11/26/2018 Environmentally Friendly Concrete
A New Form of an Old Material
By: James Murray-White
Scientists at a British concrete manufacturer, the London-based Novacem, claim to have developed a new form of concrete that effectively absorbs large amounts of carbon dioxide as it hardens. Novacem’s new version of concrete, uses a different raw material, magnesium sulphate, which requires much less heating. Novacem claim that each tonne of cement can absorb up to 0.6 tonnes of CO2. This is opposed to figures that claim that each tonne of old style cement emits about 0.4 tonnes of CO2.
For any building material to actually absorb carbon rather than just emit it in its production, is really a breakthrough, though Novacem admit the material is still in its trial period. The consequences of having an environmentally friendly building material available and on the market for builders to use, and for architects and designers to insist on using in the design of buildings and roads, is immense, and a real development for a sector which has been very guilty of creating carbon emissions through building operations.
The British Cement Association have reacted with some scepticism to Novacem’s announcement, stating that they have several non-cement alternatives being tested currently, and that there is little worldwide geological availability of other materials to create such alternative concrete, without the traditional cement. Novacem state that they estimate that there are around 10,000 billion tonnes of magnesium silicates available worldwide, and that their process could use alternative byproducts as well that also contain forms of magnesium.
Novacem is so confident of the sustainable and carbon negative potential of this new product that they have initiated a 1.5 million pounds pilot plant project in the UK, to further research this new type of concrete, experiment with it and seek the necessary licences to manufacture it. The product itself could be several years away from being available to the building public and the building trade in general, but it does have great potential, and is eagerly awaited.As the number of LEED certified projects grow, some cities have policies in place to ensure faster growth than others. One such place is Washington D.C.Learn about the ways in which general contractors are profiting and capitalizing on the boom in renewables. From installation to manufacturing; solar, wind, and all other renewables present a lucrative opportunity for commercial building firms. 2/6/2017 Why Build Green? Lower Operational Costs, Increased Staff Productivity, and Higher Asset ValuesEnvironmental Leader has published a new article detailing many of the benefits of green building that are not immediately apparent. Lower operational costs have long been the most cited reason to build green, however more benefits can be realized. 10/7/2016 The top 10 green building products for 2017Excerpts taken from The Construction Dive; Emily PeifferFrom composting toilets to electric lawn mowers, BuildingGreen’s list offers a forecast for what’s on the horizon in the rapidly evolving green building industry.The green building market is teeming with manufacturers seeking to develop products and materials that reduce a building’s overall embodied energy while standing up to stringent performance criteria — all in the hopes of helping to create a more sustainable construction industry. Let’s hope that manufacturers continue to search out new materials and design new products that help reduce construction’s impact on the environment!9/28/16 The Next Phase in Green Building Is Healthier Buildings
Building In The Urban Environment: The Challenge of Construction WasteIn many parts of the country, up to 50% of the waste that’s going to landfills comes from construction activities. And because construction waste has a lot of air in it, it takes up a lot of landfill space. Just to give you an example. On average it takes a little more than twelve yards of construction waste just to make a ton. Now that’s only about 166 pounds per yard. Just compare that to gravel, where each yard weighs about 1.5 tons.Demolition in the urban environment adds significantly to construction’s waste stream. Demolition in the urban environment adds significantly to construction’s waste stream. Now, much of construction’s waste stream is truly waste because it also includes so many perfectly usable materials. All you have to do is watch the home improvement shows and you can’t help but notice how demolition has become a form of gleeful entertainment. From smashing cabinets and countertops with sledgehammers, to front end loaders tearing into whole houses, the message is clear. It’s tear it out, destroying it in the price, and throw it away. This really isn’t sustainable, and it gives the industry a bad rap.This blog post contains an excerpt of a podcast by Duane Craig of the constructioninformerPhoto credits (Copyright: mariok / 123RF Stock Photo) Window Film Generates Power from the SunHome building pros are familiar with special window coatings that save energy, but a Columbia, Md.-based manufacturer is taking that concept a step further with commercial window film that generates power.SolarWindow’s transparent, flexible veneer can be applied directly onto existing windows. Its nearly invisible microgrid wires as thin as human hair generate electricity and are being used on tall commercial buildings such as skyscrapers. SolarWindow modeling shows that modules achieve the industry’s fastest published financial payback of less than one year as validated by a team of independent engineers and at the University of North Carolina Charlotte Energy Production and Infrastructure Center.“Our previous system was widely acknowledged as a technical breakthrough. However, we’ve always wanted to push the boundaries, and have now done so with wires as thin as human hair. Moving forward, our technology team has vowed to attempt even finer wiring grids in order to help them eventually disappear to the human eye,” says John A. Conklin, President and CEO of SolarWindow Technologies, Inc.This expanded product line broadens the company’s market reach beyond new and replacement installations, to include windows currently installed on the estimated 5 million commercial buildings constructed in the U.S. alone. Engineers envision installing SolarWindow products on all four sides of tall towers, generating electricity using natural, shaded, and even artificial light.Jennifer Goodman is Senior Editor at BUILDER. Connect with her on Twitter at @Jenn4Builder.7/22/2015Materials Science and the Use of Waste ProductsMany innovations in building technology have occurred through the use of industrial and agricultural waste as a building product.One recent example is the use of recycled crushed glass as an aggregate in lightweight precast elements. Glass is made from sand, which typically has a high silicon content. Naturally there are thousands of formulations, but glass generally is stable and can be an excellent aggregate in many concretes. Crushed glass is also used in road base and to improve the grip and wear characteristics of bitumen.Another popular use of a waste by product is with plastics. Many types of petroleum-based plastics can be are reheated and then used to make specific products. Reconstituted plastic planks with ingredients to render them UV light resistant can be excellent building materials. They do not rot, can not be eaten by termites, are not affected by chlorine or salt around swimming pools, can be treated not to easily ignite, and are lightweight. A variety of extrusions are now in use with innovative Australian technology.https://sourceable.net/materials-science-and-the-use-of-waste-products/#More information via this link to the original article written by Grant Spork
But as green building increasingly becomes the norm, driven both by market demand and environmental regulations, some savvy developers and owners and looking to the next phase of green building: healthier buildings that improve employee wellness. These buildings are better for the environment. They incorporate features like daylighting, which decreases electricity use, and zero volatile organic compound paints and glues, which reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
The top five healthy building features in use are better lighting/daylighting exposure, products that enhance thermal comfort, spaces that enhance social interaction, enhanced air quality and products that enhance acoustical comfort. As these buildings continue to show benefits including being healthier for the environment, healthier for human inhabitants and saving — and making — money for developers, facility owners and managers, we expect to see more construction industry leaders getting behind this next phase of green building.
