September 13th, 2010
Sustainable construction materials is now a well known factor that many new build owners are considering or even requesting.
Now in light of recent events in Canterbury, seismic qualities are also going to be uppermost in the minds of many people considering a new build in New Zealand.
STIC stands for the Structural Timber Innovation Company.
Ok, so WHO then is the STIC?
STIC is a New Zealand registered company with seven shareholders:
- Carter Holt Harvey Ltd
- Nelson Pine Industries Ltd
- Wesbeam Pty Ltd
- Building Research Association New Zealand Inc
- NZ Pine Manufacturers Association
- Auckland Uniservices Ltd (University of Auckland)
- University of Canterbury
In addition to these shareholders STIC has two other substantial financial Stakeholders, who are investing in the research and development, alongside the shareholders. They are;
Forest and Wood Products Australia (FWPA) and Foundation for Research Science and Technology (FRST).
The Foundation is matching all industry investments in the programme dollar for dollar.
Ok, then WHAT then is STIC?
Here’s what they say on their website;
Structural Timber Innovation Company (STIC) is a research consortium developing and commercialising new technologies that will enable structural timber to compete more effectively in the building and construction market.
Interestingly enough, when I was looking at this site a few months back, I did note the 2~3 short videos that illustrate the different seismic tests.
If you look over the list of consortium partners you might have noticed local major business Nelson Pine Industries Ltd.
As I have mentioned numerous times before our Nelson region has three major industries underpinning our local economy, the so called three “f”s. That’s Forestry, Fruit and Fishing, so it makes plain sense that they are there.
When STIC published their last news letter back in May 2010, it included this;
Test Building Survives Earthquakes!
A 2/3 scale pre-stressed LVL timber building has been designed, specified and constructed at the University of Canterbury. The building has been subjected to rigorous earthquake testing for 9 months and after more than 30 simulated earthquakes it remains structurally undamaged. This building has demonstrated the many advantages offered by this newly developed rapid-construction type of timber building. To see video clips and more information go to www.stic.co.nz or www.stic.com.au
Listed under a summary of the overall benefits offered through use of the STIC building and construction systems, in the Structural integrity section is this comment:
Building structure able to sustain a major earthquake (Richter scale 7.0 – 7.9) without structural damage and able to return to original position without permanent offset or tilt
The good news is that our very own Nelson Pine Industries, one of the largest single site producers of Medium Density Fibreboard in the world, already make some of this, specifically the LVL (Laminated Veneer Lumber) variety.
”]This additional NZ$80 million plant was commissioned back in March 2002 with the official production start of the LVL line, where veneers are laminated by hot pressing into a beam form. And to place the factories raw material needs into some perspective, I’ll let them tell you….
The Nelson-Marlborough region is one of New Zealand’s major forestry areas, with about 16% of the productive land area planted in production forests. Harvest predictions are for 2.5 million cubic metres per year by 2005, of which Nelson Pine will use about 1 million cubic metres.
Worth a look I’d suggest just to keep yourself up to play.