Sharing the Knowledge: Precast and Prestressed Concrete Panel Constructionby David Barlew, Jr. on 04/22/11
One of the goals of The Barlew Blog is to share information about buildings, construction and architecture with our readers. I believe it is important for architects to share what we learn so that the value of our experiences and knowledge can be shared with as many people as possible. For that reason, I intend to post short series of the facts I learn following each continuing education seminar, which I attend on a regular basis--ocassionally more than once a week. These seminars cover everything from zinc roofing to pervious concrete; from fire dampers to silicone sealant; from geothermal HVAC to acrylic resin.
On Wednesday I attended a continuing education seminar on precast and prestressed concrete panel construction. Here are four quick things I learned:
I learned that the primary benefit of using precast and prestressed concrete panel construction is its speed of construction. With the building's exterior finishes, structural system and interior finishes all manufactured together in a series of pre-made panels, the erection of the building can take place in a shorter duration of time.
I learned that two design strategies can reduce construction costs for this type of construction: (1.) reusing panel molds lowers the unit cost per panel and (2.) using fewer larger panels costs less than using many smaller panels.
I learned that carbon fiber grid reinforcing can be used in lieu of steel reinforcing in precast and prestressed concrete panels and that the use of carbon fiber grid reinforcing can reduce panel weights by 8%.
Finally, I learned that precast and prestressed concrete panels can have R-Values between R-4 and R-35.
Overall, I was impressed by the precast and prestressed concrete panel construction system. I would really like to work on a project using precast and prestressed concrete panel construction.
Spence, George. "The Basics of Precast/Prestressed Concrete." Metromont. Development Resource Center, Chattanooga, Tennessee. 20 April 2011.
Written by David Barlew, Jr. for David Barlew Architects, Inc.