Since the nineties, we have seen outstanding advances in the use of composite materials in structural applications. There is little doubt amongst the engineering confraternity that composites have revolutionised traditional design concepts and made possible an unparalleled range of new and exciting possibilities as viable materials for construction.
A steel deck is a highly efficient, versatile and robust formwork, reinforcement and ceiling system for concrete slabs. It is a profile steel sheeting widely accepted by the building and construction industry to offer efficiency and speed of construction. It is one of the basic components of a composite slab floor (or roof), which sometimes is combined with either a composite steel beam framing system or concrete beams and columns. The steel decking manufacturer, when plans and specifications are being developed, can provide detailed information on the sections to be employed in a composite steel deck system as the beams and deck should have a compatible relationship.
LAF’s Vermitex® AF STEEL DECKING FIRE PROTECTION system is outlined in CSIRO assessment FCO-0937 and the system is normally employed to reduce the costs associated with formwork and reduce construction time (Jump Start). Nearly all types of structural decking are supported by structural steel members, hence the requirement of some form of sprayed fire protection to impart higher fire resistance.
For some steel decking systems, a ‘Fire Mesh’ can sometimes be introduced into the concrete topping, in order to avoid the need for additional sprayed fire protection to the underside of the steel decking. However in some cases (e.g. change of building use, live load changes, etc.), the steel decking will require an upgrade with LAF’s fire protection coatings.