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reinforced concrete floors installed at the new saddleworth high school

PROJECT UPDATE: REINFORCED CONCRETE FLOORS FOR SADDLEWORTH

Metcon has completed the installation of reinforced concrete floors for the construction of Saddleworth’s new high school.

Sister steel decking division, Metaldeck, completed the supply and installation of 6,440m2 of Kingspan Multideck MD60 allowing Metcon’s concrete floor installers to move on site.

Works commenced with the installation of steel mesh sheets which are laid over the steel decking and provide the reinforcement. The steel mesh increases tensile strength and reduces the risk of cracking.

Metcon concrete floor contractors then cast concrete floor slabs on the steel decking.

The new school will accommodate 1,500 pupils aged between 11-16 years when it opens in early 2022.

What is a reinforced concrete floor?

A reinforced concrete floor is a floor which has been either cast over steel reinforcing mesh or grid sheets, or has had steel fibres mixed into its composition. The concrete then sets which enhances its performance by adding the strength of steel.

Concrete alone can be considered brittle and prone to cracking. It also has a relatively low tensile strength compared to other formwork materials, such as steel. In order to be up to the job of carrying heavy loads, such as is the requirement when used as flooring in construction, it needs to be reinforced with another material forming a composite.

Steel and concrete are similar in that they both expand and contract in response to thermal changes. This reduces the risk of internal stress within the concrete floor.

Concrete floors reinforced with steel mesh or fibres have far better tensile strength than concrete alone. They are also more durable and offer better compressive strength which allow them to carry heavier loads.

What buildings benefit from reinforced concrete floors?

Reinforced concrete flooring is most commonly used for the construction of multi-storey buildings, such as car parks, office blocks, residential apartment buildings and also industrial warehouses and distribution centres.

Here, they are used in combination with steel frame construction and steel decking profiles. The steel mesh reinforcement is laid over the steel decking and the concrete floor is cast in situ.

As steel is a relatively light weight material, the foundation requirements of steel frame buildings are less than other methods of construction resulting in savings of both time and cost.

The combination of being able to bear heavy static and dynamic loads, as well as improving speed of construction and cost efficiency, make reinforced concrete floors a popular choice for those commissioning construction projects across all sectors.

Find out more about steel decking and reinforced concrete floors in this knowledge article.

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