“LATEST MATERIALS COMMONLY USED BY TODAY’S BUILDING

STRUCTURES”
I.

STEEL & IRON
A material having a high strength in tension & compression that is able to resist bending and axial
loads w/ equal facility. It is twenty times stronger than timber & 10 times stronger than concrete.






ADVANTAGES
Preferred structural material for tall buildings &
enclosures having long spans.
Crucial to the development of the glass-clad
framework
Strength: has a high ratio of strength to weight
Manufactured under conditions of strict quality
control
Has an appearance characterized by slender
elements, smooth surfaces & straight sharp
edges
Assembled from prefabricated components
which are produced off-site allowing their
dimensions and quality under control
Shorter on-site construction time required







DISADVANTAGES
Poor durability as they are easily corroded
Poor performance in fire (around 500 degrees
Celsius)
Difficulty of shaping it into useful components
Large ecological costs in terms of
transportation of raw materials
High energy consumption and pollution
associated w/ its manufacture
High density thus affecting its weight requiring
the use of machines i.e. cranes to assemble it
Its cost is greater compared to timber and
reinforced concrete

APPLICTIONS:
A) Tensioned Cables: The Hangar and the Tie Example

Millenium Wheel, London, England, U.K. (2000)
Architect:Marks Barfield Architects; Structural Engrs: Jane Wernick of Arup
*The rods provide only means of Support for outer trussed ring
*Socket-type anchorages for tensioned Cables. Small attachments are dampers to minimize vibrations.
*Museum for the History of Hamburg, Germany (1989): iconographic “fan” connection detail used to anchor
radiating tension cables stabilizing vault over museum’s courtyard.
B) Adjustable Steel Canopy: the Beam and the Slab “Steel and Glass” combination

Yarakucho Subway Station Canopy, Tokyo, Japan (1996); Architect:
Dewhurst Macfarlane and Partners
* Overlapping Glass Plates gradually increase in depth toward
cantilevered canopy’s base support

Spain (2002) Architect and Structural Engineer: Santiago Calatrava Nearly Paraboolic Profile Of light Steel Arch Ribs corresponds to Uniform-along-the-arch loading Produced by self-weight of ribs and cross bars (ALUMINUM ALLOY) steel: Additional Lesson A silvery white metal easily forged. It has an elastic modulus E about 1/3 that of steel. TPR D) The Bird’s Nest: Beyond Surface and Geometric Purity Example The Bird’s Nest.” Note the variation in the dimension of an individual truss. . silicon and magnesium if to be used for construction purposes.C) Form Follows Diagram: the Beam and the Slab “Steel and Plastic” combination Madrid-Barajas Airport. manganese. zinc. Baijing China (2008) Architect: Herzog & de Meuron Structural Engineer: Arup *Axon showing how trussed steel frames make up the backbone of the complex pattern of structural lines which is perceived as a “Nest. Beijing National Stadium. OTEP internacional.     ADVANTAGES A material that is 100% recyclable and requires less energy Actual production of structural elements require less energy and far cheaper than the steel production Excellent anti-corrosion attributes Used more on household Fixtures and furniture    DISADVANTAGES Extracted at an extremely energy-consuming process Greater thermal expansion & lower fire resistance than steel Structural capability in handling tension and compression forces are limited. reflecting changing bending moment demand. D) Steel Arch and light relationship: the Arch and Vault Example City of the Arts and Sciences. Valencia. Spain (2006) Archits: Richard Rogers Prtnership and Estudio Lemela Structural Engrs: Anthony Hunt Associates. It is alloyed with copper. light with a favourable strength to weight ratio. Madrid.

and lime. Exterior cable is also anchored at sides and bottom edges. Owings. transparent/opaque.U. James Carpenter Design Assoc. (2004) Architect: Foster + Partners Structural Engr: Arup II. (2003) Architect: Skidmore.    ADVANTAGES A material that allows visual penetration Unmatched resistance to deterioration Easily recycled    DISADVANTAGES Weak load bearing capacity Intensive.. The Netherlands (1994) Atchitect: Dirk/Jan Postel/Kraaijvanger Urbis Structural Engr: AGT/Rob Nisse .APPLICTIONS: A) Aluminum Finished Façade: The Frame and Lateral Stability Example 30 St. London.A.schlaich. Bergermann und Partner. *Glass wall is suspended from truss above performance space. Structural Engr. energy-consuming manufacturing process Special protection against alkaline emitting materials such as concrete or lime mortars APPLICTIONS: A) Jazz on Central Park: the Hangar and the Tie example Time Warner Center and the Allen Room of Jazz at Lincoln Center. Rotterdam. sodium carbonate. Its productions starts with melting together quartz sand (silica). GLASS An inorganic.: WSP Cantor Seinuk.K..Y. and Merrill. & brittle material with a much high compression than tension strength. U. Mary Axe. for glass wall.S. B) Glass Bridge: the Frame and Lateral Stability example Glass Bridge for Kraaijvanger Urbis. N.

