Steel structures are ideal hosts for smart building systems. We would also go so far as to suggest that smart buildings wouldn’t be possible without steel. Steel outperforms other building materials in terms of sustainability, design versatility, and protection, all of which are hallmarks of the smart building mandate.
WHAT IS A SMART BUILDING?
A smart building, according to the Building Efficiency Initiative, is one that provides facilities that increase productivity while lowering costs and reducing environmental impact over the building’s lifetime. That is, a smart building is equipped with technology that interacts between systems and with building operators to keep everything green, while also saving up on expenses.
A smart building can:
- Monitor and optimise illumination
- Provide thermal comfort
- Improve air quality
- Offer physical security
To build a smart building, you must start with intelligent design and continue to consider how any improvement or addition affects the building’s systems and people, over time.
STEEL IS THE BEST SUPPORT FOR SMART BUILDINGS
Steel is a solid, long-lasting material that outperforms conventional construction materials like concrete and masonry in strength-to-weight ratio. Without raising the building size or decreasing the amount of room available for occupancy and efficiency, a building built of concrete would weigh much more and would not have enough space for today’s intelligent systems.
Steel buildings are versatile enough to be built into almost any form, with interior spaces for wires, plumbing, and building systems like HVAC and fire safety.
These types of systems are simple to incorporate into a metal building design in order to collect data on electricity use in the structure. Steel framing allows for plenty of room for information technology to be integrated in the structure while also allowing for easy maintenance and repair.
METAL BUILDINGS EASILY FLEX INTO SMART ARCHITECTURE
Steel building architecture can be tailored to almost any form and offers excellent framing choices for windows, skylights, and other natural light-transmitting elements. Light can be dimmed or enhanced as needed with specialised window treatments. Additionally, window glass with photovoltaic cells embedded in it is now available. Transparency is unaffected, and more electricity can be generated without relying on the grid.
A steel building frame can easily accommodate ventilation systems, leaving more space for such equipment than conventional construction materials. Extra space is also available for sound-absorbing materials or additional insulation to reduce the noise from ventilation shafts or other building systems.
Smart room design is part of smart architecture. The convenience of building occupants is affected by colour and acoustics, reverberation, and glare. Steel construction panelling comes in a wide range of colours and textures to help you build a productive environment and soften or stop sounds from repeating.
STEEL PLAYS AN ESSENTIAL ROLE IN SUSTAINABILITY
Steel is fully recyclable. It can be reused without having to go through any additional steps. Recycled steel accounts for over 88 percent of the steel in use today. Steel manufacturing has used almost no water in the last thirty years, reducing the amount of energy and labour needed. The water that is used is filtered continuously and is never emitted into the environment.
Steel is so easily recycled that landfills do not need to be expanded to accommodate it. Demolitionists pay to demolish steel buildings so that they can sell the scrap.
Steel can be made more or less rigid as required, which allows it to be used for a wide range of applications. It can be sturdy enough to support a bridge or flexible enough to withstand seismic tremors without cracking. Steel may be coated in a variety of materials or rendered to resemble some other material.
Steel is tough, long-lasting, and can be shaped in ways that other materials can’t. Smart buildings require this level of adaptability to make the most of any available technological and natural resource.
Let us say it again: smart buildings are impossible to imagine without steel.