards along its length. If nothing makes your eardrum move you will not hear anything. If there is no variation in the air pressure there is no sound.  Air pressure varies with height, decreasing with increasing altitude. In other words, there are fewer air molecules at 8000 metres than at sea level, for instance. This is why at the summit of Mount Everest the air is thinner.   Chain reaction Something needs to happen to make the air molecules move, i.e. for sound to be produced. When this occurs, one molecule will bump into another and this chain reaction results in the molecules being closer together than they would have been. An increase in pressure commences, as the molecules are essentially being squashed together and passing on vibrational energy; molecule to molecule.  The movement of air propagates and that’s what we call sound. As they bump into each other there is an increase and decrease in air pressure. This push and pull of sound waves reaches your ear and vibrates your eardrum. This ultimately results in electrical signals being sent to your brain and interpreted as sound.  Sound travels at different speeds depending on the medium. In steel, sound travels 17 times faster than in air, while in water it travels about four times faster. Think about when you are swimming in the sea and how hard it is to gauge where the noise of a boat engine is coming from. Sound travels more efficiently and faster through water than air. All sound needs is something to vibrate and bump into, which is why in space the absence of molecules makes it impossible to transmit any kind of sound. Sound in the built environment is sometimes overlooked and should be an important consideration.  When designing modern interiors there is much more than meets the eye – we must consider the ear as well.  It’s an issue that has become particularly important due to the proliferation of open and agile working environments. Sweeping interiors are prominent in today’s commercial buildings; therefore there is a growing demand for ceiling designs to suit these interiors, whilst still controlling sound travel.  It’s why metal ceilings have become the go-to solution that ensures these open-plan designs are not jeopardised by noise levels. A client might well place greater emphasis on aesthetics, but a good design must deliver effective sound management and an acoustic landscape which positively impacts on the productivity and wellbeing of building occupants. Visit:  https://sasintgroup.com
    Aug 13, 2018 0
  • 18 Jul 2018
    Good quality daylight is a must for all schools and is widely recognised as one of the best ways to improve the happiness and wellbeing of building occupants. It can not only maximise student performance and productivity, but also help lower a building’s energy use. While natural lighting should always be the main source of lighting in schools, daylight illumination falls off with distance from windows. This is why rooflights are playing an increasingly important role in the provision of daylight within our schools.   The school environment is critical for promoting the wellbeing and resilience of children.  After all, children spend more than 7,800 hours at school throughout their education and a large amount of time in the classroom. Studies have shown that students felt at their best under rooflight or natural lighting, whilst teachers appreciate the low glare, good colour rendition and good behaviour demonstrated under the conditions created by rooflights. Daylighting the interior environment has a direct and positive impact on student and teacher performance. A study released by the Herschong Mahone Group, Daylighting in Schools, looked at the effect of daylighting and human performance. Analysing maths and reading test scores for more than 21,000 students from elementary schools in different regions of the western United States, the results found that throughout one year, students with the most daylight in their classrooms progressed 20% faster in maths and 26% faster in reading, compared to students who had less natural daylight in their classrooms. The pressure on schools due to the combination of shrinking budgets and ever-changing teaching requirements has meant that teaching spaces need to be flexible and adaptable. By introducing rooflights, including domes, vaults, pitched skylights or panel glazing systems, manufacturers such as Brett Martin Daylight Systems can help specifiers deliver educational spaces that encourage learning, concentration and positive student behavior, helping to meet the specific needs of each school project. Daylight dividends According to The Department for Education Building Design Bulletin 90, ‘The school designer should assume that daylight will be the prime means of lighting when it is available’. With daylight considered a fundamental design criterion, rooflights can help maximise the transmission of natural light to the interior of a school. Correct use of natural light can help achieve BREEAM credits for Health and Wellbeing – including daylighting and glare control – as well as Energy Saving. An important consideration when specifying rooflights is ensuring compliance with the differing national regulatory frameworks. For example, when meeting the requirements of Part L 2013, the minimum performance standard for rooflights is 2.2W/m²K, which means all rooflights should be at least triple skin. For a building to meet its CO2 emission targets, however, specifying rooflights with a U-Value of 1.8 W/m²K - to match the performance of the rooflights in the Notional Building - is recommended. Installing 15% of the roof area in rooflights is a practical solution to ensure the lighting levels within the building are adequate and will reduce the artificial lighting requirement and energy use, which in turn reduces a building’s CO2 emissions. Furthermore, the passive solar gain achieved can provide free heat to the building. In addition to new build construction, architects and designers refurbishing and upgrading many older school buildings can reap the benefits of rooflights. Brett Martin Daylight Systems has offered guidance and advice to specifiers wanting to transform courtyards into classrooms, provide canopies and covered walkways, replace existing rooflights and develop bespoke daylight solutions for halls and circulation areas, leisure facilities and classrooms according to each project. Seeing the light For an inspiring, new academy in the Kings Norton area of Birmingham, a continuous vault rooflight system and glass domes from Brett Martin Daylight Systems have helped to deliver exceptional levels of diffused daylight into communal areas of the school. Built as part of the Priority School Building Programme and serving approximately 800 students, the new ARK Kings Academy has replaced a previously outdated school building. The rooflights package included the Marvault system which provided the optimum combination of high light transmission and diffusion. Glazed in 16mm structured polycarbonate, the Marvaults could be easily assembled into runs of more than 23 metres in length. The economic, simple-to-fit, barrel vault system complemented the new facility’s high quality external aesthetic. In addition, the sleek and modern styling of Mardome Glass, a flat glass rooflight, will further maximise natural daylight into areas where windows cannot reach. “We have partnered with local authorities, architects and schools on a significant number of school projects across the UK and Ireland,” commented Tony Isaac, National Commercial Sales Manager at Brett Martin Daylight Systems. “Our technical advisors can provide expert, impartial advice on the design, specification and installation of rooflights and are on hand to advise on the regulatory demands for daylighting the school of the future.” Lighting plays an important part in any building, and in schools the lighting design should enable students and staff to carry out their particular activities easily and comfortably in attractive and stimulating surroundings. In addition to improving the energy performance of the school building, rooflights can be fundamental to ensuring that attention, concentration and overall pupil behaviour is maximised to enhance academic performance. Visit: http://www.brettmartin.com
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Good quality daylight is a must for all schools and is widely recognised as one of the best ways to improve the happiness and wellbeing of building occupants. It can not only maximise student performance and productivity, but also help lower a building’s energy use. While natural lighting should always be the main source of lighting in schools, daylight illumination falls off with distance from windows. This is why rooflights are playing an increasingly important role in the provision of daylight within our schools.   The school environment is critical for promoting the wellbeing and resilience of children.  After all, children spend more than 7,800 hours at school throughout their education and a large amount of time in the classroom. Studies have shown that students felt at their best under rooflight or natural lighting, whilst teachers appreciate the low glare, good colour rendition and good behaviour demonstrated under the conditions created by rooflights. Daylighting the interior environment has a direct and positive impact on student and teacher performance. A study released by the Herschong Mahone Group, Daylighting in Schools, looked at the effect of daylighting and human performance. Analysing maths and reading test scores for more than 21,000 students from elementary schools in different regions of the western United States, the results found that throughout one year, students with the most daylight in their classrooms progressed 20% faster in maths and 26% faster in reading, compared to students who had less natural daylight in their classrooms. The pressure on schools due to the combination of shrinking budgets and ever-changing teaching requirements has meant that teaching spaces need to be flexible and adaptable. By introducing rooflights, including domes, vaults, pitched skylights or panel glazing systems, manufacturers such as Brett Martin Daylight Systems can help specifiers deliver educational spaces that encourage learning, concentration and positive student behavior, helping to meet the specific needs of each school project. Daylight dividends According to The Department for Education Building Design Bulletin 90, ‘The school designer should assume that daylight will be the prime means of lighting when it is available’. With daylight considered a fundamental design criterion, rooflights can help maximise the transmission of natural light to the interior of a school. Correct use of natural light can help achieve BREEAM credits for Health and Wellbeing – including daylighting and glare control – as well as Energy Saving. An important consideration when specifying rooflights is ensuring compliance with the differing national regulatory frameworks. For example, when meeting the requirements of Part L 2013, the minimum performance standard for rooflights is 2.2W/m²K, which means all rooflights should be at least triple skin. For a building to meet its CO2 emission targets, however, specifying rooflights with a U-Value of 1.8 W/m²K - to match the performance of the rooflights in the Notional Building - is recommended. Installing 15% of the roof area in rooflights is a practical solution to ensure the lighting levels within the building are adequate and will reduce the artificial lighting requirement and energy use, which in turn reduces a building’s CO2 emissions. Furthermore, the passive solar gain achieved can provide free heat to the building. In addition to new build construction, architects and designers refurbishing and upgrading many older school buildings can reap the benefits of rooflights. Brett Martin Daylight Systems has offered guidance and advice to specifiers wanting to transform courtyards into classrooms, provide canopies and covered walkways, replace existing rooflights and develop bespoke daylight solutions for halls and circulation areas, leisure facilities and classrooms according to each project. Seeing the light For an inspiring, new academy in the Kings Norton area of Birmingham, a continuous vault rooflight system and glass domes from Brett Martin Daylight Systems have helped to deliver exceptional levels of diffused daylight into communal areas of the school. Built as part of the Priority School Building Programme and serving approximately 800 students, the new ARK Kings Academy has replaced a previously outdated school building. The rooflights package included the Marvault system which provided the optimum combination of high light transmission and diffusion. Glazed in 16mm structured polycarbonate, the Marvaults could be easily assembled into runs of more than 23 metres in length. The economic, simple-to-fit, barrel vault system complemented the new facility’s high quality external aesthetic. In addition, the sleek and modern styling of Mardome Glass, a flat glass rooflight, will further maximise natural daylight into areas where windows cannot reach. “We have partnered with local authorities, architects and schools on a significant number of school projects across the UK and Ireland,” commented Tony Isaac, National Commercial Sales Manager at Brett Martin Daylight Systems. “Our technical advisors can provide expert, impartial advice on the design, specification and installation of rooflights and are on hand to advise on the regulatory demands for daylighting the school of the future.” Lighting plays an important part in any building, and in schools the lighting design should enable students and staff to carry out their particular activities easily and comfortably in attractive and stimulating surroundings. In addition to improving the energy performance of the school building, rooflights can be fundamental to ensuring that attention, concentration and overall pupil behaviour is maximised to enhance academic performance. Visit: http://www.brettmartin.com
    Jul 18, 2018 0
  • 09 Jul 2018
