10 Surprising Facts about Modern Building Materials
HOLA Readers! Are you an Architect? Or a curious explorer? Or planning to build your house with some interesting building materials? Then my friend, you are at the right place. Wait, wait...I'm not going to suggest you building materials to use in construction but to make you familiar with the top 10 modern building materials which will blow your mind. Designers and manufacturers are experimenting with building materials more than ever before, new innovative building materials are turning out to be new value propositions for manufacturers and new canvases for designers. These building materials are becoming more popular and are becoming a desirable alternative to the materials we usually use for construction. So, let us gather some knowledge about it. I cannot wait more to explore, so let's start with the basics.
The first question arises: what is a building material? Building materials are simply materials used for construction. Many natural substances, such as clay, rocks, sand, wood, and even branches and leaves, have been used to build buildings. Apart from naturally occurring materials, many man-made products are also used for construction. They provide the make-up of habitats and various structures including homes.
Time to explore! Below are mentioned the top 10 surprising building materials which are trending currently:
1. Glass: A Versatile Building Material
We all are aware of the fact that glass is a breakable material. Here the question arises is glass a good building material? Yes, glass is absolutely an excellent building material as it allows natural light transmission up to 80 percent, which saves energy.
Glass is a type of building material, which have multifarious properties and uses. It is majorly used as a transparent glazing material, providing architects with ideas for new designs and even possibilities to enhance the look and features of the building. Its attraction features are that it is easily molded, has visible transmission, is weather and rust-resistant, excellent insulator against electricity, is recyclable, and even adds to the beauty of the structure. Laminated glass is the most reliable and effective glass among the various types of glass used in construction.
Before you move ahead we suggest you to check out the Importance Of Glass In Architecture Design and discover how glass transcends mere functionality to become a pivotal element in creating stunning aesthetics, maximizing natural light, and fostering a seamless connection between indoor and outdoor spaces.
2. Polystyrene: Versatility Unleashed in Architecture, Engineering, and Product Design
Not to astonish you, the use of Polystyrene is impressively increasing in architecture, engineering, and various product designs. Polystyrene is made by stringing or polymerizing styrene, a building block chemical used in the manufacture of many products.
Polystyrene is lightweight, strong, clean, and easy to handle, providing temperature and noise insulation, and can be used as a base for rendered panels. I was also surprised to know that Polystyrene manufacture produces no ozone-depleting gases and uses no chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs). The advantage of using it as a building material is that polystyrene sheets are 100% recyclable. Therefore, any leftover sheets, or those found during demolition, can be broken down and repurposed for use later.
3. Hempcrete: Pioneering Sustainable Building with Nature's Miracle Material in Europe and Beyond
Another insurgency of building materials is Hempcrete, which is recognized as a sustainable construction material. Hempcrete is a bio-composite concrete, where hemp shives (small pieces of wood from the plant stem), are mixed with lime or mud cement to create a durable, environmentally friendly building material. Despite this, it is a non-flammable material.
Hempcrete can be used for insulation, flooring, roofing, and even drywall. Its amazing features are that it is fireproof, waterproof, Termite-Proof, and rotproof provided it is above ground. Hempcrete is a non-toxic substance. Therefore, it does not leach any harmful substances into the building structure that may harm the building or even the residents of the building. Also, being biodegradable, the material is recyclable and can be reused easily. It is now gaining most of its popularity in European countries.
Also, take a read to Top 10 Natural Building Materials For Sustainable Architecture
4. Silicone: Revolutionizing Building Materials with its Growing Popularity and Versatility
Another trend in building materials on the market today is silicone. Silicone is a polymer comprised of siloxane. They are usually colorless oils or rubber-like substances. The properties of silicone include sealants, adhesives, and protective coatings. These unique properties make silicone essential not only in residential and office buildings but also in bridges, oil rigs, industrial plants, and pipelines.
Silicone sealants are used to ensure that important structural materials remain in place in expansion, construction, connection, and movement joints. Silicone binds to most materials from concrete, glass, granite, and marble to aluminum, steel, and plastic. They are extremely durable and can withstand the decay caused by harsh weather conditions, moisture, or sunlight to other materials.
5. Aluminium Composite Panels: Transforming Building Facades Worldwide with Their Strength and Aesthetic Appeal
Aluminum composite panels are now creating hype on the market around the world. ACP sheet or Aluminium Composite Panel is the new-age cladding material used for building front elevation (facades), interiors, signage, modular kitchen, and more.
It is available in a variety of colors and textures such as wood, stone, sand, 3D, etc. Its amazing properties of being lightweight, durable, robust, rigid, high strength-to-weight ratio, and cost-effective can be considered a crucial factor in bringing it into the spotlight. They are fire-resistant, and earthquake-resistant and even improve the appearance of the building.
