April Meeting Recap
We had a very nice crowd at our April Lunch Meeting to hear Chapter Member and Concrete Awards Submittal Champion, George Spence give us a presentation on Thermal Efficient Carbon Fiber Reinforced Precast Walls. George opened with some general information on who Metromont was and some very interesting details on their precast facility in Hiram, GA. The daily volume of concrete produced and the state of the art waste concrete recycling facility they operate there was very impressive. He continued with a brief mention and showed us examples of some local and unique precast elements; the precast art cubes at the Pace Gallery in NYC and George’s total precast house were really cool.
Following his intro, George showed us how the industry ASHRAE Code Requirements have gotten increasing more stringent with ever increasing thermal improvements since 1975. In 2013, ASHRAE 90.1 added a definition of Continuous Insulation, “insulation that is uncompressed and continuous across all structural members without thermal bridges other than fasteners and service openings”. He went on to talk about many of the challenges in obtaining a continuous insulation wall system using traditional wood and steel frame construction. Using carbon fiber grid technology to build insulated precast concrete wall panels works very well as the carbon fiber works to reinforce the structural panels without creating a thermal bridge. George showed use some detailed construction techniques they use in Hiram to produce the panels and shared some technical data on the carbon fiber strength and the resulting thermal efficiencies realized in the wall panels.
George closed with some project specific examples of how these thermal panels are being put to use. He had some very detailed information and case history energy use information from Gwinnett County Schools that was very impressive. The Georgia State Student Housing building example was most interesting to me as I have a personal connection to this building; my son Thomas is a student at GA State and currently resides there. Vice-President, Wilbur Bragg, closed the meeting by thanking everyone for their attendance and making the GA Chapter Speaker travel mug presentation.