    The introduction of SAS International’s new integrated lighting portfolio will change the terrain of ceiling design. Leading experts in the design and manufacture of metal ceilings, SAS’ commercial office systems offer seamless lighting integration with high performance acoustic control. With 50 years of experience to call upon, SAS International has a wealth of knowledge when it comes to delivering integrated lighting plans to clients. The new lighting portfolio ensures that all angles of a project are accounted for; whether related to design, service, quality, dependability or all of these factors, SAS sets the benchmark for ceiling design in the industry. SAS has performed extensive research into the science and technology of light in order to make its lighting systems efficient and safe. Polar diagrams were used to generate light intensity, enabling clients to predict how the light would work in their office space. As well as light intensity, light quality had to be considered, especially in terms of how the type of light relates to wellbeing. SAS manipulated the spectrum of colours emitted by a given light source (termed as Special Power Distribution) to ensure light selectively highlights certain colours, softening harsher colours and heightening duller ones. Colour relates to wellness, which is a key argument in terms of workplace happiness. SAS researched how particular receptors in our eyes are sensitive to particular colours, including the colour blue. SAS used this insight, which forms the basis of most Circadian Lighting Design strategies, to find the perfect lighting environment for the human eye, ensuring efficiency and safety in the workplace. The launch of its new lighting portfolio brings new revisions to older systems. The well-established SAS330 design features heavily in many commercial buildings, mainly because its unobtrusive aesthetic meets the stringent specification demands of office spaces. SAS has developed the popular design by releasing SAS330i, featuring a fully integrated lighting profile which has all the versatility of SAS330 with a touch more elegance. The system is available in linear and tartan grid forms, combining monolithic design and high performance in equal measure. The SAS330i system was recently installed during a refurbishment at 20 Canada Square, Canary Wharf. In the building’s previous renovation the SAS330 system had been fitted, therefore the client simply desired an upgrade from a product they knew and trusted. SAS330i was the perfect solution as it was the same product but with new LED lighting guaranteed to deliver more than 90% peak light output after 60,000 hours of operation. The new revisions to existing SAS systems showcase how the company is committed to delivering the best, most dependable features to its customers whether new or old. SAS International has made further additions to another trusted system, SAS740. Known as the most versatile of SAS’ linear ceilings, the aluminium system now incorporates lighting to offer an aesthetic entirely different to traditional suspended ceilings. With the same LED light sources as SAS330i, SAS740 is an ideal option for clients who want to put an alternative spin on suspended ceilings. Not only has SAS developed new lighting products, it has researched into the impact light has on the people working in the spaces they create. SAS is committed to bringing the best ceiling design and technology to its customers, where the new lighting portfolio is an unparalleled addition to its multitude of ceiling systems. Visit:  https://sasintgroup.com
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • The introduction of SAS International’s new integrated lighting portfolio will change the terrain of ceiling design. Leading experts in the design and manufacture of metal ceilings, SAS’ commercial office systems offer seamless lighting integration with high performance acoustic control. With 50 years of experience to call upon, SAS International has a wealth of knowledge when it comes to delivering integrated lighting plans to clients. The new lighting portfolio ensures that all angles of a project are accounted for; whether related to design, service, quality, dependability or all of these factors, SAS sets the benchmark for ceiling design in the industry. SAS has performed extensive research into the science and technology of light in order to make its lighting systems efficient and safe. Polar diagrams were used to generate light intensity, enabling clients to predict how the light would work in their office space. As well as light intensity, light quality had to be considered, especially in terms of how the type of light relates to wellbeing. SAS manipulated the spectrum of colours emitted by a given light source (termed as Special Power Distribution) to ensure light selectively highlights certain colours, softening harsher colours and heightening duller ones. Colour relates to wellness, which is a key argument in terms of workplace happiness. SAS researched how particular receptors in our eyes are sensitive to particular colours, including the colour blue. SAS used this insight, which forms the basis of most Circadian Lighting Design strategies, to find the perfect lighting environment for the human eye, ensuring efficiency and safety in the workplace. The launch of its new lighting portfolio brings new revisions to older systems. The well-established SAS330 design features heavily in many commercial buildings, mainly because its unobtrusive aesthetic meets the stringent specification demands of office spaces. SAS has developed the popular design by releasing SAS330i, featuring a fully integrated lighting profile which has all the versatility of SAS330 with a touch more elegance. The system is available in linear and tartan grid forms, combining monolithic design and high performance in equal measure. The SAS330i system was recently installed during a refurbishment at 20 Canada Square, Canary Wharf. In the building’s previous renovation the SAS330 system had been fitted, therefore the client simply desired an upgrade from a product they knew and trusted. SAS330i was the perfect solution as it was the same product but with new LED lighting guaranteed to deliver more than 90% peak light output after 60,000 hours of operation. The new revisions to existing SAS systems showcase how the company is committed to delivering the best, most dependable features to its customers whether new or old. SAS International has made further additions to another trusted system, SAS740. Known as the most versatile of SAS’ linear ceilings, the aluminium system now incorporates lighting to offer an aesthetic entirely different to traditional suspended ceilings. With the same LED light sources as SAS330i, SAS740 is an ideal option for clients who want to put an alternative spin on suspended ceilings. Not only has SAS developed new lighting products, it has researched into the impact light has on the people working in the spaces they create. SAS is committed to bringing the best ceiling design and technology to its customers, where the new lighting portfolio is an unparalleled addition to its multitude of ceiling systems. Visit:  https://sasintgroup.com
    Jul 09, 2018 0
  • 29 Jun 2018
    Floor installation in large commercial and industrial premises can be an extremely arduous challenge. Coordinating the project’s various elements such as specification, installation and aftercare requirements - not to mention obtaining a guarantee of the flooring system’s long-term performance - can involve a myriad of companies whose systems must be compatible with each other and the surface to which they are being applied. Single-point service Time is money in business, which is why every aspect of a commercial floor’s refurbishment must run as seamlessly as possible in order to minimise disruption to staff and production levels. This is achieved with fewer issues and - potentially - far less cost when a single supplier is responsible for the start-to-finish delivery of new flooring. This includes providing all the technical expertise, quality materials, workmanship and a single-point warranty as part of a service as seamless as the finished flooring itself. It’s an offering Sika has been successfully providing for clients far and wide for many years.   Each floor has a unique set of requirements: from traffic and mechanical wear to chemical resistance and temperature or fire resistance and rapid curing, to name but a few. A single-point supplier is able to negotiate that convoluted path of possible solutions to specify and provide precisely the right materials for the appropriate job, thus relieving the client of dealing with a crucial issue that will ultimately decide whether a project succeeds or fails.   This single point of contact approach simplifies logistics which is also good news for the installer. Instead of having to juggle the delivery of each separate flooring element from a number of suppliers, it’s possible to break down your shipment so you receive delivery of the correct product when you need it, keeping your build programme on track. And when you consider that most sites have limited space, it’s best to avoid all flooring materials arriving at the same time. With more than 40 years’ experience and a leader in the development of innovative flooring systems, Sika is well placed to provide specifiers and installers with a range of products that take into account design life, operational requirements, construction joints and installation details. No matter what the application, Sika can provide the one-stop-shop total flooring solution. On the level Sika can start with the substrate, with a new range of self-levelling cementitious compounds which can meet an almost unlimited combination of substrate requirements to create a perfectly flat finish each and every time. No matter what the material is below or whatever finish you require on top, the new portfolio of self-levelling compounds and primers are easy to apply, quick drying and have very low shrinkage, ready for a huge range of floor coverings. Used in conjunction with Sika’s Flooring range, these new Sika screeds enable the company to become one of the select few manufacturers to offer a total floor specification solution backed-up with a single guarantee for total build up. With the Schonox range of products allied to the rest of the Sika Screed range there is now five different new self-levelling compounds and three primers, allied to the rest of the comprehensive Sika range, there is now a Sika cementitious flooring solution for every type of non-industrial project – from homes to offices, schools and healthcare premises. Furthermore, you will find the perfect substrate for all the popular types of floor finish, including parquet, vinyl, linoleum and LVT or resin flooring. Thanks to Sika’s one-stop-shop solution, it’s never been to ensure your business is equipped with suitable, high-quality flooring that is installed to last. Visit: www.sika.co.uk.  
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Floor installation in large commercial and industrial premises can be an extremely arduous challenge. Coordinating the project’s various elements such as specification, installation and aftercare requirements - not to mention obtaining a guarantee of the flooring system’s long-term performance - can involve a myriad of companies whose systems must be compatible with each other and the surface to which they are being applied. Single-point service Time is money in business, which is why every aspect of a commercial floor’s refurbishment must run as seamlessly as possible in order to minimise disruption to staff and production levels. This is achieved with fewer issues and - potentially - far less cost when a single supplier is responsible for the start-to-finish delivery of new flooring. This includes providing all the technical expertise, quality materials, workmanship and a single-point warranty as part of a service as seamless as the finished flooring itself. It’s an offering Sika has been successfully providing for clients far and wide for many years.   Each floor has a unique set of requirements: from traffic and mechanical wear to chemical resistance and temperature or fire resistance and rapid curing, to name but a few. A single-point supplier is able to negotiate that convoluted path of possible solutions to specify and provide precisely the right materials for the appropriate job, thus relieving the client of dealing with a crucial issue that will ultimately decide whether a project succeeds or fails.   This single point of contact approach simplifies logistics which is also good news for the installer. Instead of having to juggle the delivery of each separate flooring element from a number of suppliers, it’s possible to break down your shipment so you receive delivery of the correct product when you need it, keeping your build programme on track. And when you consider that most sites have limited space, it’s best to avoid all flooring materials arriving at the same time. With more than 40 years’ experience and a leader in the development of innovative flooring systems, Sika is well placed to provide specifiers and installers with a range of products that take into account design life, operational requirements, construction joints and installation details. No matter what the application, Sika can provide the one-stop-shop total flooring solution. On the level Sika can start with the substrate, with a new range of self-levelling cementitious compounds which can meet an almost unlimited combination of substrate requirements to create a perfectly flat finish each and every time. No matter what the material is below or whatever finish you require on top, the new portfolio of self-levelling compounds and primers are easy to apply, quick drying and have very low shrinkage, ready for a huge range of floor coverings. Used in conjunction with Sika’s Flooring range, these new Sika screeds enable the company to become one of the select few manufacturers to offer a total floor specification solution backed-up with a single guarantee for total build up. With the Schonox range of products allied to the rest of the Sika Screed range there is now five different new self-levelling compounds and three primers, allied to the rest of the comprehensive Sika range, there is now a Sika cementitious flooring solution for every type of non-industrial project – from homes to offices, schools and healthcare premises. Furthermore, you will find the perfect substrate for all the popular types of floor finish, including parquet, vinyl, linoleum and LVT or resin flooring. Thanks to Sika’s one-stop-shop solution, it’s never been to ensure your business is equipped with suitable, high-quality flooring that is installed to last. Visit: www.sika.co.uk.  
