Today, sustainability is a major focus area in construction, with everyone from builders to manufacturers innovating new, better, more sustainable ways to build. Cross-laminated timber panels are emerging as one of the top new innovations—and there are many reasons why.
We’ll cover those reasons here, and we’re also going to show you some of our own innovations. That includes the patented LIGNOLOC® system, which is the first collated wooden nail system made from renewable compressed beech wood. Adding onto the LIGNOLOC® system, we’ve also developed our own LIGNOLOC® cross-laminated timber panels (LCLT), which represent a sustainable, metal and glue-free option for the architects and builders who are pioneering sustainable construction.
What is Cross-Laminated Timber?
Cross-laminated timber (CLT) is a type of mass timber construction that relies on alternating layers of lumber fastened together to create a solid wood panel. To maximize structural strength, each layer of lumber is laid out perpendicular to the layer beneath it. Because of this, the lightweight wood panel is not only incredibly strong but delivers superior thermal, seismic, acoustic, and fire performance.
Why is CLT the Future of Sustainable Building?
There are many reasons why CLT is the building material of the future. First and foremost is sustainability. While there are many sustainable building materials out there, they all offer differing levels of sustainability. For example, metal can be considered sustainable because it has a long lifespan, and it can be recycled at the end of its lifespan. The drawback is that recycling metal can be an energy-intensive process that produces a lot of carbon.
Meanwhile, CLT panels can be produced sustainably, they also have a long lifespan, they can be recycled very easily—and if they can’t be recycled, they are biodegradable, which prevents long-term waste.
Sustainability is one thing—but CLT panels offer a lot of other advantages. Since the panels are created on a factory floor, construction with them typically goes quickly and efficiently. All laborers need to do onsite is assemble the finished panels and make connections between building systems.
CLT panels also make it possible to build bigger using green materials. Traditionally, only concrete, masonry, or steel offered the strength to build larger commercial or multifamily structures. With the advent of highly engineered CLT panels, that is changing. It’s now possible to build both bigger and greener.
BECK Paves the Way for Sustainable Building with LIGNOLOC® CLT Panels
You’ve likely already read a bit about our patented LIGNOLOC® system—and if not, then you’ll be interested in knowing that it’s the first collated nail system made of wood—with compressed beech wood to be specific. These nails are a revolution not only in sustainability, but strength too. LIGNOLOC® fasteners feature high holding power. When you drive each fastener, the heat generated by the friction causes the nail to weld to the surrounding wood—and that delivers an incredibly strong substance-to-substance connection.
Recently, LIGNOLOC® wooden nails have passed the European Technical Assessment (ETA). That’s a big development for these fasteners since it means that they’re now fully recognized throughout Europe for statically loaded connections from wood to wood in all common wood-based panels.
Beyond LIGNOLOC® fasteners, BECK is also developing its own LIGNOLOC® cross-laminated timber panels (LCLT). These are made with solid lumber and our LIGNOLOC® fasteners, which means they are completely free of metal and glue—and they feature more elastic behavior than glued CLT walls. Because of that, they are better at distributing loads in floor connections compared to glued CLT walls.
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