Against brick walls: Metal-faced composite panels for construction

PBC Today | January 29, 2020

Modern Methods of Construction are a new broom sweeping through the UK building sector, with traditional brick walls starting to get brushed aside, according to a growing number of industry players. At a time when the majority in the sector are exploring alternative methods and materials, some companies are already experienced at using metal-faced composite panels for construction across a growing number of industry sectors. Phil Montgomery, account manager at Hemsec, a leading manufacturer of such panels, says: If the masses could see the ease of build and associated benefits when using composite panels then a growing number of builders would question the use of traditional building materials such as brick and block.

Spotlight

AECOM’s head office in Madrid, Spain has been established as an AECOM Global Design Centre, providing multi-disciplinary services from project conception to completion. As a design centre, we are uniquely equipped with cutting-edge technology, such as Building Information Modelling (BIM) and RailEST (a new in-house simulation tool for rail lines), allowing us to guarantee the quality of the projects we deliver.


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ENGINEERING TECH

AkitaBox and McKinstry Announce Partnership to Deliver Facility Condition Assessment Software Offering

McKinstry | May 20, 2022

AkitaBox and McKinstry announce their partnership on delivering facility condition assessments (FCAs). AkitaBox FCA software will give architecture/engineering/construction (AEC) firms and building owners/operators a tool for conducting data collection, reporting, and other aspects of a complete FCA. "A partnership with McKinstry, a leader in designing, constructing, operating, and maintaining high performance buildings, is exciting for AkitaBox, Their invaluable testing and feedback will help us ensure our software will truly improve every aspect of FCAs." AkitaBox co-founder Josh Lowe "We believe that we can help transform something that's been overlooked and is in desperate need of change," Lowe adds. "We look forward to moving the industry towards a better FCA, one asset at a time." The collaboration began in mid-2021, when McKinstry first learned AkitaBox was developing FCA software. At the time, the company was looking for ways to augment their existing FCA offering to boost delivery of their building consulting services. "McKinstry is partnering with AkitaBox to enhance our facility condition assessment and asset data collection, analysis, and reporting," says Casey Morris, national facility assessment leader for McKinstry. "AkitaBox brings a set of capabilities that complement our existing tools and methodologies while advancing our ability to achieve greater efficiency and improve deliverables for our clients." "This partnership will expand our capabilities in the marketplace," continues Morris. "It's going to give us an opportunity to be more competitive while still offering the actionable data and custom solutions for which McKinstry is known." AkitaBox FCA software fully digitizes a facility's floor plans and maps the location of each asset to the plan, creating a digital twin. Assessment data is collected and incorporated directly into the digital twin. This data can continue to be updated after the FCA is complete for an always current view of facility condition. About AkitaBox AkitaBox delivers an unrivaled data-driven software to assess and optimize the operation and condition of facilities, from the boiler room to the boardroom. Their cloud-based software provides real-time facilities data in a visual and easy-to-use, customizable format - helping teams simplify their operations, reduce risk, and solve even the most complex facility challenges. The AkitaBox Pulse suite of software solutions includes Facility Condition Assessment, Capital Management, Asset Management, Work Order Management, Preventive Maintenance, Occupant Experience, and Inspections. Visit www.akitabox.com. About McKinstry McKinstry is a full-service, design-build-operate-and-maintain firm specializing in consulting, construction, energy, and facility services. The firm's innovative, integrated delivery methodology provides clients with a single point of accountability that drives waste and redundancy out of the design/build process. With over 2,000 professional staff and trades people throughout the United States and operations in more than 20 states, McKinstry advocates collaborative, sustainable solutions designed to ensure occupant comfort, improve systems efficiency, reduce facility operational costs, and optimize profitability "For The Life of Your Building."

