• 25 Feb 2019
    According to the United Nations, in 2050 the world’s population is expected to be around 9.8 billion, which is expected to grow to an astonishing 11.2 billion people in 2100. Back in 2010, Tokyo, Japan had the biggest population of any city on the planet with a population of over 36 Million people. This was nearly 15 million more than Delhi, India, which had the second highest population. Fast forward 90 years you’d expect Tokyo to be even further ahead, right? Wrong. Tokyo is predicted to not even make it into the top 20 cities in the world. In fact, only 6 of the top 20 cities with the highest population in 2010 are predicted to still be in the top 20 by 2100. In this research led piece, Roof Stores have been tracking the top 20 cities in the world with the highest population back in 2010 and following their projected population increase or decrease over the years. If they drop out of the top 20, the city that overtakes it joins the chart and replaces it. Read on to see how it’s changed! The Top 10 Biggest Cities by Population in 2010 were: Tokyo, Japan - 36,834,000 Delhi, India - 21,935,000 Mexico City, Mexico - 20,132,000 Shanghai, China - 19,980,000 São Paulo, Brazil - 19,660,000 Osaka, Japan - 19,492,000 Mumbai, India - 19,422,000 New York, United States of America - 18,365,000 Cairo, Egypt - 16,899,000 Beijing, China - 16,190,000   The Top 10 Biggest Cities by Population in 2025 are expected to be: Tokyo, Japan - 36,400,000 Mumbai (Bombay), India - 26,385,000 Delhi, India - 22,498,000 Dhaka, Bangladesh - 22,015,000 Sao Paulo, Brazil - 21,428,000 Mexico City, Mexico - 21,009,000 New York City-Newark, USA - 20,628,000 Kolkata (Calcutta), India - 20,560,000 Shanghai, China - 19,412,000 Karachi, Pakistan - 19,095,000   The Top 10 Biggest Cities by Population in 2050 are expected to be: Mumbai (Bombay), India - 42,403,631 Delhi, India - 36,156,789 Dhaka, Bangladesh - 35,193,184 Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo - 35,000,361 Kolkata (Calcutta), India - 33,042,208 Lagos, Nigeria - 32,629,709 Tokyo, Japan - 32,621,993 Karachi, Pakistan - 31,696,042 New York City-Newark, USA - 24,768,743 Mexico City, Mexico - 24,328,738  The Top 10 Biggest Cities by Population in 2075 are expected to be: Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo - 58,424,142 Mumbai, India - 57,862,345 Lagos, Nigeria - 57,195,075 Delhi, India - 49,338,148 Dhaka, Bangladesh - 46,218,971 Kolkata, India - 45,088,111 Karachi, Pakistan - 43,373,574 Dar Es Salaam, United Republic of Tanzania - 37,484,980 Cairo, Egypt - 32,999,203 Manila, Philippines - 32,748,758 The Top 10 Biggest Cities by Population in 2100 are expected to be: Lagos, Nigeria - 88,344,661 Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo - 83,493,793 Dar Es Salaam, United Republic of Tanzania - 73,678,022 Mumbai, India - 67,239,804 Delhi, India - 57,334,134 Khartoum, Sudan - 56,594,472 Niamey, Niger - 56,149,130 Dhaka, Bangladesh - 54,249,845 Kolkata, India - 52,395,315 Kabul, Afghanistan - 50,269,659 Visit: https://www.roof-stores.co.uk
    220 Posted by Talk. Build
  • According to the United Nations, in 2050 the world’s population is expected to be around 9.8 billion, which is expected to grow to an astonishing 11.2 billion people in 2100. Back in 2010, Tokyo, Japan had the biggest population of any city on the planet with a population of over 36 Million people. This was nearly 15 million more than Delhi, India, which had the second highest population. Fast forward 90 years you’d expect Tokyo to be even further ahead, right? Wrong. Tokyo is predicted to not even make it into the top 20 cities in the world. In fact, only 6 of the top 20 cities with the highest population in 2010 are predicted to still be in the top 20 by 2100. In this research led piece, Roof Stores have been tracking the top 20 cities in the world with the highest population back in 2010 and following their projected population increase or decrease over the years. If they drop out of the top 20, the city that overtakes it joins the chart and replaces it. Read on to see how it’s changed! The Top 10 Biggest Cities by Population in 2010 were: Tokyo, Japan - 36,834,000 Delhi, India - 21,935,000 Mexico City, Mexico - 20,132,000 Shanghai, China - 19,980,000 São Paulo, Brazil - 19,660,000 Osaka, Japan - 19,492,000 Mumbai, India - 19,422,000 New York, United States of America - 18,365,000 Cairo, Egypt - 16,899,000 Beijing, China - 16,190,000   The Top 10 Biggest Cities by Population in 2025 are expected to be: Tokyo, Japan - 36,400,000 Mumbai (Bombay), India - 26,385,000 Delhi, India - 22,498,000 Dhaka, Bangladesh - 22,015,000 Sao Paulo, Brazil - 21,428,000 Mexico City, Mexico - 21,009,000 New York City-Newark, USA - 20,628,000 Kolkata (Calcutta), India - 20,560,000 Shanghai, China - 19,412,000 Karachi, Pakistan - 19,095,000   The Top 10 Biggest Cities by Population in 2050 are expected to be: Mumbai (Bombay), India - 42,403,631 Delhi, India - 36,156,789 Dhaka, Bangladesh - 35,193,184 Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo - 35,000,361 Kolkata (Calcutta), India - 33,042,208 Lagos, Nigeria - 32,629,709 Tokyo, Japan - 32,621,993 Karachi, Pakistan - 31,696,042 New York City-Newark, USA - 24,768,743 Mexico City, Mexico - 24,328,738  The Top 10 Biggest Cities by Population in 2075 are expected to be: Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo - 58,424,142 Mumbai, India - 57,862,345 Lagos, Nigeria - 57,195,075 Delhi, India - 49,338,148 Dhaka, Bangladesh - 46,218,971 Kolkata, India - 45,088,111 Karachi, Pakistan - 43,373,574 Dar Es Salaam, United Republic of Tanzania - 37,484,980 Cairo, Egypt - 32,999,203 Manila, Philippines - 32,748,758 The Top 10 Biggest Cities by Population in 2100 are expected to be: Lagos, Nigeria - 88,344,661 Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo - 83,493,793 Dar Es Salaam, United Republic of Tanzania - 73,678,022 Mumbai, India - 67,239,804 Delhi, India - 57,334,134 Khartoum, Sudan - 56,594,472 Niamey, Niger - 56,149,130 Dhaka, Bangladesh - 54,249,845 Kolkata, India - 52,395,315 Kabul, Afghanistan - 50,269,659 Visit: https://www.roof-stores.co.uk
    Feb 25, 2019 220
  • 22 Feb 2019
    The construction industry is dynamic — ever changing and evolving through technology. The way contractors work today is clearly much different than 50 years ago — or 20 years — or even five years ago writes Jeff Winke. The big difference is due to advances in technology in the machines and tools that enable greater productivity, reduce time, and provide better results. There’s a great John F. Kennedy quote that captures the essence of the construction world: “Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.”   Successful contractors and construction workers recognize that they must take control of their future or risk being left behind. This spirit of paying attention and taking control of the future plays into the notion of being prepared with the right knowledge and skills. “Technology in earthmoving and site work changes too frequently to be ignored,” states Ron Oberlander, senior director, Professional Services for Topcon Positioning Group.  “Contractors must continually seek out new information, learn from others, and take advantage of training opportunities as often as they can to remain competitive.” Successful construction contractors view training as a necessary and beneficial investment in their business and point to numerous reasons why the investment is worthwhile: Improves safety – Contractors acknowledge that the safety of their workers is critical. The right training can ensure that the equipment is operated correctly and that health and safety practices are being followed in the workplace. Improves productivity – It makes sense and is proven that well-trained employees are more confident in their abilities to perform their work. The right training gives workers the necessary skills and knowledge to carry out their work to the best of their ability, thus increasing productivity and quality of the results. Keeps current with technology – The pace of technology changes and advancements in construction come fast and furious. Regular training means the business and employees don’t get left behind and they stay working at their best, both today and in the future. Attracts and retain key employees – In today’s market, contractors cannot afford to hire or carry workers who are not super competent or are firmly on a path to proficiency. Training and development programs not only attract, but they can engage current employees and keep them committed to the company. Gives company and workers the edge – Training employees can provide a genuine competitive advantage over competition. The only way to be better than competitors is by employees being better than the rest and training is a direct route to achieving this. “The key attributes of good training are that it is repeatable, consistent, and offered frequently so workers can commit to learning regularly,” Oberlander said. “Both managers and workers will never know everything about the products and systems they use; so, training helps everyone be smarter and more productive. I tell the people we train that if you feel you are pretty productive now, you’ll be even more productive after training.” To be effective, training needs to be concise and specific to a contractor’s needs. Construction contractors and professional surveyors are extremely busy and do not have the time or patience for superfluous information. One of the benefits of good training is to teach learners how to be resourceful and effective after the trainer is gone. Knowing when, how, and where to go for help can reinforce the content and skills acquired during training. “To ensure our products and systems are fully used after training, we’ve created two helpful resources—a global Professional Services team and a myTopcon support and training site,” said Oberlander. “Our markets are diverse, but they share a common necessity of highly precise measurements, increased automation and workflow solutions to improve their productivity. These resources are designed to provide solutions and workflow assistance to ensure the highest efficiency for our customers and help them to expand their businesses by applying these skills and technologies into new applications.” The Topcon Professional Services team has been created to integrate training, customer support, and sales support into a single resource intended to help its customers adopt and apply new technologies as they emerge. The Professional Services team includes more than 40 applications experts from the surveying, construction, civil engineering, networking and mapping fields. These experts are located around the world to support the company’s global market. The myTopcon site is designed to provide direct access to online training, firmware and software updates, and reference resources at a mobile-adapted site that can be accessed from the field. Again, the intent of both the Professional Services team and the myTopcon site is to extend and support the information and content as well as new skills acquired during training. Clearly, as the labor market continues to tighten, and as more and more baby boomers head into retirement, construction companies will need to sharpen their recruiting, hiring, and training capabilities. Younger millennial and Generation X workers expect more than their older counterparts ever did, but in exchange they bring an acceptance, expectation, and appreciation of the role technology is playing in construction today. By being committed to ongoing training, a construction firm can build a sense of connection, which can help create the positive environment where employees are willing to go above and beyond to help fuel organizational success.            As John F. Kennedy pointed out — change is the law of life — and clearly, the investment in training can keep a construction company fresh, up-to-date, and better prepared to adapt and succeed in the face of change. Jeff Winke is a business and construction writer based in Milwaukee, Wis. He can be reached through jeff_winke@yahoo.com  
    250 Posted by Talk. Build
  • The construction industry is dynamic — ever changing and evolving through technology. The way contractors work today is clearly much different than 50 years ago — or 20 years — or even five years ago writes Jeff Winke. The big difference is due to advances in technology in the machines and tools that enable greater productivity, reduce time, and provide better results. There’s a great John F. Kennedy quote that captures the essence of the construction world: “Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.”   Successful contractors and construction workers recognize that they must take control of their future or risk being left behind. This spirit of paying attention and taking control of the future plays into the notion of being prepared with the right knowledge and skills. “Technology in earthmoving and site work changes too frequently to be ignored,” states Ron Oberlander, senior director, Professional Services for Topcon Positioning Group.  “Contractors must continually seek out new information, learn from others, and take advantage of training opportunities as often as they can to remain competitive.” Successful construction contractors view training as a necessary and beneficial investment in their business and point to numerous reasons why the investment is worthwhile: Improves safety – Contractors acknowledge that the safety of their workers is critical. The right training can ensure that the equipment is operated correctly and that health and safety practices are being followed in the workplace. Improves productivity – It makes sense and is proven that well-trained employees are more confident in their abilities to perform their work. The right training gives workers the necessary skills and knowledge to carry out their work to the best of their ability, thus increasing productivity and quality of the results. Keeps current with technology – The pace of technology changes and advancements in construction come fast and furious. Regular training means the business and employees don’t get left behind and they stay working at their best, both today and in the future. Attracts and retain key employees – In today’s market, contractors cannot afford to hire or carry workers who are not super competent or are firmly on a path to proficiency. Training and development programs not only attract, but they can engage current employees and keep them committed to the company. Gives company and workers the edge – Training employees can provide a genuine competitive advantage over competition. The only way to be better than competitors is by employees being better than the rest and training is a direct route to achieving this. “The key attributes of good training are that it is repeatable, consistent, and offered frequently so workers can commit to learning regularly,” Oberlander said. “Both managers and workers will never know everything about the products and systems they use; so, training helps everyone be smarter and more productive. I tell the people we train that if you feel you are pretty productive now, you’ll be even more productive after training.” To be effective, training needs to be concise and specific to a contractor’s needs. Construction contractors and professional surveyors are extremely busy and do not have the time or patience for superfluous information. One of the benefits of good training is to teach learners how to be resourceful and effective after the trainer is gone. Knowing when, how, and where to go for help can reinforce the content and skills acquired during training. “To ensure our products and systems are fully used after training, we’ve created two helpful resources—a global Professional Services team and a myTopcon support and training site,” said Oberlander. “Our markets are diverse, but they share a common necessity of highly precise measurements, increased automation and workflow solutions to improve their productivity. These resources are designed to provide solutions and workflow assistance to ensure the highest efficiency for our customers and help them to expand their businesses by applying these skills and technologies into new applications.” The Topcon Professional Services team has been created to integrate training, customer support, and sales support into a single resource intended to help its customers adopt and apply new technologies as they emerge. The Professional Services team includes more than 40 applications experts from the surveying, construction, civil engineering, networking and mapping fields. These experts are located around the world to support the company’s global market. The myTopcon site is designed to provide direct access to online training, firmware and software updates, and reference resources at a mobile-adapted site that can be accessed from the field. Again, the intent of both the Professional Services team and the myTopcon site is to extend and support the information and content as well as new skills acquired during training. Clearly, as the labor market continues to tighten, and as more and more baby boomers head into retirement, construction companies will need to sharpen their recruiting, hiring, and training capabilities. Younger millennial and Generation X workers expect more than their older counterparts ever did, but in exchange they bring an acceptance, expectation, and appreciation of the role technology is playing in construction today. By being committed to ongoing training, a construction firm can build a sense of connection, which can help create the positive environment where employees are willing to go above and beyond to help fuel organizational success.            As John F. Kennedy pointed out — change is the law of life — and clearly, the investment in training can keep a construction company fresh, up-to-date, and better prepared to adapt and succeed in the face of change. Jeff Winke is a business and construction writer based in Milwaukee, Wis. He can be reached through jeff_winke@yahoo.com  
    Feb 22, 2019 250
  • 19 Feb 2019
