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Building with wood
Wood as a main construction materials is quite commonly used throughout the worlds and is nothing new. On the way of developing the new technologies and knowledges, wood has expanded its importance. Furthermore it has been used for multi-unit buildings even more in last several years. The great exapmples of wooden skyscrapers are in Vancouver, Canada (archinect.com/news/) and in Brummunda, Norway (www.dailyscandinavian.com), where the tallest wooden building is currently under construction.
“Wood has many benefits as a building material when compared with other materials. Above all it has a low weight in relation to its strength and load bearing capacity. The material is “flexible” and can be worked and crafted with simple tools. On top of this, it is a renewable, biological material that is part of the natural eco cycle. In this way, the use of wood makes a vital contribution to the reduction of the earth’s emissions of carbon dioxide. Wood constructions also have significant advantages in severe seismic zones.”
There are several common techniques for construction buildings with supporting frameworks made of wood:
- Using structural wood members to form a frame, which is covered by structural wood panels. Often used to build single detached houses.
- Using solid timber for the supporting framework. Cross-laminated timber is made of timber, which is glued together. It is used to build walls and joists. This technique is well suited to the construction of multi-storey buildings.
- Another technique is the system of columns and beams. In this case glue-laminated timber in different forms is used to a large extent for the loadbearing construction.
- Building on-site.
With the on-site building technique, wall components are generally assembled resting on the joists or the ground and then erected manually.
- Off-site construction.
Wall parts, floor components, roofs, trusses etc. are all built off-site at a factory. Components can be prefabricated, complete with insulation, installations, windows and doors.The trend is towards a higher degree of prefabrication so that the greater part of the building work takes place in an industrial plant in a well-controlled environment with approved quality assurance. The actual assembly of the building, up until the roof is laid, takes one or two days at the building site.
The primary benefits of the technique are:
- Excellent thermal insulation properties are easily achievable.
- The usable building area is significantly increased (as compared to a similar insulated building with masonry walls) because of lesser wall thickness.
- Savings in on-site labour and constructiontime through a systematic off-site manufacturing process.
- From an environmental (LCA) perspective, timber frame structures virtually always perform best.
- The in-fill timber frame wall panel technique allows a wide range of architectural possibilities and cladding materials.
Article and image source: www.swedishwood.com