One of the newest metals known to man, only really put into commercial use just over 100 years ago, we now see aluminium in all walks of life. Aluminium is a ‘new’ metal for a new age, it is lightweight, strong, corrosion resistant, almost 100% recyclable with no loss of material quality and in plentiful supply. No wonder aluminium was dubbed the ‘wonder material’ when it was first discovered in the early 1800’s.
Over the last 10 years aluminium has seen somewhat of a resurgence in interest in the furniture design sector, through well known designers such as Jorge Pensi, Philippe Starck and Marc Newson. In the construction sector aluminium has also seen a resurgence over the same period, in particular dominance can be seen in external envelope design. Hailed for its long life and robust powder coating technology, architectural aluminium can enjoy at least 60 years useful service life.
But it’s not just an ‘external envelope’ construction material, structurally it can allow designers to create ‘lighter’ buildings which in turn reduce the weight and quantity of materials required in a support structure. Aluminium can also be found in hardware, guttering, floor trims, light fittings, heat reflective foils on insulation boards, internal partitions - the list is almost endless.
Aluminium used in construction is non-toxic, non-flammable, easy to handle and transport given its light weight. And at the end of its installed life Aluminium has a monetary ‘value’ when recycled. It’s hard to believe but true, 75% of all aluminium ever produced is still in use today giving our future generations a bank of readily available material for further future uses.
There has never been a better time to specify aluminium - the Council for Aluminium in Building is here to help specifiers and fabricators utilise the best that aluminium can offer. Contact CAB on 01453 828851 or visit the website at www.c-a-b.org.uk.