    It is without doubt that the relationship between contractors and subcontractors is the construction industry’s bread and butter. Maintaining healthy relations between all the parties involved in a project is completely essential to delivering a project on time and to specification, writes Richard Boston, Marketing Director at Eque2. However, in some cases difficulties between contractors and subcontractors can arise, particularly in terms of price estimation and job costing. With this in mind, how can construction management software solutions prevent these issues from occurring? Why relationships matter There are many mutual benefits when it comes to sustaining a positive working relationship between contractors and subcontractors. An equal, transparent relationship between these two parties ensures projects are completed efficiently and safely; for the benefit of not only the building’s occupants but the companies’ reputations.   In comparison, negative relationships between contractors and subcontractors can have adverse effects on a build, potentially jeopardising productivity, quality, completion times and securing future work. On a large commercial project a single contractor can be working with up to 20 subcontractors, possibly more. For the contractor, there is a huge amount of responsibility on their shoulders to manage their subcontractors efficiently. On the other hand, for the subcontractor, there is always a pressure to deliver what is required of them. A positive working relationship between the two operates in exactly the same way most healthy, mutual bonds work – through clarity, communication and respect.  Creating the best working relationship To build and maintain honest relationships throughout a project’s lifecycle, it is crucial to put these three factors into practice at each stage, particularly when it comes to dealing with more sensitive tasks that are likely to cause temporary confusion and disagreement. For example, let’s consider a delicate subject such as a project’s initial job costing stage. A common procedure across the construction industry and indeed further afield, job costing is a crucial process which creates an image of the labour and materials required and how profit can be made. The usual process is: one party, a subcontractor, estimates the cost of labour and materials and delivers this quote to the other party, the contractor. Although this description sounds relatively straightforward and unambiguous, this process can be more complicated when put into practice. In some cases, a contractor might be sceptical that the cost of materials or labour is a little higher or lower than originally anticipated. But, as this would typically be a manual process in which a subcontractor would present physical documentation to a contractor, there is little means for the contractor to accurately benchmark the costing to any other source. The lack of consistency and standardisation is an issue here and rarely bodes well for the remainder of a project. Immediately, this kind of situation creates a precarious bond between contractor and subcontractor. Although the contractor might go ahead with the job, there will always be that seed of doubt at the back of their minds which questions the reliability and accuracy of the job costing. “Is that piece of machinery really needed?”, “Could I have got it at a different price?” Consistency is crucial Clearly, there needs to be a standard process in which price estimations can be traced and compared to a faithful source. An example would be a modern construction estimating solution such as Eque2’s Evaluate, which incorporates industry-recognised and centuries-old Laxton’s pricing book. Built into Eque2’s EValuate, Laxton’s Priced Libraries features authentic, standardised rates for contractor’s to benchmark subcontractors’ tenders. Compatible with both SMM and NRM rules of measurement, Laxton’s provides annually updated rates for accurate up-to-date information. EValuate with Laxton’s Priced Libraries is fully compliant with industry standards, giving contractors and subcontractors complete peace of mind when it comes to labour and material cost estimation. And, what’s more, as Laxton’s is now fully integrated within modern estimating software, it means all estimations can be traced, recorded and accessed easily in the same place. But what does this mean for contractor and subcontractor relationships? With modern estimating software, subcontractors and contractors feel more comfortable during the estimation process. This is because Laxton’s can be used as a benchmarking tool for contractors to compare rates with an accurate, reliable source, and can work with the subcontractors collaboratively from there. Overall, it creates a mutually healthy and beneficial business relationship for all. There is no doubt that the contractor and subcontractor relationship is essential to a project’s success. With this in mind, isn’t it high time that more robust, digital measures were employed to preserve this important bond? Visit:  https://www.eque2.co.uk
    327 Posted by Talk. Build
  • It is without doubt that the relationship between contractors and subcontractors is the construction industry’s bread and butter. Maintaining healthy relations between all the parties involved in a project is completely essential to delivering a project on time and to specification, writes Richard Boston, Marketing Director at Eque2. However, in some cases difficulties between contractors and subcontractors can arise, particularly in terms of price estimation and job costing. With this in mind, how can construction management software solutions prevent these issues from occurring? Why relationships matter There are many mutual benefits when it comes to sustaining a positive working relationship between contractors and subcontractors. An equal, transparent relationship between these two parties ensures projects are completed efficiently and safely; for the benefit of not only the building’s occupants but the companies’ reputations.   In comparison, negative relationships between contractors and subcontractors can have adverse effects on a build, potentially jeopardising productivity, quality, completion times and securing future work. On a large commercial project a single contractor can be working with up to 20 subcontractors, possibly more. For the contractor, there is a huge amount of responsibility on their shoulders to manage their subcontractors efficiently. On the other hand, for the subcontractor, there is always a pressure to deliver what is required of them. A positive working relationship between the two operates in exactly the same way most healthy, mutual bonds work – through clarity, communication and respect.  Creating the best working relationship To build and maintain honest relationships throughout a project’s lifecycle, it is crucial to put these three factors into practice at each stage, particularly when it comes to dealing with more sensitive tasks that are likely to cause temporary confusion and disagreement. For example, let’s consider a delicate subject such as a project’s initial job costing stage. A common procedure across the construction industry and indeed further afield, job costing is a crucial process which creates an image of the labour and materials required and how profit can be made. The usual process is: one party, a subcontractor, estimates the cost of labour and materials and delivers this quote to the other party, the contractor. Although this description sounds relatively straightforward and unambiguous, this process can be more complicated when put into practice. In some cases, a contractor might be sceptical that the cost of materials or labour is a little higher or lower than originally anticipated. But, as this would typically be a manual process in which a subcontractor would present physical documentation to a contractor, there is little means for the contractor to accurately benchmark the costing to any other source. The lack of consistency and standardisation is an issue here and rarely bodes well for the remainder of a project. Immediately, this kind of situation creates a precarious bond between contractor and subcontractor. Although the contractor might go ahead with the job, there will always be that seed of doubt at the back of their minds which questions the reliability and accuracy of the job costing. “Is that piece of machinery really needed?”, “Could I have got it at a different price?” Consistency is crucial Clearly, there needs to be a standard process in which price estimations can be traced and compared to a faithful source. An example would be a modern construction estimating solution such as Eque2’s Evaluate, which incorporates industry-recognised and centuries-old Laxton’s pricing book. Built into Eque2’s EValuate, Laxton’s Priced Libraries features authentic, standardised rates for contractor’s to benchmark subcontractors’ tenders. Compatible with both SMM and NRM rules of measurement, Laxton’s provides annually updated rates for accurate up-to-date information. EValuate with Laxton’s Priced Libraries is fully compliant with industry standards, giving contractors and subcontractors complete peace of mind when it comes to labour and material cost estimation. And, what’s more, as Laxton’s is now fully integrated within modern estimating software, it means all estimations can be traced, recorded and accessed easily in the same place. But what does this mean for contractor and subcontractor relationships? With modern estimating software, subcontractors and contractors feel more comfortable during the estimation process. This is because Laxton’s can be used as a benchmarking tool for contractors to compare rates with an accurate, reliable source, and can work with the subcontractors collaboratively from there. Overall, it creates a mutually healthy and beneficial business relationship for all. There is no doubt that the contractor and subcontractor relationship is essential to a project’s success. With this in mind, isn’t it high time that more robust, digital measures were employed to preserve this important bond? Visit:  https://www.eque2.co.uk
    Feb 19, 2019 327
  • 13 Feb 2019
    The construction industry reminds me, writes Gerald Kelly, of that old argument about aliens from another planet, it goes something like this – there can’t be any advanced aliens on other planets because they would have visited us by now. Ah, a reasonable hypothesis you may think. However, it can also be argued that being enlightened aliens they have listened to our radio broadcasts that have leaked out from Earth into the void of space since the 1930’s and have concluded that Earth is a planet that is troubled and should be avoided. This could also be said of the construction industry as the sector is deeply troubled with; insanely low profit margins; worsening levels of insolvencies; a deepening skills crisis; a recruitment image problem; BREXIT uncertainty, rising costs of materials and labour; quality problems; continued poor contractual practices which includes -altering standard forms of subcontract; insisting on onerous terms and conditions; collecting retentions and participating in systematic late payment practices.  Thus, the question remains, is construction a sector to visit or should it be avoided? To make the construction sector worth a visit, changing the Tier 1 contractor business model would be a good start. Instead of tendering for contracts at ridiculously low profit margins and then relying on variation orders and the systematic squeezing of the supply chain in an effort to boost profit and mitigate risk, main contractors should be selective on the projects they proceed with and should substantially increase their margins on projects with increased risk and difficulty.  Yes, the cost of construction may rise, however, in truth it already has. The increase is being borne out by main contractors who are more than likely carrying huge debts, making losses or entertaining small profit margins in comparison to the risk taken, and by the specialised supply chain who are relentlessly forced to endure bad contractual and payment practices, reduced margins and losses. Turnover vanity has to end. The sanity of profit has to prevail if the construction industry is to strengthen and move away from increasing insolvencies and losses. Government procurement can help with the transition by moving its focus away from securing the lowest cost. And there should be an insistence that a sustainable profit is made by all involved in the project. Using the old worn-out excuse that driving down costs is enabling best value for the tax payer’s money is a nonsense. It is not in the interest of anyone to have the UK construction industry scrabbling around on its knees. With more money in the system, main contractors would be able to work in a true respectful partnership with their supply chain (okay, this may be a fantasy, but it is more likely if there is money in the pot). Furthermore, increased profits for all will see money being spent on improving quality; investments in improving productivity; training; increases in pay; better health & safety measures and working practices. An industry that is making profit and has a workforce that is content through better working conditions, training and pay is an industry that has an improving image and is attractive to new recruits.  Although, as a harmonious partnership between main contractors and their supply chains won’t happen overnight, the supply chain absolutely needs to be equipped with up-to-date contractual knowledge to administer the contract properly to protect themselves from dubious contract alterations, onerous terms and conditions, and poor payment practices. According to the ARCADIS 2018 Global Construction Disputes Report, the main causes of contractual dispute are: 1st A failure to properly administer the contract 2nd Employer/Contractor/Subcontractor failing to understand and/or comply with its contractual obligations 3rd Failure to serve the appropriate notice under the contract And with 19% of subcontractors not thoroughly checking contracts before they sign them and 38% stating construction contracts are too complex to understand (Bibby financial Services Subcontracting Growth Report) it is not surprising that poor contractual and payment practices are prevalent in the industry and insolvencies are on the rise. Contractual training is essential for subcontractors so that contracts can be administered properly to stop time consuming and costly disputes. Since 1983 our confederation (CCS) has been campaigning; providing legal and contractual advice; and developing and delivering professional contractual training to empower its members and the wider construction community to optimise contractual arrangements when dealing with main contractors and clients. Gerald Kelly is General Manager of the Confederation of Construction Specialists. Visit: www.constructionspecialists.org  
    427 Posted by Talk. Build
  • The construction industry reminds me, writes Gerald Kelly, of that old argument about aliens from another planet, it goes something like this – there can’t be any advanced aliens on other planets because they would have visited us by now. Ah, a reasonable hypothesis you may think. However, it can also be argued that being enlightened aliens they have listened to our radio broadcasts that have leaked out from Earth into the void of space since the 1930’s and have concluded that Earth is a planet that is troubled and should be avoided. This could also be said of the construction industry as the sector is deeply troubled with; insanely low profit margins; worsening levels of insolvencies; a deepening skills crisis; a recruitment image problem; BREXIT uncertainty, rising costs of materials and labour; quality problems; continued poor contractual practices which includes -altering standard forms of subcontract; insisting on onerous terms and conditions; collecting retentions and participating in systematic late payment practices.  Thus, the question remains, is construction a sector to visit or should it be avoided? To make the construction sector worth a visit, changing the Tier 1 contractor business model would be a good start. Instead of tendering for contracts at ridiculously low profit margins and then relying on variation orders and the systematic squeezing of the supply chain in an effort to boost profit and mitigate risk, main contractors should be selective on the projects they proceed with and should substantially increase their margins on projects with increased risk and difficulty.  Yes, the cost of construction may rise, however, in truth it already has. The increase is being borne out by main contractors who are more than likely carrying huge debts, making losses or entertaining small profit margins in comparison to the risk taken, and by the specialised supply chain who are relentlessly forced to endure bad contractual and payment practices, reduced margins and losses. Turnover vanity has to end. The sanity of profit has to prevail if the construction industry is to strengthen and move away from increasing insolvencies and losses. Government procurement can help with the transition by moving its focus away from securing the lowest cost. And there should be an insistence that a sustainable profit is made by all involved in the project. Using the old worn-out excuse that driving down costs is enabling best value for the tax payer’s money is a nonsense. It is not in the interest of anyone to have the UK construction industry scrabbling around on its knees. With more money in the system, main contractors would be able to work in a true respectful partnership with their supply chain (okay, this may be a fantasy, but it is more likely if there is money in the pot). Furthermore, increased profits for all will see money being spent on improving quality; investments in improving productivity; training; increases in pay; better health & safety measures and working practices. An industry that is making profit and has a workforce that is content through better working conditions, training and pay is an industry that has an improving image and is attractive to new recruits.  Although, as a harmonious partnership between main contractors and their supply chains won’t happen overnight, the supply chain absolutely needs to be equipped with up-to-date contractual knowledge to administer the contract properly to protect themselves from dubious contract alterations, onerous terms and conditions, and poor payment practices. According to the ARCADIS 2018 Global Construction Disputes Report, the main causes of contractual dispute are: 1st A failure to properly administer the contract 2nd Employer/Contractor/Subcontractor failing to understand and/or comply with its contractual obligations 3rd Failure to serve the appropriate notice under the contract And with 19% of subcontractors not thoroughly checking contracts before they sign them and 38% stating construction contracts are too complex to understand (Bibby financial Services Subcontracting Growth Report) it is not surprising that poor contractual and payment practices are prevalent in the industry and insolvencies are on the rise. Contractual training is essential for subcontractors so that contracts can be administered properly to stop time consuming and costly disputes. Since 1983 our confederation (CCS) has been campaigning; providing legal and contractual advice; and developing and delivering professional contractual training to empower its members and the wider construction community to optimise contractual arrangements when dealing with main contractors and clients. Gerald Kelly is General Manager of the Confederation of Construction Specialists. Visit: www.constructionspecialists.org  
    Feb 13, 2019 427
  • 05 Feb 2019
