Category Archives: Sustainable Materials

Introducing FlexiSet® by SureSet Permeable Paving

SureSet are excited to boost their ever-expanding commercial paving product range.

Made from 50% recycled rubber and 50% 6mm natural aggregate and resin, lightweight and flexible, FlexiSet is ideal for woodland trails, jogging paths, pedestrian areas, cycle tracks, equestrian centres, drainage channels, golf course pathways, pool surrounds, roof gardens, tree pits and boat decks.

FlexiSet is made from shredded bus and truck tyres so the recycled rubber itself is black, but by adding natural aggregate to the mix SureSet are able to bring a subtle colour to the surface.

PERMEABLE PAVING

A combination of the absorption and flexible properties of recycled rubber and the strength and durability of natural aggregate, bound together with quality resin, creates an external surface suitable for pedestrian use.

SureSet permeable paving have been manufacturing and installing high quality resin bound paving since 1997. Offering an 18-year guarantee, SureSet work with both residential and commercial customers across the UK and overseas.

PERMEABLE PAVING

PERMEABLE PAVING

For more information about SureSet resin bound paving please visit www.sureset.co.uk, call 0800 612 2083 or email contact@sureset.co.uk

SI-Modular: Sustainable building system with timber I-beams

Architect Hans-Ludwig Stell from Münster, Germany, has developed a sophisticated modular system for one and two-storey house construction. This quick, easy, and self-explanatory timber construction, SI-Modular, is based on Metsä Wood´s I-beam Finnjoist®.

an easy, quick and self-explanatory timber construction

Hans-Ludwig Stell, the managing partner of the Stellinnovation GmbH, was asked to develop a house type for use in development-aid that could be assembled as simply as possible. The SI-Modular system enables the houses to be constructed from timber completely without screws, by simply using interlocking connections in the installation.

without screws

I-beam modules supported by Kerto® LVL

“I was architecturally inspired by steel construction”, the architect thinks back: “nevertheless, our architect team excluded steel construction specifically from this application. Timber I-beams by Metsä Wood turned out to be a suitable solution.

interlocking connections

The construction of timber I-beams is similar to that of steel I-profiles: the OSB web in the middle separates the top and bottom flanges that run parallel to each other. The latter are made of high-strength Kerto-S, in a single piece and can bear enormous pressure and tensile loads permanently. The Finnjoist® timber I-beam is a very versatile building product that fulfilled all the required characteristics for this house type.

Hans-Ludwig Stell further extended the house type to comply with today’s European standards, for example, the German EnEV energy saving ordinance.

half storey home with duo pitched roofMetsa Wood

Easy to build with a fixed grid

The SI-Modular system is based on a fixed grid. The distances are exactly one metre. Five bays, i.e. five metres, form the maximum width – the length may be any amount on the grid. For certain applications, such as plaster surfaces, the clear span can be halved by inserting an intermediate stud in the system.

modular construction

Due to the high load capacity, Metsä Wood I-beams are used for the walls, floors and roof. The I-beams are fixed to the horizontal rails which are anchored to the floor plate.

When erecting the walls, the transversely running beams are visible. The beams and rails, as well as the connections and reinforcements are made of load-bearing and bracing Kerto-Q or the dimensionally stable Kerto-S. The individual timber components are connected using precisely interlocking connections.

 load-bearing and bracing

Due to the dimensional stability of the I-beams and the precise milling, no assembly errors arise and the construction is very stable. Only a hammer is necessary for the assembly.

“Even if it is said that timber moves, it certainly isn’t the case here!” Hans-Ludwig Stell sums it up.

Learn more about SI-Modular wood framing system:

www.metsawood.com/global/news-media/references/Pages/SI-modular-wood-construction-system.aspx

Metsä Wood launches ‘Open Source Wood’

A pioneering open innovation project to accelerate growth in large scale wood construction.

Metsä Wood’s Open Source Wood initiative is a call to action to architects, designers and engineers to join forces, share innovation and contribute knowledge about large-scale, modular wood construction. By creating an open innovation platform around modular wood construction, Metsä Wood’s aim is to connect the local wood construction industry with global knowledge to facilitate collaboration and growth.

Metsa Wood

Today the construction industry is dominated by two materials – steel and concrete. Only a fraction (5-10%) of global urban construction is wood, due in part to the fact that the industry is fragmented and local. Wood, however, is an optimal material for urban construction as it enables faster building processes; its lightness leads to more affordable structures and it is the most environmentally friendly building material, battling climate change through carbon storage.

