Technical Resources

Technical Resources

Technical Resources

Electrochromic Glazing as an Architectural Enabler

There is now indisputable evidence of the positive benefits of access to daylight on human health and well-being [1]. Access to daylight has been shown to significantly improve productivity and reduce absenteeism in office settings, increase student achievement in schools, and increase healing rates in healthcare environments [1]. It turns out that views to the outdoors may be even more important than daylight (although hard to separate). In fact views of nature, specifically, have been shown to reduce stress levels and improve mood [2]. The World Health Organization says that mental health disorders are expected to be the number two illness worldwide by 2020, and stress can be a major contributor [3].

The Code Corner Openings Part 2

by: Ronald L. Geren, AIA, CSI, CCS, CCCA, SCIP In Part 1, the importance of protecting openings was addressed with a focus on interior windows and doors. But opening protection is not limited to interior construction; openings in exterior walls are also subject to protection. Openings in Exterior Walls Protection requirements for openings located in exterior walls are determined in a manner completely different than that for interior openings. One of the most notable differences is that just because an exterior wall is required to be of fire-resistive construction does not mean that openings in that same wall are required to be protected.

The Code Corner - Openings Part I

by: Ronald L. Geren, AIA, CSI, CCS, CCCA, SCIP ÏThe act or an instance of becoming open or being made to open. ÏAn open space serving as a passage or gap. ÏAn unfilled job or position; a vacancy. ÏA breach or aperture.1 The word Ïopening has many meanings, as indicated above. However, with its many specific code-related definitions, it is surprising that theInternational Building Code(IBC)2does not provide its own definition of Ïopening. So, in the absence of a code-specific definition, the latter definition from the above list is very apt when referring to doors, windows, and other Ïbreaches in fire-resistance-rated assemblies.

The Code Corner - Gypsum Board Construction

by: Ronald L. Geren, AIA, CSI, CCS, CCCA, SCIP Gypsum board has been an important part of the construction industry for more than 100 years. Its humble beginnings started in the late 1800s as ÏSackett Board, named for Augustine Sackett, one of the inventors of the early gypsum product. Sackett Board consisted of Plaster of Paris between two layers of felt paper. The board was 1/4 inch thick and 36 inches square with exposed edges. Although not suitable as a finish product as is todays gypsum board, Sackett Board made an excellent base for gypsum plaster. In 1910 the evolution of gypsum board took another step forward when a process for wrapping the exposed edges was implemented in manufacturing.

The Code Corner - Construction Documents Revisited

by: Ronald L. Geren, AIA, CSI, CCS, CCCA, SCIP The topic of construction documents was addressed in a previous article ofThe Code Corner1. However, the message of that article was the broad subject of construction documents by building code definition and did not broach methods of how to actually communicate code-related information in the documents. This article and a companion article in RLGAsKeynotes2series will expand on the previousCode Cornerarticle by introducing methods to better communicate building code compliance within the drawings and specifications. Plan reviews can take a few days up to several weeks or months depending on the size of the project.

Code Corner - Fire Walls

By Ronald L. Geren, AIA, CSI, CCS, CCCA, SCIP Passive fire protection has been a significant component of building codes since the publication of the first Building Code recommended by the National Board of Fire Underwriters (NBFU) in 1905Óeven Nero established some form of passive fire protection in Rome after it burned in 64 A.D. Passive fire protection is the use of building materials to limit the effects of fire on a building or to contain the spread of fire within a building or between separate buildings.

The Code Corner - Glass and Glazing

By: Ronald L. Geren, AIA, CSI, CCS, CCCA, SCIP According to the Glass Manual, published by the Glass Association of North America (GANA), glass has been around for more than 4,000 years. Glass allows daylight in and allows building occupants to view the outside world while still maintaining an envelope to separate inside from outside. However, the use of glass in buildings presents issues that must be addressed, such as energy efficiency, fire protection, and life safety. The International Building Code (IBC) covers all three of these areas. Read More...

The Code Corner - Elevators

by: Ronald L. Geren, AIA, CSI, CCS, CCCA, SCIP One hundred and sixty years ago, Elisha Otis invented the first braking mechanism for the elevator, which made vertical travel within a building feasible and safe. A little over forty years later, the gearless traction elevator was developed, which allowed movement in buildings of significant height. Thus, along with the advent of inexpensive materials and advanced engineering and construction methods, the automatic elevator became a pivotal step that led to the surge of high-rise construction in the United States. Since its introduction, the elevator has seen numerous advancements, but its purpose remains the same: moving people between floors of multi-story buildings efficiently and safely.

 Applying the Building Code

Applying the Building Code: Step-by-Step Guidance for Design and Building Professionals (Building Codes Illustrated)

No other resource—not even the building code—presents the exact code information you need, when you need it at design stage

The International Building Code (IBC) is a model building code developed by the International Code Council (ICC). The IBC and its complementary codes provide design and construction professionals with a complete set of comprehensive, coordinated building safety and fire prevention regulations in order to safeguard the public health and general welfare of the occupants of new and existing buildings and structures. Adopted throughout most of the United States and its territories, it is referenced by federal agencies, such as the General Services Administration, National Park Service, Department of State, U.S. Forest Service, and the Department of Defense. For architects and other design and construction professionals, it is particularly important that they understand how to apply the IBC and how code officials view buildings, so that they integrate code-required provisions in the earliest design stages of any project.

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