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Publicising design instructions and benefits of aluminium construction
TAMK is creating a learning environment for aluminium construction

TAMK University of Applied Sciences is creating an illustrative, user-friendly learning environment for the design of aluminium structures. Using this, anyone who knows the rudiments can specialise in the use of aluminium in the construction industry. The target is a 25 per cent increase in the use of aluminium in Finland by 2011.

An office building by SRV Yhtiöt Oyj is being built at Keilaniemi, Espoo. The walls are large scale lightweight panels with aluminium frame and glass cladding. The panels are supported by each concrete floor slab. The picture shows a wall element by Teräselementti using an aluminium profile.
High resolution image (418 Kb)
Photo: Jarkko Järvinen

Finland lacks design standards for aluminium construction. In Europe common norms covering the entire construction field are to be introduced in 2010, and new instructions and standards are currently in the making to meet these norms. TAMK leads a project on which a learning environment for aluminium construction based on Eurocode standard EC9 is being created. Students of construction nearing the completion of their studies will gradually begin to use this and the learning environment will be complete in 2008.

Work on the first version of the learning environment in aluminium construction has been in progress for about half a year. It is Internet based and videos and animations among other are used to render it illustrative. The content covers aluminium as a material and manufacturing techniques for aluminium products, the use and costs of aluminium in building construction and how to install, join and transport aluminium. Real practical examples of design, calculation and implementation are measured by Eurocode standard loadings.

Of the Nordic countries, Finland is the one to use least aluminium in its industry. Basic aluminium manufacturing demands a great deal of energy but the good recycling properties of aluminium make it easier to use in construction products. Aluminium is only a third as heavy as steel and it is easy to shape by extrusion, spinning and also casting strong, rigid construction products.

Aluminium has long been used for glass roofs, facades and balcony rails, likewise in the construction of doors and windows. The learning environment makes it easier to learn the practical special features in design and implementation such that European norms are fulfilled. The use of aluminium is expected to increase in Finland by over five per cent per year. The learning environment supports this development.

The development work on the learning environment for aluminium construction is part of the research and development work of TAMK. The work is financed by Teknologiakeskus ry and TAMK. Others involved include companies in the metal business Nordic Aluminium Oyj, Purso Oy, Mäkelä Alu Oy and Rautaruukki Oyj, also the media companies Ebax Oy and Mediaporras Oy. In connection with the project TAMK is the only Finnish higher education institution involved in the network of ten Nordic higher education institutions to arrange a common exchange of information week for five students specialising in aluminium construction.

More information:

TAMK University of Applied Sciences
Principal Lecturer Olli Saarinen
Tel. +358 50 561 1100
The Federation of Finnish Technology Industries
Expert Pentti Kangasmaa
Tel. +358 40 569 2486

Feel free to use all news. Photographs copyright Kalle Heiska.
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