10 July 2012
10 July 2012
The SAFEHUT building concept was created by David Smith who envisioned the need for a new generation shelter comprised of a composite material made from fibre-reinforced polymers, specifies AOC resins and is designed to create a much superior alternative to trailers, sheds, tents and other inferior structures.
SAFEHUT explains their “Unfolding Solutions” drew upon Smith’s experience in designing lightweight, high-strength composites. They say he optimised the composite components for the SAFEHUT system by turning to state-of-the-art design, materials and process technologies. AOC explains that SAFEHUT’s composite walls, floor and roof panels are manufactured by the resin infusion process, which creates consistent, high-quality parts with extremely low emissions.
According to AOC, cored laminate and moulded-in ribs and beams enhance rigidity and reduce the weight of the panels. The fibre reinforcement is a combination of traditional knitted E-glass and an infusion-specific reinforcing material. The core is a low-density PET (polyethylene terephthalate) foam.
AOC explains that the resin used is its Altek R961-IPF-40 and the gel coat is its Vibrin G370LV. “The resin properties that are important are low viscosity to enable good flow across large panels, as well as minimal shrinkage during cure,” said Jeff Worden, Chief Operating Officer for SAFEHUT. “In the gel coat, we need a material that sprays smoothly and evenly and has good weather-resistant properties.”
Worden explained the value that AOC service and support brings. “AOC Sales Representative Bob Hoit has been a great asset by working with us to determine the best material choices,” Worden said. “He provides technical help where necessary and works to maintain a good flow of product.”
“The SAFEHUT is designed to last for up to 30 years with proper maintenance,” said Jeff Worden. Wind and load calculations by Vectorworks Naval Engineering, Titusville, Florida, US, concluded that SAFEHUT’s composite walls are designed to withstand:
SAFEHUT says its building is collapsible, easy to transport and set up. Ten (10) units fit into a standard 40-foot (1203.6 centimetres) ISO cargo container. Twelve (12) units can be transported on a 40-foot flatbed semi-trailer. “Three people can set up an individual SAFEHUT unit in less than 10 minutes, using a manual small crane system or forklift,” Worden pointed out.
AOC explains that integrated latching systems and rubber seals are secured using only an Allen wrench (hex key) to form air- and water-tight connections. Walls and floors are pre-wired for electricity, and units can be configured to include plumbing features that are connected to water supply and sewer/septic drainage.
They say a single SAFEHUT unit is 8 feet wide by 20 feet long by 8 feet high (2.4 by 6.1 by 2.4 meters) and weighs about 2,200 pounds (998 kilograms), depending on configuration. Modular design allows for multiple units to be connected in a variety of configurations, including T and H layouts.
University of Southern Queensland (USQ)’s composites research and development was on display when the Centre for Future Materials (CFM) held its inaugural Open Day.