ACP is one of the go-to façade materials nowadays, explore some more 8 Most Popular Materials for Home Elevation, Every Architect Must Know
6. Copper Pipes: Safeguarding Groundwater Quality and Enhancing Structural Resilience against Earthquakes
Copper pipes are commonly used in the construction industry for water supply lines and coolant lines in HVAC (heating, cooling, and air conditioning) systems. Copper pipes can be made in the form of soft or rigid copper and offer excellent corrosion resistance and reliable connections.
Copper plumbing pipes are durable, do not contaminate water, and are lightweight and fire-resistant. Copper piping is also less harmful to the environment. Copper is naturally resistant to corrosion in most soils and underground environments. So, they are the best substance that can be used to treat groundwater. This is because copper is antimicrobial and can kill 99.9% of microorganisms within two hours of contact. Since copper is a soft metal, it also has some flexibility, decreasing the likeliness of breakage during an earthquake or other disaster.
7. Green Roofs: Transforming Urban Landscapes with Sustainable Building Materials and Natural Beauty
“GREEN ROOFS,” sounds like something interesting! A green roof is a partially or completely covered roof with plants and vegetation. This is also known by other names like sedum roofs, grass roofs, or living roofs. They can be installed on flat or pitched roofs to help manage stormwater. It contains layers of soil, a waterproofing membrane, and drainage or water storage systems.
Green roofs are ecologically friendly and a great way to promote environmental sustainability. Compared to other roof types, green roofs have numerous benefits, such as rainwater buffers, purifying the air, reducing the ambient temperature, regulating the indoor temperature, saving energy, and also reducing energy costs. Green roofs are becoming more and more popular as concerns about climate change and declining natural resources grow.
Do check out Green Building Materials: A Comprehensive Guide and make informed choices for a greener, more sustainable future in the built environment.
8. Mycelium Bricks: Sustainable Construction and Innovative Building Solutions
You know what, mycelium is becoming an alternative to the common bricks used in construction. Mycelium bricks are organic bricks formed from organic waste and mycelium of the fungus. The mycelium bricks are by far not as strong as conventional brick, but it is much lighter.
Mycelium composites have customizable material properties based on their composition and process of manufacturing. They can replace foam, wood, and plastic for applications such as insulation, door cores, panels, floors, cabinets, and other furniture. However, when in contact with the ground, a mycelium panel can begin to decompose in about six weeks. On the contrary, if maintained in favorable and stable conditions, it could have a life span of about 20 years.
Look out for some more unique materials 10 Unique Building Materials That Are Perfect for Modern Homes
9. Fly Ash Bricks: Redefining Sustainable Construction with Environmentally Friendly Building Materials
This is not intended to amaze you, but fly ash bricks are replacing the conventional red bricks used for construction. The main ingredients in fly ash bricks' composition include fly ash, water, quicklime or lime sludge, cement, aluminum powder, and gypsum. Autoclaving increases the block's hardness by promoting rapid cement curing. Gypsum on the other hand acts as a long-term strength gainer.
Fly ash bricks are high-tech well-improved bricks used for brick masonry structures. Compared to red bricks, fly ash bricks absorb less heat, resulting in less structure heating. It is fire and vermin resistant, acts as a good sound Insulator, and also has good thermal conductivity.
10. Glass Fiber Reinforced Concrete: Reinventing Construction with Strength, Durability, and Design Freedom
Another trending modern building material is Glass Fiber reinforced concrete, which is a type of Fiber-reinforced concrete. Glass Fiber concretes are used in exterior building façade panels and as architectural precast concrete. It is a composite comprised of Portland cement, fine aggregate, water, acrylic co-polymer, alkali-resistant glass Fiber reinforcement, and additives.
Its properties include the ability to construct lightweight panels as it is highly compressive, flexural, and has good tensile strength. GFRC (glass Fiber reinforced concrete) is incredibly versatile and has many cases of use because of its strength, weight, and design. The most common place where this material is in the construction industry. It is used in very demanding cases such as architectural cladding that hangs several stories above sidewalks or even more for aesthetics.
The fact I like to conclude is that I can give you a summary of the whole blog about what it was all about. This blog aims to highlight the materials which for sure must have blown your mind. Here were some of the modern construction materials which are taking over the market and becoming an alternative to the common building materials we use for construction. They are not only competing with their versatility to improve the aesthetics of the building but also giving tough competition with their extraordinary properties and being environment friendly at the same time. I am quite sure that you will not deny that you are also making up your mind to switch to one of the materials described above while choosing to build or renovate your house. To keep yourself up to date with the information on new trends in the building construction market, keep reading Planndesign.
Lastly, take a read to the How to Choose the Right Building Material for Your Project
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