    Jun 29, 2018 0
  • 20 Jun 2018
    In the EU, approximately 4.1 million patients acquire a Healthcare Associated Infection (HAI) each year and at least 37,000 patients die as a result writes David Hockley. Therefore, when it comes to floor selection in hospitals and medical establishments, maintaining the highest hygiene standards must take precedence when it comes to specification. SEAMLESS SOLUTION Examination rooms, MRI suites, operating rooms, inpatient rooms, nurses’ stations, administrative offices, restaurants and retail stores; each space in a healthcare facility has unique floor, ceiling and wall finish requirements based on the room’s purpose, occupants and equipment. In terms of flooring, a smooth, seamless, slip-resistant finish not only minimises the risk of trips and falls - the second most common cause of injuries in work spaces - it creates easy-to-clean surfaces where germs could fester. Additionally, seamless flooring materials and wall finishes have become an increasingly common specification in helping reduce the risk of transmission of infection in hospitals and medical environments.    To achieve this standard of building and the high quality, safe and efficient healthcare within, the quality and fitness-for-purpose of the healthcare estate is vital. The Department of Health’s HBN: 00-10 details the key requirements of every floor, wall and coating systems and divides them into three main performance themes – infection control, life cycle maintenance and fire performance. Sika has a range of high performance resin floor systems, including Sika Comfortfloor®, which are suitable for the most demanding healthcare environments.  The company’s Sikagard® range of seamless hygienic coatings for walls and ceilings can be specified to mirror design life requirements, construction joints, floor to wall connections, surface design and installation details to meet and exceed HBN 00-10 guidelines. FEEL-GOOD FACTOR Patient comfort is paramount in hospitals. Their increased satisfaction aids rehabilitation, hence the need for flooring that reduces noise – a by-product of a busy, public environment. Highly-durable flooring is also key to creating comfortable, ‘feel good’ spaces. Surfaces with excellent resistance to heavy equipment and footfall will remain looking smarter for longer and help create a positive, welcoming atmosphere and improve the healthcare ‘experience’ for staff, visitors and patients. Regular maintenance will help uphold a floor’s aesthetic properties as well as most importantly, help facilitate a healthy interior finish. The more durable the wear layer, the less chemicals and labour will be required for routine maintenance and surface renovations. In addition, flooring with greater resistance to ultraviolet (UV) radiation has greater colour stability and is likely to look better for longer than systems with low UV resistance that are more susceptible to fading. Visit: https://gbr.sika.com/flooring/en/sika-flooring.html
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • In the EU, approximately 4.1 million patients acquire a Healthcare Associated Infection (HAI) each year and at least 37,000 patients die as a result writes David Hockley. Therefore, when it comes to floor selection in hospitals and medical establishments, maintaining the highest hygiene standards must take precedence when it comes to specification. SEAMLESS SOLUTION Examination rooms, MRI suites, operating rooms, inpatient rooms, nurses’ stations, administrative offices, restaurants and retail stores; each space in a healthcare facility has unique floor, ceiling and wall finish requirements based on the room’s purpose, occupants and equipment. In terms of flooring, a smooth, seamless, slip-resistant finish not only minimises the risk of trips and falls - the second most common cause of injuries in work spaces - it creates easy-to-clean surfaces where germs could fester. Additionally, seamless flooring materials and wall finishes have become an increasingly common specification in helping reduce the risk of transmission of infection in hospitals and medical environments.    To achieve this standard of building and the high quality, safe and efficient healthcare within, the quality and fitness-for-purpose of the healthcare estate is vital. The Department of Health’s HBN: 00-10 details the key requirements of every floor, wall and coating systems and divides them into three main performance themes – infection control, life cycle maintenance and fire performance. Sika has a range of high performance resin floor systems, including Sika Comfortfloor®, which are suitable for the most demanding healthcare environments.  The company’s Sikagard® range of seamless hygienic coatings for walls and ceilings can be specified to mirror design life requirements, construction joints, floor to wall connections, surface design and installation details to meet and exceed HBN 00-10 guidelines. FEEL-GOOD FACTOR Patient comfort is paramount in hospitals. Their increased satisfaction aids rehabilitation, hence the need for flooring that reduces noise – a by-product of a busy, public environment. Highly-durable flooring is also key to creating comfortable, ‘feel good’ spaces. Surfaces with excellent resistance to heavy equipment and footfall will remain looking smarter for longer and help create a positive, welcoming atmosphere and improve the healthcare ‘experience’ for staff, visitors and patients. Regular maintenance will help uphold a floor’s aesthetic properties as well as most importantly, help facilitate a healthy interior finish. The more durable the wear layer, the less chemicals and labour will be required for routine maintenance and surface renovations. In addition, flooring with greater resistance to ultraviolet (UV) radiation has greater colour stability and is likely to look better for longer than systems with low UV resistance that are more susceptible to fading. Visit: https://gbr.sika.com/flooring/en/sika-flooring.html
    Jun 20, 2018 0
  • 18 May 2018
    What makes a great working space? Must it increase individual and group productivity or does it need to improve employee wellbeing? How do spaces strike a balance between private and open areas? All of these factors are important considerations when creating a positive, working environment. The current concern, however, is whether we can have visual privacy without compromising natural light. Natural sources of light maintain a healthy mind and disposition, making for a happy environment. Daylight has been found to be the number one wanted natural feature in the workplace. For this reason, workplaces are facing increasing demands to have open spaces which encourage light flow and prevent darkness. However, in busy offices large expanses aren’t always practical when it comes to managing acoustic and visual privacy levels. In essence the question is: how can natural light be utilised effectively when privacy is also a demand? The following solutions will offer some insight into how visual and acoustic privacy can be attained without losing light. Glass Partitions Double and single glazed partitions allow natural sources of light to pass through whilst maintaining privacy in the workplace. Not only can the glass partitions manage acoustics, they create private areas which encourage natural streams of light throughout the space. Get Creative Visual privacy can be achieved through a design which is manifested over a series of glass partitions. Whether it’s an applied film or a decorative interlayer, these designs not only look aesthetically pleasing, they control the amount of natural light in private spaces. The manifestation gives designers a chance to inject some creativity into the scheme whilst also ensuring natural light is maximised within the space. Go Technical In cases where lighting is important, Tech Panels are a great solution to control lighting levels in rooms. Tech Panels are an efficient way to manage ambient lighting where visual and acoustic privacy outweigh the need for natural light. The panels house various types of technology like air conditioning controls and room booking systems.  Switch It Some work spaces promote the flow of natural daylight but need to provide visual privacy on occasion. Switchable glass can provide visual privacy at the flick of a switch, turning the glass opaque. When you’ve finished just switch back, the glass goes clear and the flow of natural light is resumed.  Natural light improves mood, reduces stress and positively impacts circadian system functioning. Where better to employ the best use of natural light than in a hospital environment. The clever use of blinds within the glass cavity promotes the flow of light but also creates a private space when the blinds are closed.  Re-Plan Your Space Demountable walls offer more versatility as companies can manage the changing needs of the workforce. As visual and acoustic privacy needs develop and the workforce changes, workspaces can be adapted. Not only is this a cost effective solution but it’s also environmentally friendly. There are many solutions to ensuring the natural flow of light is maximised within private spaces. Find the right glass partition for the right space; get creative, reduce stress and enjoy the positive results on your happy workforce. Visit: https://optimasystems.com
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • What makes a great working space? Must it increase individual and group productivity or does it need to improve employee wellbeing? How do spaces strike a balance between private and open areas? All of these factors are important considerations when creating a positive, working environment. The current concern, however, is whether we can have visual privacy without compromising natural light. Natural sources of light maintain a healthy mind and disposition, making for a happy environment. Daylight has been found to be the number one wanted natural feature in the workplace. For this reason, workplaces are facing increasing demands to have open spaces which encourage light flow and prevent darkness. However, in busy offices large expanses aren’t always practical when it comes to managing acoustic and visual privacy levels. In essence the question is: how can natural light be utilised effectively when privacy is also a demand? The following solutions will offer some insight into how visual and acoustic privacy can be attained without losing light. Glass Partitions Double and single glazed partitions allow natural sources of light to pass through whilst maintaining privacy in the workplace. Not only can the glass partitions manage acoustics, they create private areas which encourage natural streams of light throughout the space. Get Creative Visual privacy can be achieved through a design which is manifested over a series of glass partitions. Whether it’s an applied film or a decorative interlayer, these designs not only look aesthetically pleasing, they control the amount of natural light in private spaces. The manifestation gives designers a chance to inject some creativity into the scheme whilst also ensuring natural light is maximised within the space. Go Technical In cases where lighting is important, Tech Panels are a great solution to control lighting levels in rooms. Tech Panels are an efficient way to manage ambient lighting where visual and acoustic privacy outweigh the need for natural light. The panels house various types of technology like air conditioning controls and room booking systems.  Switch It Some work spaces promote the flow of natural daylight but need to provide visual privacy on occasion. Switchable glass can provide visual privacy at the flick of a switch, turning the glass opaque. When you’ve finished just switch back, the glass goes clear and the flow of natural light is resumed.  Natural light improves mood, reduces stress and positively impacts circadian system functioning. Where better to employ the best use of natural light than in a hospital environment. The clever use of blinds within the glass cavity promotes the flow of light but also creates a private space when the blinds are closed.  Re-Plan Your Space Demountable walls offer more versatility as companies can manage the changing needs of the workforce. As visual and acoustic privacy needs develop and the workforce changes, workspaces can be adapted. Not only is this a cost effective solution but it’s also environmentally friendly. There are many solutions to ensuring the natural flow of light is maximised within private spaces. Find the right glass partition for the right space; get creative, reduce stress and enjoy the positive results on your happy workforce. Visit: https://optimasystems.com
    May 18, 2018 0
  • 14 May 2018