    The construction industry has this stereo-typical image of the macho male and in spite of the huge influx of women workers that perception has changed little in recent years. And because men are more likely to bottle up feelings of anxiety and depression there is no doubt that we are seeing an increase in mental health issues on building sites writes Michael Younge. Just in case anyone is in any doubt, just look at the statistics. There were more than 13,000 suicides of construction workers in the UK between 2011 and 2015 according to the Office of National Statistics. This represented some 13% of the total workforce suicides in Britain – and to get this figure into perspective, construction workers as a whole only account for 7% of the working population. As a result, we are now seeing the industry looking at techniques such as Mindfulness and positive thinking as a way of reducing the suicide figures and enhancing the lives of construction workers. This might seem like new age hippy speak but there is plenty of evidence to suggest that mindfulness promotes wellbeing and most importantly better health and safety – a vital part of the construction industry. So what is Mindfulness? There have been many definitions but I prefer to call it – thinking in the NOW - by being aware at all times of our own feelings and surroundings, by allowing your thoughts to focus on the immediate situation.  When practiced properly, it allows the person to forget about the past and to avoid future outcomes. This is a very simple explanation and readers who want to know more should visit my website – for once you have mastered the art of Mindfulness and positive thinking you can change your life, as this practice has been proven to reduce depression, anxiety and stress. There is very little that’s new about the subject - it has been practiced by Buddhist Monks for centuries - but there is now strong anecdotal evidence that building companies are looking to introduce such techniques as a way of reducing stress and promoting harmony within the workplace. A more focussed workforce will make better decisions, be more positive about outcomes and objectives and most importantly, because they will become more aware of their feelings and surroundings – health and safety will also improve. The biggest challenge for employers is to take the workforce with them. Unless individuals are prepared to buy into the concept of Mindfulness then it is clearly not going to work and there is no magic button that can be pressed that will transform an individual overnight – it takes commitment and practice and for many, it might be a step too far. However, for those prepared to try, there can be enormous benefits. By nature our minds wander but Mindfulness promotes a feeling of success allowing individuals to be more vigilant and stay focussed on the job in hand for longer. More importantly, the majority become more positive and this will change their attitude to work and life in general. Banning those negative thoughts is the first step to better mental health and wellbeing and hopefully, in time, it will lead to a reduction in those appalling suicide figures. Michael Younge is an established blogger specialising in positivity and the benefits it offers to all of us. To read more visit: www.powerfulpositivethinking.org
    478 Posted by Talk. Build
  • The construction industry has this stereo-typical image of the macho male and in spite of the huge influx of women workers that perception has changed little in recent years. And because men are more likely to bottle up feelings of anxiety and depression there is no doubt that we are seeing an increase in mental health issues on building sites writes Michael Younge. Just in case anyone is in any doubt, just look at the statistics. There were more than 13,000 suicides of construction workers in the UK between 2011 and 2015 according to the Office of National Statistics. This represented some 13% of the total workforce suicides in Britain – and to get this figure into perspective, construction workers as a whole only account for 7% of the working population. As a result, we are now seeing the industry looking at techniques such as Mindfulness and positive thinking as a way of reducing the suicide figures and enhancing the lives of construction workers. This might seem like new age hippy speak but there is plenty of evidence to suggest that mindfulness promotes wellbeing and most importantly better health and safety – a vital part of the construction industry. So what is Mindfulness? There have been many definitions but I prefer to call it – thinking in the NOW - by being aware at all times of our own feelings and surroundings, by allowing your thoughts to focus on the immediate situation.  When practiced properly, it allows the person to forget about the past and to avoid future outcomes. This is a very simple explanation and readers who want to know more should visit my website – for once you have mastered the art of Mindfulness and positive thinking you can change your life, as this practice has been proven to reduce depression, anxiety and stress. There is very little that’s new about the subject - it has been practiced by Buddhist Monks for centuries - but there is now strong anecdotal evidence that building companies are looking to introduce such techniques as a way of reducing stress and promoting harmony within the workplace. A more focussed workforce will make better decisions, be more positive about outcomes and objectives and most importantly, because they will become more aware of their feelings and surroundings – health and safety will also improve. The biggest challenge for employers is to take the workforce with them. Unless individuals are prepared to buy into the concept of Mindfulness then it is clearly not going to work and there is no magic button that can be pressed that will transform an individual overnight – it takes commitment and practice and for many, it might be a step too far. However, for those prepared to try, there can be enormous benefits. By nature our minds wander but Mindfulness promotes a feeling of success allowing individuals to be more vigilant and stay focussed on the job in hand for longer. More importantly, the majority become more positive and this will change their attitude to work and life in general. Banning those negative thoughts is the first step to better mental health and wellbeing and hopefully, in time, it will lead to a reduction in those appalling suicide figures. Michael Younge is an established blogger specialising in positivity and the benefits it offers to all of us. To read more visit: www.powerfulpositivethinking.org
    Feb 05, 2019 478
  • 31 Jan 2019
    It can be difficult to look to the future with a sense of optimism at times. Anxieties over our ever-burgeoning global population, with its increasing thirst for finite natural resources, always seem to be just a headline away. But in-between all of the doom and gloom are remarkable success stories. The sustainable prowess of the steel industry is one of them. For starters, steel is one of the few materials in the modern world that is encapsulated in a truly closed recycling loop. It can be used again and again. Whereas other highly recyclable products tend to degenerate or diminish over time, steel can actually be enhanced in quality and strength. This is known as ‘upcycling’. This fact alone may explain why steel is the most recycled material in the world. It might be more appropriate to say that steel is not ‘consumed’ like almost everything else. Rather, it is just ‘used’. Steel hegemony Steel is everywhere in our building, planning, and construction thanks to its reusability, but also because it is manufactured from one of the most abundant elements on Earth – Iron and Carbon. Iron ore is mined in around 50 countries, but Australia, Brazil, and China are the largest producers. The overwhelming majority of iron ore is extracted for steel-making (98 per cent). Steel has a high tensile strength and low cost, with a malleability and strength-to-weight ratio that goes a long way and invites creativity and ingenuity among the world’s planners and architects. Steel is thought to have been in production as early as 4,000 years ago in modern-day Spain and the Roman military are understood to have used a form of Celtic (Noric) steel for weaponry. Steel is still used for weaponry in the twenty-first century, but it is also used to support – both literally and metaphorically – modern-day economies. China’s economic growth invigorated a huge thirst for steel, and the British Geological Survey has estimated China to be the top steel producer today, churning out about one-third of the total global output. The United Kingdom is one of the world’s leaders in steel construction (although it only accounts for 0.7 per cent of world production, this puts it in the top ten), yet it has shown remarkable leadership in so-called ‘circular economy’ of steel. Current levels of recovery rates from demolition sites stands at 99 per cent for structural steel work and 96 per cent for steel based products. This is in comparison to a global recycling rate of about 60 per cent. The steel industry in the United Kingdom has an output of around £1.6 billion, approximately 0.1 per cent of the economy. It employs a similar percentage of the available workforce, with most of them being located in Wales, and Yorkshire and the Humber. Steel Adaptability The steel frames that make up building structures can be thought of as a kit of parts. This means they can easily dismantled and repurposed. Because so many connections are bolted in place, these bolts can simply be removed, in prime condition, and entire structures can almost always be used for some other purpose without much reconfiguring. In some cases buildings can be dismantled, and their steel structures repurposed in a matter of months. This relatively minimal deconstruction and construction can take place with minimal dust, dirt, and noise pollution. Because steel can span large distances, this means that most steel buildings have large open-plan spaces. That is why airplane hangers, warehouses, areas, stadiums and agricultural buildings all tend to be made entirely out of steel. These open-plan spaces can easily be reused – often as lightweight partition walls. Steel frames can always have parts added or taken away to accommodate extra floors without overloading the existing foundations. Existing steel buildings can also be modified relatively easily. Changes, such as the addition of new lift spaces or stairways, or the raising or lowering of ceilings for more column spaces, are much easier to make with the flexibility of steel. Creating shallower floor depths can also help minimize heating and cooling costs in the long run. Steel is not just adaptable, but durable. It is non-combustible and highly resistant to fire. It is also virtually invulnerable to structural damage posed by insect infestation or water. Steel can be primed or galvanized to shield it from rust and rot. It doesn’t settle, warp, swell, or twist, either. Steel structures have been built (in their respective areas) to withstand high winds, heavy snow, and even earthquakes.   The future of steel The future continues to look positive for sustainable steel. Energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions from European steelmaking have already made considerable progress over the past 50 years – achieving reductions of up to 60 per cent. But target reductions are always being implemented to further drive down these emissions. The Ultra-Low CO2 Steelmaking Partnership (ULCOS) has set goals of reducing CO2 emissions of steel production by half by the middle of the century – an ever important goal if the ‘tipping point’ of runaway climate change is to be avoided. The steel industry has already met and exceeded its carbon emissions reduction targets set out by the 1992 Kyoto Protocol by an astonishing 240 per cent. The Environmental Protection Agency has awarded it a “best industry performance” designation. At the same time steel is manufactured at strength 40 per cent greater than it was just 25 years ago, while using much less energy. Over 22 billion tonnes of steel are estimated to have been recycled worldwide since the beginning of the twentieth century. If only the other major industries of the world could encapsulate the success of the steel industry over the last 50 years. If it were possible for similar success stories to dominate most of the world’s important industries, then thinking about the future would no longer be met with troubled thoughts, but with a warm smile. Check out the below Infographic for more feel-good facts about steel. -- This article was provided by Weldwide, an organization of architectural and structural metal workers based in London.
    337 Posted by Talk. Build
  • It can be difficult to look to the future with a sense of optimism at times. Anxieties over our ever-burgeoning global population, with its increasing thirst for finite natural resources, always seem to be just a headline away. But in-between all of the doom and gloom are remarkable success stories. The sustainable prowess of the steel industry is one of them. For starters, steel is one of the few materials in the modern world that is encapsulated in a truly closed recycling loop. It can be used again and again. Whereas other highly recyclable products tend to degenerate or diminish over time, steel can actually be enhanced in quality and strength. This is known as ‘upcycling’. This fact alone may explain why steel is the most recycled material in the world. It might be more appropriate to say that steel is not ‘consumed’ like almost everything else. Rather, it is just ‘used’. Steel hegemony Steel is everywhere in our building, planning, and construction thanks to its reusability, but also because it is manufactured from one of the most abundant elements on Earth – Iron and Carbon. Iron ore is mined in around 50 countries, but Australia, Brazil, and China are the largest producers. The overwhelming majority of iron ore is extracted for steel-making (98 per cent). Steel has a high tensile strength and low cost, with a malleability and strength-to-weight ratio that goes a long way and invites creativity and ingenuity among the world’s planners and architects. Steel is thought to have been in production as early as 4,000 years ago in modern-day Spain and the Roman military are understood to have used a form of Celtic (Noric) steel for weaponry. Steel is still used for weaponry in the twenty-first century, but it is also used to support – both literally and metaphorically – modern-day economies. China’s economic growth invigorated a huge thirst for steel, and the British Geological Survey has estimated China to be the top steel producer today, churning out about one-third of the total global output. The United Kingdom is one of the world’s leaders in steel construction (although it only accounts for 0.7 per cent of world production, this puts it in the top ten), yet it has shown remarkable leadership in so-called ‘circular economy’ of steel. Current levels of recovery rates from demolition sites stands at 99 per cent for structural steel work and 96 per cent for steel based products. This is in comparison to a global recycling rate of about 60 per cent. The steel industry in the United Kingdom has an output of around £1.6 billion, approximately 0.1 per cent of the economy. It employs a similar percentage of the available workforce, with most of them being located in Wales, and Yorkshire and the Humber. Steel Adaptability The steel frames that make up building structures can be thought of as a kit of parts. This means they can easily dismantled and repurposed. Because so many connections are bolted in place, these bolts can simply be removed, in prime condition, and entire structures can almost always be used for some other purpose without much reconfiguring. In some cases buildings can be dismantled, and their steel structures repurposed in a matter of months. This relatively minimal deconstruction and construction can take place with minimal dust, dirt, and noise pollution. Because steel can span large distances, this means that most steel buildings have large open-plan spaces. That is why airplane hangers, warehouses, areas, stadiums and agricultural buildings all tend to be made entirely out of steel. These open-plan spaces can easily be reused – often as lightweight partition walls. Steel frames can always have parts added or taken away to accommodate extra floors without overloading the existing foundations. Existing steel buildings can also be modified relatively easily. Changes, such as the addition of new lift spaces or stairways, or the raising or lowering of ceilings for more column spaces, are much easier to make with the flexibility of steel. Creating shallower floor depths can also help minimize heating and cooling costs in the long run. Steel is not just adaptable, but durable. It is non-combustible and highly resistant to fire. It is also virtually invulnerable to structural damage posed by insect infestation or water. Steel can be primed or galvanized to shield it from rust and rot. It doesn’t settle, warp, swell, or twist, either. Steel structures have been built (in their respective areas) to withstand high winds, heavy snow, and even earthquakes.   The future of steel The future continues to look positive for sustainable steel. Energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions from European steelmaking have already made considerable progress over the past 50 years – achieving reductions of up to 60 per cent. But target reductions are always being implemented to further drive down these emissions. The Ultra-Low CO2 Steelmaking Partnership (ULCOS) has set goals of reducing CO2 emissions of steel production by half by the middle of the century – an ever important goal if the ‘tipping point’ of runaway climate change is to be avoided. The steel industry has already met and exceeded its carbon emissions reduction targets set out by the 1992 Kyoto Protocol by an astonishing 240 per cent. The Environmental Protection Agency has awarded it a “best industry performance” designation. At the same time steel is manufactured at strength 40 per cent greater than it was just 25 years ago, while using much less energy. Over 22 billion tonnes of steel are estimated to have been recycled worldwide since the beginning of the twentieth century. If only the other major industries of the world could encapsulate the success of the steel industry over the last 50 years. If it were possible for similar success stories to dominate most of the world’s important industries, then thinking about the future would no longer be met with troubled thoughts, but with a warm smile. Check out the below Infographic for more feel-good facts about steel. -- This article was provided by Weldwide, an organization of architectural and structural metal workers based in London.
