As widely reported, the recession caused a vast fall in the demand for bricks, resulting in many kilns ceasing to manufacture and bricklayers having to find alternative employment. As the industry emerged from the downturn, in 2014, it became clear that housebuilders were challenged by two major factors – a shortage of materials and traditional labour skills
Although many businesses grappled to find the best way forward, Alumasc Facade Systems turned this situation into an opportunity by developing a new and innovative facade technology designed specifically for the offsite structural timber sector – the Alumasc Ventilated System (AVS).
The initial product development remit was to design a ventilated system that would replicate traditional building aesthetics, whilst providing a lightweight solution that could be fixed directly to structural timber systems. Alumasc’s main goal was to ensure the system was engineered to deliver structural stability across all applications whilst providing adaptability to all forms of structural timber construction.
This innovative, engineered system provides the solution to overcome the fundamental issues of the brick shortages. AVS, as an offsite manufactured system, improves efficiency and speed of construction, addresses skills shortages and enhances the quality of finish, whilst delivering the final aesthetics to meet the exacting requirements of architects, designers and housebuilders.
The product offers specifiers a ventilated cladding solution for timber frame construction (open and closed panel technology), together with volumetric modular and structurally insulated panel systems (SIPS). It protects the fabric of the building whilst providing a wide choice of aesthetic options.
AVS meets all UK ventilation standards for timber framed buildings and offers an industry-leading A2 Fire Performance Rating, together with the highest levels of impact resistance and is suited to all exposure levels.
AVS complies with the requirements of both the NHBC and TRADA, namely the need for ventilation for structural timber construction, with a minimum of 15mm ventilated cavity for NHBC and 25mm for TRADA.
The system accommodates a range of cavity depths – the free-flowing system ensures that the substrate remains continuously ventilated and prevents any moisture tracking back to the primary structure, removing condensation – providing a protective facade.
Offering an alternative method of construction, AVS can replicate any brick in the market via patented, lightweight acrylic brick slips. The system is not just limited to using acrylic brick slips as the final facade finish – it is also approved for use with textures, through-coloured silicone renders, along with an extensive range of dashing renders.
AVS is erected via Alumasc’s network of registered installers to ensure correct application onsite. The AVS installer training programme is independantly assessed and approved by the BBA. AVS comes with a 10 year warranty offer for all projects installed by an Alumasc registered contractor.
The AVS system has been rigorously tested, resulting in compliance with all UK Building Regulations and became British Board of Agrément approved (Cert No: 15/5211) in May 2015. It is the only ventilated system in the UK to be BBA certified with an external acrylic brick slip finish and offers an industry-leading A2 rating, providing the building with improved fire performance when compared to other cladding solutions.
During the development of the system, Alumasc worked very closely with a number of companies and bodies to ensure AVS would meet the demands of the offsite and onsite construction industry, whilst providing optimum performance and longevity. These organisations include CCG, Exova Fire Research, Warrington (fire testing); Lucideon (UKAS accredited testing body); Pell Frishmann (Consultant Engineers) and the British Board of Agrément.
AVS is the solution to overcome current construction industry skills issues and is well-positioned to be part of the building technology of the future.
For more information visit: www.alumascfacades.co.uk/avs
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