    There is no denying that the specification of metal ceilings has seen huge growth over the past 30 years. Metal is now the go-to ceiling material, superseding mineral fibre as the mainstay of modern workplace and infrastructure projects. An indispensable tool in the architect’s design arsenal, metal is a cost-effective and desirable material meeting contemporary interior demands. Metal creates visual impact, provides essential acoustic control and allows specifiers to add drama and confidence to an interior. So what is the secret to metal’s desirability and popularity as a ceiling material? Buildings sympathetic to the changing needs of occupiers is increasingly key. The rise of open plan offices with diverse, agile and collaborative spaces is the new norm. This requires designers to pioneer solutions that meet these changing occupier demands. As a reflective material, specifying a metal ceiling might seem counterintuitive for effective acoustic control. However, they provide excellent acoustic regulation, controlling reverberance and occupational noise. The level of acoustic absorption required will depend on the size of space, materials used and occupier density. A range of acoustic infill panels combined with appropriate perforations will effectively control unwanted noise in the majority of spaces. Depending on performance demands, metal ceilings will typically offer the benchmark ‘Class A’ acoustic absorption. Design flexibility In today’s changing spaces, manufacturers have had to develop multi-functional, yet beautiful solutions. Metal ceiling systems allow the designer curved, waveform, trapezoidal and even multi-faceted options. Transition and perimeter trims also offer the advantage of specifying different metal systems within one coherent and integrated design. In addition, metal ceilings can now incorporate a wide range of finishes and effects. Another advantage of metal ceilings is they work flexibly with partitioning allowing occupiers to rethink space. As traditional working practices change, the ability to adapt spaces cost-effectively is increasingly attractive. Maintenance and Durability A long-term investment for any project, metal maintains its appearance considerably longer than lower quality ceiling materials. Metal ceilings are impervious to many of the common factors you would associate with ceiling degradation. For example, a non-porous material, metal does not suffer from increased loading, sagging or unsightly stains from burst water pipes. Neither will dust and grime permeate the surface. This robust, hardwearing material maintains its appearance, offers ease of maintenance and full access to ceiling voids. Sustainability Steel and aluminium are the most widely recycled and reused materials in construction, the benchmark for waste reduction. These highly sustainable materials can be 100% recycled and re-used repeatedly without degradation of quality. Value A recent report by SAS International considered the long-term value of metal over other ceiling materials. When considering the increased life expectancy and ease of maintenance, metal demonstrated a 47% cost saving over a 20-year period. Service Integration Ceilings often combine with or discretely hide otherwise unsightly M&E services. Metal has always been an ideal material to integrate lighting and other services within a considered and functioning design. As part of a fire protection system*, metal ceilings can also accommodate additional services such as sprinklers and smoke detectors. However, as we move closer and closer to more intelligent and smarter buildings, the possibilities of integrating technology are endless. The world’s most sustainable office Metal allows architects the freedom to work in a material that offers performance and durability alongside aesthetics. However, it allows for far more than this. For example, take the petal leaf ceiling in the Foster + Partners designed Bloomberg building – the world’s most sustainable office. The Integrated Ceiling Panels (ICPs) combine acoustics, lighting and ambient temperature control. This played a crucial part in the building achieving a BREEAM Outstanding rating. Sustainability was an overarching objective for Michael Bloomberg from day one. He insisted on a considerate design from an architectural and performance perspective. For SAS’ Special Projects team - which oversaw the design, manufacture and eventual installation of the scheme onsite - this was a truly collaborative project and one that saw the company deliver 24,000m2 of SAS product. The stunning petal-shaped ceiling is aesthetically striking and plays a significant part in a building that pushes the boundaries of sustainability. In total, 3,916 Integrated Ceiling Panels (ICPs) were manufactured and installed with an impressive 2.5 million petals attached to them. The petal shape is not just an architectural feature; it has been optimised by specialist software modelling to give the best possible acoustic, thermal and light reflecting performance. The sculpted shape maximises surface area to improve heat exchange and optimises airflow to maximise convection. The slots allow air to pass through, which also improves performance. In short, and from a temperature control perspective, the design exceeds Category A Thermal comfort, the highest level achievable for an office. In terms of lighting, the role that LED lighting takes is a lesson in efficiency and sustainable design. The ICPs feature 500,000 LED lights and use 40% less energy than a typical office design. Due to the number of LEDs used, they run significantly below maximum output for the required light levels. They are even more efficient when cooled and operate with an increased life expectancy. The cumulative effect is an incredibly efficient design, consuming significantly less energy than is typical in office space. Acoustically, the design of the metal ceiling performs exceptionally well. The slotted petals and the perforations mean that the surface is sufficiently open to allow enough sound to come through to the mineral wool behind. Tested to Class A absorption levels, the ceiling impressively and precisely manages acoustic reverberation across the open plan offices. The ceiling is a first for the UK, if not globally, and unlikely to be achieved in any other material. Commenting on the project, Foster + Partners’ Michael Jones said: "Without the ceiling the sustainability wouldn't be what it is." Metal allows architects the freedom to work in a material that offers performance and durability alongside aesthetics. However, it allows for far more than this. For example, take the petal leaf ceiling in the Foster + Partners designed Bloomberg building – the world’s most sustainable office. The Integrated Ceiling Panels (ICPs) combine acoustics, lighting and ambient temperature control. This played a crucial part in the building achieving a BREEAM Outstanding rating. The ceiling is a first for the UK, if not globally, and unlikely to be achieved in any other material. Commenting on the project, Foster + Partners’ Michael Jones said: "Without the ceiling the sustainability wouldn't be what it is." When it comes to metal as a material for ceilings there are virtually no limits to what can be achieved; it is possible to turn an imaginative concept into a colourful and truly inspired design. By working closely with leading manufacturers such as SAS International, there is an opportunity to bring an architect’s vision to reality. Visit: https://sasintgroup.com/ * It is not recommended that a suspended ceiling be relied upon to protect the structural elements of a building. Metal ceiling systems should be tested and certified in accordance with UK and European standards.  
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • There is no denying that the specification of metal ceilings has seen huge growth over the past 30 years. Metal is now the go-to ceiling material, superseding mineral fibre as the mainstay of modern workplace and infrastructure projects. An indispensable tool in the architect’s design arsenal, metal is a cost-effective and desirable material meeting contemporary interior demands. Metal creates visual impact, provides essential acoustic control and allows specifiers to add drama and confidence to an interior. So what is the secret to metal’s desirability and popularity as a ceiling material? Buildings sympathetic to the changing needs of occupiers is increasingly key. The rise of open plan offices with diverse, agile and collaborative spaces is the new norm. This requires designers to pioneer solutions that meet these changing occupier demands. As a reflective material, specifying a metal ceiling might seem counterintuitive for effective acoustic control. However, they provide excellent acoustic regulation, controlling reverberance and occupational noise. The level of acoustic absorption required will depend on the size of space, materials used and occupier density. A range of acoustic infill panels combined with appropriate perforations will effectively control unwanted noise in the majority of spaces. Depending on performance demands, metal ceilings will typically offer the benchmark ‘Class A’ acoustic absorption. Design flexibility In today’s changing spaces, manufacturers have had to develop multi-functional, yet beautiful solutions. Metal ceiling systems allow the designer curved, waveform, trapezoidal and even multi-faceted options. Transition and perimeter trims also offer the advantage of specifying different metal systems within one coherent and integrated design. In addition, metal ceilings can now incorporate a wide range of finishes and effects. Another advantage of metal ceilings is they work flexibly with partitioning allowing occupiers to rethink space. As traditional working practices change, the ability to adapt spaces cost-effectively is increasingly attractive. Maintenance and Durability A long-term investment for any project, metal maintains its appearance considerably longer than lower quality ceiling materials. Metal ceilings are impervious to many of the common factors you would associate with ceiling degradation. For example, a non-porous material, metal does not suffer from increased loading, sagging or unsightly stains from burst water pipes. Neither will dust and grime permeate the surface. This robust, hardwearing material maintains its appearance, offers ease of maintenance and full access to ceiling voids. Sustainability Steel and aluminium are the most widely recycled and reused materials in construction, the benchmark for waste reduction. These highly sustainable materials can be 100% recycled and re-used repeatedly without degradation of quality. Value A recent report by SAS International considered the long-term value of metal over other ceiling materials. When considering the increased life expectancy and ease of maintenance, metal demonstrated a 47% cost saving over a 20-year period. Service Integration Ceilings often combine with or discretely hide otherwise unsightly M&E services. Metal has always been an ideal material to integrate lighting and other services within a considered and functioning design. As part of a fire protection system*, metal ceilings can also accommodate additional services such as sprinklers and smoke detectors. However, as we move closer and closer to more intelligent and smarter buildings, the possibilities of integrating technology are endless. The world’s most sustainable office Metal allows architects the freedom to work in a material that offers performance and durability alongside aesthetics. However, it allows for far more than this. For example, take the petal leaf ceiling in the Foster + Partners designed Bloomberg building – the world’s most sustainable office. The Integrated Ceiling Panels (ICPs) combine acoustics, lighting and ambient temperature control. This played a crucial part in the building achieving a BREEAM Outstanding rating. Sustainability was an overarching objective for Michael Bloomberg from day one. He insisted on a considerate design from an architectural and performance perspective. For SAS’ Special Projects team - which oversaw the design, manufacture and eventual installation of the scheme onsite - this was a truly collaborative project and one that saw the company deliver 24,000m2 of SAS product. The stunning petal-shaped ceiling is aesthetically striking and plays a significant part in a building that pushes the boundaries of sustainability. In total, 3,916 Integrated Ceiling Panels (ICPs) were manufactured and installed with an impressive 2.5 million petals attached to them. The petal shape is not just an architectural feature; it has been optimised by specialist software modelling to give the best possible acoustic, thermal and light reflecting performance. The sculpted shape maximises surface area to improve heat exchange and optimises airflow to maximise convection. The slots allow air to pass through, which also improves performance. In short, and from a temperature control perspective, the design exceeds Category A Thermal comfort, the highest level achievable for an office. In terms of lighting, the role that LED lighting takes is a lesson in efficiency and sustainable design. The ICPs feature 500,000 LED lights and use 40% less energy than a typical office design. Due to the number of LEDs used, they run significantly below maximum output for the required light levels. They are even more efficient when cooled and operate with an increased life expectancy. The cumulative effect is an incredibly efficient design, consuming significantly less energy than is typical in office space. Acoustically, the design of the metal ceiling performs exceptionally well. The slotted petals and the perforations mean that the surface is sufficiently open to allow enough sound to come through to the mineral wool behind. Tested to Class A absorption levels, the ceiling impressively and precisely manages acoustic reverberation across the open plan offices. The ceiling is a first for the UK, if not globally, and unlikely to be achieved in any other material. Commenting on the project, Foster + Partners’ Michael Jones said: "Without the ceiling the sustainability wouldn't be what it is." Metal allows architects the freedom to work in a material that offers performance and durability alongside aesthetics. However, it allows for far more than this. For example, take the petal leaf ceiling in the Foster + Partners designed Bloomberg building – the world’s most sustainable office. The Integrated Ceiling Panels (ICPs) combine acoustics, lighting and ambient temperature control. This played a crucial part in the building achieving a BREEAM Outstanding rating. The ceiling is a first for the UK, if not globally, and unlikely to be achieved in any other material. Commenting on the project, Foster + Partners’ Michael Jones said: "Without the ceiling the sustainability wouldn't be what it is." When it comes to metal as a material for ceilings there are virtually no limits to what can be achieved; it is possible to turn an imaginative concept into a colourful and truly inspired design. By working closely with leading manufacturers such as SAS International, there is an opportunity to bring an architect’s vision to reality. Visit: https://sasintgroup.com/ * It is not recommended that a suspended ceiling be relied upon to protect the structural elements of a building. Metal ceiling systems should be tested and certified in accordance with UK and European standards.  
