Advanced Engineering 2019

What is the Biggest Barrier to Composites in Construction?

25 November 2016

NetComposites Enterprise has been involved in the construction industry for many years. Through networks, conferences, projects and consultancy, it keeps close links and allies of those working in and around consultancy.

In 2015, CompIC, NetComposites' Composites in Construction Conference, was born. Over two days, 120 people from across the supply chain attended to discuss industry progression and more importantly, 'What are the Biggest Barriers to Composites in Construction?'

Two years later, CompIC is set to return to its birthplace in Amsterdam, and I thought it was time to see what we discovered and if any progression had been made.

The conference showcased some fantastic projects and it was encouraging to see attendees from across the supply chain actively involved and in support of progressing the industry. It was obvious that work was required to educate clients and infrastructure, but people were hopeful that this could be achieved.

The biggest concerns in the industry came, not from technical issues, but instead from education, training and marketing, as well as standards. So, what have we done to try and overcome this? NetComposites has worked with the Advanced Engineering show to encourage a number of construction forums. It has also worked with JEC to help provide a Construction event which will take place in Chicago in June 2017.

And others? A number of projects were born from CompIC and its attendees working together. Construction Composites and J. Murphy worked to create composite coping stones, and we are aware of another two projects that we should be able to talk about by January at the event. Also, both Eurocodes and Bridge Design Guidance have been released - something we will be particularly watching with interest as they hit the programme at CompIC in January.

And what's next? We need to work together to help raise awareness of composites and their advantages with respect to more traditional materials. Training needs to cover a wide range of business functions - not only the obvious areas like design and manufacturing, but also procurement, senior management/specifiers, contractors and clients/customers. Hopefully this is something we can achieve with the upcoming event.

Will we see you there?

CompIC 2017

The Park Hotel, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

31st January - 1st February, 2017

Gemma Smith is the Communications Director of NetComposites