Development of an Innovative Flooring System for Residential and Light Industrial Buildings

Reid, Amber Hope (2021) Development of an Innovative Flooring System for Residential and Light Industrial Buildings. [USQ Project]

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REID Amber dissertation_redacted.pdf

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Due to Australia’s current housing boom and drastic bushfires over recent years, there is a high demand for timber. This has forced long lead times, particularly for structural timber, due to limited alternatives available. This may be an opportunity for developers of innovative building systems to gain some market acceptance in the residential building industry that is normally very conservative and slow to adopt new building systems.

The traditional bearer and joist flooring system requires an extensive list of raw materials and many man hours to complete the job safely and effectively. Reducing material costs and onsite labour during construction would benefit the building industry. This study aimed to follow and document the development process of an innovative flooring system. This includes the design and testing of a structural beam and an innovative floor plank that can be used as flooring in residential and light industrial buildings. The building industry could be provided with a viable alternative to traditional flooring if these innovative building systems prove to have the structural capability after efficient research and testing.

A desktop analysis was performed to consider different material combinations and material thicknesses for the beam and plank. The theoretical analysis was used to assist with the best suited design for physical testing. One floor plank and one beam were manufactured. The plank was tested with a uniformly distributed load (UDL) and the beam with two-point loads. The loads applied were based on AS1170.1 - Minimum design loads on structures. The loads, deflections and failure modes were recorded and graphed during testing. The physical data was compared with the theoretical data to validate the outcomes and provide conclusions.

The physical testing validated the structural capability of both systems. It was proven that these innovative building systems provide a possibility for builders to save both time and money during construction. The results provided an opportunity to develop structural span tables for both building systems. These tables show the load capacities and limitations for each building system.

Theoretical analysis and physical testing proved both innovative building systems have the structural capability to compete with the traditional bearer and joist construction. Further investigation into material variables would benefit. Ongoing material refinement could improve the design and viability and broaden the use of these innovative building systems.

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Item Type: USQ Project
Item Status: Live Archive
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Civil Engineering and Surveying (1 Jul 2013 - 31 Dec 2021)
Supervisors: Elks, Gary
Qualification: Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) (Civil)
Date Deposited: 03 Jan 2023 04:01
Last Modified: 26 Jun 2023 01:48
Uncontrolled Keywords: housing, timber, flooring, plank, beam, loads

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