    May 14, 2018 0
  • 22 Mar 2018
    Here’s a fact to chew over: did you know, that three out of four customers said they would never return to a restaurant with a dirty washroom? The survey conducted by Harris Poll shows how highly we value the cleanliness of sanitary facilities in the public arena. Is it because, in our minds at least, the state of the toilets say so much about the state of the business in which they’re installed? Let’s face it, if hygiene standards are falling short in a restaurant’s washroom, it’s not unfair to assume the same slovenly attitude to health and safety applies throughout the establishment, particularly the kitchen. Drips lead to trips That’s the problem, you see - first impressions count for so much, and can take forever to reverse if initial feelings aren’t good. It’s why businesses of all type should pay close attention to the design and upkeep of their washroom. From a health and safety point of view, wet floors caused by splash-happy taps and basins are an obvious hazard, as well as an eyesore. We live in litigious times, and any fall or trip on a surface where maintenance standards have slipped could result in a compensation claim costing thousands of pounds. This is evidenced in a 2015 report by insurance firm AXA, which found slips and trips accounted for half of UK claims from the public against retailers. Thanks to the onslaught of social media and websites such as Trip Advisor, word of a company’s lax, rather than luxurious rest room offering is able to spread faster than before. This could lead to a raft of customers washing their hands of a business without even seeing it. Dirty handtowels, overflowing bins, chipped or soiled basins, poor lighting, cubicles where privacy is compromised due to a faulty lock or damaged panel; a few little failures can add-up to a hugely unpleasant washroom experience. But customers should not be the only beneficiaries of a smart, comfortable washroom. Well-fitted and functioning toilet areas are found to increase staff wellbeing in offices and businesses. And happy employees means better productivity due to less time being lost to sick days caused by mental and physical stresses and strains. Design to inspire Perhaps, eventually, the question as to why companies should take the greatest care with the design and upkeep of their washrooms comes down to a matter of pride. Every aspect of a commercial premises, from the ‘ladies’ and ‘gents’ to theboardroom, should inspireconfidence in visitors that the company they’re dealing with employs the highest possible standards at all levels of the business. As soon as we are old enough to understand, we are urged not to judge a book by its cover. Yet our judgement on businesses we visit is proven to be affected by the cleanliness of the washrooms they keep. Therefore, a smart, hygienic rest room could be considered to be among a company’s most valuable asserts. Visit: http://www.interfixgroup.com/
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Here’s a fact to chew over: did you know, that three out of four customers said they would never return to a restaurant with a dirty washroom? The survey conducted by Harris Poll shows how highly we value the cleanliness of sanitary facilities in the public arena. Is it because, in our minds at least, the state of the toilets say so much about the state of the business in which they’re installed? Let’s face it, if hygiene standards are falling short in a restaurant’s washroom, it’s not unfair to assume the same slovenly attitude to health and safety applies throughout the establishment, particularly the kitchen. Drips lead to trips That’s the problem, you see - first impressions count for so much, and can take forever to reverse if initial feelings aren’t good. It’s why businesses of all type should pay close attention to the design and upkeep of their washroom. From a health and safety point of view, wet floors caused by splash-happy taps and basins are an obvious hazard, as well as an eyesore. We live in litigious times, and any fall or trip on a surface where maintenance standards have slipped could result in a compensation claim costing thousands of pounds. This is evidenced in a 2015 report by insurance firm AXA, which found slips and trips accounted for half of UK claims from the public against retailers. Thanks to the onslaught of social media and websites such as Trip Advisor, word of a company’s lax, rather than luxurious rest room offering is able to spread faster than before. This could lead to a raft of customers washing their hands of a business without even seeing it. Dirty handtowels, overflowing bins, chipped or soiled basins, poor lighting, cubicles where privacy is compromised due to a faulty lock or damaged panel; a few little failures can add-up to a hugely unpleasant washroom experience. But customers should not be the only beneficiaries of a smart, comfortable washroom. Well-fitted and functioning toilet areas are found to increase staff wellbeing in offices and businesses. And happy employees means better productivity due to less time being lost to sick days caused by mental and physical stresses and strains. Design to inspire Perhaps, eventually, the question as to why companies should take the greatest care with the design and upkeep of their washrooms comes down to a matter of pride. Every aspect of a commercial premises, from the ‘ladies’ and ‘gents’ to theboardroom, should inspireconfidence in visitors that the company they’re dealing with employs the highest possible standards at all levels of the business. As soon as we are old enough to understand, we are urged not to judge a book by its cover. Yet our judgement on businesses we visit is proven to be affected by the cleanliness of the washrooms they keep. Therefore, a smart, hygienic rest room could be considered to be among a company’s most valuable asserts. Visit: http://www.interfixgroup.com/
    Mar 22, 2018 0
  • 01 Dec 2017
    Using high performance insulation within the fabric of a building is key to meeting increased energy efficiency demands, but as we look to enhance the airtightness of homes, are we paying enough attention to other aspects including ventilation, heating, detailing and the quality of the installation? Overheating and poor air quality has seen wide and often simplistic coverage in the press, including even suggestions of deaths caused by overheating. This has led some to erroneously put the blame on insulation. However, despite the fact that overheating can be a problem, particularly poorly ventilated loft spaces, it is a more complex issue than insulation alone, and well-installed insulation could even help reduce overheating if a whole-house approach to building design is employed. As is so often the case, an intelligent solution to the problem will need to consider a range of factors. It is a given that the more insulation you have, the heat from solar gain will last longer, and if you don’t have adequate ventilation and design to limit internal and external heat gains, then of course that heat will stay in the building. But it’s not the fault of the insulation. Blaming insulation for doing its job is a bit like blaming an oven for global warming if someone leaves the door open. Ventilation provides a means by which moisture from activities such as cooking and bathing, as well as breathing, can be expelled and replaced by fresh outside air,. At the same it will also remove or dilute the odours and pollutants that can accumulate in a building, so that the indoor environment remains healthy for the occupants. An under-ventilated property can experience condensation issues and problems with air quality. An over-ventilated dwelling is usually less efficient, as lost heated air is replaced with colder unheated air from outside (with associated costs and carbon emissions from heating it). Warm and airy A good ventilation system will ensure the right amount of air moves consistently through the house and is vital in kitchens and bathrooms.  Excessive moisture in the air can lead to condensation and mould growth where it condenses on colder surfaces, not just in the bathroom itself but throughout the rest of the house.  A ventilation system will remove and dilute the odours and pollutants that can accumulate so that the indoor environment remains healthy for building occupants. Often the only form of ventilation in older homes is through natural leakage such as around doors and windows, or by opening windows, but these are uncontrolled with either too much, or too little, ventilation. When retrofitted, the airtightness of a building may increase through sealing up uncontrolled ventilation pathways, so it is essential that alongside any changes to the building fabric, an adequate ventilation strategy be considered.   Some designers question whether natural ventilation can provide sufficient ventilation in more airtight dwellings, which is why they often specify mechanical ventilation for more airtight homes due to concerns that natural ventilation will not perform adequately. A mechanical ventilation system can also include heat recovery, so that the heat lost with expelled air is in part recovered to heat the incoming cooler replacement air. Ventilation should ideally also come ‘out of the box’, with the capability to ramp-up and down operation without the need for user intervention as demands and needs change. Damp and mould A 2016 study by The Fraunhofer Institute for Building Physics IBP looking at mould and dampness in European homes, concluded that “Enabling easy natural, automated or mechanical demand-related ventilation in buildings helps prevent development of damp and mould.” Mould-related damage was noted in the report as being frequent in Germany (10% of building damage being mould related), but levels were noted as being better (lower) for modernised buildings. The report noted that for those modernised buildings (after 1995) 35% of damage occurs due to insufficient thermal insulation; 33% due to insufficient ventilation; 22% due to defective installations and trapped moisture and 10% due to problems in sanitary /other areas. So from the report, it is clear that adequate insulation is the most important factor to help reduce moisture problems, but close behind is adequate ventilation provision. Whole-house approach  But it is not only insulation and ventilation; house design means taking the time on the details. For example, ensuring junctions are appropriately designed and constructed, as this makes a significant contribution to reducing heat loss. Thermal bridges occur at breaks in insulation at junctions and openings causing heat loss which ultimately leads to a drop in internal temperature and an increased demand for heating. This can increase the risk of surface condensation and mould growth. Good design and workmanship necessitates a proper level of quality assurance throughout design and construction and good detailing is particularly important for new-build and retrofit alike. The Government’s Fabric Energy Efficiency Standard (FEES) has grappled with the issue and puts the focus on the whole energy performance of new houses in the context of user comfort, emphasising the importance of a robust and well-designed fabric, which has good levels of air-tightness coupled with an appropriate ventilation strategy and incorporates measures to minimise thermal bridging. There are many issues beyond the fabric of the building to consider when it comes to tackling overheating in housing, including its ventilation strategy, orientation and initial choice of location. While the issue remains a challenge for the industry, the problems are not insurmountable. If we want more thermally-efficient building envelopes as well as comfortable buildings, then we need to aim for a fabric-first approach which includes insulation such as high-performance PIR, however, at the same time, we need to design and build in a way that takes into account the effect of both external and internal heat gains that can lead to overheating.                                                   
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Using high performance insulation within the fabric of a building is key to meeting increased energy efficiency demands, but as we look to enhance the airtightness of homes, are we paying enough attention to other aspects including ventilation, heating, detailing and the quality of the installation? Overheating and poor air quality has seen wide and often simplistic coverage in the press, including even suggestions of deaths caused by overheating. This has led some to erroneously put the blame on insulation. However, despite the fact that overheating can be a problem, particularly poorly ventilated loft spaces, it is a more complex issue than insulation alone, and well-installed insulation could even help reduce overheating if a whole-house approach to building design is employed. As is so often the case, an intelligent solution to the problem will need to consider a range of factors. It is a given that the more insulation you have, the heat from solar gain will last longer, and if you don’t have adequate ventilation and design to limit internal and external heat gains, then of course that heat will stay in the building. But it’s not the fault of the insulation. Blaming insulation for doing its job is a bit like blaming an oven for global warming if someone leaves the door open. Ventilation provides a means by which moisture from activities such as cooking and bathing, as well as breathing, can be expelled and replaced by fresh outside air,. At the same it will also remove or dilute the odours and pollutants that can accumulate in a building, so that the indoor environment remains healthy for the occupants. An under-ventilated property can experience condensation issues and problems with air quality. An over-ventilated dwelling is usually less efficient, as lost heated air is replaced with colder unheated air from outside (with associated costs and carbon emissions from heating it). Warm and airy A good ventilation system will ensure the right amount of air moves consistently through the house and is vital in kitchens and bathrooms.  Excessive moisture in the air can lead to condensation and mould growth where it condenses on colder surfaces, not just in the bathroom itself but throughout the rest of the house.  A ventilation system will remove and dilute the odours and pollutants that can accumulate so that the indoor environment remains healthy for building occupants. Often the only form of ventilation in older homes is through natural leakage such as around doors and windows, or by opening windows, but these are uncontrolled with either too much, or too little, ventilation. When retrofitted, the airtightness of a building may increase through sealing up uncontrolled ventilation pathways, so it is essential that alongside any changes to the building fabric, an adequate ventilation strategy be considered.   