Metsa Wood

Metsä Wood’s Executive Vice President, Esa Kaikkonen, explains: “Not enough knowledge about modular wood design and building is shared, so wood construction remains niche. There is plenty of innovation but it is difficult to find, so Open Source Wood is our solution. We believe that with open collaboration the industry can achieve significant growth.”

Inspired by open source ideology

The initiative takes its inspiration from open source ideology, championed by the software industry, to drive innovation further and faster, and to increase speed to market.

Metsä Wood is taking the first step by sharing its own intellectual property for modular Kerto® LVL wood elements, making them available freely for everyone.

Metsä Wood to award €30,000 prize

Additionally, Metsä Wood will award innovation in modular element design by offering 30k euro in prize money during 2017 to exceptional designs, submitted as part of the initiative, using its Kerto LVL material.

By 2050, approximately 70% of the world’s population is expected to live in urban areas. This means that we need living space for billions. At the same time, cities contribute to up to 70% of the total greenhouse gas emissions and we need to fight climate change. One way to fight climate change is to make construction more sustainable and that’s possible when building with wood on a global scale.

Eric Karsh, an engineer at Vancouver-based Equilibrium Consulting, adds: “We fundamentally need to challenge the way we build. Timber technology is now progressing so fast that knowledge transfer is often the bottleneck. Those of us who have expertise have a responsibility to share, and the fastest way is an open source approach promoting knowledge and innovation from all corners of the world. That’s why Metsä Wood is launching the initiative and makes the first step in giving away knowledge and intellectual property for prefabricated elements, allowing systematic creativity and efficiency in building.”

Open Source Wood is a continuation of Metsä Wood’s project Plan B, launched in 2015 as an ambitious blueprint to explore the possibilities of using wood in urban construction.

Learn more about Open Source Wood and how you can participate: www.metsawood.com/opensourcewood

Join the initiative.Metsa Wood

Contact: opensourcewood@metsagroup.com

www.metsawood.com/uk/

 

Red Elm is on the menu at Itsu

The American Red Elm tables can now be found in ITSU outlets at Victoria, Camden, Heathrow T5 and Bristol. And following the success of the new concept booth seating there are plans to re-fit more restaurants across the UK later in the year.

AMERICAN RED CEDAR

ITSU as a company pride themselves on providing “beautiful” high quality food, so it was imperative for them to find “beautiful” high quality materials to reflect their company ethos. American Red Elm is known for its attractive appearance, boasting a smooth texture and distinctive visible grain so it was the perfect choice.  However, American Red Elm was not only chosen for its aesthetic qualities but also its sustainability credentials as well as its hard-wearing attributes.

James Latham

James Latham often recommended American Red Elm for furniture projects such as this due to its excellent shock resistance and flexible bending properties, enabling joiners and furniture makers to produce superior craftsmanship.

To add a modern twist to the traditional material, one of ITSU’s specifications for the booth area incorporates USB chargers inside the wood so that customers can re-charge their phone with ease whilst enjoying a delicious, nutritious meal with friends.

James LathamMitch Jackson, Timber Sales at Latham’s Leeds depot said

“Our customer was delighted with the overall finish which American Red Elm created, these new concept booths really do stand out and give the ITSU restaurants the wow factor.

“American Red Elm is great for furniture projects such as these as it is a light and porous species of wood. Plus, as well as being fantastic at absorbing noise, which is useful in a busy restaurant such as ITSU, it is also resistant to moisture. And with its elegant and distinctive finish showing visible grains, American Red Elm is simple to work with and stain, making it an ideal material for commercial dining tables such as these.”

To find out more about this and James Latham’s full range of products please visit www.lathamtimber.co.uk , email marketing@lathams.co.uk or call 0116 257 3415

The Green Eyed Monster

Open any trade magazine or visit supplier websites and you will find numerous articles and products offering exceptional ‘green’ credentials.  Nowhere is this more prevalent than in the glass and glazing industry as each manufacturer attempts to outperform the next by offering astounding figures for thermal performance.

What is surprising however, is the regular use of terms such as ‘environmentally friendly’ or ‘green’ simply because a product offers a low u-value.  As more buildings are constructed to Passivhaus standards there appears to be a blurring of the lines between what is good for the environment and what is thermally efficient.  Whilst there is no doubt that increased thermal efficiency contributes to a reduction in burning of fossil fuels; this alone should not be the deciding factor in whether a product is actually environmentally friendly.

