Concreate lightweight concrete floor and wall panels were born from a brief inspired by the sustainable construction of the Beijing 2008 Olympic village.
The brief asked for a precast out of the box version of the stunning concrete surfaces used to clad the interiors of the key olympic buildings.
The residing message of the games was one of a new age of sustainability in manufacture and building construction, looking for ways to minimise the impact on the environment by offsetting carbon emissions, so the surfaces and substrates used in the structures were made from new forms of lightweight low energy materials.
How can concrete be Green?
In the modern world concrete in it’s traditional portland cement form is one of the most consumed substances by mankind other than water. The production is energy hungry and its implementation in building and structures requires large amounts of wasteful energy and extra building substrates to support it’s often considerable weight.
So the idea of a decorative panel which can be used to clad light structures instead of solid forms of concrete and steel is an attractive proposition when considering reducing the elements of construction to lessen a building’s carbon footprint.
With this in mind Concreate floor and wall panels are produced using the minimum of conventional portland type cement, with just a 4 mm skim which is mixed with natural recycled fibres from the textile industry. This mixture forms a micro concrete which has no harmful chemicals. It is both mold and fire resistant whilst remaining breathable.
The 4 mm skim layer is then cold press glued using formaldehyde free adhesive to a mineral cement base. The mineral cement mix is a non-portland type and uses 50% less energy in it production the conventional portland cement.
Less is much much more
The main advantage of using this mineral base is its lightweight honeycomb structure which whilst being extremely strong is also relatively light. Without this base the floor panels would need to be much thicker like conventional poured concrete flooring and polished concrete tile which can weigh 10 times as much.
The result is a concrete floor panel which is just 14 mm thick and can be installed on any structurally supporting subfloor, this means that for the first time polished concrete can be installed in lightweight buildings using less building materials and far less energy to transport and install.
Concreate wall panels can be bonded to any flat surface so wall do not need to be reinforced and solid concrete aesthetic can be created with out the need for heavy construction.
Low Energy Living
Once installed in a home a concrete surface will help reduce energy consumption by acting as a thermal mass. Like ceramic tiles Concreate will warm quickly with under floor and central heating but unlike a ceramic surface, which cools quickly, Concreate will store warmth. So once required temperature is reached and the thermostatic control turns off the heat source a Concreate floor will maintain the room temperature. This heat storage can also work in a south facing room by storing the natural heat of the sun throughout the year. Installed in a well insulated building Concreate can be used as part of a low carbon building.
We are more aware than ever of the harmful effects caused by Volatile Organic Compound/ VOC emissions. By eliminating them from homes we can create healthier living environments.
Concreate can contribute towards a low VOC environment. It is biodegradable and can be recycled as all the component ingredients are derived from natural minerals and fibres. Both floor and wall panels re bonded to subfloor an wall using solvent free, VOC free adhesive.
Concreate’s water resistant easy-to-clean surface is sealed with natural Danish oil which can be kept dust free and is mold proof making it ideal for sufferers of allergies, which so effect many families.
Concreate has passed the European standard tests, including:
- Asbestos Test;
- Antistatic Test;
- Fire Behavior Test;
- Formaldehyde Release Test;
- Physical Properties Test;
- Sound Insulation Test;
- VOC Emission Test.
To that end the international certification company Intertek were appointed to control and audit the numerous and rigorous tests required to achieve “Green Leaf”. Concreate floor and wall panels were granted the mark of “Green Leaf”.