Some designers question whether natural ventilation can provide sufficient ventilation in more airtight dwellings, which is why they often specify mechanical ventilation for more airtight homes due to concerns that natural ventilation will not perform adequately. A mechanical ventilation system can also include heat recovery, so that the heat lost with expelled air is in part recovered to heat the incoming cooler replacement air. Ventilation should ideally also come ‘out of the box’, with the capability to ramp-up and down operation without the need for user intervention as demands and needs change. Damp and mould A 2016 study by The Fraunhofer Institute for Building Physics IBP looking at mould and dampness in European homes, concluded that “Enabling easy natural, automated or mechanical demand-related ventilation in buildings helps prevent development of damp and mould.” Mould-related damage was noted in the report as being frequent in Germany (10% of building damage being mould related), but levels were noted as being better (lower) for modernised buildings. The report noted that for those modernised buildings (after 1995) 35% of damage occurs due to insufficient thermal insulation; 33% due to insufficient ventilation; 22% due to defective installations and trapped moisture and 10% due to problems in sanitary /other areas. So from the report, it is clear that adequate insulation is the most important factor to help reduce moisture problems, but close behind is adequate ventilation provision. Whole-house approach  But it is not only insulation and ventilation; house design means taking the time on the details. For example, ensuring junctions are appropriately designed and constructed, as this makes a significant contribution to reducing heat loss. Thermal bridges occur at breaks in insulation at junctions and openings causing heat loss which ultimately leads to a drop in internal temperature and an increased demand for heating. This can increase the risk of surface condensation and mould growth. Good design and workmanship necessitates a proper level of quality assurance throughout design and construction and good detailing is particularly important for new-build and retrofit alike. The Government’s Fabric Energy Efficiency Standard (FEES) has grappled with the issue and puts the focus on the whole energy performance of new houses in the context of user comfort, emphasising the importance of a robust and well-designed fabric, which has good levels of air-tightness coupled with an appropriate ventilation strategy and incorporates measures to minimise thermal bridging. There are many issues beyond the fabric of the building to consider when it comes to tackling overheating in housing, including its ventilation strategy, orientation and initial choice of location. While the issue remains a challenge for the industry, the problems are not insurmountable. If we want more thermally-efficient building envelopes as well as comfortable buildings, then we need to aim for a fabric-first approach which includes insulation such as high-performance PIR, however, at the same time, we need to design and build in a way that takes into account the effect of both external and internal heat gains that can lead to overheating.                                                   
    Dec 01, 2017 0
  • 10 Nov 2017
    Noise is all around us and can interfere with our working efficiency by being an annoyance and causing stress. Good or bad, the acoustical environment in buildings is ultimately a result of design and so it’s never been more important for architects and building engineers to silence a well-known source of undesirable noise and vibration – heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems. A fundamental element of buildings across a wide range of sectors, building services equipment can create unwanted noise problems leading to workplaces that are uncomfortable and less productive. Noise sources can include everything from fans to variable air volume systems; grilles and diffusers to roof-top units; fan coil units to chillers, compressors and condensers; pumps and stand-by generators; boilers and cooling towers. As we create more energy efficient and airtight buildings, this has a knock-on impact both thermally and acoustically. However, this further drives the need for ventilation and thermal management, and this required airflow can then introduce a noise issue of its own, both break-out and in-line noise. Break-out noise is where sound transmits through the wall of ducting and into the room through which the ductwork is travelling.  In-line (duct-borne) noise or noise traveling through ductwork can create unwelcome high levels of background noise if not properly managed. This noise can raise stress levels in the workplace, harming communication and concentration and increasing fatigue. A poorly designed acoustic solution can potentially exacerbate issues by causing regenerative noise, and negatively affecting airflow. There’s also the issue of cross-talk, whereby speech privacy is compromised by room-to-room transmission via the ventilation system. Air velocity within a duct system is another important element as it influences the noise levels significantly. Regenerated noise can be created by transition pieces, bends, dampers, grilles and diffusers. Regenerated noise can be reduced by limiting the air velocities within the duct system; by easing transitions in the system design and by ensuring that internal acoustic treatments contain chamfers where appropriate to reduce the turbulent effect of sudden changes in opening or direction. When two adjacent or closely positioned rooms are sharing the same ductwork, sound travels within ducts and will decrease the room-to-room sound insulation dramatically. This, will of, course impact speech privacy and negatively affect the working environment through disturbance. Vibration and sound energy from HVAC operation will transmit to a structure and be redistributed around a building.  By isolating your systems from the structure before it has a chance to vibrate, through isolation mounts or decoupled through flexible linkages from the structure via the noise source and the duct runs, another path of noise has been reduced through physical materials. Silent treatment The SIDERISE range of noise control solutions can be tailored to meet project -specific design and performance requirements such as the octave band requirements of your HVAC unit, thereby delivering the optimum acoustic performance at the minimum cost. Manufactured from high performance open cell acoustic foam, parts are designed to ease airflow and lower regenerative noise, and the lining treatment is engineered to deliver the lowest possible Sound Power (LwA). These acoustic solutions give exceptional noise absorption, yielding reduced airborne noise at inlets and outlets, and lowering case radiated noise.  Lining kits are Class 0 fire rated to EN 13501-1 to comply with Building Regulations Approved Document B. Supplied as an easy-to-fit, pre-cut kit and backed with high performance modified acrylic adhesive for rapid installation on a manufacturer’s assembly-line, these noise control solutions offer exceptional performance for fan coil units, air handling units and heat exchangers. Existing buildings can benefit too. If there is a ductwork ‘in-line’ noise problem, open-cell melamine resin foams are an easy and cost-efficient way to introduce noise control.  At the terminal ends, where air is being delivered to the occupied spaces, you can remove the grille and simply install the foam inserts. Inherently flexible, the inserts are ideally suited to retro-fit installation, particularly in situations where there is minimal access and/or where less disruption is a consideration.  For ‘duct noise breakout’ another solution, which contributes well to quiet air-handling, are externally applied acoustic treatments. Easy to install without disturbing the HVAC system, this solution reduces break-out noise by providing a combination of acoustic absorption and sound reduction via inherently damped flexible mass membrane. While it’s difficult to escape sound completely, by proactively considering potential acoustic problems at the design stage of a HVAC system and adding sound control measures to minimise unwanted noise, building owners will have a far quieter system, which in the end, can go a long way towards promoting comfort and productivity.   By Graham Laws – Business Development Officer, Siderise Visit: www.siderise.com
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Noise is all around us and can interfere with our working efficiency by being an annoyance and causing stress. Good or bad, the acoustical environment in buildings is ultimately a result of design and so it’s never been more important for architects and building engineers to silence a well-known source of undesirable noise and vibration – heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems. A fundamental element of buildings across a wide range of sectors, building services equipment can create unwanted noise problems leading to workplaces that are uncomfortable and less productive. Noise sources can include everything from fans to variable air volume systems; grilles and diffusers to roof-top units; fan coil units to chillers, compressors and condensers; pumps and stand-by generators; boilers and cooling towers. As we create more energy efficient and airtight buildings, this has a knock-on impact both thermally and acoustically. However, this further drives the need for ventilation and thermal management, and this required airflow can then introduce a noise issue of its own, both break-out and in-line noise. Break-out noise is where sound transmits through the wall of ducting and into the room through which the ductwork is travelling.  In-line (duct-borne) noise or noise traveling through ductwork can create unwelcome high levels of background noise if not properly managed. This noise can raise stress levels in the workplace, harming communication and concentration and increasing fatigue. A poorly designed acoustic solution can potentially exacerbate issues by causing regenerative noise, and negatively affecting airflow. There’s also the issue of cross-talk, whereby speech privacy is compromised by room-to-room transmission via the ventilation system. Air velocity within a duct system is another important element as it influences the noise levels significantly. Regenerated noise can be created by transition pieces, bends, dampers, grilles and diffusers. Regenerated noise can be reduced by limiting the air velocities within the duct system; by easing transitions in the system design and by ensuring that internal acoustic treatments contain chamfers where appropriate to reduce the turbulent effect of sudden changes in opening or direction. When two adjacent or closely positioned rooms are sharing the same ductwork, sound travels within ducts and will decrease the room-to-room sound insulation dramatically. This, will of, course impact speech privacy and negatively affect the working environment through disturbance. Vibration and sound energy from HVAC operation will transmit to a structure and be redistributed around a building.  By isolating your systems from the structure before it has a chance to vibrate, through isolation mounts or decoupled through flexible linkages from the structure via the noise source and the duct runs, another path of noise has been reduced through physical materials. Silent treatment The SIDERISE range of noise control solutions can be tailored to meet project -specific design and performance requirements such as the octave band requirements of your HVAC unit, thereby delivering the optimum acoustic performance at the minimum cost. Manufactured from high performance open cell acoustic foam, parts are designed to ease airflow and lower regenerative noise, and the lining treatment is engineered to deliver the lowest possible Sound Power (LwA). These acoustic solutions give exceptional noise absorption, yielding reduced airborne noise at inlets and outlets, and lowering case radiated noise.  Lining kits are Class 0 fire rated to EN 13501-1 to comply with Building Regulations Approved Document B. Supplied as an easy-to-fit, pre-cut kit and backed with high performance modified acrylic adhesive for rapid installation on a manufacturer’s assembly-line, these noise control solutions offer exceptional performance for fan coil units, air handling units and heat exchangers. Existing buildings can benefit too. If there is a ductwork ‘in-line’ noise problem, open-cell melamine resin foams are an easy and cost-efficient way to introduce noise control.  At the terminal ends, where air is being delivered to the occupied spaces, you can remove the grille and simply install the foam inserts. Inherently flexible, the inserts are ideally suited to retro-fit installation, particularly in situations where there is minimal access and/or where less disruption is a consideration.  For ‘duct noise breakout’ another solution, which contributes well to quiet air-handling, are externally applied acoustic treatments. Easy to install without disturbing the HVAC system, this solution reduces break-out noise by providing a combination of acoustic absorption and sound reduction via inherently damped flexible mass membrane. While it’s difficult to escape sound completely, by proactively considering potential acoustic problems at the design stage of a HVAC system and adding sound control measures to minimise unwanted noise, building owners will have a far quieter system, which in the end, can go a long way towards promoting comfort and productivity.   By Graham Laws – Business Development Officer, Siderise Visit: www.siderise.com
    Nov 10, 2017 0
  • 19 Oct 2017