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PRODUCTS

DEWALT® To Premiere New Innovation for the Commercial Concrete and Masonry Construction Industries at World of Concrete® Trade Show

DEWALT | January 15, 2022

DEWALT, a leader in total jobsite solutions and part of Stanley Black & Decker (NYSE: SWK), the world's largest, fastest growing and most innovative tools and storage company, today announced it will debut several new products supporting the concrete and construction industries from the World of Concrete® TradeShow in Las Vegas, taking place from January 18-20. Attendees at the World of Concrete Trade Show will be among some of the first to test and demo these new products onsite:60V MAX* Cordless SDS MAX Chipping Hammers in 22 lb. (DCH892X1) and 15 lb. (DCH832X1) models Made in the USA Critical Connection Undercut Anchors (CCU+™) 20V MAX* XR® Brushless Cordless 1/2-in. Hammer Drill (DCD805) 20V MAX* XR® Brushless Cordless 1/2-in. Drill/Driver (DCD800) 60V MAX* Cordless SDS MAX Chipping Hammers in 22 lb. (DCH892X1) and 15 lb. (DCH832X1) models Designed for heavy-duty demolition, concrete, and masonry work, the DEWALT 60V MAX* 22 lb. Cordless SDS MAX Chipping Hammer quickly breaks down dense concrete with up to 19.4 Joules of impact energy**. The hammer tackles horizontal and downward chipping for high-performance in mid-to-lower wall and flooring tasks and is also ideal for demanding highway jobs. The midweight 60V MAX* 15 lb. Cordless SDS Max Chipping Hammer delivers up to 10.5 Joules of impact energy** and is highly maneuverable for horizontal chipping in upper or lower walls and concrete surface preparation applications. The hammers deliver precision chipping with 7-position variable speed control and maintain consistent speed under load through built-in constant-speed electronics for steady operation. Both hammers feature an integrated SHOCKS Active Vibration Control® system designed to minimize vibration felt at the handles compared to rotary hammers without this feature. Each is enabled with WIRELESS TOOL CONTROL connectivity for remote activation of the DCV585 60V MAX* Dust Extractor (sold separately) and comes Tag Ready™ providing the ability to attach a DEWALT Tool Connect™ Tag for location tracking via the DEWALT Tool Connect™ app (tags sold separately). The hammers will be available April 1, 2022 as kitted units. Made in the USA Critical Connection Undercut Anchors (CCU+™) When critical mechanical anchor connections are required, DEWALT heavy-duty Critical Connection Undercut (CCU+™) Anchors get the job done. The 3/8-in, 1/2-in, 5/8-in and 3/4-in CCU+™ anchor range combines with Hollow Stop and Undercutting Bits, 60V MAX* rotary hammers and dust extractors for an OSHA Table 1 compliant cordless system that is designed to fast-track anchor installation and reduce dust exposure. Available now in two steel grades, Carbon Steel B7 and 316 Stainless Steel Class 2, the anchors are Made in the USA and compliant with the procurement requirements under the Buy American Act for USDA projects. They are ideal for: Beam, column, and post anchorages Safety related attachments and assemblies Industrial facilities and water treatment plants Transportation structures Equipment supports and utility systems Barriers, guards, and railing mounts Critical overhead anchorages Seismic qualification (SDC A – F) Tension zone / cracked concrete 20V MAX* XR® Brushless Cordless 1/2-in. Hammer Drill (DCD805) and the 20V MAX* XR® Brushless Cordless 1/2-in. Drill/Driver (DCD800) Attendees will also preview the new DEWALT 20V MAX* XR® Brushless Cordless 1/2-in. Hammer Drill (DCD805) and 20V MAX* XR® Brushless Cordless 1/2-in. Drill/Driver (DCD800), both launching in March 2022. In addition, DEWALT will spotlight a wide variety of its latest tools, accessories, and technology solutions at World of Concrete, including the following: DEWALT POWERSTACK™ 20V MAX* Compact Battery: DEWALT is the world's first major power tool brand to use pouch cell batteries designed for the construction industry DEWALT ELITE SERIES™ Accessories: SDS PLUS and SDS MAX Carbide Drill Bits, Diamond† Blades, and Abrasive Cutting Wheels that are Built to Last™ 20V/12V MAX* XR® 3x360 Green Line Laser: Compatible with the DEWALT 12V MAX* and 20V MAX* battery platforms offering versatility across both battery systems Total Trade Solutions™: A new DEWALT end-to-end solution offerings including industry-leading software, products, services, and trainings as tailored for the specific needs and unique challenges of concrete contractors To learn more about DEWALT products, please visit: www.dewalt.com. *With respect to 60V MAX* - Maximum initial battery voltage (measured without a workload) is 60 volts. Nominal voltage is 54. With respect to 20V MAX* - Maximum initial battery voltage (measured without a workload) is 20 volts. Nominal voltage is 18. With respect to 12V MAX* - Maximum initial battery voltage (measured without a workload) is 12 volts. Nominal voltage is 10.8. According to EPTA-Procedure 05/2009 These blades use manufactured diamonds engineered for cutting. World of Concrete® is a registered trademark of Hanley Wood Exhibitions, Inc., which has not endorsed or approved these products About DEWALT DEWALT is obsessed with how users work in the real world and is relentlessly pursuing total jobsite solutions. By incorporating its latest technology and industry innovations, DEWALT is leading the charge for the jobsite of the future. DEWALT products. GUARANTEED TOUGH®. For more information, visit www.dewalt.com or follow DEWALT on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. About Stanley Black & Decker Headquartered in New Britain, Connecticut, Stanley Black & Decker, an S&P 500 company, is a leading $14.5 billion global diversified industrial with 56,000 employees in more than 60 countries who make the tools, products and solutions to deliver on its Purpose, For Those Who Make The World. The Company operates the world's largest tools business featuring iconic brands such as DEWALT, STANLEY, BLACK+DECKER and CRAFTSMAN; the world's second largest commercial electronic security company; and is a global industrial leader of highly engineered solutions within its engineered fastening and infrastructure businesses. Learn more at www.stanleyblackanddecker.com.

