Over the last few years, architectural ultra-high-performance concrete (UHPC) has been gaining popularity because of its outstanding strength, durability, and design flexibility.
We approached Aditya Yadav, a professional engineer and an exceptional contributor in this domain, to discuss the recent developments in architectural design where Ultra High-Performance Concrete dominated the discussion, as it is increasingly being used to improve the built environment in urban settings and many consider it one of the most significant developments with precast concrete.
Aditya Yadav graduated from the University of South Florida with a degree in Mechanical Engineering and hence, entering the sphere of the Construction Industry was a whole new challenge for him. After having previous experiences in automobile and designing, he resolved to follow his passion for taking challenges head-on in real estate and construction. Aditya joined STABIL back in 2019 and self-taught his way to gaining proficiency in precast concrete and eventually becoming one of the very few people capable of manufacturing UHPC in the international market.
Coming to UHPC, it has a high flexural capacity which makes it possible to design long-span parts with a thinner profile, which creates more airy and expansive interiors. Aditya clarified how UHPC’s high compressive strength frees architects to experiment with new forms of lightweight and slender construction.
He shared that UHPC is a fantastic choice for fabricating complicated shapes in a built environment because of its unique flow characteristics and moldability — UHPC can be cast into complex shapes which allows architects to construct spectacular facades, curved shapes, and elaborate patterns that would have been impossible before. In fact, it can also be considered as an emerging trend as UHPC panels are long-lasting and aesthetically pleasing and therefore, are finding more and more application as cladding for buildings.
At STABIL, Aditya first started a drafting job where he used to do engineering drawings for small commercial jobs. His experience there included doing drawings for Glass Fiber Reinforced Concrete (GFRC) related luxury concrete furniture like sinks, countertop, planters, artistic wall panels etc. Working as a Project Engineer during his 3 years, he has worked on around 32 Precast projects, 4 GFRC projects and a major UHPC project.
Diving deeper into UHPC, Aditya mentioned how its low permeability and resistance to climatic variables helps it shield structures from severe weather even while allowing for a great deal of creative freedom in terms of their appearance. He stated that UHPC cladding can be used to make stunning facades because of its adaptability to many textures, patterns, and colors.
Adding to that, Aditya talked about the strength and durability of the material because of which it is widely used in prefabricated and modular buildings. It also enhances efficiency as casting it into exact forms and sizes enables off-site fabrication of building components. It is possible to pre-fabricate UHPC elements off-site and then send them to the job site where they can be erected quickly and efficiently. So, essentially, Aditya believes that using this cutting-edge technology in completing one of STABIL’s projects will attract more jobs for the company and consequently will increase business.
“UHPC is a sustainable material due to its long life-span and high resistance to wear and tear. It also requires less upkeep as it does not corrode or degrade easily. It can also use recyclable elements like fly ash or slag, which make it even more impressive in terms of its environment-friendliness.”, said Aditya.
UHPC is not only limited to creative freedom, it also has remarkable mechanical qualities to allow for the creation of advanced structural systems. Using UHPC along with other materials like steel or glass fibers leads to the creation of exceptional strength-to-weight ratios in composite elements. Since these systems allow for greater spans with less material, it would be useful to deploy them for bridges, cantilevers, and other architectural applications.
The material has a strong ductility and energy-absorption capability, which makes it ideal for fortifying buildings against earthquakes and other forms of intense loading. This also means that the material is a safe option for carrying out construction work in seismically active regions due to its resistance to cracking and spalling under intense impact.
After working consistently in the real estate and construction industry just because of sheer passion for it, Aditya has been successful in figuring out a mix design, and is still continuing to refine it so that it can be optimized to become more economical for the industry. The material is already reshaping the architectural industry by giving designers access to a robust and adaptive material which can even solve problems that were earlier intractable.
Today, the usage of UHPC is changing the way buildings were made and experienced because of its lightweight construction complex geometries, facade cladding, prefabrication, and environmentally friendly design.