    Productivity, well-being and happy employees are all key considerations in the ideal office environment. With noise being high on the list of annoyances in the workplace and a cause of work-related stress, how can designers and specifiers create a quieter office place, improve privacy and deliver exceptional floor-to-floor, room-to-room sound reductions?   The office has changed quite dramatically over the years, with informal, open-plan and flexible spaces replacing the more formal enclosed and private rooms of the past.  This flexible working ends up having a knock-on effect - increasing the level of occupation, upping noise levels, which in turn hinders productivity.  Acoustics, like lighting, should be an integral part of good architectural design and when it is done well, is a significant contributor to the well-being and productivity of the office employee.  From the outset it’s important to use materials which will achieve good acoustics and solve any sound transmission issues. The designer must also not only satisfy the legislative requirements, but the client or end user’s ‘wish list’ of acoustic behaviour. Proper acoustics, the unobtrusive sum of all sounds, is the key objective for a comfortable environment. Cross-talk The sound separation achieved between adjoining rooms or offices is often severely limited by ‘cross-talk’ via a common void. This common problem occurs when the transmission loss associated with this sound path is less than that provided by the primary separating element, for example, a partition.  Voids affected by ‘cross-talk’ include:  * Suspended ceiling voids at partitions,  * Access floor voids below partitions  * Cavities at floor slab edges to façades. To effectively reduce sound transmission or ‘cross-talk’ via hidden voids which sit above office partitions, ceiling void barriers should be installed directly in-line with the partition. The Sound Reduction Index or SRI (Rw) of the cavity barrier is not normally required to equal that of the partition itself. This is due to the presence of other obstructions in the room-to-room sound path such as the suspended ceiling. The individual performance of the barrier need only be sufficient to correct the shortfall between the partition and the untreated cross-talk path. Suspended ceiling systems The actual value of these paths can vary substantially. For ceiling voids, 15-40dB Dnf,w (DnCw) would usually be associated with most suspended ceiling systems. An acoustic engineer can assess a minimum SRI value for the cavity barrier with knowledge of either the existing overall path value or details of the individual path obstructing elements. Occasionally conditions arise that demand substantially higher SRI values of the cavity barrier, such as ceiling voids formed by open-cell or substantially perforated suspended ceilings. Twin barrier or multiple element arrangements can then be employed to accommodate almost all possible sound performance criteria.  In this situation, Rw values are for the barrier arrangement alone. Room-to-room performance (DnCw) would normally be significantly higher. Curtains to noise When you combine the evolving and changing nature of the workplace with modern lightweight construction, such as curtain walls, this can also present a number of challenges when it comes to acoustics.  The overall sound performance in a curtain wall building is effectively controlled by the ‘weakest link’. This means that very careful consideration should be given to any potential weak point to ensure it does not become the ‘limiting factor’ in the overall sound transmission performance. The curtain wall together with the movement joint should all be considered as potential weak points and thoroughly assessed accordingly. Making it soundtight Involved in projects throughout the world and having manufactured acoustic and fire insulation products for more than 40 years, SIDERISE offer a large range of tried and tested product enhancements specifically developed for both building interiors and the façade industry. From flexible and semi-rigid acoustic barriers for suspended ceilings to acoustic void closures for tops of walls and fire stops for profiled decks, the ceiling void barrier range is designed to effectively reduce sound transmission via hidden voids. Designed to reduce vertical and horizontal sound transmission in curtain wall buildings, this comprehensive range includes a choice of effective and proven acoustic void barriers and barrier overlays for facades that deal with all common sound path problems and are frequently used to assist in reducing flanking transmission between adjacent internal areas. Acoustic comfort in the built environment has become a concern to society and a challenge to designers. It is all too common when considering the specification of the seal between the slab edge and the facade, for product selection to be based exclusively in terms of compliance to the relevant fire regulations. For façade engineers, architects and their clients, it is essential that due consideration is given to both the acoustic implications and performance of the closure arrangement, ensuring any potential weak point in curtain walled buildings is controlled. The cavity seal should ideally always be selected at the design stage because at this point, the largest range of suitable products is potentially available to the designer.  Products can therefore be selected based on cost-effectiveness, ease of installation, and acoustic performance.  Post or remedial treatment severely limits available product selection. Also it is invariably more expensive, less practical to install and may not always be fully compliant. Often the acoustic design of offices does not receive the attention that most other architectural systems would.  A superior acoustic environment should be a given. The use of performance enhancing products will mitigate against these issues and ensure any potential noise issues within offices are eliminated. By:Mike Carrick AMIOA, Head of Acoustics at Siderise Group Visit: www.siderise.com
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Productivity, well-being and happy employees are all key considerations in the ideal office environment. With noise being high on the list of annoyances in the workplace and a cause of work-related stress, how can designers and specifiers create a quieter office place, improve privacy and deliver exceptional floor-to-floor, room-to-room sound reductions?   The office has changed quite dramatically over the years, with informal, open-plan and flexible spaces replacing the more formal enclosed and private rooms of the past.  This flexible working ends up having a knock-on effect - increasing the level of occupation, upping noise levels, which in turn hinders productivity.  Acoustics, like lighting, should be an integral part of good architectural design and when it is done well, is a significant contributor to the well-being and productivity of the office employee.  From the outset it’s important to use materials which will achieve good acoustics and solve any sound transmission issues. The designer must also not only satisfy the legislative requirements, but the client or end user’s ‘wish list’ of acoustic behaviour. Proper acoustics, the unobtrusive sum of all sounds, is the key objective for a comfortable environment. Cross-talk The sound separation achieved between adjoining rooms or offices is often severely limited by ‘cross-talk’ via a common void. This common problem occurs when the transmission loss associated with this sound path is less than that provided by the primary separating element, for example, a partition.  Voids affected by ‘cross-talk’ include:  * Suspended ceiling voids at partitions,  * Access floor voids below partitions  * Cavities at floor slab edges to façades. To effectively reduce sound transmission or ‘cross-talk’ via hidden voids which sit above office partitions, ceiling void barriers should be installed directly in-line with the partition. The Sound Reduction Index or SRI (Rw) of the cavity barrier is not normally required to equal that of the partition itself. This is due to the presence of other obstructions in the room-to-room sound path such as the suspended ceiling. The individual performance of the barrier need only be sufficient to correct the shortfall between the partition and the untreated cross-talk path. Suspended ceiling systems The actual value of these paths can vary substantially. For ceiling voids, 15-40dB Dnf,w (DnCw) would usually be associated with most suspended ceiling systems. An acoustic engineer can assess a minimum SRI value for the cavity barrier with knowledge of either the existing overall path value or details of the individual path obstructing elements. Occasionally conditions arise that demand substantially higher SRI values of the cavity barrier, such as ceiling voids formed by open-cell or substantially perforated suspended ceilings. Twin barrier or multiple element arrangements can then be employed to accommodate almost all possible sound performance criteria.  In this situation, Rw values are for the barrier arrangement alone. Room-to-room performance (DnCw) would normally be significantly higher. Curtains to noise When you combine the evolving and changing nature of the workplace with modern lightweight construction, such as curtain walls, this can also present a number of challenges when it comes to acoustics.  The overall sound performance in a curtain wall building is effectively controlled by the ‘weakest link’. This means that very careful consideration should be given to any potential weak point to ensure it does not become the ‘limiting factor’ in the overall sound transmission performance. The curtain wall together with the movement joint should all be considered as potential weak points and thoroughly assessed accordingly. Making it soundtight Involved in projects throughout the world and having manufactured acoustic and fire insulation products for more than 40 years, SIDERISE offer a large range of tried and tested product enhancements specifically developed for both building interiors and the façade industry. From flexible and semi-rigid acoustic barriers for suspended ceilings to acoustic void closures for tops of walls and fire stops for profiled decks, the ceiling void barrier range is designed to effectively reduce sound transmission via hidden voids. Designed to reduce vertical and horizontal sound transmission in curtain wall buildings, this comprehensive range includes a choice of effective and proven acoustic void barriers and barrier overlays for facades that deal with all common sound path problems and are frequently used to assist in reducing flanking transmission between adjacent internal areas. Acoustic comfort in the built environment has become a concern to society and a challenge to designers. It is all too common when considering the specification of the seal between the slab edge and the facade, for product selection to be based exclusively in terms of compliance to the relevant fire regulations. For façade engineers, architects and their clients, it is essential that due consideration is given to both the acoustic implications and performance of the closure arrangement, ensuring any potential weak point in curtain walled buildings is controlled. The cavity seal should ideally always be selected at the design stage because at this point, the largest range of suitable products is potentially available to the designer.  Products can therefore be selected based on cost-effectiveness, ease of installation, and acoustic performance.  Post or remedial treatment severely limits available product selection. Also it is invariably more expensive, less practical to install and may not always be fully compliant. Often the acoustic design of offices does not receive the attention that most other architectural systems would.  A superior acoustic environment should be a given. The use of performance enhancing products will mitigate against these issues and ensure any potential noise issues within offices are eliminated. By:Mike Carrick AMIOA, Head of Acoustics at Siderise Group Visit: www.siderise.com
    Oct 19, 2017 0
  • 17 Oct 2017
    While the life-saving benefits of sprinklers are undisputed and well-known, the inclusion of automated sprinkler systems within offices can add value to a scheme by increasing design options, saving on capital costs and reducing the construction programme. An adequate level of fire safety is a statutory requirement but the decision as to how the fire safety measures are achieved is down to the designer. A recent BSA report, produced by leading engineering consultancy WSP: The Impact of Automatic Sprinklers on Building Design – Commercial Sector, Offices, outlines the beneficial impact that incorporating sprinklers can have and how they can add value to building design. Sprinklers are a key component in the long-term strategy of any building and if considered early in the design process, they can be included at little, and sometimes at no cost. One of the key advantages of an automatic sprinkler system is it enables the balancing of fire protection measures which in turn opens up a number of significant design opportunities. An office which has automatic sprinklers allows occupants more time to escape when a fire occurs, which for the designer means they can incorporate longer travel distances and narrower door and stair widths, freeing up their design. In addition, the maximum travel distances in an office building can be increased by around 15% when an automatic sprinkler system is incorporated. This provides flexibility in the location of staircases and reduces the necessity of introducing escape corridors. Another design benefit with sprinklers is in the number of firefighting shafts and fire mains can be adjusted.  In a building without sprinklers, a firefighting shaft should be provided such that no part of a floor is more than 45 metres from a fire main outlet in a protected stairway. If a building is fitted with sprinklers, the distance can be increased to 60 metres. Sprinklers act to limit fire growth so that compartment sizes can be increased, which in turn offers additional design options.  In addition to greater freedom in the building layout, sprinklers can work to contain a fire and limit fire to the compartment of origin. Building Regulations Approved Document B recommends that buildings are separated sufficiently, or that a portion of the building’s facade should be fire-resistant to prevent fire spreading between buildings. The area of facade required to be fire-rated is proportional to the distance between the facade and the site boundary. However, because automatic sprinklers inhibit fire size and therefore spread of fire, the non-fire-resistant area of facade can be doubled, giving designers greater flexibility in facade design and layout. In addition to the flexibility introduced in terms of the façade material and internal layouts, there is a misconception that sprinkler heads cannot be concealed and are visually unappealing. The use of concealed heads, however, ensures that they can be discreet when desired. Ultimately, the consideration of automatic sprinklers at the earliest stages of the design will enable stakeholders to realise and benefit from a wealth of design freedoms. Through robust research and by looking at different building types and design options, the consideration of automatic sprinklers should be part of any robust design development for a new office project. For more detailed information about the benefits relating to different building types and design options, download The Impact of Automatic Sprinklers on Building Design, Commercial Sector Applications – Offices which is available by clicking http://www.business-sprinkler-alliance.org/publications/impact-automatic-sprinklers-building-design-wsp/