    Jan 31, 2019 337
  • 08 Jan 2019
    With the UK construction, operation and maintenance industry accounting for 48% of the UK’s carbon emissions, the focus of many innovations in construction is now on reducing the construction sector's CO2 output. Protection Supplies have uncovered the cutting-edge yet conscious building materials of the future before revealing how these materials are changing the way that buildings are now being constructed. The UK's construction industry also needs to build 300,000 homes a year to overcome the current housing shortage. As the industry is failing to do this, materials which can shorten the time it takes to build homes and make them more affordable are crucial for revolutionising the industry. Some of the benefits of these innovative materials include: Speeding up housing production Improving the longevity of buildings Helping buildings to adapt to their surroundings, such as in the event of earthquakes Increasing natural light Reducing fuel bills Making construction more environmentally friendly by lowering CO2 production 1. Transparent Wood Invented by Swedish researchers, wood can now be treated and compressed to become a transparent material. What it does: Researcher Lars Berglund creates the transparent wood by compressing strips of wood veneer in a process similar to pulping. This removes the lignin and replaces it with the polymer, making the wood 85% transparent. Benefits: This material will create a strong and environmentally friendly alternative to plastic and glass. The material has the strength of lumber but is far lighter. It can be used in the construction of homes to bring more light in and reduce the need for artificial light which can quickly use up a lot of power. It is as environmentally friendly and biodegradable as normal wood.   2. Hydrogel Architects at the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia in Barcelona are in the process of creating walls which are able to cool themselves down, using the substance Hydrogel. What it does: Bubbles of Hydrogel are layered between two ceramic panels. These can then be installed into already constructed walls. Benefits: Hydrogel is able to absorb water when the air around Hydrogel heats up it evaporates and cools the room down by up to 5°C. The mechanism is inspired by the way the human body cools itself down. Once installed in buildings it will act as an alternative to the overuse of air conditioning which is detrimental to the environment, producing 100 million tonnes of CO2.   3. Cigarette **** Bricks Smoking is bad for your health and bad for the environment as discarded cigarettes make up an estimated 38% of all waste. Researchers at the Australian RMIT University have found that adding discarded cigarettes to bricks lessens the amount of energy needed for baking. What it does: The bricks made with the addition of cigarette butts, require less baking time than traditional bricks. This means they are cheaper and more eco-friendly to produce. Benefits: As the cigarettes within the brick reduce the time of baking bricks, they reduce the energy required to produce them by up to 58%. Additionally, the bricks are better insulators than those without cigarette butts within them and solve an ongoing pollution problem of what to do with discarded cigarettes to prevent contamination. 4. Super-hydrophobic Cement Scientists in Mexico have discovered that changing the microstructure of cement can make it absorb and reflect light, creating super-hydrophobic cement, also known as luminescent cement. What it does: The cement is able to absorb and reflect light, offering an alternative to street lighting as the ground would be lit up using this luminescent cement. Benefits: Often cement needs to be replaced within thirty to fifty years, however, this alternative product is far more durable and will last for up to hundred years. It also offers power free lighting and therefore can reduce the energy consumed and CO2 produced by lighting the streets of the world.   5. Synthetic Spider Silk A spider's web is the strongest material in the natural world. It is a naturally tough and strong material that for years scientists have been trying to create a synthetic version. Now, with the help of 3D printing, they are closer than ever. What it does: The synthetic spider's silk is created at room temperature using water, silica and cellulose which are all easily accessible. The finished product could be used as a biodegradable alternative to nylon and other tough fabrics. Benefits: The material will offer an alternative to the textile industry which is currently one of the biggest producers of CO2 in the world. The product will be used as an alternative to an array of strong materials such as parachutes and eventually it is hoped the Synthetic Spider Silk will be used in creating building materials such as blocks as well as in mechanics, making super strong car parts. 6. Breathe Bricks Acting as a secondary layer of insulation, these pollution absorbing bricks can remove 30% of fine particles and 100% of coarse particles making air within office spaces and public buildings healthier to breathe. This is particularly useful in areas with poor air quality as a way to improve air within buildings. What it does: Composed of two key parts, concrete bricks and recycled plastic coupler, the aligned bricks create a route from the outside into the brick’s hollow centre. The surface of the bricks themselves helps to direct airflow and a cavity removes pollution. Benefits: This is a cost-effective way to reduce air pollution as it requires no further maintenance once installed. It would be particularly helpful in developing countries where air quality is poor and other solutions could be too expensive to maintain.   7. Bamboo-reinforced Concrete A natural alternative to the steel reinforcement usually used in most countries, this Singaporean method of reinforcing concrete is far more sustainable. What it does: The use of bamboo rather than steel to reinforce concrete is more environmentally friendly and creates flexibility within the concrete that can better withstand earthquakes. Benefits: Bamboo grows at a high rate, meaning it absorbs a lot of CO2 as it grows and therefore increased production of bamboo would benefit the environment. It is also a great alternative to materials which cause harm as they are produced. Bamboo also has a higher tensile strength than steel because its fibres run axially and it is flexible so is great for use in earthquake-prone areas.   8. Super Wood Although wood has been used for millennia in construction, it isn’t as strong as metals used in building today. Scientists have now discovered a way to add strength to wood by boiling it in a solution of sodium hydroxide (NaOH) and sodium sulfite (Na2SO3) before it is compressed so that the molecules within the wood are strengthened. What it does: The compressed wood is far stronger and more durable than wood in its natural state, therefore it can be used in a greater range on construction projects. Benefits: As this product relies on the already abundant and natural material of wood, it is still affordable and can be created in an environmentally sustainable way according to its creators at University of Maryland, College Park. The wood is so strong it can stop bullets but is far lighter than comparable materials of the same strength.   The diversity of these materials showcases how much the industry is starting to consider the environment and the affordability of construction. The construction industry is revolutionising the way that we live. Even the materials that make up our homes are increasingly innovative and futuristic. Visit: https://www.protectionsupplies.co.uk
    469 Posted by Talk. Build
  • With the UK construction, operation and maintenance industry accounting for 48% of the UK’s carbon emissions, the focus of many innovations in construction is now on reducing the construction sector's CO2 output. Protection Supplies have uncovered the cutting-edge yet conscious building materials of the future before revealing how these materials are changing the way that buildings are now being constructed. The UK's construction industry also needs to build 300,000 homes a year to overcome the current housing shortage. As the industry is failing to do this, materials which can shorten the time it takes to build homes and make them more affordable are crucial for revolutionising the industry. Some of the benefits of these innovative materials include: Speeding up housing production Improving the longevity of buildings Helping buildings to adapt to their surroundings, such as in the event of earthquakes Increasing natural light Reducing fuel bills Making construction more environmentally friendly by lowering CO2 production 1. Transparent Wood Invented by Swedish researchers, wood can now be treated and compressed to become a transparent material. What it does: Researcher Lars Berglund creates the transparent wood by compressing strips of wood veneer in a process similar to pulping. This removes the lignin and replaces it with the polymer, making the wood 85% transparent. Benefits: This material will create a strong and environmentally friendly alternative to plastic and glass. The material has the strength of lumber but is far lighter. It can be used in the construction of homes to bring more light in and reduce the need for artificial light which can quickly use up a lot of power. It is as environmentally friendly and biodegradable as normal wood.   2. Hydrogel Architects at the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia in Barcelona are in the process of creating walls which are able to cool themselves down, using the substance Hydrogel. What it does: Bubbles of Hydrogel are layered between two ceramic panels. These can then be installed into already constructed walls. Benefits: Hydrogel is able to absorb water when the air around Hydrogel heats up it evaporates and cools the room down by up to 5°C. The mechanism is inspired by the way the human body cools itself down. Once installed in buildings it will act as an alternative to the overuse of air conditioning which is detrimental to the environment, producing 100 million tonnes of CO2.   3. Cigarette **** Bricks Smoking is bad for your health and bad for the environment as discarded cigarettes make up an estimated 38% of all waste. Researchers at the Australian RMIT University have found that adding discarded cigarettes to bricks lessens the amount of energy needed for baking. What it does: The bricks made with the addition of cigarette butts, require less baking time than traditional bricks. This means they are cheaper and more eco-friendly to produce. Benefits: As the cigarettes within the brick reduce the time of baking bricks, they reduce the energy required to produce them by up to 58%. Additionally, the bricks are better insulators than those without cigarette butts within them and solve an ongoing pollution problem of what to do with discarded cigarettes to prevent contamination. 4. Super-hydrophobic Cement Scientists in Mexico have discovered that changing the microstructure of cement can make it absorb and reflect light, creating super-hydrophobic cement, also known as luminescent cement. What it does: The cement is able to absorb and reflect light, offering an alternative to street lighting as the ground would be lit up using this luminescent cement. Benefits: Often cement needs to be replaced within thirty to fifty years, however, this alternative product is far more durable and will last for up to hundred years. It also offers power free lighting and therefore can reduce the energy consumed and CO2 produced by lighting the streets of the world.   5. Synthetic Spider Silk A spider's web is the strongest material in the natural world. It is a naturally tough and strong material that for years scientists have been trying to create a synthetic version. Now, with the help of 3D printing, they are closer than ever. What it does: The synthetic spider's silk is created at room temperature using water, silica and cellulose which are all easily accessible. The finished product could be used as a biodegradable alternative to nylon and other tough fabrics. Benefits: The material will offer an alternative to the textile industry which is currently one of the biggest producers of CO2 in the world. The product will be used as an alternative to an array of strong materials such as parachutes and eventually it is hoped the Synthetic Spider Silk will be used in creating building materials such as blocks as well as in mechanics, making super strong car parts. 6. Breathe Bricks Acting as a secondary layer of insulation, these pollution absorbing bricks can remove 30% of fine particles and 100% of coarse particles making air within office spaces and public buildings healthier to breathe. This is particularly useful in areas with poor air quality as a way to improve air within buildings. What it does: Composed of two key parts, concrete bricks and recycled plastic coupler, the aligned bricks create a route from the outside into the brick’s hollow centre. The surface of the bricks themselves helps to direct airflow and a cavity removes pollution. Benefits: This is a cost-effective way to reduce air pollution as it requires no further maintenance once installed. It would be particularly helpful in developing countries where air quality is poor and other solutions could be too expensive to maintain.   7. Bamboo-reinforced Concrete A natural alternative to the steel reinforcement usually used in most countries, this Singaporean method of reinforcing concrete is far more sustainable. What it does: The use of bamboo rather than steel to reinforce concrete is more environmentally friendly and creates flexibility within the concrete that can better withstand earthquakes. Benefits: Bamboo grows at a high rate, meaning it absorbs a lot of CO2 as it grows and therefore increased production of bamboo would benefit the environment. It is also a great alternative to materials which cause harm as they are produced. Bamboo also has a higher tensile strength than steel because its fibres run axially and it is flexible so is great for use in earthquake-prone areas.   8. Super Wood Although wood has been used for millennia in construction, it isn’t as strong as metals used in building today. Scientists have now discovered a way to add strength to wood by boiling it in a solution of sodium hydroxide (NaOH) and sodium sulfite (Na2SO3) before it is compressed so that the molecules within the wood are strengthened. What it does: The compressed wood is far stronger and more durable than wood in its natural state, therefore it can be used in a greater range on construction projects. Benefits: As this product relies on the already abundant and natural material of wood, it is still affordable and can be created in an environmentally sustainable way according to its creators at University of Maryland, College Park. The wood is so strong it can stop bullets but is far lighter than comparable materials of the same strength.   The diversity of these materials showcases how much the industry is starting to consider the environment and the affordability of construction. The construction industry is revolutionising the way that we live. Even the materials that make up our homes are increasingly innovative and futuristic. Visit: https://www.protectionsupplies.co.uk
    Jan 08, 2019 469
  • 04 Jan 2019
    The importance of science within today’s economy should not be underestimated writes Mark Gatrell, Head of Research & Development, Sika UK.  It’s essential for a country’s prosperity, environment, health, and quality of life. So when it comes to the next generation of scientists for industry, how do you inspire and find them, to ensure the UK remains at the forefront of global innovation? Graduate training programmes and internships are an ideal way to train and develop a workforce of homegrown talent. While construction product manufacturers are perhaps not household names as far as prospective interns are concerned, Sika is a globally renowned name within the industry, something that is recognised by new applicants and highly valued. Sika's UK Research & Development department offers four graduate internships, operating in either polymer synthesis; coating formulation; sealant and adhesive formulation; or cement chemistry. These posts are based at our three sites, in Preston, Leeds and Welwyn Garden City, and run for a one year, fixed term. There are significant benefits of internships for both the company and the intern. Sika has been extremely impressed with the students who have participated within the scheme since it commenced, and the skills and knowledge that they have brought to the business. It is seen as a valuable route to develop relationships with a group of highly talented people, who will soon be looking to build careers within companies such as Sika. The graduate programme brings a new influx of ideas and initiatives every year, which have contributed significantly to the development of new products, and the growth of intellectual property. The scheme offers interns a meaningful placement, with engaging work in product development and testing. Time is usually split evenly, between contributions to the ongoing development programmes, and a single dedicated project. This is selected on the basis of its value to Sika, and applicability to being the subject of the intern’s thesis. For the intern, the opportunity to spend a full year in employment within product development teams, and surrounded by some of Sika's leading experts within their field, is an engaging and highly motivating experience. There is incredible progress in their understanding of the business and its products over this time, as well as significant growth in their capability, presentation skills, and business acumen. The company invests heavily in its people, and the graduates join and benefit from our learning and development activities. Sika is a firm believer in the merits of industrial placements, and often experiences stronger performance at interview from those students who have completed industrial placements. For many of the company’s interns, an industrial placement potentially marks the beginning of a career path. Understanding of the importance of networking, effective time management, presentation skills, and organisation, are rapidly developed. Success in this environment is seen to offer greater intrinsic rewards, though the consequences of failure are far more significant and apparent. Sika believes this exposure provides an engaging challenge for candidates entering the workplace, and provides the impetus for developing new skills. Visit www.sika.co.uk.
    525 Posted by Talk. Build
  • The importance of science within today’s economy should not be underestimated writes Mark Gatrell, Head of Research & Development, Sika UK.  It’s essential for a country’s prosperity, environment, health, and quality of life. So when it comes to the next generation of scientists for industry, how do you inspire and find them, to ensure the UK remains at the forefront of global innovation? Graduate training programmes and internships are an ideal way to train and develop a workforce of homegrown talent. While construction product manufacturers are perhaps not household names as far as prospective interns are concerned, Sika is a globally renowned name within the industry, something that is recognised by new applicants and highly valued. Sika's UK Research & Development department offers four graduate internships, operating in either polymer synthesis; coating formulation; sealant and adhesive formulation; or cement chemistry. These posts are based at our three sites, in Preston, Leeds and Welwyn Garden City, and run for a one year, fixed term. There are significant benefits of internships for both the company and the intern. Sika has been extremely impressed with the students who have participated within the scheme since it commenced, and the skills and knowledge that they have brought to the business. It is seen as a valuable route to develop relationships with a group of highly talented people, who will soon be looking to build careers within companies such as Sika. The graduate programme brings a new influx of ideas and initiatives every year, which have contributed significantly to the development of new products, and the growth of intellectual property. The scheme offers interns a meaningful placement, with engaging work in product development and testing. Time is usually split evenly, between contributions to the ongoing development programmes, and a single dedicated project. This is selected on the basis of its value to Sika, and applicability to being the subject of the intern’s thesis. For the intern, the opportunity to spend a full year in employment within product development teams, and surrounded by some of Sika's leading experts within their field, is an engaging and highly motivating experience. There is incredible progress in their understanding of the business and its products over this time, as well as significant growth in their capability, presentation skills, and business acumen. The company invests heavily in its people, and the graduates join and benefit from our learning and development activities. Sika is a firm believer in the merits of industrial placements, and often experiences stronger performance at interview from those students who have completed industrial placements. For many of the company’s interns, an industrial placement potentially marks the beginning of a career path. Understanding of the importance of networking, effective time management, presentation skills, and organisation, are rapidly developed. Success in this environment is seen to offer greater intrinsic rewards, though the consequences of failure are far more significant and apparent. Sika believes this exposure provides an engaging challenge for candidates entering the workplace, and provides the impetus for developing new skills. Visit www.sika.co.uk.
