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Construction : Technology | April 2016 | Source : CW-India

Lighter, Faster, Better

The use of structural steel revs up the speed of construction and ensures quality.

Jindal Steel & Power Ltd (LTD) recently received a supply order for Festival City, India´s tallest composite steel structure, from Bhasin Group. The aim is to build the 33-storeyed structure in 99 days. A world-class commercial complex spread over 9 lakh sq ft in Noida, Festival City is currently under construction and pegged to be the fastest ever in India. For this project, JSPL is providing lighter and faster infrastructure solutions such as E550 grade structural steel columns and beams. Niladri Sarkar, Chief Executive (SBU Business Head)-Construction Solution Business, JSPL, shares more with CW on the technologies that will help ensure speedy and quality construction in this project along with insights on the company´s other projects.

Structural steel and infra
solutions: E550 grade steel is the highest grade of steel produced in India with minimum yield strength of 550 MPa. The application of this steel in high-rise buildings reduces the per square feet consumption of steel as the overall weight of the column members reduces substantially. The overall decrease in the weight of the building reduces foundation costs and, in turn, overall project costs. JSPL is the first and only steel producer in India producing, as well as fabricating, E550 grade steel, using high grade of welding electrodes.

Apart from E550 grade structural steel columns and beam, the company is providing infrastructure solutions such as suspended concrete flooring system, Speedfloor, for slabs; drywall panels for facade works and partition walls, and TMT welded-mesh for slab reinforcements. The floors of the Festival City project are being laid through international cutting-edge technology, Speedfloor, without scaffolding using ´Made in India´ steel. JSPL has also introduced drywall panels, a replacement for conventional brick-and-mortar internal walls and facade works. Our composite design solution requires less concrete and, in turn, less aggregate, saving the burden on quarries or mines. Our dedicated project team is guiding and supervising to ensure construction is moving at a fast pace.

Overcoming challenges with technology: Optimum design and project planning are of primary importance for a steel building. Most challenges faced in project execution can be avoided with proper planning. By mobilising an expert team, we have managed the first half of the challenge. Our project teams have coordinated in estimating the future requirements of the building well in advance, so that procuring and getting the material at site are not delayed. Our delivery of materials to site has been ´just in-time´ to avoid build-up of unwanted materials at site. By using our Speedfloor system, we have managed to increase the reuse of plywood for shuttering and eliminated the requirements of props during construction, resulting in faster erection.

Suspended concrete flooring system: We have introduced a revolutionary and innovative technique to eliminate outdated conventional flooring called Jindal Speedfloor.

A lightweight suspended concrete flooring technique from New Zealand, it is quick and easy to install and reduces the slab construction cycle from three weeks to less than a week, thus ensuring rapid construction. An extensive range of joist depths and topping thicknesses satisfies loading and fire requirements and offers contractors and end-users an efficient and cost-effective suspended concrete floor. The joist is manufactured from pre-galvanised high tensile steel in a one-pass roll former, where it is roll-formed, punched, pressed and slotted to a high degree of accuracy at a fast production rate. The individually marked, lightweight joists are placed on the support medium, where the Speedfloor shuttering system locks the joist into the exact position.

The reinforcement is placed and the concrete floor is ready to pour.

The Speedfloor composite floor system is suitable for use in all types of flooring and construction. Compatible with steel and concrete frames, Speedfloor reduces both, cost and time of slab construction. It is a roll-formed, galvanised steel joist that offers all the benefits of a secondary beam, easy enough to be manually handled into place, reducing machinery handling costs. It is a cold formed joist made of E350 grade coil galvanised to 275 GSM. Speedfloor construction ensures rapid construction with multiple floors at a time. It reduces floor thickness and is easy enough to be manually handled into place, thus reducing craneage cost.

Its speedy erection makes it an ideal solution for multi-storey construction, especially in high seismic zones.

Its unique advantages over traditional construction make it an ideal choice for developers to use this concrete flooring system in their projects. The Speedfloor concrete flooring system has already been implemented in many of our projects, including Festival City, Noida; Medanta Hospital, Gurgaon; GD Goenka School, Gurgaon; Philips Innovation Centre, Bengaluru; MAX Hypermart, Hyderabad; OP Jindal Community College, Raigarh; and many others.

Cost invested and savings: The benefits of a steel building is based on lifetime costing, which is comparable to a conventional RCC building, as the former requires little annual maintenance. While, at the outset, a steel building would appear costlier than a RCC building owing to capital investment, it is also well-established that delivery time for a steel building is substantially lower than a concrete building, which would reduce financial costs for any investor.

Outlook on prefabricated steel structures
¨Steel has always been the best material for construction,¨ avers Niladri Sarkar. ¨Steel structures are more suitable, durable and resilient in the long run, and architecturally and aesthetically more appealing. To date, prefabricated steel structures were only being used in industrial buildings. Applications of steel structures in commercial and residential spaces have been a norm in developed nations for decades. The trend is slowly picking up in India, as well and steel structures are getting popular with architects, consultants and developers welcoming the change. As the overall duration of project execution is cut down by at least 50 per cent, the net return on investment is much higher than the marginal incremental costs spent on composite steel buildings. Hence, developers are now exploring this concept more actively. As the construction sector in the US, Europe and other developed countries and regions is primarily dominated by steel buildings rather than RCC buildings, projects governed by foreign investments are likely to go ahead with steel structures and composite buildings.¨

JSPL´s upcoming infra projects
Apart from the Festival City project, JSPL has received supply order for the Flipkart campus building in Bengaluru through BL Kashyap & Sons Ltd. ¨Another order from Hyderabad is in the pipeline,¨ adds Niladri Sarkar. ¨Both orders combined add up to a built-up area of over 30 lakh sq ft. We are working on proposals for various buildings of a cumulative built-up area of more than 50 lakh sq ft. We are also working on a stadium in Dharamshala and a project at Vijayawada airport. At present, we are currently focusing on high-rise steel buildings, primarily in the commercial space across India. Our efforts are also to capture the untapped residential segment. Additionally, we are looking to provide solutions to multilevel car parks, which is pertinent in the near-term context to decongest cities.¨

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