3E in harmony - Energy, Environment, Elematic
The society of today is highly ecologically conscious, which is clearly reflected in the activities of the construction industry. Elematic, as a leading one-stop-supplier, has long realized its responsibility to act as a forerunner in the continuous development of eco-friendly solutions. Energy-efficiency is an important part of ecological thinking and a hot topic globally. Buildings are increasingly required to have insulated facades to keep the cold or heat out, saving considerable energy by minimizing the need to reduce or increase the temperature from within. Already at the factory, precast utilizes energy efficiently, as the heat resulting from the production process is used in the heating of the building. With leading precast technology competence, Elematic can contribute to better life conditions. Dr. Jouni Punkki is Innovation Manager at Parma Oy in Nummela, Finland. He knows about prefabrication as an eco-friendly production process. "Compared to in-situ construction, precast structures can save greatly on material resources", he describes. "For instance, with hollow-core slabs you can save up to 50 % in concrete compared to on-site casting, and with pre-stressing techniques you can economize up to 50 % also in the amount of steel needed". Punkki goes on to explain that prefabrication that takes place inside also saves energy. In addition, it is an excellent way of reducing the total amount of waste and also recycling can be organized more efficiently. As a result of industrial production, the environmental burden caused by the manufacture of precast concrete elements is reasonably low when compared to producing the entire building on-site.
Minimum energy for heating or cooling = eco-friendly
Precast requires less concrete, less cement, and less steel, and that means less CO2 emissions. However, it is important to remember that only approximately 10 % of the energy consumption and CO2 emissions occurring during a buildings life cycle takes place during the construction phase. The remaining 90 %, results from the using of the building. Therefore an environmentally friendly building is one that consumes only little heating or cooling energy. "According to regulations in the UAE, all new residential buildings must be insulated and an estimate on the insulation capacity of walls must be presented", says Mr. Raimo Juhantalo, Elematic's Area Sales Director for the UAE. He continues, "In practice, the insulation thickness is 50 mm minimum". Although there are a variety of methods for insulating walls, sandwich panels allow for greater variety in the appearances of outer levels and they are quick to install.
Quick-to-build insulated wall solutions
Mr. Peder Biese is Executive Board Member of Paroc Group Holding Oy and has worked with construction materials and insulation techniques for many decades. In that time he has seen Finland evolve into a forerunner in construction technology. Elematic has been strongly involved in this development and Biese remembers that even in the 1980's, Elematic was implementing successful strategies. In 2006, the Arab investment company Arcapita acquired a major share in Paroc. The company's main office is in Bahrain and in the course of the negotiations, Biese spent two weeks travelling in the UAE. "It was an immensely interesting and positive experience", he says. "The tremendous boom in construction is well demonstrated by the fact that 35 % of the world's cranes are in Dubai at present!" Biese says he came to realize during his visit in the UAE that there exists a genuine concern related to energy economics. Oil and energy are not resources to be wasted and eco-friendliness was very much the main subject of the daily news. These days, methods that can be used to build quickly are becoming increasingly popular, but the walls must still be insulated. For this purpose, precast is the perfect solution. Already in the 1970's, Partek, as Paroc was then called, set up a company called Mabco Saudi in the UAE. Machinery for the production of hollow-core slabs where shipped to the company's factory, and during the first year the output was used to erect a wall around the plant. Today, a whole new tune is being whistled, as demand for hollow-core slabs is skyrocketing. Whereas building with in-situ casting takes three years, building with precast takes just one year, to give an example. Biese says that in the UAE, it is expected that the future will see oil becoming sparse, and businesses are wisely investing in other modern technologies to compensate. Developing the construction industry plays an important part in this. In conclusion, Raimo Juhantalo says: "Elematic's technologies are excellent for promoting energy efficient solutions, we can find for you the perfect option no matter what kind of façade you are looking for, or what kind of building you are planning".