High-pressure laminate
Alloc Commercial says its flooring now has a thicker and stronger high pressure laminate surface and an integral Silent System sound absorbent underlay. Alloc says the surface resists damp, diluted chemicals and cigarette burns and has been designed to endure heavier impacts. Alloc has also launched the new StoneStructure decor, which is designed to look like stone and comes in travertine, granite and slate versions.
Alloc Commerical
www.building.co.uk/enquiries 617

Eco-friendly floor hits the high street
Clothing retailer H&M has specified Amtico's Stratica eco-polymeric flooring as part of its commitment to eliminate PVC from its stores. Amtico says that Stratica contains no plasticisers and so emits a very low level of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). It also requires no dressing or cleaning with caustic chemicals, thus minimising lifetime cost and environmental impact. H&M has chosen Stratica Oak and Stratica Limestone flooring for its 43 UK stores. Stratica flooring has a 10-year guarantee on its wear layer.
www.building.co.uk/enquiries 618

Treat concrete floors in one
Laybond has introduced ScreedMaster One Coat Membrane for power-floated concrete floors. The One Coat Membrane is applied by trowel or roller and is ready for overcoating after approximately eight hours at 200C. This enables the early laying of moisture sensitive floor coverings according to Laybond. One Coat Membrane is black, which Laybond says makes it easier to identify treated areas.
www.building.co.uk/enquiries 619

Quick-drying floor screed
CG Flooring Systems has launched a cementitious floor screed that can be laid at a rate of 1000 m2 a day and will take wheeled traffic within 24 hours of being laid. Fastfloor-IT is a water-based pump-applied material that CG says allows a large quantity to be laid in a short time. The fast curing time is a combination of special cements and acrylics. The company says the material contains no solvents and is odourless. The screed can be between 5 mm and 25 mm thick, and has self-smoothing properties. Before laying the screed, CG carries out the preparation work to BS8204 Part 3.
CG Flooring Systems
www.building.co.uk/enquiries 620

Wood and stone floor brochure
Marley Floors has published a Reflections Wood and Stone Collection brochure and sample cards. The pack contains samples of wood and stone designs and information on design layouts, plus installation and maintenance tips. Marley says that the 28 designs in the range are suited to retail, leisure, health, education and domestic appliances.
Marley Floors
www.building.co.uk/enquiries 621

Stone floor for Mayfair offices
Burlington has supplied its sliver grey Brandy Crag stone flooring for the reception of Mayfair Place, an office development in London's West End.

EPR Architects specified 820 m2 of Burlington's Brandy Crag 20 mm thick stone in honed finish for the main reception area. To provide a contrast the architect chose riven bands of the same stone for the perimeter skirting.
www.building.co.uk/enquiries 624

Water-resistant tile backerboard
Building materials manufacturer James Hardie Industries has expanded into the UK. One of its first products available will be tile Hardibacker, a water-resistant tile backerboard for walls and floors. The company says it is designed for use around baths, showers, kitchens and worktops and anywhere that needs protection from long-term water damage.
James Hardie Building Products
www.building.co.uk/enquiries 625

Recycled carpet backing

Tandus has introduced a carpet recycling system to the UK. Tandus says it will collect any used vinyl-backed carpet and take it to its facility in Blaina, Wales, where it will be baled and shipped to the firm’s recycling factory in the US. It claims that 100% of the returned carpet is processed into vinyl backing. The carpet fibres become an integral part of the backing, adding structural strength, which Tandus calls upcycling. The company will accept its competitors’ carpets and says that the vinyl backing can be recycled indefinitely.
www.building.co.uk/enquiries 622

Floor tiles with colourful prints

Harvey Maria has added more designs to its range of printed vinyl tiles. Plain, boring rooms can now be transformed into a blanket of daisies, feathers, corks or petals. Other tiles in the range include lawn, beach, pebbles, bubbles and gerberas, which are like small sunflowers. The tiles come in packs of 11, which cost £39.95 and cover approximately 1 m2.
Harvey Maria
www.building.co.uk/enquiries 623

Air apparent: The next generation of flooring

Corus has developed a structural flooring system that uses thermal mass to regulate a building’s internal temperature. Airdek is a composite steel and concrete flooring system that works by bringing air into contact with the concrete slab. The thermal mass of the concrete then retains the temperature of the air and is later used to heat or cool the internal environment. Corus says that Airdek can eliminate or reduce the need for air-conditioning because cool evening air can be introduced to the slab passively through exterior vents (“Night-time purge” digram, below). This is then released during the day through floor vents to cool the internal environment (“Passive cooling”, below). The system does allow chilled air to be introduced mechanically if the slab is not cool enough to reduce the room temperature during the day. Airdek’s structure consists of concrete poured on to a profiled metal deck that is supported by steel beams. An insulated liner called Coolduct from Kingspan Insulation is fixed to the underside of the steel profile to ensure that no cool air escapes to the interior below. Coolduct is used because of its ability to be easily shaped into the structural deck to form air ducts. The insulation means that the slab is cooled more efficiently as the air cannot escape. On ground floors where a ground-bearing slab is used, air can be introduced to the occupied space from the slab above. In this case, air has to be cooler, at 13°C, than if it is delivered from the floor below, when it should be 18°C. One benefit of Airtek is that the slab can be cooled without lowering the temperature of the inhabited environment, which means that the workspace can be used 24 hours a day. Another plus is that the system can take cold air deep into the plan of the building, where air conditioning would usually be required. As the air needs are catered for within the structural floor deck, Corus says that its system does away with the need for raised access flooring. This would have the advantage of either increasing floor to ceiling heights or reducing the floor-to-floor distance, allowing architects to increase the number of storeys in buildings. Corus also believes that the growth of wireless ICT will mean that less space will be required for cabling in the future. In the Airtek system, ICT cabling and power lines are catered for in a shallow trench cast in the surface of the concrete slab. The depth can be increased according to the client’s requirements. Another benefit is that by using a steel deck in the floor structure architects can also benefit from steel’s fast erection time. Corus has already built a mock-up of the Airdek flooring system and it is aiming to launch the system in spring 2004. Corus
email: david.martin@corusgroup.com