The latest industry news on materials for architecture.

Hello and welcome to the Materials for Architecture Newsletter

In this issue, we bring you news on the materials supply crisis, fire test data in the timber frame industry, reducing CO2 emissions in new homes, and more. Contact us

Test data in the frame

Steve Griffiths of Taylor Lane Timber Frame and the Structural Timber Association looks at the latest developments on fire test data in the timber frame industry, post-Grenfell. For many years, the construction industry – not least the timber frame sector – has relied upon fire test data provided by plasterboard manufacturers. Plasterboard is the industry standard... Read more...
Published 03/12/2021 via

Traditional is the new modern

Tom Wright of George Barnsdale explores the use of timber in ‘minimalist’ designs. “We must recognise the importance of timber in overcoming our climate challenge,” David Warburton wrote to his fellow MPs recently. On paper, politicians are making the right noises, having enshrined into law a commitment to reduce carbon emissions by 78% versus 1990 levels... Read more...
Published 03/12/2021 via

Ask the Expert: Cut your losses and save CO2

Improving insulation is at the heart of the country’s mission to reduce CO2 emissions in new homes. Matthew Evans of Kingspan Insulation answers key questions around the materials and details to consider to avoid heat loss in your build, and lower its environmental impact. What’s the right thickness of insulation for my project? To answer this... Read more...
Published 19/11/2021 via

MVRDV reimagines Berlin Film Studios with Sustainable Materials

MVRDV has received planning approval for the first two buildings in Atelier Gardens, a proposal to sustainably transform the campus of Berliner Union Film Ateliers (BUFA). Situated on the southern edge of Berlin’s Tempelhof Airport, BUFA has been a key part of Berlin’s film and television industry since its first buildings were constructed... Read more...
Published 11/11/2021 via

Bridging the gap in design

Improving the thermal performance of the building envelope is central to the drive for sustainability, energy efficiency and meeting the criteria for the impending Future Homes Standard. Simon Hill of Schöck considers the issues involved. Critical to improving the thermal performance, is the avoidance of thermal bridging. Understanding how significantly... Read more...
Published 09/11/2021 via

The devil is in the brickwork detail

What are the modern techniques that enable housebuilders and developers to produce details in masonry facades that take buildings to new levels in terms of design and aesthetics? Scott Denham from IG Masonry Support investigates. Deep reveals, soffits, flying beams and arches transform a building into a thing of beauty. Traditional facades... Read more...
Published 09/11/2021 via

Offsite gets another chance

Dr Jonathan Evans of metal envelope supplier Ash & Lacy gives a counter view to the consensus on offsite, saying that in the push towards MMC there is a strong case for some key design elements remaining onsite. 20 years ago, I gave my most unpopular talk. At an event promoting offsite construction shortly after the publication of the Egan Report... Read more...
Published 09/11/2021 via

Protecting decorative projecting brickwork

Projecting brickwork is a popular design feature on masonry building envelopes. However, the resulting inconsistent cavity depths can add complexity when ensuring structures’ passive fire protection – Graham Laws of Siderise Insulation explains more, and describes solutions. Masonry finishes have long been a desirable facade choice for all kinds... Read more...
Published 09/11/2021 via

A construction revolution

With Brexit closing the doors on many highly-skilled workers, Paul Richards of Aquarian Cladding Systems discusses the struggle to bring young people into the industry and why MMC techniques can provide a solution. It’s no secret that the construction industry must work harder than ever to attract young people into the industry and to re-skill those who have... Read more...
Published 08/11/2021 via

Materials supply crisis continues to curtail builders’ recovery

Building and property maintenance firms are facing enormous challenges as they attempt to recover from the pandemic with a long-lasting crisis in the price and availability of vital building materials now facing them. Brian Berry, Chief Executive of the Federation of Master Builders, said: “Builders throughout the UK, particularly smaller firms... Read more...
Published 03/11/2021 via

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