Steel framework is extremely strong and robust, which is why it serves as the foundation for most buildings. As a construction material, it withstands movement well (high yield strength) and excels in toughness, durability, and ductility. Concrete can be used to construct walls or roofs, but it will usually need reinforcing to stand up to the loads applied to a building.
The strongest material by far is steel. It has greater yield strength and tensile strength than any other known substance except gold. Even with reinforcement, a typical steel structure would fail at the first sign of tension because the steel would bend rather than resist further pressure. But if you want a really strong building, then use steel! It is also very economical if done correctly. Concrete is cheap and easy to work with, which is why it is used for foundations and simple structures such as houses. However, concrete's poor tolerance to heat and noise makes it unsuitable for high-rise buildings unless it is mixed with rubber or some other insulating material. As a rule of thumb, the stronger the building, the thicker its floor plates should be to avoid structural failure.
The next strongest material is wood. It too can be used for structural elements if properly designed and executed. Wood is available in many different varieties, sizes, and qualities. It is usually chosen based on its suitability for a particular purpose or location.
Steel, however, does not. Steel is resistant to decay, mildew, bug infestations, fires, and even natural calamities. A metal construction will survive for generations, much beyond its initial purpose. You will undoubtedly receive your money's worth.
Metal buildings are also more energy efficient than their wooden counterparts. They do not emit greenhouse gases nor do they burn fuel when being constructed. The only by-product of building a metal structure is some steel scrap which can be recycled.
Finally, metal buildings have many unique advantages. For example: metal roofs are cooler in summer and warmer in winter than asphalt or concrete; metal walls are more thermally conductive than brick or stone; and metal doors are stronger than wood. These features are all explained in more detail in the following sections.
Does this mean that a metal building is right for me? Yes, if you want your building project to last for several generations to come.
Steel is utilized in structures because it bonds well to concrete, has a comparable thermal expansion coefficient, is robust, and is relatively inexpensive. Reinforced concrete, which is today the world's principal building material, is also utilized to produce deep foundations and basements. It consists of coarse aggregate (rock) mixed with a cement paste that is placed around the reinforcing fibers (rebar or wire). The paste gives the concrete its strength and durability. When exposed to heat or cold, it will expand or contract by about the same amount as wood does.
The majority of buildings are constructed with reinforced concrete because it provides an extremely strong and durable product. However, when constructing large or long concrete structures, such as bridges, highways, or skyscrapers, it is difficult or impossible to use traditional reinforcement methods due to cost or space limitations. In these cases, pre-stressed concrete is used instead. Pre-stressing involves wrapping wires or rebar around the outer surface of the concrete prior to casting it. The force of the concrete as it cures binds the wires or rebar together creating a uniform load distribution within the structure. This means that the entire load on the bridge is transmitted through the rebar rather than being distributed across a large surface area as with traditional reinforcements. Pre-stressed concrete is commonly used in large structures where cost efficiency is important.
Modern skyscrapers are constructed with steel or reinforced concrete frames and glass or polished stone curtain walls. They make use of mechanical devices such as water pumps and elevators. The construction process requires large amounts of labor-intensive work, so most skyscrapers are built by employing a joint partnership between an architecture firm and a construction company.
The basic components used in constructing a skyscraper include wood for frame buildings and brick or stone for wall structures. Other common materials include aluminum, copper, and stainless steel for internal building features such as roof supports and elevator cars. Finally, concrete is the most common material used for ground floors because they are often required by law to be fully functional public spaces. However, other materials are also used including terra cotta, wood, and glass.
There are two main types of construction: open-frame and closed-frame. In an open-frame skyscraper, the floor plates are attached to the footings on one side and the walls on the other. The footings provide support for the weight of the building and prevent it from being pushed over. Inside the footprint of the building, there are typically openings called windows or doors that allow natural light into the space and provide egress in case of an emergency.
Wood and steel have greater give than stucco, unreinforced concrete, or masonry and are preferred building materials in earthquake zones. Skyscrapers must be strengthened anywhere to resist strong winds, but there are special issues in earthquake zones. The power of an earthquake can cause parts of a building to collapse, releasing energy that would otherwise be absorbed by the structure. In addition, after an earthquake people often walk past damaged buildings without realizing it, which can lead to further damage. To prevent this, all buildings in earthquake zones should be designed to be at least partially self-supporting after a shock.
The key factor in determining how well a building will stand up is its "quake resistance". This is done by using design elements such as thick walls, deep foundations, and strong connections between components.
Buildings in earthquake zones should be designed to be at least partially self-supporting after a shock. This means that they should have some kind of internal support system to keep outweighted items from being pushed over. These items could include heavy furniture or appliances that might not seem important enough to add weight to individually, but together they can do a lot of damage if they fall on someone.
After a major earthquake, follow official instructions for clearing away debris before it gets in the way of rescue efforts.
Steel is used to build twentieth-century skyscrapers, and architects continue to try to outdo the last great effort by developing higher and taller buildings that can withstand wind and adjust to changing temperatures. You must be a Study.com member to access this lesson. Sign up for a free Study.com account today.
It takes a lot of steel to build a skyscraper. A single floor area of a 20-story building is about 7,000 square feet (650 m2). To make a structure this size from solid metal would require over 19 million pounds (8.5 million kg) of steel. The British architect Thomas Paine invented the idea of using iron and steel in construction documents in 1867. Since then, many other inventions have been made that have improved the quality of life for people who live in tall buildings include: air conditioning, free-standing windows, and accessible high floors that can be bought or rented.
Skyscrapers are very useful because they allow more room inside them than traditional buildings with lower roofs. This is important because it means that more people can fit into smaller spaces within them. They also help cities by providing more space for offices, shops, hotels, etc. Tall buildings also act as markers, giving directions by showing which way the wind is blowing.