For more than 10 years Gurit has been a key partner for many leading civil engineering companies. We understand the needs of the industry and work closely and effectively with architects, engineers and quantity surveyors to help create efficient and cost effective composite solutions.
Lightweight, organic, durable, fatigue resistant, efficient to maintain, and easy to apply; composites offer a number of advantages for civil engineering, and Gurit can help you maximise their potential.
Compared to steel and other traditional construction materials, composites have considerable ecological and economic advantages. Now, with up to 50 years’ of successful use in a wide range of environmentally demanding applications in the marine, offshore and civil engineering sectors, these materials have passed the test of time and shown themselves to be a true contender in this market.
Composites have been used successfully for pipes, tanks, slabs, walkways, bridge decks and strengthening, facades, gratings, column reinforcing wraps and reinforcing bars for concrete, etc. and new applications are materialising each year.
Gurit’s involvement in civil engineering is evolving rapidly and at the present time encompasses a number of specific areas of application, although we are always interested in pursuing new avenues.
It was recognised early on that specialised composite engineering design input was crucial to facilitate the best composite solution.
Thus Gurit’s Engineering Team, formerly known as SP Technologies, was established in 1988 to provide a structural engineering service, primarily to the raceboat industry.
Today, this structural engineering capability is now seamlessly woven into the Gurit organisation and contributes significantly toward the presentation of a unique composites capability.
Most composites companies only have one of the three capabilities indicated by the circles in the figure above. A few companies have two. But Gurit is unique in covering all three.
The overlapping zone within the three circles in the figure illustrates the integrated technological solution, typified by Gurit’s prototyping capability.
Within Gurit, the structural engineering capability is still seen as the major driver leading to the incorporation of composites into new areas of application, the development of new materials technology and a significant influence on Gurit’s overall business strategy.
Within the construction industry, epoxy based products are now used extensively, but despite this, there has been a reluctance to use epoxy composites for structural applications. The reason for this has been a lack of knowledge and of a set of international engineering and manufacturing codes and standards. Nowadays though, there are many international standards which can be applied both to the individual composite materials, and also during the various stages of manufacture of a structure.
What now remains to be realised in order to facilitate the acceptance of composites within the construction industry is the building of the relationship between the composites engineer and architects, designers and quantity surveyors.
As decisions on geometry and component split lines are often made at the very early stages of design, the involvement of the composites structural engineer is crucial to achieving a successful outcome. He is able, by drawing on extensive personal and company experience, to advise on the selection of the most appropriate resin system, the reinforcements most likely to be used, and especially the manufacturing process most suitable in realising an acceptable product cost and quality.
In our experience, a projects failure to realise the expectations of the designer, and thus the client, can almost always be attributed to poor decisions made during the very first moments of the project's life. Further decisions and progress made after this milestone simply exaggerate the error, extend the programme, and thus add to the cost.
At Gurit, we are enthusiastic in promoting the successful application of composites in any industry. Advice during the early critical stages of a project can be supplied by us completely free of charge, and without any commitment to the purchase of engineering or materials from us.
Quantity surveyors also face an impossible problem. There are no guidelines to assist in the estimate of costs for a composite structure. Whilst budget costs can be drawn from composite fabricators, there is often no information provided to them on choice of materials, thickness of laminate, sandwich core type, manufacturing process, fire requirements or anything else. Usually there is an architect's 3D image, and a preferred surface finish. And to add to the problem, many fabricators are unfamiliar with the industry and do not know what questions need to be asked of the QS.
At Gurit we know the industry, we know what to ask, and we know most of the answers. Our involvement over many years ensures we only provide sound reliable advice; and this leads to realistic manufacturing cost estimates very early on the project timeline.
So if in any doubt at all, make Gurit's Structural Engineering group your first stop. Come visit us and let us educate you at the same time. You can contact us by following the link on this site.
SP, IMS, Stesalit and Gurit Suprem have become a single entity to the global composites market. Called Gurit, this group represents an entirely restructured organisation focused entirely on meeting the needs of the customer. As such the separate... more