    Jan 04, 2019 525
  • 03 Jan 2019
    Without tower cranes, it’s likely that many iconic buildings and structures we know and love would not be standing. Not only do these steel giants look striking, they are also integral to modern construction and development. Tower cranes are the go-to tool used to bring even the largest and grandest construction projects to life. To help you develop a better understanding of how these mammoth machines do the seemingly impossible, we’ve outlined the key mechanisms that make tower cranes work. Building a Tower Crane There are an abundance of tower cranes in cities. So much that you may be fooled into believing that they reach sky-scraping heights with ease.  In reality, erecting a tower crane takes weeks of prior preparation. To make the erection process as efficient as possible crew members typically stick to a predetermined set of sequences. Assembly procedures differ depending on the type of tower crane used. Broadly speaking, tower cranes typically fall into general categories of either Luffing Jib or Trolley Jib types.  Luffing jib tower cranes have jib arms that “luff” or pivot up/down similar to ground based mobile cranes.  Trolley jib tower cranes have a horizontal jib arm and a trolley assembly that positions the load along the length of the jib.  We’ve outlined the assembly process for a freestanding, trolley jib tower crane as these are some of the most commonly used tower cranes nationally. The Crane Base The process of erecting a crane begins with creating a secure foundation from which the structure will be built upon. The integrity of the base is crucial in supporting the crane’s structure and balance for assembly and operation. Prior to the crane’s arrival on site, the first piece of the vertical mast is secured to a concrete foundation using heavy duty anchor bolts or embedded stools. The exact quantity of concrete needed will depend on various factors including the configuration of the tower crane and the local code requirements, but the entire weight of the base usually exceeds 400,000 lbs. Crane Transportation    The next order of business is the transportation of the equipment to the worksite, this may sound simple enough, but for the crew many factors have will need to be taken into account. Transportation considerations include: Transportation Budget – To transport the parts of the tower crane heavy hauling services are required, this will incur additional costs. Transportation Routes – Particular road routes and travel times are restricted when hauling loads over a certain weight or dimension. Transportation Schedule -The transportation of equipment requires precise coordination, to ensure the tower crane components arrive on site in the order needed, along with any additional equipment needed for the assembly. Erecting a Crane The tower crane will arrive on site in multiple parts.  First, the vertical mast is erected by adding additional mast sections on top of the base using other types of lifting equipment such as mobile or crawler cranes. Once the desired mast height has been reached, the operator’s cab and a turntable, which provides rotation, will be placed and secured atop the lengthy mast, this section is usually the heaviest element of a tower crane. The apex of the crane is then attached – aptly named the tower top. A working arm or jib is connected to the turntable and extends horizontally.  Attached to the jib is a trolley mechanism, hoist & hook.  These provide the various functions needed for lifting. Behind the cab and in alignment with the working jib is the counter-jib.  This section contains counterweights, motors, and electronics. For the tower crane to become functional, ropes must be attached and connected to the working elements. Operating a Tower Crane The majority of cranes are designed to be operated from the cabin at the top of the crane. For efficiency and safety, a team of skilled individuals are employed to oversee the operation of the crane. Each member of the team resumes responsibility for various processes. For example, ‘the appointed person’ has a range of duties including assessing risk and managing the overall planning of the lift. A ‘crane coordinator’ will take on the responsibility of scheduling the lifts, managing the sequencing the lifts and ensuring clashes do not occur.  A “Signal person” is responsible for acting as the operator’s second set of eyes and communicating to the operator which direction(s) to move the load. The ‘crane operator’, obviously, is responsible for operating the crane and lifting/positioning loads as required and directed by others.  Dismantling Tower Cranes The basic steps to dismantle a tower crane are the same as assembly, just in reverse order.  However, it must be consider that when a tower crane is erected, typically the jobsite is mostly empty as the primary structure hasn’t started without the tower crane.  When it comes down, the opposite is true as the completed structure usually occupies most of the available space on the site.  Hence, with limited room to setup a mobile crane or set the tower crane components down, dismantlement is often a far more complicated task. Maxim Crane is a coast-to-coast provider of crane rental and lifting services. As specialists within our field, we offer innovative solutions to meet your project’s needs. Situated in over 50 locations, each branch is able to provide management services, including transportation, risk management, safety and insurance programs that are unparalleled in the industry. Visit: https://www.cranerental.com
    478 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Without tower cranes, it’s likely that many iconic buildings and structures we know and love would not be standing. Not only do these steel giants look striking, they are also integral to modern construction and development. Tower cranes are the go-to tool used to bring even the largest and grandest construction projects to life. To help you develop a better understanding of how these mammoth machines do the seemingly impossible, we’ve outlined the key mechanisms that make tower cranes work. Building a Tower Crane There are an abundance of tower cranes in cities. So much that you may be fooled into believing that they reach sky-scraping heights with ease.  In reality, erecting a tower crane takes weeks of prior preparation. To make the erection process as efficient as possible crew members typically stick to a predetermined set of sequences. Assembly procedures differ depending on the type of tower crane used. Broadly speaking, tower cranes typically fall into general categories of either Luffing Jib or Trolley Jib types.  Luffing jib tower cranes have jib arms that “luff” or pivot up/down similar to ground based mobile cranes.  Trolley jib tower cranes have a horizontal jib arm and a trolley assembly that positions the load along the length of the jib.  We’ve outlined the assembly process for a freestanding, trolley jib tower crane as these are some of the most commonly used tower cranes nationally. The Crane Base The process of erecting a crane begins with creating a secure foundation from which the structure will be built upon. The integrity of the base is crucial in supporting the crane’s structure and balance for assembly and operation. Prior to the crane’s arrival on site, the first piece of the vertical mast is secured to a concrete foundation using heavy duty anchor bolts or embedded stools. The exact quantity of concrete needed will depend on various factors including the configuration of the tower crane and the local code requirements, but the entire weight of the base usually exceeds 400,000 lbs. Crane Transportation    The next order of business is the transportation of the equipment to the worksite, this may sound simple enough, but for the crew many factors have will need to be taken into account. Transportation considerations include: Transportation Budget – To transport the parts of the tower crane heavy hauling services are required, this will incur additional costs. Transportation Routes – Particular road routes and travel times are restricted when hauling loads over a certain weight or dimension. Transportation Schedule -The transportation of equipment requires precise coordination, to ensure the tower crane components arrive on site in the order needed, along with any additional equipment needed for the assembly. Erecting a Crane The tower crane will arrive on site in multiple parts.  First, the vertical mast is erected by adding additional mast sections on top of the base using other types of lifting equipment such as mobile or crawler cranes. Once the desired mast height has been reached, the operator’s cab and a turntable, which provides rotation, will be placed and secured atop the lengthy mast, this section is usually the heaviest element of a tower crane. The apex of the crane is then attached – aptly named the tower top. A working arm or jib is connected to the turntable and extends horizontally.  Attached to the jib is a trolley mechanism, hoist & hook.  These provide the various functions needed for lifting. Behind the cab and in alignment with the working jib is the counter-jib.  This section contains counterweights, motors, and electronics. For the tower crane to become functional, ropes must be attached and connected to the working elements. Operating a Tower Crane The majority of cranes are designed to be operated from the cabin at the top of the crane. For efficiency and safety, a team of skilled individuals are employed to oversee the operation of the crane. Each member of the team resumes responsibility for various processes. For example, ‘the appointed person’ has a range of duties including assessing risk and managing the overall planning of the lift. A ‘crane coordinator’ will take on the responsibility of scheduling the lifts, managing the sequencing the lifts and ensuring clashes do not occur.  A “Signal person” is responsible for acting as the operator’s second set of eyes and communicating to the operator which direction(s) to move the load. The ‘crane operator’, obviously, is responsible for operating the crane and lifting/positioning loads as required and directed by others.  Dismantling Tower Cranes The basic steps to dismantle a tower crane are the same as assembly, just in reverse order.  However, it must be consider that when a tower crane is erected, typically the jobsite is mostly empty as the primary structure hasn’t started without the tower crane.  When it comes down, the opposite is true as the completed structure usually occupies most of the available space on the site.  Hence, with limited room to setup a mobile crane or set the tower crane components down, dismantlement is often a far more complicated task. Maxim Crane is a coast-to-coast provider of crane rental and lifting services. As specialists within our field, we offer innovative solutions to meet your project’s needs. Situated in over 50 locations, each branch is able to provide management services, including transportation, risk management, safety and insurance programs that are unparalleled in the industry. Visit: https://www.cranerental.com
    Jan 03, 2019 478
  • 02 Jan 2019
    Being in a building dispute can be a pain. But if it is not immediately resolved, it can cause worse problems for you. This could be in the form of delays, unfinished work, additional costs, and it can take much of your time. How will deal with it can determine the success of the construction project? An Australian construction lawyer gives his views. Building disputes can be anything. It could be about poor workmanship, payment issues, contract breaches, or any concern that involves a constructed building. It can also be a test on how you could manage your relationships with the others involved in the building project. With a harmonious relationship, you can easily work together to finish the building properly. But, handling building disputes sounds easy but it could be hard when you are in the actual situation. This applies especially when the person you are dealing with could be difficult to work with. So, here as some tips to help you handle building disputes better: Talk and Negotiate with empathy. Do not let your emotions rule you when talking to your builder. They are people too, and they can make mistakes. You must learn to listen to their story with understanding what are the events that led to the dispute. With a clear head, you can already know what your next action to resolve this mess. But while being understanding, you should still know how to distinguish the difference between excuses from facts. It will lead you to know the truth and the way to resolve the problem. Take note and document every detail. Having a copy of everything related to the building project is a helpful practice for you when things go wrong. You can easily track where the dispute happened, and even keep your work organized. You can even have it as solid legal proof. Your contract, payment claim, invoices, pictures and other documents can help you handle the dispute as objective as possible. You can use it to plead your case properly to the parties involved and you can easily pinpoint who is at fault. And in some cases, they can hold the key to a resolution for the issue. Know your rights. Different construction laws protect you from different building disputes. There are laws for building defects, laws for late payments and laws that can protect your rights whichever role you are taking part in the building project. So, you have to do your best to enforce it. The law is on your side so if the other parties in the project are not doing their job well, you can confront them about it. It is in your hands on how you should remind them of these laws, but remember that the law is also solid proof of their incompetence.   Talk to a specialist construction lawyer. If you feel that you do not have the confidence to confront the other party yourself, you can ask the help of a construction lawyer to mediate in between. They can help you understand your rights in the building disputes and what you can do about them. They can guide you through each step of any legal process you would have to undergo due to the dispute. They can also give you expert legal advice, so you are sure that your building dispute gets resolved as cost and time- efficient as possible. So that, you get to enforce your legal rights and handle your building dispute with ease. Visit: https://www.contractsspecialist.com.au/building-dispute-lawyer-sydney  
    541 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Being in a building dispute can be a pain. But if it is not immediately resolved, it can cause worse problems for you. This could be in the form of delays, unfinished work, additional costs, and it can take much of your time. How will deal with it can determine the success of the construction project? An Australian construction lawyer gives his views. Building disputes can be anything. It could be about poor workmanship, payment issues, contract breaches, or any concern that involves a constructed building. It can also be a test on how you could manage your relationships with the others involved in the building project. With a harmonious relationship, you can easily work together to finish the building properly. But, handling building disputes sounds easy but it could be hard when you are in the actual situation. This applies especially when the person you are dealing with could be difficult to work with. So, here as some tips to help you handle building disputes better: Talk and Negotiate with empathy. Do not let your emotions rule you when talking to your builder. They are people too, and they can make mistakes. You must learn to listen to their story with understanding what are the events that led to the dispute. With a clear head, you can already know what your next action to resolve this mess. But while being understanding, you should still know how to distinguish the difference between excuses from facts. It will lead you to know the truth and the way to resolve the problem. Take note and document every detail. Having a copy of everything related to the building project is a helpful practice for you when things go wrong. You can easily track where the dispute happened, and even keep your work organized. You can even have it as solid legal proof. Your contract, payment claim, invoices, pictures and other documents can help you handle the dispute as objective as possible. You can use it to plead your case properly to the parties involved and you can easily pinpoint who is at fault. And in some cases, they can hold the key to a resolution for the issue. Know your rights. Different construction laws protect you from different building disputes. There are laws for building defects, laws for late payments and laws that can protect your rights whichever role you are taking part in the building project. So, you have to do your best to enforce it. The law is on your side so if the other parties in the project are not doing their job well, you can confront them about it. It is in your hands on how you should remind them of these laws, but remember that the law is also solid proof of their incompetence.   Talk to a specialist construction lawyer. If you feel that you do not have the confidence to confront the other party yourself, you can ask the help of a construction lawyer to mediate in between. They can help you understand your rights in the building disputes and what you can do about them. They can guide you through each step of any legal process you would have to undergo due to the dispute. They can also give you expert legal advice, so you are sure that your building dispute gets resolved as cost and time- efficient as possible. So that, you get to enforce your legal rights and handle your building dispute with ease. Visit: https://www.contractsspecialist.com.au/building-dispute-lawyer-sydney  
    Jan 02, 2019 541
  • 20 Dec 2018
    When Fosters + Partners announced in 2013 it was exploring the possibilities of 3D printed buildings on the moon using lunar soil, the concept of 3D printed buildings as a viable commercial alternative to current construction techniques was one step closer to reality writes Martin Liska, Research and Development Manager, Sika. Five years later, this ‘disruptive technology’, a term defined by American scholar Clayton Christensen, may well still be in its infancy, but remains on track to being a game-changer in the construction industry with buildings and their components having the potential to quite literally raise themselves. The digitisation of the construction industry is changing every aspect of construction and the entire lifecycle of a building from design to maintenance. As part of this, 3D concrete printing is just one of the new tools for architects and contractors to change the rules of the game and allow a more efficient and sustainable design. The technology may not yet be at the point where we can build high spec homes or fifty storey buildings but in its infancy it is showing to have remarkable technical, economical as well as sustainability potential. If 3D concrete printing is to compete with traditional and economical construction methods, then structures need to be printed efficiently. As a 3D concrete printing pioneer, Sika has consolidated all the technologies and knowledge resulting in a developed complex system which ensures that concrete is printed rapidly, inexpensively and precisely.  The system includes the robotics, the Sika Pulsement process control system, the Sika MiniShot extrusion system, 3D mortar system and Sika ViscoCrete® technology.   One of the major parts of the robotics system is the print head developed by the Sika 3D research team. It is a high performance tool that ensures an efficient printing process through precise management of not only the head movement, but also with the 3D mortar system and the ViscoCrete technology, the properties of the extruded material. Consistence, colour, strength rate development, dimensional stability and durability of the 3D printed concrete are controlled through a tailored selection and dosage of raw materials and proprietary additives. The concrete extruded through the print head then creates building components layer-by-layer. The material cures within seconds and bonds with the layer placed previously. This way, conventional as well as complex shapes can be constructed rapidly with the highest efficiency of the material use. This allows for the realisation of previously inconceivable architecture, from dynamic curves to futuristic interlinked structures, all of which can be printed directly and efficiently from digital plans. 3D printing does not require formwork or any additional equipment as the concrete is directly moulded into the construction. It is therefore possible to print concrete quickly and competitively. 3D printing offers a wealth of sustainability benefits, directly fulfilling one of Sika’s core values. The process aims to significantly increase the speed of construction and eliminate waste through utilisation of virtually all material extruded from the printing head. The efficient use of materials is such that they become multifunctional; they are not only strong enough to support the structure, but act as an effective insulation in the case hollow wall segments are 3D printed - thus achieving more with less. The method will allow for building bespoke houses available for the wider market, addressing, for example, the ever-increasing need for housing at a competitive price. 3D printing will also be dependent on fewer logistical processes and a shorter supply chain, both contributing to a faster design and construction time. The construction industry has a reputation for being slow to adopt innovation and new methods, but the obvious potential and benefits of 3D concrete printing technology is astonishing and should not be underestimated.  Sika is perfectly positioned to lead the field and is prepared to play an important role in the 3D concrete printing market. Visit: www.sika.co.uk
