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Construction News Awards finalists: Commercial Innovation

Finalists in the Commercial Innovation of the Year category have demonstrated standard-setting vision and produced impressive results.

Balfour Beatty - King Sheet Piling

Balfour Beatty developed its King Sheet Piling system while working on the widening of the M25.

The patented system saves 35-40 per cent of the steel normally used in a sheet pile wall and speeds up linear installation two to fourfold.

On the M25 widening alone, for example, Balfour Beatty saved around 9,000 tonnes of steel which, when coupled with programme savings, achieved more than £10m of savings for the client on a £300m project.

British Gypsum - ACTIVair

British Gypsum’s ACTIVair technology absorbs harmful volatile organic compounds from the atmosphere, converts them into non-harmful inert compounds and prevents re-emission back into the atmosphere.

It has been incorporated into the company’s products, significantly improving internal air quality where used. ACTIVair was used on a project at St Mary’s Hospital, reducing formaldehyde levels in the air by 44 per cent.

Carbon8 Aggregates - Carbonbuster

Carbonbuster is the world’s first carbon-negative building block, according to the company.

Developed by Lignacite in partnership with Carbon8 Aggregates using its Accelerated Carbonation technology, the block combines more than 50 per cent recycled materials with Carbon8’s carbonated aggregates.

These are derived from EfW plant by-products, resulting in the first building block to capture more carbon than emitted during its manufacture.

GKR Scaffolding - Elimin-8

GKR Scaffolding designed Elimin-8 to prevent scaffold fittings falling from height. The team replaced standard washers with one that forms a figure-of-eight profile.

This provides a tethered fixing point, with the fitting tethered to the operative prior to fitting and then securely fixed to the scaffolding before release.

GKR has not patented the product and is sharing it throughout the industry to help eliminate falling objects.

The Keystone Group - Hi-Therm Sustainability Lintel

Thermal bridging is a major cause of heat loss in energy- efficiency assessments.

The Keystone Group developed its Hi-Therm Sustainability Lintel to meet current and future Building Regulations.

This product is 500 per cent more thermally efficient than normal cavity wall steel lintels, virtually eliminating thermal bridging and offering greater corrosion

 resistance than stainless steel counterparts.

Nullifire - SC900 Intumescent Coating

Nullifire’s R&D team has adapted technology from the construction sealants market to produce the first hybrid intumescent coating for use in fireproofing.

The product means fire protection of structural steel can be completed more quickly, speeding up programmes, saving money and reducing the required working-at-height time.

It can be applied at lower temperatures and higher humidity than traditional coatings, and is quickly rain-resistant.

Off Grid Energy - GridtoGo

GridtoGo helps solve a common problem on sites: how to cut the noise and energy wastage produced by generators. Off Grid Energy’s solution stores spare energy when the generator is running.

When demand falls and GridtoGo is charged, the generator switches off, saving both money and CO2 emissions.

The system provides mobile temporary power supply in places where grid connection is not available and is clean and silent.

Permaban - Permaban Eclipse

Construction joints in large-scale concrete slabs are traditionally protected with armoured joints, with those in larger buildings typically containing thick steel top strips.

Permaban’s research determined that the position and shape of the steel is the key, not its thickness.

Permaban’s Eclipse is the result: a shorter and lighter joint offering greater rigidity than traditional joints and can be used in the same applications as existing industry standard joints.

Senceive and London Underground/Tubelines - Senceive Robust Wireless Remote Condition Monitoring

Senceive deployed its wireless remote condition monitoring system on several challenging projects last year.

The system replaces the need for manual inspections and hard-wired sensors and optical systems.

Major clients to use the system include London Underground, to monitor potential tunnel deformation, and Crossrail, to monitor sleeper movement on the track bed for the project.

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