There isn’t truly any magical material…but if there were one, it would be aluminum. It’s unique in its durability and flexibility, making it easy to mold into unique shapes but also hard to break down. It’s unsurprising that aluminum is a popular choice in construction.
According to Design Build Network, there are 4 key reasons why aluminum is a popular choice for commercial builds.
Aluminum is green
For environmentally-conscious builders, aluminum is an attractive material. According to the American Architectural Manufacturers Association :
At the end-of-life stage in a building, aluminum is 100 percent recyclable and may be reused without any loss in mechanical attributes, saving on raw material costs.
Aluminum is endlessly recyclable, which means it can be salvaged easily from existing builds to create new designs. Additionally, aluminum can reduce energy costs. In the case of aluminum windows, the frame can also be thermally improved in order to reduce the amount of heat transfer through the window and frame. By finishing the frame and installing the thermal barrier after the aluminum has been stretch formed and shaped, the amount of stress on the barrier is reduced and performance is improved.
There are endless new applications for aluminum
Aluminum facades are common designs because aluminum is easy to shape and resistant to corrosion and fire. However, it’s not without its downsides as well – especially because traditional methods pair aluminum with other materials that are highly flammable. Recently, builders have been utilizing aluminum foam in designs as an alternative. This is made by injecting air into aluminum and then shaping air bubbles to create texture and variable levels of light to enter or leave a building. The Earthcam headquarters building in New Jersey used this technique, to great success.
Aluminum can be molded into just about any shape
One of the key benefits of aluminum is its ductility. It can be easily shaped into a wide array of designs, giving architects and builders endless possibilities for design. Stretch form aluminum is critical to fitting oddly-shaped historic windows. For facades, aluminum makes unique shapes and silhouettes achievable.
The rise of modular construction with aluminum
Design Build Network explains:
Modular construction involves the remote prefabrication of building elements for reassembly on site, and is increasingly valued for its innovations in manufacturing and the speed with which structures can be built when compared to traditional site-built projects. It’s a rapidly maturing system that can be particularly useful for temporary or semi-permanent structures, and lightweight, recyclable aluminum makes for a smart choice as a primary building material.
This makes aluminum even more attractive for commercial purposes.
Aluminum may not be “magic,” but it certainly is a highly-adaptable material. At St. Cloud Window, we use the highest-quality aluminum. View our product list for our full selection of aluminum windows.
At St. Cloud Window we know every project begins with a challenge or an idea of what a building might be. We bring that vision to life with our distinctive design aesthetics, precision performance, and design-to-delivery support. Learn more about how our products can deliver on your design objectives and site requirements here. Then, check out our full line of historic replica and acoustic window products, and get in touch for more details about any of our high-performing commercial window products.