    433 Posted by Talk. Build
  • When Fosters + Partners announced in 2013 it was exploring the possibilities of 3D printed buildings on the moon using lunar soil, the concept of 3D printed buildings as a viable commercial alternative to current construction techniques was one step closer to reality writes Martin Liska, Research and Development Manager, Sika. Five years later, this ‘disruptive technology’, a term defined by American scholar Clayton Christensen, may well still be in its infancy, but remains on track to being a game-changer in the construction industry with buildings and their components having the potential to quite literally raise themselves. The digitisation of the construction industry is changing every aspect of construction and the entire lifecycle of a building from design to maintenance. As part of this, 3D concrete printing is just one of the new tools for architects and contractors to change the rules of the game and allow a more efficient and sustainable design. The technology may not yet be at the point where we can build high spec homes or fifty storey buildings but in its infancy it is showing to have remarkable technical, economical as well as sustainability potential. If 3D concrete printing is to compete with traditional and economical construction methods, then structures need to be printed efficiently. As a 3D concrete printing pioneer, Sika has consolidated all the technologies and knowledge resulting in a developed complex system which ensures that concrete is printed rapidly, inexpensively and precisely.  The system includes the robotics, the Sika Pulsement process control system, the Sika MiniShot extrusion system, 3D mortar system and Sika ViscoCrete® technology.   One of the major parts of the robotics system is the print head developed by the Sika 3D research team. It is a high performance tool that ensures an efficient printing process through precise management of not only the head movement, but also with the 3D mortar system and the ViscoCrete technology, the properties of the extruded material. Consistence, colour, strength rate development, dimensional stability and durability of the 3D printed concrete are controlled through a tailored selection and dosage of raw materials and proprietary additives. The concrete extruded through the print head then creates building components layer-by-layer. The material cures within seconds and bonds with the layer placed previously. This way, conventional as well as complex shapes can be constructed rapidly with the highest efficiency of the material use. This allows for the realisation of previously inconceivable architecture, from dynamic curves to futuristic interlinked structures, all of which can be printed directly and efficiently from digital plans. 3D printing does not require formwork or any additional equipment as the concrete is directly moulded into the construction. It is therefore possible to print concrete quickly and competitively. 3D printing offers a wealth of sustainability benefits, directly fulfilling one of Sika’s core values. The process aims to significantly increase the speed of construction and eliminate waste through utilisation of virtually all material extruded from the printing head. The efficient use of materials is such that they become multifunctional; they are not only strong enough to support the structure, but act as an effective insulation in the case hollow wall segments are 3D printed - thus achieving more with less. The method will allow for building bespoke houses available for the wider market, addressing, for example, the ever-increasing need for housing at a competitive price. 3D printing will also be dependent on fewer logistical processes and a shorter supply chain, both contributing to a faster design and construction time. The construction industry has a reputation for being slow to adopt innovation and new methods, but the obvious potential and benefits of 3D concrete printing technology is astonishing and should not be underestimated.  Sika is perfectly positioned to lead the field and is prepared to play an important role in the 3D concrete printing market. Visit: www.sika.co.uk
    Dec 20, 2018 433
  • 19 Dec 2018
    Private homes are estimated to be responsible for about one fifth to one fourth of global carbon dioxide emissions; and for that reason, eco-friendly construction or green building is becoming more and more of a necessity. If you’re looking to move home and are wanting something more eco-friendly, Roof Stores have been investigating some alternative types of housing that will help you cut down your carbon footprint… Earthship Earthship designs are made completely from natural and upcycled materials. They are built with the intention of being “Off-The-Grid ready”. This means the require minimal reliance on public utilities and fossil fuels. They are also constructed to use available natural resources in particular energy from the sun and rain water Sub-Types Packaged: Prefabricated construction packages available making it easier to construct. Most economical and versatile. Modular: Provides more sculptural and variety of rooms. Every room has thermal mass and stability. Eco-Friendly Elements Constructed using natural and upcycled materials. Thermo-solar heating and cooling. Solar and wind electricity. Self-contained sewage treatment. Water harvesting and long-term storage. Advantages Grow food inside thanks to greenhouse interaction zones. Thermal mass keeps you cool in summer and warm in winter. Ease of construction. Can be constructed using materials that are free and would otherwise be landfill. Inexpensive. Models start at $20,000. Little to no utility bills. Disadvantages While materials are free, they take time to collect. Most Earthships are constructed with the aid of concrete, which contributes 10% of the world’s greenhouse gases. If not done by yourself, it can be costly to construct. Can take 2-3 years to find its median temperature. Environment Rating 4/5 Practicality Rating 2/5 Cost To Build $225 per square foot.Or, from as little as $10,000. Earth Sheltered   Earth Sheltered Houses are typically built into the side or underneath the ground. This could be through ‘Earth Berming’ where earth is piled up against exterior walls and packed, sloping away from the house. Or, they could be classed as ‘in-Hill Construction’ where the home is set into a slope or hillside. There is usually only one wall visible, the rest are surrounded by earth. Some houses are completely underground, otherwise known as Fully Recessed Construction. This is where the ground is excavated, and the house is set in below grade. Eco-Friendly Elements Thermal mass: Generated by the earth surrounding the building, warming the house in winter and cooling it in summer. Advantages Lower Bills: Energy usage will be minimal from heating. Storm Resistant: Thanks to being mostly underground, the impact on your home from high-winds will be minimal or non-existent. Thermal Mass: Energy Usage can be slashed by up to 50%-80% Disadvantages If the earth shelter has not been properly designed, you will find the following; Water Seepage Internal Condensation Bad Acoustics Poor Indoor Air Quality Due to the threat of water seepage, non-biodegradable substances, like concrete and plastics, tend to be used, which isn’t eco-friendly Lack of natural light. Environment Rating 4/5 Practicality Rating 1/5 Cost $100-$120 per square foot Prefabricated   Pre-fabricated designs are houses that are constructed off-site. Once complete they are shipped to your chosen location and even assembled for you. Sub-Types Manufactured: Built on nonremovable steel frames, known as chasses, which are used to transport the home and for permanent support and are relatively low cost. Modular: Consist of units or modules that are constructed in factories and joined together on site. They often use costlier materials and are bigger than manufactured homes. They also tend to have more customisation options Panellised: Have separate units joined together on-site and are more structured then Modular. The panels fit together in a unique order, rather than the random method of modular. Eco-Friendly Elements Green Construction: Prefabricated houses use less energy during construction. Green Materials:Typically built with environmentally friendly and recyclable materials like wood and steel. Wastage: There’s less wastage during construction. Advantages Air-Tight: Tight seams and state-of-the-art windows keep heat in and thus reduce energy bills. Also have a reputation to withstand natural disasters. Speed Of Assembly: Thanks to being pre-made assembly is very quick, as walls and ceilings just need to be joined together. Affordability: Cheaper than standard stick-built homes. Disadvantages Increased up-front costs due to pre-construction and assembly before you can move in. Hooking up utilities can be problematic. Transportation can be difficult depending on where you want to live. Buying the land to put your home on can be very expensive. Environment Rating 3/5 Practicality Rating 5/5 Cost Can range from $50,000 - $500,000. Shipping Container Homes made out of shipping containers! They have grown in popularity over the past several years due to their inherent strength, wide availability, and relatively low expense. Eco-Friendly Elements Reusing Steel: For each recycled shipping container 7,000 pounds of steel become reused. Less Concrete & Cement: The only concrete that you will need will be for the foundations. Advantages Low Cost: Containers and much cheaper than materials such as brick and steel. Quick Construction: Due to the walls, floors and ceilings being already constructed, moving in time is radically decreased. Durable: Containers are already made to resist extreme weather conditions. Off Site Construction: Containers can be converted off-site so only assembly and interior design in needed on-site. Disadvantages Temperature Control: Temperature control can be difficult due to the metal’s absorption quality. Space & Shape: You are restricted to the length and width of the containers. Cargo Spillages: You never know what the container was storing before you owned it. Solvents: Solvents released from paint and sealants used in manufacture might be harmful. Environment Rating 2/5 Practicality Rating 3/5 Cost $2,000 per container. Tiny House Movement Tiny houses have become so popular that they have their own ‘movement’. Generally, they are under 500 square feet. Eco-Friendly Elements Less building materials required. Easier to build with recycled, repurposed and salvaged materials. Reduced life cycle cost of materials. Smaller space to heat. Can be mostly powered off solar and wind resources due to size. Composting toilet. Catch and filtration of rainwater. Advantages Many tiny houses can be built with wheels enabling it to be a mobile home. Affordability. Disadvantages Less living and storage space. Limited entertaining space. Minimalist lifestyle. Environment Rating 4/5 Practicality Rating 3/5 Cost $19,000 - $50,000 Visit: https://www.roof-stores.co.uk              
    449 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Private homes are estimated to be responsible for about one fifth to one fourth of global carbon dioxide emissions; and for that reason, eco-friendly construction or green building is becoming more and more of a necessity. If you’re looking to move home and are wanting something more eco-friendly, Roof Stores have been investigating some alternative types of housing that will help you cut down your carbon footprint… Earthship Earthship designs are made completely from natural and upcycled materials. They are built with the intention of being “Off-The-Grid ready”. This means the require minimal reliance on public utilities and fossil fuels. They are also constructed to use available natural resources in particular energy from the sun and rain water Sub-Types Packaged: Prefabricated construction packages available making it easier to construct. Most economical and versatile. Modular: Provides more sculptural and variety of rooms. Every room has thermal mass and stability. Eco-Friendly Elements Constructed using natural and upcycled materials. Thermo-solar heating and cooling. Solar and wind electricity. Self-contained sewage treatment. Water harvesting and long-term storage. Advantages Grow food inside thanks to greenhouse interaction zones. Thermal mass keeps you cool in summer and warm in winter. Ease of construction. Can be constructed using materials that are free and would otherwise be landfill. Inexpensive. Models start at $20,000. Little to no utility bills. Disadvantages While materials are free, they take time to collect. Most Earthships are constructed with the aid of concrete, which contributes 10% of the world’s greenhouse gases. If not done by yourself, it can be costly to construct. Can take 2-3 years to find its median temperature. Environment Rating 4/5 Practicality Rating 2/5 Cost To Build $225 per square foot.Or, from as little as $10,000. Earth Sheltered   Earth Sheltered Houses are typically built into the side or underneath the ground. This could be through ‘Earth Berming’ where earth is piled up against exterior walls and packed, sloping away from the house. Or, they could be classed as ‘in-Hill Construction’ where the home is set into a slope or hillside. There is usually only one wall visible, the rest are surrounded by earth. Some houses are completely underground, otherwise known as Fully Recessed Construction. This is where the ground is excavated, and the house is set in below grade. Eco-Friendly Elements Thermal mass: Generated by the earth surrounding the building, warming the house in winter and cooling it in summer. Advantages Lower Bills: Energy usage will be minimal from heating. Storm Resistant: Thanks to being mostly underground, the impact on your home from high-winds will be minimal or non-existent. Thermal Mass: Energy Usage can be slashed by up to 50%-80% Disadvantages If the earth shelter has not been properly designed, you will find the following; Water Seepage Internal Condensation Bad Acoustics Poor Indoor Air Quality Due to the threat of water seepage, non-biodegradable substances, like concrete and plastics, tend to be used, which isn’t eco-friendly Lack of natural light. Environment Rating 4/5 Practicality Rating 1/5 Cost $100-$120 per square foot Prefabricated   Pre-fabricated designs are houses that are constructed off-site. Once complete they are shipped to your chosen location and even assembled for you. Sub-Types Manufactured: Built on nonremovable steel frames, known as chasses, which are used to transport the home and for permanent support and are relatively low cost. Modular: Consist of units or modules that are constructed in factories and joined together on site. They often use costlier materials and are bigger than manufactured homes. They also tend to have more customisation options Panellised: Have separate units joined together on-site and are more structured then Modular. The panels fit together in a unique order, rather than the random method of modular. Eco-Friendly Elements Green Construction: Prefabricated houses use less energy during construction. Green Materials:Typically built with environmentally friendly and recyclable materials like wood and steel. Wastage: There’s less wastage during construction. Advantages Air-Tight: Tight seams and state-of-the-art windows keep heat in and thus reduce energy bills. Also have a reputation to withstand natural disasters. Speed Of Assembly: Thanks to being pre-made assembly is very quick, as walls and ceilings just need to be joined together. Affordability: Cheaper than standard stick-built homes. Disadvantages Increased up-front costs due to pre-construction and assembly before you can move in. Hooking up utilities can be problematic. Transportation can be difficult depending on where you want to live. Buying the land to put your home on can be very expensive. Environment Rating 3/5 Practicality Rating 5/5 Cost Can range from $50,000 - $500,000. Shipping Container Homes made out of shipping containers! They have grown in popularity over the past several years due to their inherent strength, wide availability, and relatively low expense. Eco-Friendly Elements Reusing Steel: For each recycled shipping container 7,000 pounds of steel become reused. Less Concrete & Cement: The only concrete that you will need will be for the foundations. Advantages Low Cost: Containers and much cheaper than materials such as brick and steel. Quick Construction: Due to the walls, floors and ceilings being already constructed, moving in time is radically decreased. Durable: Containers are already made to resist extreme weather conditions. Off Site Construction: Containers can be converted off-site so only assembly and interior design in needed on-site. Disadvantages Temperature Control: Temperature control can be difficult due to the metal’s absorption quality. Space & Shape: You are restricted to the length and width of the containers. Cargo Spillages: You never know what the container was storing before you owned it. Solvents: Solvents released from paint and sealants used in manufacture might be harmful. Environment Rating 2/5 Practicality Rating 3/5 Cost $2,000 per container. Tiny House Movement Tiny houses have become so popular that they have their own ‘movement’. Generally, they are under 500 square feet. Eco-Friendly Elements Less building materials required. Easier to build with recycled, repurposed and salvaged materials. Reduced life cycle cost of materials. Smaller space to heat. Can be mostly powered off solar and wind resources due to size. Composting toilet. Catch and filtration of rainwater. Advantages Many tiny houses can be built with wheels enabling it to be a mobile home. Affordability. Disadvantages Less living and storage space. Limited entertaining space. Minimalist lifestyle. Environment Rating 4/5 Practicality Rating 3/5 Cost $19,000 - $50,000 Visit: https://www.roof-stores.co.uk              
    Dec 19, 2018 449
  • 17 Dec 2018
    As an employer, safety is likely pretty high on your priority risk, ensuring that you and those you work with minimise the risk of accidents. Although it can be easy to incorporate various health and safety protocols in order to sufficiently protect yourself and your colleagues from immediate harm, it’s important to consider some of the hidden dangers that may be hidden within the walls. Asbestos is a flame retardant used in a variety of building works across the country until its ban in the 1990s and remains a very serious danger to those who may be working in close proximity to the material. With this in mind, it’s useful to understand asbestos and how it still poses a threat. What exactly is asbestos? The term asbestos actually covers a group of naturally occurring materials made up of microscopic fibres. These silicate materials are split into six different types and can be found all across the globe. Its use in industry is due to its flame retardant properties and its use can be traced back to the Ancient Egyptians, who weaved asbestos cloth to preserve their dead. However, it wasn’t until the industrial revolution that asbestos began to be used on a much larger scale, with over 30,000 tonnes of the lightweight fibre being mined across the globe every year by the early 1900s. Although its effects as a dangerous material were documented as early as the late 1800s, asbestos was only fully banned in the UK with the prohibition of chrysotile in 1999. Because of this, a large percentage of buildings constructed before this point may have some form of asbestos built into it, making it a very present danger for many working in the industry. What are the dangers? Asbestos is not generally considered dangerous unless the microscopic fibres are inhaled or ingested. However, there is a host of problems that can occur from asbestos infiltrating your lungs that can range from minor to severe. The four main diseases that can be contracted from asbestos are as follows: Diffuse pleural thickening/pleural plaques - these two diseases occur from the inhalation of asbestos and cause scarring or plaque build-up to occur around the pleura; the double-layered membrane surrounding your lungs. Asbestosis - the scarring of lung tissue, this can evolve into a host of more severe problems. Asbestos-related lung cancer and Mesothelioma - two types of cancers that affect the various parts of the lung. These problems may take years or even decades to surface so it’s imperative for those working in close proximity to older buildings to be adequately protected. Keeping you protected from asbestos Making sure that you’re working in an environment safe from the scourge of asbestos is essential, so if you believe you may have discovered some, it is imperative to bring in the experts. Modbay, alongside our work in roofing and guttering, we offer a comprehensive asbestos stripping service, ensuring that you’re working safely.  visit our website.  