The majority of flat rooflights on the market today are manufactured from either PVC or aluminium and both of these require an exceptional amount of energy to produce and extract a lot of resources from the planet without putting anything back.

rooflight

While most companies will adopt some sort of environmental policy, telling customers that their products use a percentage of recycled material, this is more likely to be about cost rather than any real environmental intentions.  After all recyclables are recycled because it is the cheapest available option and it makes more financial sense to do so rather than to send them to a landfill – with Landfill tax currently over £84 per tonne, plus the gate fee on top.

It stands to reason that consuming vast amounts of natural resources to produce the raw materials of a product negates the environmental benefits further down the chain, regardless of what the product becomes.  This has often been overlooked in the rooflight industry because of the low maintenance and long life that aluminium and PVC can offer the end user.  For decades these two materials have been unrivalled and it was widely accepted that flat rooflights should be manufactured from one of these materials; until now.

There is now a real alternative in the flat rooflight market that not only offers exceptional thermal performance, but is also a genuine environmentally friendly product in every sense.  The Lumen Planus is manufactured in the UK using Accoya® wood which is a material that has been thoroughly tested for dimensional stability, durability, paint retention and in-ground conditions to ensure optimal performance.  It offers a new standard in high performance, sustainable and low maintenance applications.

In addition to the outstanding performance, Accoya® wood is one of the very few building products to have acquired Cradle to CradleSM Certification on the elusive Gold level. Cradle to Cradle (C2C) provides a means to tangibly and credibly measure achievement in environmentally-intelligent design including the use of environmentally safe and healthy materials and instituting strategies for social responsibility.

A carbon footprint assessment was executed for Accoya® wood by Verco in line with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development and World Resources Institute’s Greenhouse Gas Reporting Protocol best practice guidelines, based on a cradle to factory gate scenario. This includes sourcing, harvesting and processing of the input timber, as well as all energy and raw material consumption and waste production. The results are shown in the graph below.

rooflight

Today there are some exceptional flat rooflight products available for specifiers to choose from.  It is a fact that both aluminium and PVC are very good at providing superb thermal performance and that modern technology has reduced the end of life environmental impact.  That said, if your project requires a truly environmentally friendly product then Accoya® provides compelling environmental advantages in every stage of the life cycle.

For more information on the right products for your project information contact Lumen Rooflight on 0330 300 1090, email info@lumenrooflight.co.uk or visit www.lumenrooflight.com

New design-led concrete product launches in the UK

AN INNOVATIVE and extremely stylish new concrete product that offers architects, planners and interior designers a vast range of design-led uses is now available for the first time in the UK.Arnold Laver

LightBeton is being sold exclusively by Arnold Laver, the UK’s leading supplier of timber and construction materials.  The product features a 2mm layer of concrete bonded onto MDF or a variety of other materials such as polypropylene honeycomb.  This combines to create a lightweight material that is ideal for ceilings, walls, table tops, furniture, counters, columns, pillars, temporary floorings as well as a vast range of other uses.

The product, which is produced by renowned German surface manufacturer Richter akustik & design, weighs just 3.9kg per square metre and is also available with an optional fire rated composite material added.  It can be cut using standard woodworking equipment and is suitable for edge-banding machinery, as well as looking authentic with bevels.

Category Manager Mark Ashmore, from Arnold Laver says: “We are constantly searching for the most innovative and pioneering products, and LightBeton really hits the mark, with many leading architects and interior designers already specifying it in some of the world’s most stylish shops, restaurants, hotels, trade shows and homes.

“We envisage that LightBeton will become the go-to product of choice for many design-led projects, due to its flexibility, cost, ease of use and lightweight consistency, and we’re delighted to be supplying it to the UK market for the first time.  It comes in a variety of whites and greys, which are very on-trend at the moment, and as a result it’s immediately become a very popular product within our extensive range.”

LightBeton has scooped numerous prestigious accolades, including winning an award at the German Design Awards, and being named ‘best of the best’ at the Interior Innovation Awards.

For further information about LightBeton, call your local Arnold Laver depot or visit www.laver.co.uk

Altro’s first adeshive-free flooring for low slip risk areas is tough time-saving solution at Warrington Hospital

New Altro CantataTM, the company’s first adhesive-free flooring for areas with a low slip risk, is already demonstrating its capabilities at Warrington Hospital, providing a tough time and cost-saving solution in a busy non-clinical corridor.

