Richard Lees Steel Decking launches innovative floor damping system

Press release 14/02/2003 00:00 CET

Skanska’s structural flooring specialist Richard Lees Steel Decking is launching a major innovation to improve the work environment by combating floor vibration inside buildings.

Developed in collaboration with Arup’s Advanced Technology Group and called Resotec, it provides extra damping of composite floors to counter excessive vibration generated by human movement.

It meets a need to increase damping in structures following the trend for modern buildings to be designed with lighter structural mass, particularly in the steelwork, which makes floor plates more sensitive to human movement. Although not relevant in every new building, the potential for excessive vibration is an issue that cannot be ignored.

Richard Lees Steel Decking technical director Adrian Shepherd explained, “The effects are subtle, but too much vibration can be felt by the occupants and cause computer screens to flicker, creating discomfort and an unwelcome problem for the building’s owner to sort out. Resotec gives property developers the assurance that their tenants will not be discomforted by adverse floor vibration.”

Resotec addresses the potential vibration issue by adding the required extra damping on floor plates susceptible to vibration. It’s targeted for specification at concept design stage, giving engineers time to identify whether it will benefit the structural design before construction starts on site. Richard Lees Steel Decking will help evaluate whether a design requires Resotec’s extra damping to improve floor plate performance.

The product has already been successfully used on part of the More London Bridge development, producing a quantifiable improvement to the floor slab performance.

Resotec is installed between the steel beam and the overlaying steel decking. The benefit is that it doesn’t disrupt the construction cycle or require more structural mass to be added to the design, at additional cost.

Mr Shepherd said, “Resotec will enable commercial developers to provide a quality working environment for tenants without major additional costs. However, it can be equally valuable in buildings sensitive to movement, such as hospitals or laboratories.”

Arup’s Michael Willford and Peter Young helped Richard Lees Steel Decking develop Resotec. They explained,” We have seen a number of cases recently of tenants not being satisfied with vibration levels arising in well-designed modern buildings. The market needed a cost effective system that could significantly increase the damping of composite floors without knock-on effects on other aspects of the building’s design or construction time.

“Teaming up with Richard Lees Steel Decking created the skills to develop Resotec and hopefully a new generation of buildings will benefit with a more comfortable working environment.”