    335 Posted by Talk. Build
  • As an employer, safety is likely pretty high on your priority risk, ensuring that you and those you work with minimise the risk of accidents. Although it can be easy to incorporate various health and safety protocols in order to sufficiently protect yourself and your colleagues from immediate harm, it’s important to consider some of the hidden dangers that may be hidden within the walls. Asbestos is a flame retardant used in a variety of building works across the country until its ban in the 1990s and remains a very serious danger to those who may be working in close proximity to the material. With this in mind, it’s useful to understand asbestos and how it still poses a threat. What exactly is asbestos? The term asbestos actually covers a group of naturally occurring materials made up of microscopic fibres. These silicate materials are split into six different types and can be found all across the globe. Its use in industry is due to its flame retardant properties and its use can be traced back to the Ancient Egyptians, who weaved asbestos cloth to preserve their dead. However, it wasn’t until the industrial revolution that asbestos began to be used on a much larger scale, with over 30,000 tonnes of the lightweight fibre being mined across the globe every year by the early 1900s. Although its effects as a dangerous material were documented as early as the late 1800s, asbestos was only fully banned in the UK with the prohibition of chrysotile in 1999. Because of this, a large percentage of buildings constructed before this point may have some form of asbestos built into it, making it a very present danger for many working in the industry. What are the dangers? Asbestos is not generally considered dangerous unless the microscopic fibres are inhaled or ingested. However, there is a host of problems that can occur from asbestos infiltrating your lungs that can range from minor to severe. The four main diseases that can be contracted from asbestos are as follows: Diffuse pleural thickening/pleural plaques - these two diseases occur from the inhalation of asbestos and cause scarring or plaque build-up to occur around the pleura; the double-layered membrane surrounding your lungs. Asbestosis - the scarring of lung tissue, this can evolve into a host of more severe problems. Asbestos-related lung cancer and Mesothelioma - two types of cancers that affect the various parts of the lung. These problems may take years or even decades to surface so it’s imperative for those working in close proximity to older buildings to be adequately protected. Keeping you protected from asbestos Making sure that you’re working in an environment safe from the scourge of asbestos is essential, so if you believe you may have discovered some, it is imperative to bring in the experts. Modbay, alongside our work in roofing and guttering, we offer a comprehensive asbestos stripping service, ensuring that you’re working safely.  visit our website.  
    Dec 17, 2018 335
  • 10 Dec 2018
    A happy employee is a productive one, which is why it is essential workspaces are light, appealing, and ideally, paragons of energy-efficiency. These characteristics were very much to the fore when it came to building one of the largest distribution hubs in the UK, which included 13,000m2 of Energysaver GRP composite rooflights from the UK and Ireland’s leading rooflight manufacturer, Brett Martin. . Home to a leading homeware retailer, the huge 111,000m2 warehouse at Central Park in Avonmouth covers an impressive amount of ground. In fact, it’s thought to be the biggest single building in the south west; the equivalent size of 15 Wembley Stadiums. Central to the design of the £100m building was a rooflight solution that minimised the use of artificial lighting and reduced running costs associated with such an enormous building. The specification for the 80mm-thick composite panel roof included 13,000m2 of Brett Martin GRP Trilite Energysaver rooflights to bathe the building in natural sunlight and achieve an excellent U-value of 1.3W/m²K.  For a project of such magnitude, it is testament to the skills and dedication of ‘full-envelope’ contractor, FK Group, and the usability of the factory-assembled Brett Martin insulating rooflights (FAIRs) that the warehouse application was completed within an impressive 16-week timeframe. The FAIRs were built-up using a Trilite GRP sheet (3.0kg/m2) to ensure fast, reliable weatherproofing and allow the highest-quality natural daylight into the interior of this widespan building. “High performance, trouble-free Energysaver rooflights used at the Range Warehouse are one of the most cost effective ways of getting natural light into wide span buildings,” commented David Biggs, Commercial Director at Brett Martin Daylight Systems. “Energysaver rooflights are the go-to solution for introducing daylight into these building types, increasing worker productivity and helping warehouses meet their energy efficiency targets.” GRP allows an even spread of daylight, illuminating the warehouse while eliminating the risk of hot spots and solar glare which could disturb the retailer’s staff. A revelation in terms of quality and invention, Brett Martin’s Energysaver composite panel rooflights are innovative triple-skin FAIRs for composite roofs manufactured from GRP. Designed to the same depth as the composite roofing system, Energysaver's flat liner panel sits flush with surrounding metal panels for excellent aesthetics and a neater, trim internal appearance. Delivering U-values from 1.9W/m²K down to 0.9W/m²K, they offer high quality diffused natural daylight, thermal performance and ready-to-fit convenience for widespan buildings. Science supports the benefits of natural daylight in inspiring an uplifting effect upon those exposed to its rays, particularly in workspaces. Rooflights help facilitate this ‘real’ feel good factor, offering an attractive solution to daylighting requirements whilst providing the required insulation values which allow buildings to meet energy saving targets and reduce running costs. Brett Martin has taken rooflight provision to new heights. How so? Well, it not only designs a wide range of rooflight systems to deliver optimum performance, durability, safety and regulation standards – it offers superior technical support, detailed installation instructions and maintenance guidelines to ensure systems perform as promised, and work alongside all other roofing elements. The use of in-plane GRP rooflights from Brett Martin more than played its part in the design and performance of Avonmouth’s ‘super-warehouse’. It’s a shining example of how a building and its occupants perform better in the natural light. Visit: http://www.brettmartin.com  
    435 Posted by Talk. Build
  • A happy employee is a productive one, which is why it is essential workspaces are light, appealing, and ideally, paragons of energy-efficiency. These characteristics were very much to the fore when it came to building one of the largest distribution hubs in the UK, which included 13,000m2 of Energysaver GRP composite rooflights from the UK and Ireland’s leading rooflight manufacturer, Brett Martin. . Home to a leading homeware retailer, the huge 111,000m2 warehouse at Central Park in Avonmouth covers an impressive amount of ground. In fact, it’s thought to be the biggest single building in the south west; the equivalent size of 15 Wembley Stadiums. Central to the design of the £100m building was a rooflight solution that minimised the use of artificial lighting and reduced running costs associated with such an enormous building. The specification for the 80mm-thick composite panel roof included 13,000m2 of Brett Martin GRP Trilite Energysaver rooflights to bathe the building in natural sunlight and achieve an excellent U-value of 1.3W/m²K.  For a project of such magnitude, it is testament to the skills and dedication of ‘full-envelope’ contractor, FK Group, and the usability of the factory-assembled Brett Martin insulating rooflights (FAIRs) that the warehouse application was completed within an impressive 16-week timeframe. The FAIRs were built-up using a Trilite GRP sheet (3.0kg/m2) to ensure fast, reliable weatherproofing and allow the highest-quality natural daylight into the interior of this widespan building. “High performance, trouble-free Energysaver rooflights used at the Range Warehouse are one of the most cost effective ways of getting natural light into wide span buildings,” commented David Biggs, Commercial Director at Brett Martin Daylight Systems. “Energysaver rooflights are the go-to solution for introducing daylight into these building types, increasing worker productivity and helping warehouses meet their energy efficiency targets.” GRP allows an even spread of daylight, illuminating the warehouse while eliminating the risk of hot spots and solar glare which could disturb the retailer’s staff. A revelation in terms of quality and invention, Brett Martin’s Energysaver composite panel rooflights are innovative triple-skin FAIRs for composite roofs manufactured from GRP. Designed to the same depth as the composite roofing system, Energysaver's flat liner panel sits flush with surrounding metal panels for excellent aesthetics and a neater, trim internal appearance. Delivering U-values from 1.9W/m²K down to 0.9W/m²K, they offer high quality diffused natural daylight, thermal performance and ready-to-fit convenience for widespan buildings. Science supports the benefits of natural daylight in inspiring an uplifting effect upon those exposed to its rays, particularly in workspaces. Rooflights help facilitate this ‘real’ feel good factor, offering an attractive solution to daylighting requirements whilst providing the required insulation values which allow buildings to meet energy saving targets and reduce running costs. Brett Martin has taken rooflight provision to new heights. How so? Well, it not only designs a wide range of rooflight systems to deliver optimum performance, durability, safety and regulation standards – it offers superior technical support, detailed installation instructions and maintenance guidelines to ensure systems perform as promised, and work alongside all other roofing elements. The use of in-plane GRP rooflights from Brett Martin more than played its part in the design and performance of Avonmouth’s ‘super-warehouse’. It’s a shining example of how a building and its occupants perform better in the natural light. Visit: http://www.brettmartin.com  
    Dec 10, 2018 435
  • 04 Dec 2018
    Distinguishing your company from competitors can be a challenge, especially now tradespeople can easily enrol on courses to give their business that defining edge. But often, these courses fail to strike a crucial balance between time onsite and time in the classroom, meaning that participants walk away with less practical knowhow than they had originally hoped. Fortunately enough Baumit, leading experts in external wall insulation and façade systems, offer exceptional courses tiered at bronze, silver and gold level. Designed to educate participants on a broad range of EWI installations and practices, these courses provide vital theoretical and practical experience in façade systems, creating an essential balance between the two.  A true success since opening in February 2018, Ben Warren, Managing Director at Baumit, reflects on the year, giving some insight into the academy’s future plans for 2019 and beyond.   What’s on offer at the academy? Here at Baumit, one of our key drivers is to make beautiful, healthy homes for people to live in. Whether that is striking exteriors or interiors, we provide solutions that ensure buildings are made to last. This philosophy, to give relevant tradespeople the opportunity to create better spaces for their clients, is at the heart of our on-site, purpose-built training academy based at Baumit HQ Aylesford, Kent. Yet, the other element of our academy is, of course, to enable companies to add another area of expertise to their business. Not only are companies providing their customers with the most reliable and advanced EWI solutions on the market, they are widening their individual skillsets, adding vital strings to their bow. As such, the 62 people who have walked through Baumit’s doors to complete either a bronze, silver or gold course have gone on to significantly improve their offerings. Those who finished the bronze course have expanded their practical and theoretical rendering knowledge and plan on returning to participate in the silver course to become a Baumit-approved installer. For those who have become Baumit-certified, on completion of the gold course, they are now looking to work with us in the future as Baumit-approved partners. We have developed these courses to reflect the industry’s evolving diversity. Our programme range is designed to meet everyone’s criteria; whether you are starting out in EWI or want to grow and develop your business to work with one of the largest EWI manufacturers in the world. These site-based scenarios provide hands-on, ‘real-life experience’ in dealing with regular challenges faced by installers.  What’s next for the academy? Looking into the future of Baumit’s training academy, there are plenty of exciting prospects emerging on our horizons. First and foremost, we wish to build on the great foundations we have laid, as the training academy has been an even greater success than we initially hoped. In its current form, the academy is at the stage it needs to be; everyone who participates in the courses comments on how their experiences are unlike any other programmes they have completed, and are extremely impressed with the course content. We invested a huge amount of time refining the course structure, so we hope to continue in this strain to ensure we create the best learning environment for our participants. In terms of the future, we hope to continue to attract new people to the course, where another key focus will be on previous applicants and people in associated trades. We have plans to widen our pool of interest, encouraging the latter to apply to the silver or gold course to become future partners and give clients the most supreme EWI solutions on the market. Another larger ambition is to get the course into colleges, to define a new generation of tradespeople using Baumit’s application and products. Although this will take some time and investment, one day we hope to teach students a new way to hone their skills, inspiring future generations of EWI installers. Lastly, we have to give attention where it is due to course leader Chris Kendall, Field Engineer at Baumit. With 30 experience working as a contractor, Chris has been at Baumit since March 2017 and is a crucial part of the training academy. His expertise, experience, and constructive teaching techniques are second to none, where his involvement has been hugely instrumental in the current success of the training academy. This year has been fantastic for the Baumit Training Academy. We have developed and grown as an educational hub and are glad to be offering some of the best EWI courses in the UK, which will hopefully continue to be a success throughout 2019 and well into the future. For more information on Baumit Training Academy see: http://info.baumit.co.uk/baumit-academy-courses
    532 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Distinguishing your company from competitors can be a challenge, especially now tradespeople can easily enrol on courses to give their business that defining edge. But often, these courses fail to strike a crucial balance between time onsite and time in the classroom, meaning that participants walk away with less practical knowhow than they had originally hoped. Fortunately enough Baumit, leading experts in external wall insulation and façade systems, offer exceptional courses tiered at bronze, silver and gold level. Designed to educate participants on a broad range of EWI installations and practices, these courses provide vital theoretical and practical experience in façade systems, creating an essential balance between the two.  A true success since opening in February 2018, Ben Warren, Managing Director at Baumit, reflects on the year, giving some insight into the academy’s future plans for 2019 and beyond.   What’s on offer at the academy? Here at Baumit, one of our key drivers is to make beautiful, healthy homes for people to live in. Whether that is striking exteriors or interiors, we provide solutions that ensure buildings are made to last. This philosophy, to give relevant tradespeople the opportunity to create better spaces for their clients, is at the heart of our on-site, purpose-built training academy based at Baumit HQ Aylesford, Kent. Yet, the other element of our academy is, of course, to enable companies to add another area of expertise to their business. Not only are companies providing their customers with the most reliable and advanced EWI solutions on the market, they are widening their individual skillsets, adding vital strings to their bow. As such, the 62 people who have walked through Baumit’s doors to complete either a bronze, silver or gold course have gone on to significantly improve their offerings. Those who finished the bronze course have expanded their practical and theoretical rendering knowledge and plan on returning to participate in the silver course to become a Baumit-approved installer. For those who have become Baumit-certified, on completion of the gold course, they are now looking to work with us in the future as Baumit-approved partners. We have developed these courses to reflect the industry’s evolving diversity. Our programme range is designed to meet everyone’s criteria; whether you are starting out in EWI or want to grow and develop your business to work with one of the largest EWI manufacturers in the world. These site-based scenarios provide hands-on, ‘real-life experience’ in dealing with regular challenges faced by installers.  What’s next for the academy? Looking into the future of Baumit’s training academy, there are plenty of exciting prospects emerging on our horizons. First and foremost, we wish to build on the great foundations we have laid, as the training academy has been an even greater success than we initially hoped. In its current form, the academy is at the stage it needs to be; everyone who participates in the courses comments on how their experiences are unlike any other programmes they have completed, and are extremely impressed with the course content. We invested a huge amount of time refining the course structure, so we hope to continue in this strain to ensure we create the best learning environment for our participants. In terms of the future, we hope to continue to attract new people to the course, where another key focus will be on previous applicants and people in associated trades. We have plans to widen our pool of interest, encouraging the latter to apply to the silver or gold course to become future partners and give clients the most supreme EWI solutions on the market. Another larger ambition is to get the course into colleges, to define a new generation of tradespeople using Baumit’s application and products. Although this will take some time and investment, one day we hope to teach students a new way to hone their skills, inspiring future generations of EWI installers. Lastly, we have to give attention where it is due to course leader Chris Kendall, Field Engineer at Baumit. With 30 experience working as a contractor, Chris has been at Baumit since March 2017 and is a crucial part of the training academy. His expertise, experience, and constructive teaching techniques are second to none, where his involvement has been hugely instrumental in the current success of the training academy. This year has been fantastic for the Baumit Training Academy. We have developed and grown as an educational hub and are glad to be offering some of the best EWI courses in the UK, which will hopefully continue to be a success throughout 2019 and well into the future. For more information on Baumit Training Academy see: http://info.baumit.co.uk/baumit-academy-courses
    Dec 04, 2018 532
  • 03 Dec 2018
