Author: Eur Ing M. D. Beare (CARE, AKS Ward-Lister Beare Consulting Engineers)
31 July 2015
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Eur Ing M. D. Beare (CARE, AKS Ward-Lister Beare Consulting Engineers)
Structural insulated panels (SIPs) are engineered, load-carrying, timber-based panel products that can be used in walls and roofs of residential and light commercial buildings. These lightweight panels combine the structural and thermal envelope of the building; they are manufactured offsite in a factory and shipped to the construction site, offering advantages to the build programme. This panelised form of construction allows SIPs to be assembled to form highly airtight, energy-efficient building envelopes.
The concluding article in this series discusses the span-to-effective-depth method for verifying deflection limits of slabs and beams. (This article was corrected on 1 October 2015. For details, see the corrigendum published on page 37 of the October 2015 issue.)
Timber and stone are the oldest known building materials. Our most ancient buildings are characterised by their use. So it is no surprise that an engineer looking after historic fabric will regularly encounter the need to repair timberwork. The greatest threats to the structural integrity of timber are from attack by rot and insect; therefore, in the damp British Isles, those working in conservation will often need to reach for the sketchpad to record and re-detail areas damaged by the effects of moisture. Interventions to historic timberwork are also necessary when a building is converted. This happens, for example, when floor joists are reframed or loading is assessed for a new use. While philosophically this is different to a simple repair, it nevertheless requires similar skillsets to achieve the best, most sensitive results. This article looks briefly at these matters, first from the aspect of conservation philosophy and material choice to establish some ground rules, and then by showing some of the details typically in use in the UK today. In order to focus on these, it does not consider survey and diagnosis.