Posted by Eva Spessa - 14 March, 2018
In the years and decades to come, what are the key demands that building and construction will have to live up to?
And what types of innovative construction materials, products and systems can help realize them?
These were the focal issues addressed during the BASF Architects Day, held on 8 March in Cologne, and organized by BASF in cooperation with architecture journal DETAIL for actively interested architects and designers. At the event, experts from BASF presented the company’s broad construction portfolio, and acclaimed architects provided food for thought on topics such as: architecture in 2050; spaces for creative learning; aesthetics and functionality of facades; or the importance of natural daylight for personal wellbeing.
The presenters included Werner Frosch, Managing Director, Henning Larsen, Munich; Faraneh Farnoudi of Hild und K, Munich; and Wilfried Pohl, Director Research, Bartenbach Research & Development, Aldrans/Tirol.
New ideas for urgent challenges
But even today, innovative materials and technologies, new guidelines and rules, as well as societal changes such as the global megatrend of urbanization are leaving their mark on the way buildings are designed and constructed. In future, the challenges faced by architects, construction designers and urban developers will only increase: The issues to be addressed include, among others: more efficient planning and construction processes; a longer service-life for buildings; the efficient use of available space; and ways and means of flexibly converting existing premises as necessary.
A wide variety of Master Builders Solutions
With its Master Builders Solutions products, BASF provides innovative and efficient solutions for these challenges.
Such as the polypropylene fibers of the MasterFiber range for concrete, for example. Spotlighted at the Architects Day by Christoph Hahn, MasterFiber expert from Master Builders Solutions, these fibers are a strong and lightweight alternative to traditional steel reinforcement and make a substantial contribution to building durability by reducing crack-width in concrete and thus preventing the penetration of aggressive substances such as CO2 or chloride. This serves to durably protect the reinforcement from corrosion.
And since smaller amounts of steel are required, production costs and energy consumption are also reduced. At the same time, architects and designers benefit from maximum design flexibility, as MasterFiber permits the creation of even highly intricate construction elements.
MasterTop: the right floor – every time
Arnd Kotlenga, MasterTop expert from Master Builders Solutions, provided an overview of the wide variety of flooring solutions the series offers. It includes cement-bonded as well as epoxy- and polyurethane-based systems suitable for interior as well as exterior use for both decorative and industrial applications. The seamless MasterTop flooring systems combine functionality with convenience, comfort and superior design and have a particularly long service life.
For a large part of the MasterTop product range, Environmental Product Declarations (EPD) are available. BASF was the first manufacturer of epoxy- and polyurethane-resin-based floor coating systems with publicly available EPDs. They contain environmentally-related information on the product and its impact on the environment.
Sustainability – the core issue of the future
In addition to highlighting specific solutions, the BASF Architects Day also provided the architects and designers with an opportunity for exchange – both with each other and with the BASF experts. In the focus throughout: Sustainability. Across a number of sample rooms, the BASF experts demonstrated selected solutions that in various ways contribute to sustainable construction – from highly efficient concrete admixtures and insulation materials to extremely durable floors to daylight guidance.
A forum for exchange
The idea was to trigger discussion and to provide experts with an opportunity for informal exchange, and participants said that the event completely lived up to that promise. They also agreed on the urgent necessity to address the challenges as well as the opportunities that the future holds for construction; and this, many said, is best done through sharing ideas and practices with other experts. And the BASF Architects Day provided the ideal forum – involving, inspiring and forward-looking – for doing exactly that.