    Since the construction giant Carillion’s liquidation at the beginning of the year, the government has released regulations to target late payers in the public sector in an attempt to resolve the delayed payment crisis. In light of this government order released a few months ago by Parliamentary Secretary Oliver Dowden, private sector clients and developers have been asked to follow suit in order to assure transparency and reliability across the entire sector. But what are the solutions to stop delayed payments from occuring? Matthew Jones, CEO of Open ECX, discusses how the industry might tackle this issue collectively to put better payment processes into practice. Recent government intervention in lieu of Carillion’s collapse exemplifies how much of a grave inconvenience delayed payments can be, especially if left unresolved. In effect, government measures will make it easier for subcontractors to report poor payment methods to the authorities. In an ideal world, no business wants to add to the stress already evident during the invoice and payment process, whether large or small scale. Although delayed payments can occur for a variety of reasons, whether related to unsolicited administrative errors or employee illness, contractors should still strive to make the subcontractor payment process as easy and straightforward as possible. In order to prevent late payments, the government will offer advisory, constructive workshops to help companies with their project management and payment plans. Solutions such as these should help prevent any delayed payments, allowing contractors the time to consider the impact of their delay and providing contractors with helpful advice to better manage their current payment processes. Overall, this initiative will ensure employees and businesses will not suffer as a consequence.   Even though the Carillion collapse is a stand-alone case, nonetheless, it begs several questions on how and why payments were so late. But moving forward, it is important to identify key solutions to prevent further financial catastrophes from occuring. All contractors desire a risk-free environment in which their payment processes are rigorous, safe and reliable; such solutions allow contractors to be more organised and efficient with their payments, preventing any late payments from slipping beneath the surface. A potential solution is to digitise all payment and invoice processes so that contractors pay their subcontractors in a timely fashion whilst maintaining a healthy, risk-free environment for themselves. Designed for medium to large contractors, WebContractor is a useful tool which manages the subcontractor applications for payment process, as well as other subcontractor concerns; insurances and bonds, self-billing invoices, authenticated VAT receipts, minor works, work order instructions for example, offering a great solution for the industry as a whole. Subcontractors access an online portal for easy and timely submission of payment applications while contractors take advantage of the workflow and reminder features designed to streamline the management of approvals. For contractors, this is a great support mechanism, designed to enhance visibility, control and compliance of the subcontractor application process, lightening the associated administrative workload. Not only do digital processes alleviate any messy paperwork from mounting up, they ensure both contractor and subcontractor are kept up to date with payments and invoices.  Contractors benefit from increased efficiencies, improved clarity around cash flow, and a far more accurate understanding of their liabilities at any given time. Potential risks, such as litigation, can be potentially avoided, as a thorough, reliable system such as WebContractor has been employed. Subcontractors gain visibility of the progress of their various applications for payment – something that will help them with their business planning. Applications for payment are securely stored for subcontractors and contractors to access payment applications at any given time. Time is always of the essence especially in terms of managing cash flow, meaning digital platforms are a sensible and necessary solution to combating late payments. With the right technology, processes associated with applications for payment can become efficient, standardised, transparent and quick. Most importantly, the automation of these processes can allow for tracking and management across the whole supply chain, which reduces risk and helps to build a clear and transparent picture of the finances affecting the business. Digitised systems for management of subcontractor invoices are the solution to stop late payments from occuring. Whilst the government’s recent measures must be recognised as offering an opportunity for both the public and private sector to push for change in the industry, services such as WebContractor are a tangible, accessible method to ensure contractors keep on top of the multiple payments they have to process each month. Given subcontractors can send payment applications directly, without the need for manual submissions, it improves accuracy, hastens the process and eliminates time costs as well as lost paperwork. Enhancing methods for managing applications for payment across the sector will benefit the industry’s credibility plus the health of all businesses operating within the sector. Even though it was a dark time for the construction industry, many positive lessons for the future can be learnt from Carillion’s collapse. Seeing the implementation of government intervention signifies the level of support it is willing to give the industry. But internal measures must also be taken by the industry itself, where digital application for payment and subcontractor management platforms are a worthy solution. Not only do these systems ensure subcontractors get paid on time, they reduce risk to contractors’ businesses. Turning to more rigorous, digital payment processes will preserve contractor and subcontractor integrity and the wider construction industry as a whole. Visit:  www.openecx.co.uk  
    416 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Since the construction giant Carillion’s liquidation at the beginning of the year, the government has released regulations to target late payers in the public sector in an attempt to resolve the delayed payment crisis. In light of this government order released a few months ago by Parliamentary Secretary Oliver Dowden, private sector clients and developers have been asked to follow suit in order to assure transparency and reliability across the entire sector. But what are the solutions to stop delayed payments from occuring? Matthew Jones, CEO of Open ECX, discusses how the industry might tackle this issue collectively to put better payment processes into practice. Recent government intervention in lieu of Carillion’s collapse exemplifies how much of a grave inconvenience delayed payments can be, especially if left unresolved. In effect, government measures will make it easier for subcontractors to report poor payment methods to the authorities. In an ideal world, no business wants to add to the stress already evident during the invoice and payment process, whether large or small scale. Although delayed payments can occur for a variety of reasons, whether related to unsolicited administrative errors or employee illness, contractors should still strive to make the subcontractor payment process as easy and straightforward as possible. In order to prevent late payments, the government will offer advisory, constructive workshops to help companies with their project management and payment plans. Solutions such as these should help prevent any delayed payments, allowing contractors the time to consider the impact of their delay and providing contractors with helpful advice to better manage their current payment processes. Overall, this initiative will ensure employees and businesses will not suffer as a consequence.   Even though the Carillion collapse is a stand-alone case, nonetheless, it begs several questions on how and why payments were so late. But moving forward, it is important to identify key solutions to prevent further financial catastrophes from occuring. All contractors desire a risk-free environment in which their payment processes are rigorous, safe and reliable; such solutions allow contractors to be more organised and efficient with their payments, preventing any late payments from slipping beneath the surface. A potential solution is to digitise all payment and invoice processes so that contractors pay their subcontractors in a timely fashion whilst maintaining a healthy, risk-free environment for themselves. Designed for medium to large contractors, WebContractor is a useful tool which manages the subcontractor applications for payment process, as well as other subcontractor concerns; insurances and bonds, self-billing invoices, authenticated VAT receipts, minor works, work order instructions for example, offering a great solution for the industry as a whole. Subcontractors access an online portal for easy and timely submission of payment applications while contractors take advantage of the workflow and reminder features designed to streamline the management of approvals. For contractors, this is a great support mechanism, designed to enhance visibility, control and compliance of the subcontractor application process, lightening the associated administrative workload. Not only do digital processes alleviate any messy paperwork from mounting up, they ensure both contractor and subcontractor are kept up to date with payments and invoices.  Contractors benefit from increased efficiencies, improved clarity around cash flow, and a far more accurate understanding of their liabilities at any given time. Potential risks, such as litigation, can be potentially avoided, as a thorough, reliable system such as WebContractor has been employed. Subcontractors gain visibility of the progress of their various applications for payment – something that will help them with their business planning. Applications for payment are securely stored for subcontractors and contractors to access payment applications at any given time. Time is always of the essence especially in terms of managing cash flow, meaning digital platforms are a sensible and necessary solution to combating late payments. With the right technology, processes associated with applications for payment can become efficient, standardised, transparent and quick. Most importantly, the automation of these processes can allow for tracking and management across the whole supply chain, which reduces risk and helps to build a clear and transparent picture of the finances affecting the business. Digitised systems for management of subcontractor invoices are the solution to stop late payments from occuring. Whilst the government’s recent measures must be recognised as offering an opportunity for both the public and private sector to push for change in the industry, services such as WebContractor are a tangible, accessible method to ensure contractors keep on top of the multiple payments they have to process each month. Given subcontractors can send payment applications directly, without the need for manual submissions, it improves accuracy, hastens the process and eliminates time costs as well as lost paperwork. Enhancing methods for managing applications for payment across the sector will benefit the industry’s credibility plus the health of all businesses operating within the sector. Even though it was a dark time for the construction industry, many positive lessons for the future can be learnt from Carillion’s collapse. Seeing the implementation of government intervention signifies the level of support it is willing to give the industry. But internal measures must also be taken by the industry itself, where digital application for payment and subcontractor management platforms are a worthy solution. Not only do these systems ensure subcontractors get paid on time, they reduce risk to contractors’ businesses. Turning to more rigorous, digital payment processes will preserve contractor and subcontractor integrity and the wider construction industry as a whole. Visit:  www.openecx.co.uk  
    Dec 03, 2018 416
  • 29 Nov 2018
    Not our usual kind of construction blog but we at talk.build thought this was a fun event and deserved an airing. We hope you agree What happens when waste management and rugby collide? A kicking extravaganza, as it turns out! Back in July, Championship rugby team London Irish hosted a kicking competition with their main sponsors, waste management experts Powerday. Skips and wheelie bins, all varying in size, were set up as targets for the players, making for an interesting spectacle. If you’re intrigued to see who came out on top, take a look at the video below. Video https://adtrak-3.wistia.com/medias/lu8ba5csdo Powerday provided skips and wheelie bins of varying sizes to serve as targets - the smaller the target, the higher the score. The players then battled it out to see who could come out on top, with each player getting three attempts to build up points. It’s certainly harder than it looks. If you think you could best the professionals, why don’t you try your hand at the online game, London Irish’s Rugby Kick Challenge? Warning: it’s highly addictive! The game is sponsored by Powerday and allows you to choose one of 10 players to take 10 kicks with. Go for the gold skip for 10 points, or the blue skips for 5 points each. Watch the direction bar and click at the right moment to hit the skips. Happy kicking. Play the Game - https://www.powerday.co.uk/rugby-kick-challenge/ Don’t forget to share your score on Facebook and Twitter to stake your claim to the skip-kicking crown.  
    388 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Not our usual kind of construction blog but we at talk.build thought this was a fun event and deserved an airing. We hope you agree What happens when waste management and rugby collide? A kicking extravaganza, as it turns out! Back in July, Championship rugby team London Irish hosted a kicking competition with their main sponsors, waste management experts Powerday. Skips and wheelie bins, all varying in size, were set up as targets for the players, making for an interesting spectacle. If you’re intrigued to see who came out on top, take a look at the video below. Video https://adtrak-3.wistia.com/medias/lu8ba5csdo Powerday provided skips and wheelie bins of varying sizes to serve as targets - the smaller the target, the higher the score. The players then battled it out to see who could come out on top, with each player getting three attempts to build up points. It’s certainly harder than it looks. If you think you could best the professionals, why don’t you try your hand at the online game, London Irish’s Rugby Kick Challenge? Warning: it’s highly addictive! The game is sponsored by Powerday and allows you to choose one of 10 players to take 10 kicks with. Go for the gold skip for 10 points, or the blue skips for 5 points each. Watch the direction bar and click at the right moment to hit the skips. Happy kicking. Play the Game - https://www.powerday.co.uk/rugby-kick-challenge/ Don’t forget to share your score on Facebook and Twitter to stake your claim to the skip-kicking crown.  
    Nov 29, 2018 388
  • 22 Nov 2018
    Time is of the essence in business, particularly the roofing business, writes Mahroof Hussain, Area Technical Manager at Sika-Trocal. Delays, however minimal, incurred during commercial new-build or refurbishment projects can lead to unexpected costs to the client. When someone falls behind schedule in a multi-trade works programme, the knock-on effect can be disastrous. If a roof’s waterproofing is held-up, interior works are also likely to be delayed with the building not being weatherproof. This means the installation of floors, walls, electrics, plumbing and the like are also put on hold. The overall effect of this type of stalling could set a project back weeks and months, rather than hours or days.  Rapid development Product innovation and the streamlining of the building process itself is vital to helping contractors, developers, etc, fulfil the project expectations. Sika-Trocal’s Type S waterproof membrane presents a fine example of a system created specifically for the 21st century roofing market. Suitable for new and refurbishment projects, the Type S system uses dedicated Sika-Trocal laminated discs to fasten the membrane and the insulation to the substrate. Mechanical fixing has been proven to speed-up the roof waterproofing process by up to 30%. The improved application time is due to solvent-welding methods devised to fuse the overlapping membrane rolls; a practice pioneered by Sika in the UK. Employing this process, rather than the more traditional heat-welding method, also results in a neater, more attractive waterproof finish. Heat welding requires a temperature of more than 350°C in order to successfully fuse membrane layers. Although there is no naked flame involved, in inexperienced hands a membrane is at risk of discoloration using this method. Mechanically- fixed, solvent-welded membranes also require less equipment to install. This benefit, along with its time-saving attributes which reduce on-site working hours, means the Type S system helps cut pollution caused by machine-based emissions. Wind resistant  The Type S system comprises of a vapour control layer, insulation and membrane which is held in place by Sika-Trocal discs. These are spot-welded to the membrane. The fixings allow the whole system to be mechanically-fastened to a roof’s structural deck. The added strength this provides makes the Type S membrane an ideal waterproof solution for roofs located in exposed areas where high wind uplift is a common hazard. Speed of installation and reliable, long-term performance are the properties which attract contractors and renowned commercial brands to specify Sika-Trocal’s Type S. Supermarket stores nationwide have historically been fitted with the system. Its rapid delivery minimises disruption to businesses, hence its specification in September for a new supermarket site where its installation across a 600m2 roof area was completed in just  three days. The system’s speedy installation doesn’t compromise its quality, however. It is why Sika-Trocal’s Type S system is the rapid, long-term solution when it comes to waterproof roofing. Visit: www.sika.co.uk
    410 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Time is of the essence in business, particularly the roofing business, writes Mahroof Hussain, Area Technical Manager at Sika-Trocal. Delays, however minimal, incurred during commercial new-build or refurbishment projects can lead to unexpected costs to the client. When someone falls behind schedule in a multi-trade works programme, the knock-on effect can be disastrous. If a roof’s waterproofing is held-up, interior works are also likely to be delayed with the building not being weatherproof. This means the installation of floors, walls, electrics, plumbing and the like are also put on hold. The overall effect of this type of stalling could set a project back weeks and months, rather than hours or days.  Rapid development Product innovation and the streamlining of the building process itself is vital to helping contractors, developers, etc, fulfil the project expectations. Sika-Trocal’s Type S waterproof membrane presents a fine example of a system created specifically for the 21st century roofing market. Suitable for new and refurbishment projects, the Type S system uses dedicated Sika-Trocal laminated discs to fasten the membrane and the insulation to the substrate. Mechanical fixing has been proven to speed-up the roof waterproofing process by up to 30%. The improved application time is due to solvent-welding methods devised to fuse the overlapping membrane rolls; a practice pioneered by Sika in the UK. Employing this process, rather than the more traditional heat-welding method, also results in a neater, more attractive waterproof finish. Heat welding requires a temperature of more than 350°C in order to successfully fuse membrane layers. Although there is no naked flame involved, in inexperienced hands a membrane is at risk of discoloration using this method. Mechanically- fixed, solvent-welded membranes also require less equipment to install. This benefit, along with its time-saving attributes which reduce on-site working hours, means the Type S system helps cut pollution caused by machine-based emissions. Wind resistant  The Type S system comprises of a vapour control layer, insulation and membrane which is held in place by Sika-Trocal discs. These are spot-welded to the membrane. The fixings allow the whole system to be mechanically-fastened to a roof’s structural deck. The added strength this provides makes the Type S membrane an ideal waterproof solution for roofs located in exposed areas where high wind uplift is a common hazard. Speed of installation and reliable, long-term performance are the properties which attract contractors and renowned commercial brands to specify Sika-Trocal’s Type S. Supermarket stores nationwide have historically been fitted with the system. Its rapid delivery minimises disruption to businesses, hence its specification in September for a new supermarket site where its installation across a 600m2 roof area was completed in just  three days. The system’s speedy installation doesn’t compromise its quality, however. It is why Sika-Trocal’s Type S system is the rapid, long-term solution when it comes to waterproof roofing. Visit: www.sika.co.uk
    Nov 22, 2018 410