Altro safety flooring

Lee Bushell, the hospital’s acting head of capital projects, said: “The service corridor is an area that gets an enormous amount of traffic. It’s in constant use during the day.

“After many years of this treatment, the existing vinyl flooring was really showing the strain. It looked tired, scruffy and we needed to find a hard-wearing, affordable, long-term solution that could be laid with minimal disruption in this busy area.

“We have a very good relationship with Altro and their flooring is proving very successful elsewhere in the hospital, so we asked them to have a look at the corridor and give us some guidance.

“They suggested we use their new Altro Cantata flooring because it could be laid straight down onto the existing flooring, without adhesive, which would mean a fast installation.

New Altro Cantata is a decorative, adhesive-free flooring that creates maximum impact with minimum downtime.

Using Altro’s award-winning adhesive-free installation method, it can be welded and walked on the same day, and at the end of its life removed easily, allowing it to be reused or recycled.

It is ideal for busy public spaces where disruption needs to be minimal, such as hospitals, with the durability needed for medium-to-high-traffic areas. Plus, there are no associated adhesive odours.

Altro Cantata’s 16 soft-look shades, which range from subtle naturals to beautifully vivid, allows you to create just the right colour scheme or tone.

Bushell said: “I was sceptical that Altro Cantata would be able to meet our needs, but I am very pleased that I have been proved wrong and it has been perfect for us in so many ways.

“There was a very-short window for installation because the corridor is in use until 7pm, but the process went very smoothly and was completed in just one night.

“A flooring that needs adhesive would have taken 3-4 days to fit. Altro Cantata has delivered a massive saving in cost and the corridor was back in full use the next morning.

When speaking of the floor handling foot and wheeled traffic, he added: “It’s standing up to the demands well with no signs of movement, bubbling or rippling, which proves it truly is a long-term solution and not just a temporary fix.

“In terms of aesthetics, the flooring looks superb. There are some great colour choices. We selected a pale ice blue, which perfectly matches the colour scheme of the corridor.

“And ceaning is proving to be a revelation. The black scuffs and wheel marks from the trolleys were always tough to remove on the old flooring. Initially our cleaning team was doubtful they could get the marks off the new flooring, and nervous of using the scrubber and buffer because they thought they might do some damage.

“But we are delighted to report that the flooring comes up like new after every nightly cleaning regime and even the stubborn black wheel marks are gone. Scrubbing machines and buffers are doing a wonderful job, with no damage.

“Sustainability is also an important factor for us. Because Altro Cantata is an adhesive-free flooring, it means that in the future, if we need to make repairs, we can simply cut out a section and replace it without having to re-lay the entire area. And the product is 100% recyclable as well.

“Overall, Altro Cantata is meeting all our needs in terms of cost saving, durability, looks and hygiene.

“This is vital at a time when the NHS is looking to make savings where possible, while also maintaining the highest standards.”

The hospital is now looking to place the product in another non-clinical area where there are similar issues with installation time.

Altro Cantata was installed at Warrington Hospital by Cheshire Contract Flooring. Director, Dave Hunt, said: “The beauty of Altro Cantata is that it can be laid straight down on to the subfloor, or existing flooring, with minimal preparation.

“There is no need to grind the floor, or put down a DPM, or prime, screed or use adhesive. This is a massive time and cost saver, a real fast-track solution.

“Plus there is no need to wait for adhesive to dry and cure, so the flooring can be used and walked on immediately.

“It’s an ideal product for busy areas with heavy traffic where quick installation is paramount.”

www.altro.co.uk

Osmo revives aged wood with highly effective power gel

Osmo UK, the eco-friendly wood and finishes expert, brings tired looking and aged wood back to life with its powerful cleaning agent, Osmo Wood Reviver Power Gel. This product has been especially developed to restore exterior wood, including wooden decking, timber cladding and garden furniture, back to its original colour and character.

sustainable wood finish

Osmo Wood Reviver Power Gel is a jelly-like cleaner that effectively cleans and refreshes greyed and weathered exterior wood. Made from environmentally friendly and biodegradable ingredients, the product is free from harmful solvents, chlorine compounds, amines and harmful odours. Osmo’s special cleaning agent is also biodegradable and odour free. One coat of Osmo Wood Reviver Power Gel is sufficient to revive external wood back to its natural colour and appearance.