Glass Facade III. Can be combined with other materials i. Beijing. in w/c woven fabrics commonly form doubly curved structural shapes. Weak compression strength Weak against moisture.C) Beijing National Aquatics Center: Space Frame Structure Example Beijing National Aquatics Center.Munich. Their tensile strength is exploited in pre-stressed membrane structures.     ADVANTAGES It lends strength to polymer that envelops & holds them in place. the Watercbe. FIBERS AND FABRICS Mineral and synthetic fibers are materials of crucial importance in contemporary light-weight tensile membranes and in polymer (plastics) composites. glass to further strengthen its structural property High tensile strength Pre-stressed during manufacturing    DISADVANTAGES No appropriate aging and weathering properties. UV radiation & fungus APPLICTIONS: A) Pneumatic Membranes: The inflated new type Vault Example Allianz Arena. China (2008) Architects: PTW Architects Structural Engr: Arup *Space Frame Structure Based on Weaire & Phelan bubbles. Germany (2004) Architect: Herzog and De Meuron Structural Engr: Arup *Air-inflated Cushions of EFTE foil Mobile Performance Venue (2009) Structural engr: Ramboll Whitby-Bird *Air-inflated Tubes in hexagonal Pattern as skin structure .e.

as well as acrylic glass and polycarbonate. COMPOSITES Plastics are large chain-like molecules that are based on carbon atoms.  Polycarbonate displays good strength to resist impact loads.K. better than float glass having the same thickness  Very durable and degrade slowly Composites  High strength-to-weight ratio  Good anti-corrosion and weather resistant  Design can have a great influence on material properties such as strength & stiffness. U. Its most important material is oil.      APPLICTIONS: A) Acrylic Glass: Irregular Domes and Shell Example for Plastics DISADVANTAGES One-twentieth elastic modulus compared to that of a glass. polycarbonate discolours if left untreated Burnt plastics release toxic fumes fatal to all living beings Its manufacture can create undesirable chemical pollutants High cost . & can thus be given new shapes multiple times i. Edinburgh. PLASTICS & V.it deforms under heat and pressure. PTFE. Thermosetting plastics-have a complex molecular structure that resists being reshaped by heating i. epoxy and polyester. They are recyclable materials that regain their properties after cooling. larger structural thickness are needed Even if weather resistant. Composites consists of two or more different material components w/c are joined to give a combination of properties that can’t be attained by the original materials independently.B) Dynamic Earth: Hyper Shells Example DynamicEarth.e. & adhesives. PVC. & are present in such substance as plastics. ETFE. (1999) Architect: Michael Hopkins and Partners Structural Engr: Arup *Steel Mast-supported membrane stretched over a steel skeleton covered in a tensile structure. ADVANTAGES Plastics  Good substitute for glass material  Some have good optical properties having a density about half of the glass of the same size  Acrylic glass have 2-3 times the tension strength of a glass  Thermoplastics experience both elastic and plastic deformation when subjected to stresses. which means that where deformations are a critical issue. Thermoplastics. IV.e. rubbers. It is grouped into two: the thermosetting plastics and the thermoplastics.

England. Exterior surface covered by inflated EFTE pillows whose relative transparency to UV rays promotes the Growth of Plants in one of the world’s largest greenhouses. St. . (2001) Architect: Nicholas Grimshaw and Partners Structural Engr: Anthony Hunt and Associates *Bubble-like Domes nestled into landscape. Cornwall. Graz. U.K. Bazey.Kunsthaus Graz. Architektur Consult Structural Engr: Bollinger + Grohmann B) Fiber-Reinforced Plastic: Wall façade Example for Composite Chanel Mobile Art Container (2008) Architect: Zaha Hadid Architects Structural Designer: Arup Manufactured by: Stage One B) The Eden Project: Plastic Domes and Shell Example The Eden Project. Austria (2003) Architect: Spacelab Cook-Fournier.

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