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Timber innovation awards in London

Safeguard Europe Ltd and a team of students from the Architectural Association’s School of Architecture have been named the winners of the TTJ Timber Innovation Award 2018. Source: Timberbiz

The Award is comprised of two categories: Product Development, which celebrates pioneering product design throughout the industry; and Innovative Timber University Research, aimed at acknowledging the boundary-breaking work that university students are carrying out at both undergraduate and postgraduate level throughout the UK.

Both category winners were announced at the TTJ Awards ceremony held in London, on 21 September 2018.

Safeguard Europe Ltd won the Product Development category for its Roxil Wood Protection Cream, a thoughtful reaction to the European Biocides Directive that restricted use of biocide-containing products for timber protection against rot and decay.

Over the last two years, Safeguard Europe Ltd has been honing its biocide-free timber treatment formulation, which included complex chemistry to create an inverted emulsion, and the development of a manufacturing technique new to the company.

The resulting product, a silicone cream emulsion, is not only biocide-free; with just one coat, it weatherproofs the timber and protects it from the undesirable effects of moisture—all while retaining the timber’s natural appearance.

In-house testing using QUV accelerated weathering suggests the cream can last for over 10 years.

Rolando Madrigal Torres, Evgenia Spyridonos, En-Kai Kuo and Eleni McKirahan, four students from the Architectural Association’s innovative Design + Make program, won the University Research category for their work on the Sawmill Shelter.

The project was an investigation into the limits of small section timber under tension, which involved an intricate and lightweight anticlastic timber net, and the resulting structure serves as a full-scale prototype for later builds by consecutive students at Hooke Park.

The investigation’s general conclusion suggests properties of timber, when the proper techniques are applied, permit the formation of curved building structures of a large range, including anticlastic configurations.

Sawmill Shelter can therefore form the basis for further research, highlighting the potential applications of timber in doubly curved structures.

Runner-up of the University Research category was Joshua Mudie from the University of Bristol with his research Insight into mechanics of externally indeterminate hardwood–concrete composite beams, detailing how concrete and timber can be made to work together.