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CONSTRUCTION

MetroNet Launches Virginia Construction in Norfolk, VA

MetroNet | January 11, 2022

MetroNet announced that construction has begun on its fiber optic infrastructure in Norfolk, Virginia. MetroNet will fully fund the $90 million construction project that will provide Norfolk residents and businesses with access to 100 percent fiber optic internet. The City of Norfolk marks the first city in Virginia that will have access to MetroNet’s services. Upon completion, the City of Norfolk will be named a Gigabit City with MetroNet’s future-proof fiber optic network.Construction has begun near the Five Points Neighborhood Spot and will expand rapidly over the next two years with the first customers online in the fall of 2022. Residents and businesses may visit construction.metronetinc.com to receive updates on construction in their area. “As we welcome MetroNet as a member of our community, Norfolk is proud to be the first Virginia community that will have access to this modern technology, We understand the tremendous impact that MetroNet’s services have on the communities they serve, and we look forward to providing our residents with those same services that will improve the quality of life and work here in Norfolk.” -Mayor Kenny Alexander MetroNet brings 100 percent fiber optic internet and local and long-distance phone service directly to homes and businesses in underserved communities in America with affordable, symmetrical speeds up to 10 Gigabits with no long-term contracts. The company expects its network to be available to more than one million residential households and business locations in the near term, providing more service options to hundreds of communities. “We’ve experienced a warm welcome from Mayor Alexander and the City of Norfolk since we began discussing this project, It’s clear that this city is rich in diversity and opportunity, and we’re excited to be a part of that as we move forward together. We can’t thank the Mayor and the Council enough for the invitation and we look forward to servicing Norfolk.” -John Cinelli, MetroNet CEO. Residents in construction areas will receive communication by mail about construction activity in their neighborhood 30 days prior to beginning and the company provides additional messaging, such as yard signs, to let residents know when the temporary construction process is beginning in their neighborhood. MetroNet crews are marked by ID tags and branded vehicles. MetroNet is one of the fastest-growing providers of fiber optic high-speed services in the nation and is known for its outstanding customer service provided by a strong local presence. MetroNet will establish a retail storefront located in the Norfolk area for customers to have direct access to customer care associates, sign-up for services and schedule installation. About MetroNet: MetroNet is the nation’s largest independently owned, 100 percent fiber optic company headquartered in Evansville, Indiana. The customer-focused company provides cutting-edge fiber optic communication services, including high-speed Fiber Internet and full-featured Fiber Phone. MetroNet started in 2005 with one fiber optic network in Greencastle, Indiana, and has since grown to serving and constructing networks in more than 120 communities across Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Florida, North Carolina, Virginia, Texas, Wisconsin, and Missouri. MetroNet is committed to bringing state-of-the-art telecommunication services to communities — services that are comparable or superior to those offered in large metropolitan areas. MetroNet has been recognized by PC Mag as one of the Top 10 Fastest ISPs in North Central United States in 2020 and Top 10 ISPs with Best Gaming Quality Index in 2021. Broadband Now has recognized MetroNet as the Top 3 Fastest Internet Providers and Fastest Fiber Providers in the Nation in 2020, and #1 Fastest Mid-Sized Internet Provider in two states in 2020. In 2020, MetroNet was awarded the Vectren Energy Safe Digging Partner Award from Vectren. For more information, visit www.MetroNetinc.com.