“Exterior wood can often look jaded and old after being exposed to the external elements for a long period,” comments Steve Grimwood, Managing Director, Osmo UK. “In particular, high UV rays can bleach exterior wood, giving the timber a greyed and lifeless appearance.  Osmo Wood Reviver Power Gel has a deep penetrating effect that allows professionals and end users to achieve remarkable results that will bring exterior wood back to its original condition in just 30 minutes.”

sustainable wood finish

Osmo Wood Reviver Power Gel is ready to apply straight from the tin. After generously applying the product along the wood grain, the solution requires just 20 minutes to gently work into the wood’s surface before being scrubbed with a hard bristle brush. Once rinsed with plenty of water, it is recommended to allow 48 hours drying time before applying a finish, such as Osmo Polyx-Oil, Decking-Oils and Country Colour. On average, one litre of Osmo Wood Reviver Power Gel will cover a 10m2 area.

sustainable wood finish

For stockist details and more information on Osmo and its range of environmentally friendly wooden products and specialist finishes, call Osmo UK direct on 01296 481220 or alternatively visit www.osmouk.com.

Timber Structure low consumption house in Wadebridge, Cornwall.

Innes Architects

We love to use Timber to make our buildings, for its structural abilities, its low carbon footprint, aand the dizzying array of cladding opportunities it provides. We believe wood is a truly inspiring material.

We have been advocating the use of timber in construction for many years now. And our principal architect Mark has recently completed his own house using timber as an intergal component of almost all parts of the construction. The house is situated in Wadebridge, Cornwall and is designed on passivhaus principles, utilising wood for many reasons and in many ways, inside and out. From the structure and the window frames to the finished walls, timber construction can take a myriad of forms. Even the Warmcel insulation is timber via the circuitous route of wood-pulp to paper to recycling. To know more about this project have a look at our website.

img_4601 View from the first floor.

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Sustainable Building Designs Take Over

Danny Phelan, National Sales Manager at Panel Systems, looks at how building designers and architects are using innovative cladding materials, such as timber, to create modern and environmentally sustainable building designs.

 “There have been great leaps forward made in green building techniques over the past decade and, as a result, we have seen building product manufacturers adapt to develop innovative and sustainable new products to meet demand.

timber cladding

In 2013, it was reported that around 28 per cent of architects, engineers, contractors, building owners and building consultants around the world were focusing construction work upon sustainable building design. The UK specifically has embraced the idea of sustainable construction, with UK developers expecting to complete at least 60 per cent of their construction projects using green materials by 2018. The top developments which plan to do this include:

·     New low-rise residential (40%)

·     Retrofits (44%)

·     New institutional buildings (37%)

The increase in production of green building developments within the UK is leading to a rise in demand for construction materials that require much less energy to process, such as timber. The exterior of these buildings plays a major part in making them attractive whilst still achieving the energy efficiency ratings required, therefore the choice of cladding material is very important.

Materials like timber are now more popular than ever with building designers and architects and a growing number of timber clad buildings can be seen within our towns and cities. With naturally appealing tones and the ability to reduce the overall carbon footprint of any development, Timber is favoured in order to create aesthetically pleasing building designs that achieve a green status. Modern timber clad panels are regularly used on a range of construction projects and can be pre-fabricated to incorporate insulation which enhances the thermal properties of a building.

As a very strong and renewable source, timber is 100 per cent recyclable meaning that it can be re-used at the end of its life. Aside from timber’s desired sustainable properties, its visual appeal helps architects and building designers achieve a finish that can help a building to complement its surroundings.

timber cladding

This was one of the many reasons why timber clad panels were chosen for a recent new build project in Glasgow. The £15m Eastwood Health Centre project serves the Eastwood area of East Renfrewshire and houses five existing GP practices and community health and care services. For this project, we supplied over 140m2 of Aluminium insulated panels which were clad with Siberian Larch to the front face. The timber facing was also given a special fire retardant coating, for added safety. In order to meet the intricate shape requirements of the insulation and panel, the core was carefully fabricated using 3 and 5-axis CNC equipment, meeting the architect’s design aspiration’s and ensuring the panels could be easily installed on site. 

The centre now sets the standard for affordable, quality and sustainable healthcare facilities across Scotland.

As the popularity of timber cladding increases, we continue to invest in our fabrication facilities to ensure we can meet market demand and provide architects and building designers with innovative cladding materials.”

For more information, visit the website www.panelsystems.co.uk call direct on: 0114 275 2881 or email sales@panelsystems.co.uk.