Concrete has emerged as one of the major building materials today due to its many qualities. In fact, it is the most used material in the world after water. This shows the prevalence of its use. However, developments in construction have made it impossible to rely on the strength of concrete alone, especially with taller and longer buildings being built in urban areas to maximize space. In order for concrete to cope with the increased weight and pressure, it has to carry or bear, other materials and chemicals have been combined. Here, we look into the steps of how enforced structures for concrete are created.
This is the first stage, and it determines the success of all the other stages and how the building would look. The designer considers many things at this stage. These include the type of concrete to be used, strength, weight, stability, and effect on the structural design.
Build the Form:
The next step is to build a form based on the design. While some use wood, the best material for building a form for an enforced concrete structure is metal. The form is where the concrete will be poured. Metal is a better material to make it firmer and compact the concrete.
Add Rebar or Steel Reinforcements:
Steel rods and bars of various thicknesses are bent into shapes and joined together before being placed in the form. The steel reinforcements are added because concrete alone cannot withstand the tension of the enforced structure. While it is a material that performs well under compression, it will most likely buckle or crack if used alone under stress. It can withstand winds, vibrations, etc. With the addition of steel reinforcements and sometimes wire meshes, its overall strength is increased, and it becomes capable of resisting tensile forces. The two materials – steel and concrete – bond and act together as one structural element.
Pouring and Curing the Concrete:
Once all the reinforcements have been attached properly within the form, the next step is to pour concrete into the form. This concrete is specially mixed, based on what the structural engineer believes is right for the enforced structure, and it is usually pumped directly from the truck into the form except where it is prepared on-site. Once the concrete has cured, the rebar of each part of the enforced structure is tied together in what engineers call moment connections. By doing this, the structure becomes capable of carrying or withstanding any load that might act on it during its lifespan. Such load could be dead loads, live loads, dynamic loads, wind loads, and earthquake loads.
An enforced concrete structure can be finished in a series of ways, depending on the structure’s requirement and purpose. Aluminum panels, ceramic facades, glass, stone sheets, etc. are a few of the finishes that can be used for the construction.