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Compared to smaller vessels, the largest container ships afloat are likelier to pick up vibrations caused by waves. These vibrations can cause structural damage, potentially endangering lives. This difference must be taken into account when new ultra-large container ships (ULCSs) are built. EU-funded research has charted a course towards safer ship design.
Published: 4 July 2014
A clear understanding of how environmental factors can affect historical buildings and structures is vital for their long-term conservation. To date, monitoring systems have focused on a limited range of environmental pressures, such as air pollution and temperature, but the system designed and commercialised by the European Union (EU)-funded SMooHS project widens the range of factors monitored and analysed, thus allowing better protective measures to be taken.
Published: 16 June 2014
Small cracks in concrete are hard to avoid. These tiny fissures are no immediate threat to safety, but they can affect a building's durability: water seeping in can corrode reinforcements, for example. Millions of euros could be saved every year in maintenance if concrete could be designed to repair itself. EU researchers are working on it.
Published: 20 May 2014
Published: 13 May 2014
If Europe is to achieve its energy efficiency targets for 2020 and 2050, one vital step would be to modify the continents vast stock of buildings to make them much more energy efficient than their original designers could ever have contemplated. This important advance, however, brings potential problems.
Published: 12 May 2014
Published: 6 May 2014
Fire-resistant protection is essential for structures made of light steel, such as industrial buildings, warehouses, houses, garages and containers. The standard solution is intumescent paint, which swells up when heated to form a protective layer for the metal.
Published: 19 February 2014
As the world focuses its efforts on the battle to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and limit the impact of global warming, one significant part of the solution could be the greater use of wood in the construction industry in place of other, less environmentally-friendly materials such as metal or plastic.
Published: 10 February 2014
The project team developed the first software-based decision-support tool for the building design and construction sector that offers results and a rating system for specific buildings as well as references to building accessibility requirements.
Published: 28 January 2014
The European research project, Durawood, has developed a special pre-treatment system using plasma, whereby electric discharges are applied near the wood changing its surface properties. The plasma pre-treatment extends coating durability and may improve fungicide efficiency to protect the wood.
Published: 22 January 2014