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MATERIALS

Aerospace and defense materials continue to challenge toolholding

cutting tool engineering | December 14, 2021

From Rene 41, 718 stainless steel and 625 Inconel to titanium and carbon fiber, the materials used in the aerospace and defense industry sector as well as space exploration continue to present significant toolholding challenges. Magnifying these challenges are complex workpiece geometries with deep cavities, features that require long tool overhangs, and jobs requiring small-diameter cutters. Toolholding is just as important as the machine that runs it, and sub-par tooling can keep a machine from running at its full potential. For these reasons, shops turn to high-quality, precise toolholding. Because many of these materials are hard on cutting tools, shops constantly strive for the longest possible tool life. For one shop, the simple switch to a high-precision mechanical-type toolholding system skyrocketed its tool life from machining 100 steel parts per cutter up to 700.Toolholder reduces TIR When it comes to toolholding, one key to increased cutter life is a holder that provides ultra-low Total Indicated Runout (TIR). The goal is to get as close to zero TIR as possible. With every 0.0001" of TIR reduction, the company says that tool life can increase by upwards of 50%. Another example when reduced cutter TIR is required are long tool overhangs to reach complex part features in parts that do not provide much clearance. Shops within the Aerospace, Defense and Space Exploration sectors often run cutters as small as 0.128" diameter in a CAT 40 machine tool spindles with the tools hanging out up to 8" from the spindle nose. To achieve TIR of 0.0002" and under in such overhang applications depends almost entirely on the precision of the toolholder. Part characteristics and features that involve 5-axis machining, such as those typically associated with 3D metal printed parts, compound the risk of cutter runout and breakage. In the Aerospace, Defense and Space Exploration sectors, 3D metal printed parts made from materials such as 718 Inconel and titanium are commonplace, and some of these parts can take as long as 40 hours to produce. Shops have one chance to machine them correctly, and must use toolholders that not only provide low TIR, but also offer the necessary strength and stability. Cutters create dillemma In addition to challenging parts, solid ceramic cutters for machining nickel-based and other heat-resistant alloys present a dilemma for shops in the aerospace, defense and space sectors.. Solid ceramic cutters generate significant amounts of heat that can affect the holding integrity of certain types of toolholders. For instance, toolholders that use heat or hydraulics for clamping would be at risk from the higher-than-normal levels of heat generated during machining with ceramic tools. Mechanical-based systems, however, are unaffected by extreme heat. Beyond the challenges of metal workpieces, those produced from carbon fiber composites also cause issues with tool life and for toolholding. Shops must use tools designed specifically for the materials, which are extremely abrasive. While cutting, these tools force the part material downward and upward simultaneously to prevent delamination of layers. When holding these tools, maintaining low TIR is once again critical to achieving part quality and the longest-possible tool life, but tool pullout is also a major concern, especially when shops want to run cutters at maximum rpm. To combat this, toolholders need tremendous gripping strength paired with some type of locking tool-retention mechanism. CO2-based cooling Because shops cannot use conventional coolant when machining carbon fiber composites, many have incorporated the use of CO2-based cooling systems. These systems use supercritical CO2 not only to cool, but also to lubricate and to evacuate chips. Not all toolholders are suited for CO2 coolant delivery, and with some, tool changeovers can be