3/24/2015BuildingGreen Announces Top-10 Products for 2015
Transformative products eliminate toxic chemicals and fossil fuels, and improve building and site performance.
BuildingGreen, publisher of EBN, has announced the winners of its annual Top-10 Green Building Products awards. The 13th annual awards recognize green building products that make fundamental transformations to “business as usual” in the design and construction industry.
This year’s picks include products that have eliminated halogenated flame retardants, a longstanding health and environmental issue, along with a highly effective air- and weather-barrier system, chairs made from a new biobased plastic, and high-efficiency chillers using near-frictionless compressor rotors.
See the top ten in this article By Brent Ehrlich, Paula Melton, and Alex Wilsonhttps://www2.buildinggreen.com/article/buildinggreen-announces-top-10-products-2015Here’s a link to the 10 greenest buildings in the world. It’s a great start!
The gals at www.buildsitepro.com thought you might enjoy this interesting article about recycling!
Building demolition demands a lot of heavy machinery to crush concrete and separate valuable materials for reuse. Often, those materials are transferred to offsite locations, which wastes time and resources. The process also wastes a lot of water in order to prevent harmful dust clouds from blooming. However, a Swedish student’s concrete-eating robot aims to change all that.
“The ERO Concrete Recycling Robot was designed to efficiently disassemble concrete structures without any waste, dust or separation and enable reclaimed building materials to be reused for new prefabricated concrete buildings,” explained Omer Haciomeroglu of the Umea Institute of Design of Design. ”It does so by using a water jet to crack the concrete surface, separate the waste and package the cleaned, dust-free material.”
The idea is to send in a fleet of the ERO robots that will scan buildings to determine the best route to execute demolition. Once the robot goes to work, using vacuum suction and electrical power, it erases the building.
“ERO deconstructs with high-pressure water and sucks and separates the mixture of aggregate, cement and water. It then sends aggregate and filtered cement slurry separately down to the packaging unit to be contained,” Haciomeroglu wrote. ”Clean aggregate is packed into big bags, which are labeled and sent to nearby concrete precast stations for reuse. Water is recycled back into the system.”
Turbulence dynamos strategically placed inside air suction chambers even provide a percentage of ERO’s energy needs. Once the last wall has been demolished, essentially nothing has gone to landfills or been sent away for additional processing.
“Even the rebar is cleaned of concrete, dust and rust and is ready to be cut and reused immediately,” Haciomeroglu stated. “Every bit of the load-bearing structure is reusable for new building blocks.”
So far the design remains a concept, but influential organizations are starting to take note. Last year, Haciomeroglu’s concept won in the Student Designs category of the International Design Excellence Awards.
Interesting new developments from the Green Building Industry! Forbes Magazine reported today that an innovative green building products company called bioMason has created a brick made form bacterial byproducts that cement sand particles together in a matrix that is strong enough to use for homes. In only five days, bacteria create a natural cement similar to coral that binds aggregate into a brick. Since waste from residential and commercial building activities accounts for around 40% of landfill wastes, this product could be a cheap, renewable, and biodegradable alternative to regular concrete in the near future.
For more information visit the following link: Self-Repairing Concrete Could be the Future of Green Building.
Happy Earth Day from the Surface Protection Experts! Builders and contractors are more concerned than ever about using recycled materials, conserving resources, and “going green”. Surface Protection helps tremendously by allowing builders to prevent damage to expensive fixtures, which often results in these fixtures needing to get thrown away. Remember to use surface protection on your next project to stay green!
While Green building continues to pick up, fewer firms pursue LEED certification, according to a new survey conducted by McGraw-Hill. The report indicates a significant increase in demand for green building over the last ten years. Builders report that they are not pursuing LEED because of the perceived costs and difficulty of the certification process.
Green Building Sees Growth, But Fewer Firms Pursue LEED
The Surface Protection Experts just stumbled onto a great website and cause called “The All American Home“. “The All American Home” asks the construction industry to commit to reallocating 5% of spending towards products made in the USA.It encourages builders and contractors to buy locally-made products rather than cheaper goods made in China or other foreign countries.
We agree that investing in high-quality products produced in the USA stimulates the economy and will help get us out of the recession. If you are a contractor looking for surface protection products that are USA-made, check out a few of these:
Toilet Sheath™,Door Guard™, Tack Guard™, Cabinet Foam™, and Swift Wrap™ are made in the USA and were designed and manufactured by Builders Site Protection. In addition, many green products including Edge Pro corner guards, and Sill Pro sliding door protection are also made in the USA.
Check out “The All American Home” website to learn more or take the pledge!
The All American Home