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • While the life-saving benefits of sprinklers are undisputed and well-known, the inclusion of automated sprinkler systems within offices can add value to a scheme by increasing design options, saving on capital costs and reducing the construction programme. An adequate level of fire safety is a statutory requirement but the decision as to how the fire safety measures are achieved is down to the designer. A recent BSA report, produced by leading engineering consultancy WSP: The Impact of Automatic Sprinklers on Building Design – Commercial Sector, Offices, outlines the beneficial impact that incorporating sprinklers can have and how they can add value to building design. Sprinklers are a key component in the long-term strategy of any building and if considered early in the design process, they can be included at little, and sometimes at no cost. One of the key advantages of an automatic sprinkler system is it enables the balancing of fire protection measures which in turn opens up a number of significant design opportunities. An office which has automatic sprinklers allows occupants more time to escape when a fire occurs, which for the designer means they can incorporate longer travel distances and narrower door and stair widths, freeing up their design. In addition, the maximum travel distances in an office building can be increased by around 15% when an automatic sprinkler system is incorporated. This provides flexibility in the location of staircases and reduces the necessity of introducing escape corridors. Another design benefit with sprinklers is in the number of firefighting shafts and fire mains can be adjusted.  In a building without sprinklers, a firefighting shaft should be provided such that no part of a floor is more than 45 metres from a fire main outlet in a protected stairway. If a building is fitted with sprinklers, the distance can be increased to 60 metres. Sprinklers act to limit fire growth so that compartment sizes can be increased, which in turn offers additional design options.  In addition to greater freedom in the building layout, sprinklers can work to contain a fire and limit fire to the compartment of origin. Building Regulations Approved Document B recommends that buildings are separated sufficiently, or that a portion of the building’s facade should be fire-resistant to prevent fire spreading between buildings. The area of facade required to be fire-rated is proportional to the distance between the facade and the site boundary. However, because automatic sprinklers inhibit fire size and therefore spread of fire, the non-fire-resistant area of facade can be doubled, giving designers greater flexibility in facade design and layout. In addition to the flexibility introduced in terms of the façade material and internal layouts, there is a misconception that sprinkler heads cannot be concealed and are visually unappealing. The use of concealed heads, however, ensures that they can be discreet when desired. Ultimately, the consideration of automatic sprinklers at the earliest stages of the design will enable stakeholders to realise and benefit from a wealth of design freedoms. Through robust research and by looking at different building types and design options, the consideration of automatic sprinklers should be part of any robust design development for a new office project. For more detailed information about the benefits relating to different building types and design options, download The Impact of Automatic Sprinklers on Building Design, Commercial Sector Applications – Offices which is available by clicking http://www.business-sprinkler-alliance.org/publications/impact-automatic-sprinklers-building-design-wsp/
    Oct 17, 2017 0
  • 16 Oct 2017
    Human health and wellness is at the forefront of building design with the emergence of the WELL Building Standard® (WELL), the first standard of its kind which rates a building’s impact on occupants and gives a single ‘wellness’ rating for buildings.  But what are the challenges for the specifier and contractor to meet this standard and how difficult is it to find the right flooring system? Steven Argent, Construction Director at fit-out specialists QOB Interiors, looks at the WELL Standard and taking a healthy view in the specification of a flooring system. When you consider the average person spends well over 90% of their life in and around buildings, the creation of a healthy environment will have a direct impact on their wellbeing.  Illness costs UK businesses on average £550 per employee per year, amounting to a staggering £30 billion annually, according to the Chartered Institute of Professional Development, so incorporating wellbeing into our buildings has never been more important. Putting the emphasis on the human element, WELL is a performance-based system for measuring, certifying, and monitoring features of the built environment that impact human health and wellbeing through air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort and mind. While the building industry is used to dealing with and incorporating well factors such as light and air quality, other features that impact mobility, access, nutrition, access to water, to name but a few - are new territory for many designers and fit-out specialists. This innovative approach to building design and operation is set to change the way we create building interiors. A well-made floor Whether it’s contributing to air quality and sound reduction, adding to atmosphere or helping to create a hygienic environment, floors play a significant and increasingly important role in a healthy and productive environment.  A well-chosen floor can add texture and comfort, whilst having the capability to reflect light and delineate spaces as well. To meet the WELL standard, it’s important to choose flooring manufacturers offering products that contribute to the health and wellbeing of building occupants. A flooring manufacturer which offers low VOC, phthalate-free products and solutions which are sound-reducing and allergy approved will make a significant contribution towards creating a healthier workplace and meeting WELL certification. One Carter Lane The first project in Europe to achieve the standard is One Carter Lane, the London office of multi-disciplinary engineer Cundall. As the first building in Europe to be delivered under WELL, there was careful attention to the specification of every single material and product used to ensure it met the criteria of WELL. This included research, testing materials as well as checking credentials and conformity. It is surprising when you start to scrutinise products how difficult it can be to find materials that are natural and don’t contain any toxins. It’s vital specifiers think carefully about what is used and the long term effects this has on building occupiers. From a design by architects Studio Ben Allen, the challenging 15,400 sq ft Cat B commercial office fit-out was carried out to stringent tolerances with a focus on the most sustainable and environmentally-friendly materials. Every aspect of the ground floor fit-out by QOB – from materials used, to lighting, heating and open space – had to be thoroughly considered as to the impact on post-occupancy use before the design was finalised. The specification of materials under WELL meant only those that had a very low concentration of formaldehydes and volatile organic compounds (VOC) could be used. The VOC rating of all materials had to be between negligible and zero, ensuring that office fixtures, fittings and fabric did not expel harmful chemical or organic emissions. Medical research has shown that indoor air quality has a major influence on the health, wellbeing and productivity of building occupants.  A floor like no other At the Cundall offices, all furnishings, insulation, interior paint, adhesives, oils, waxes, varnishes and finishes were specified for low or zero VOC, formaldehyde and toxic content.  A recycled, woven nylon floor tile from a Swedish manufacturer was specified for the flooring in main office area and fitted to the raised access floor system with an ultra-low VOC adhesive. The flooring material used in the main office area is from Bolon’s Botanic selection and is a natural Bolon tile. This particular product aids the reduction of VOC absorption which makes it the perfect fit for this environmentally aware fit out. The solvent-free adhesive used for bonding the floor tiles has an extremely low emission level of VOCs which makes it harmless for those who apply the product and for the people work in the environment in which it is applied. In addition, a WELL approved anti-slip, noise-absorbent and easy to maintain satin rubber floor was used for the tea point area. This was also applied used the ultra-low VOC adhesive. As a preventative measure, during construction, the specialist contractor ensured that all the carpet tiles were kept protected in the secure site office, to further reduce the chance of VOC’s absorption.  Managing the fit-out meant ensuring there was an understanding of product selection on the site so that operatives couldn’t defer away from using the approved materials. This was achieved through specific site inductions, informing the installation teams of the environmental standards to be achieved and their contribution to achieving them. Furthermore it was vital that the selected environmentally accredited materials performed to ‘industry standards’ so as to dispel the common myth that there would be a noticeable loss of performance. This was achieved through the ridged review of manufacturer’s material data sheets and ‘benchmarking’ the install to observe quality of workmanship and the acceptable performance of the installation prior to continuing with the whole install. With the constant monitoring and testing of indoor air quality under WELL so critical throughout the fit-out, it was vital there were precautions in place to isolate work areas to ensure any dust was contained, preventing contamination entering into other areas of the site. In addition, dust covers were used on light fittings and airtight plastic covers on all grills, filters, ducts and fan coil units. The WELL Building Standard is uncharted territory for many across the industry, but at One Carter Lane, Cundall has an office environment that sets a high benchmark for the workplace, putting people’s health and wellbeing at the very heart of the building. Visit: http://qobinteriors.com/  
    0 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Human health and wellness is at the forefront of building design with the emergence of the WELL Building Standard® (WELL), the first standard of its kind which rates a building’s impact on occupants and gives a single ‘wellness’ rating for buildings.  But what are the challenges for the specifier and contractor to meet this standard and how difficult is it to find the right flooring system? Steven Argent, Construction Director at fit-out specialists QOB Interiors, looks at the WELL Standard and taking a healthy view in the specification of a flooring system. When you consider the average person spends well over 90% of their life in and around buildings, the creation of a healthy environment will have a direct impact on their wellbeing.  Illness costs UK businesses on average £550 per employee per year, amounting to a staggering £30 billion annually, according to the Chartered Institute of Professional Development, so incorporating wellbeing into our buildings has never been more important. Putting the emphasis on the human element, WELL is a performance-based system for measuring, certifying, and monitoring features of the built environment that impact human health and wellbeing through air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort and mind. While the building industry is used to dealing with and incorporating well factors such as light and air quality, other features that impact mobility, access, nutrition, access to water, to name but a few - are new territory for many designers and fit-out specialists. This innovative approach to building design and operation is set to change the way we create building interiors. A well-made floor Whether it’s contributing to air quality and sound reduction, adding to atmosphere or helping to create a hygienic environment, floors play a significant and increasingly important role in a healthy and productive environment.  A well-chosen floor can add texture and comfort, whilst having the capability to reflect light and delineate spaces as well. To meet the WELL standard, it’s important to choose flooring manufacturers offering products that contribute to the health and wellbeing of building occupants. A flooring manufacturer which offers low VOC, phthalate-free products and solutions which are sound-reducing and allergy approved will make a significant contribution towards creating a healthier workplace and meeting WELL certification. One Carter Lane The first project in Europe to achieve the standard is One Carter Lane, the London office of multi-disciplinary engineer Cundall. As the first building in Europe to be delivered under WELL, there was careful attention to the specification of every single material and product used to ensure it met the criteria of WELL. This included research, testing materials as well as checking credentials and conformity. It is surprising when you start to scrutinise products how difficult it can be to find materials that are natural and don’t contain any toxins. It’s vital specifiers think carefully about what is used and the long term effects this has on building occupiers. From a design by architects Studio Ben Allen, the challenging 15,400 sq ft Cat B commercial office fit-out was carried out to stringent tolerances with a focus on the most sustainable and environmentally-friendly materials. Every aspect of the ground floor fit-out by QOB – from materials used, to lighting, heating and open space – had to be thoroughly considered as to the impact on post-occupancy use before the design was finalised. The specification of materials under WELL meant only those that had a very low concentration of formaldehydes and volatile organic compounds (VOC) could be used. The VOC rating of all materials had to be between negligible and zero, ensuring that office fixtures, fittings and fabric did not expel harmful chemical or organic emissions. Medical research has shown that indoor air quality has a major influence on the health, wellbeing and productivity of building occupants.  A floor like no other At the Cundall offices, all furnishings, insulation, interior paint, adhesives, oils, waxes, varnishes and finishes were specified for low or zero VOC, formaldehyde and toxic content.  A recycled, woven nylon floor tile from a Swedish manufacturer was specified for the flooring in main office area and fitted to the raised access floor system with an ultra-low VOC adhesive. The flooring material used in the main office area is from Bolon’s Botanic selection and is a natural Bolon tile. This particular product aids the reduction of VOC absorption which makes it the perfect fit for this environmentally aware fit out. The solvent-free adhesive used for bonding the floor tiles has an extremely low emission level of VOCs which makes it harmless for those who apply the product and for the people work in the environment in which it is applied. In addition, a WELL approved anti-slip, noise-absorbent and easy to maintain satin rubber floor was used for the tea point area. This was also applied used the ultra-low VOC adhesive. As a preventative measure, during construction, the specialist contractor ensured that all the carpet tiles were kept protected in the secure site office, to further reduce the chance of VOC’s absorption.  Managing the fit-out meant ensuring there was an understanding of product selection on the site so that operatives couldn’t defer away from using the approved materials. This was achieved through specific site inductions, informing the installation teams of the environmental standards to be achieved and their contribution to achieving them. Furthermore it was vital that the selected environmentally accredited materials performed to ‘industry standards’ so as to dispel the common myth that there would be a noticeable loss of performance. This was achieved through the ridged review of manufacturer’s material data sheets and ‘benchmarking’ the install to observe quality of workmanship and the acceptable performance of the installation prior to continuing with the whole install. With the constant monitoring and testing of indoor air quality under WELL so critical throughout the fit-out, it was vital there were precautions in place to isolate work areas to ensure any dust was contained, preventing contamination entering into other areas of the site. In addition, dust covers were used on light fittings and airtight plastic covers on all grills, filters, ducts and fan coil units. The WELL Building Standard is uncharted territory for many across the industry, but at One Carter Lane, Cundall has an office environment that sets a high benchmark for the workplace, putting people’s health and wellbeing at the very heart of the building. Visit: http://qobinteriors.com/  
    Oct 16, 2017 0