In our last blog, we looked at pultrusion; the stages that are involved in this essential manufacturing process, plus how it can have real benefits in your build. As specialists in delivering quality components and materials, we are constantly striving for excellence in the products that we offer and the quality service for which we’re renowned. We’re continually working to ensure that we meet growing demand within the building industry. Which is why we make sure that we provide a full range of composite materials for each and every project and build.
When it comes to composite materials, you’ve got three primary categories. Firstly, if we look at ceramic matrix composites – or CMCs for short. These are carbon or ceramic fibres which are surrounded by a carbon matrix. PMCs – or polymer matrix composites, are popular in the transference of loads between fibres through the matrix. The third type of composites that we are able to support are metal matrix composites – or MMCs. These are particularly strong and are usually made from aluminium.
With the building industry being so vast, there is no doubt that there is strong demand for composites to meet an extensive list of requirements. It’s recognised that each application will have its own needs in terms of capabilities and materials. At Plura, we spend considerable amounts of time and investment in developing our product and service offering from wide variations of industry sectors from aerospace through to military, transport and many more.
When it comes to the built environment, composites offer an excellent range of properties. Certainly, strength is a key benefit. Having a high strength-to-weight ratio, they are ideal for structural requirements. With carbon fibre weighing an equivalent of 25% of steel or 70% of aluminium, these materials’ strength delivers superb results.
As with many other sectors, the building industry faces a real challenge in terms of costs, so any opportunities to reduce the bottom line are welcome. Choosing from composites means that you can select the exact materials that you need; saving money where needed. And a particular advantage of composites is that maintenance and upkeep is minimal. Composites are ultra-flexible, and benefit from superb resistance to corrosion.
It also goes without saying, being environmentally friendly is on top of every business and industry’s wishlist. So, the use of recycled plastics and other highly durable composites makes for an ideal solution; particularly those that are highly functional and not harmful to the environment.
We know that reduction of time to build is a huge demand in the building industry. So the development of composites has meant that this is more of a reality. Using composites within infrastructure means that lighter weight and smaller builds have become a much more beneficial option. It’s known that composites have been far used, way back in history; as far as 2100 BC. Since the 1990s especially, the range of composites has certainly developed with the ever-growing demand for environmentally friendly options; meaning that many types of structural builds and installations have much stronger life cycles and cost savings.
When it comes to structural composites in particular, GRP – or glass-reinforced polyester, is a superb material which is easily moulded into your chosen application. So easy to install, we at Plura use it as part of our POLYbridge™ and POLYwalk™ materials. And thanks to its long-lasting life and its excellent resistance to warping or extreme conditions, you’ve got a lightweight option that’s quick to use, delivers great heat and sound insulation, not to mention the fact that it saves money too.
With developing R&D within the building industry sector, composites are certain to see significant changes and advancements. In particular, The Future Composites Manufacturing Hub; a growing combined UK hub of universities, continues to find novel ways to meet the needs of many demanding applications. Developed from a £10.3m investment from the EPSRC (Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council) cimcomp.ac.uk, it looks to find beneficial changes in the production of polymer matrix composites; increasing performance and improving sustainability.
And at Plura, we’re constantly committed to keeping up with technical and industrial evolvements; ensuring that we deliver the best materials to meet the needs of your projects. Regardless of your requirements, we’re proud of our extensive range of composite profiles that are carefully manufactured in the UK. With our longstanding commitment to finding solutions to environmentally friendly challenges that our valued clients demand in terms of building projects, our product range will remain state-of-the-art; meeting your individual needs for all of your building projects.