time consuming as well. Combined with the latest cutting tool technology and the right toolholders, CO2 cooling systems can provide productivity increases in the 70% range. Compared to shrink-fit toolholding systems, mechanical-based systems offer optimum CO2 delivery and the fastest, easiest tool changeovers. For heat shrink, the delicate ruby nozzles used to deliver the CO2 to cutters would need to be removed prior to heating the holder to change out a tool – a task that can require hours. Conversely, some mechanical toolholding systems incorporate modified collets specifically for either through-tool or external CO2 cooling that have no effect on tool changeout time. CO2 coolant also can be supplied through modified toolholding collets with 150µm slots that direct coolant around the shank and along the exterior sides of a composite tool. CO2 cooling offers especially beneficial performance when profiling and drilling carbon fiber composites. Those benefits include dramatic cooling of the cutting tool tip, which reduces wear and extends tool life. Most importantly, however, the tool will cut through the carbon fiber layers much better with fewer, if any, ragged edges. For drilling, instead of the large through holes used with flood coolant, the holes for CO2 are much smaller, in the 150 to 300 µm range. These tiny holes not only cool the drill but also the material, so the drill makes clean entries and exits. Both internal and external type CO2 toolholders ensure drills cut through the last layer, as opposed to punching through it and leaving ragged edges. High tool usage rates provide the first indication that a shop may not be using the right toolholding. Regardless of workpiece material or geometry, a shop that runs through many instances of the same tool for one part needs a better toolholder, especially one that is high precision, makes for fast and easy tool changeovers, provides extreme gripping force and, most importantly, delivers near-zero TIR.powRgrip achieves near-zero TIR toolholding Out-of-balance, poorly manufactured toolholders generate vibration that increases exponentially from the toolholder to the cutting tool tip. So, the longer the cutting tool, the higher the levels of runout. While the complete elimination of TIR and vibration is impossible, the REGO-FIX powRgrip toolholding system reduces both to near-zero levels. The powRgrip system consists of three basic components – holders, collets and press-fit assembly mounting units. In manual or automatic configurations, the hydraulic press-fit assembly units quickly press collets into holders with up to nine tons of force. The collets have high-precision tapers that match with equally high-precision internal tapers in the holders, all of which creates the system’s extreme levels of transferable torque. Unlike other clamping systems where heat or hydraulics are used, the powRgrip system uses the mechanical properties of the holder material to generate its tremendous gripping force. Such taper-to-taper collet-holding systems deliver extremely high levels of precision, and as a whole their TIR is typically less than 3µm, which ensures accurate finished parts. Such precision optimizes the machining of complex, critical Aerospace and Defense industry components through the use of high speed cutting (HSC) or high performance cutting (HPC) strategies. The lower the TIR, the less tool vibration, and the less vibration, the longer cutting tools last, which in turn reduces overall tooling costs.

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Spotlight

AECOM’s head office in Madrid, Spain has been established as an AECOM Global Design Centre, providing multi-disciplinary services from project conception to completion. As a design centre, we are uniquely equipped with cutting-edge technology, such as Building Information Modelling (BIM) and RailEST (a new in-house simulation tool for rail lines), allowing us to guarantee the quality of the projects we deliver.

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