Fiber reinforced polymer is one of hundreds of new materials and finishes nested under the term “composite materials”. This relatively new material offers architects and engineers the opportunity to take advantage of the qualities of dissimilar materials at the same time. Fiber Reinforced Polymers (FRP) are made by combining glass or carbon fiber with epoxy or plastic resin to create durable and flexible panels, rods, beams, ect. FRP is waterproof, due to their composition and lately have even been applied to a fire-resistant octagonal mesh system. FRPs are also sustainable; LEED has certified them as an option for sustainable building construction. In addition, they are lightweight, resistant to insects, and are easy to utilize in construction. For designers, these building components can prove a useful asset in attaining a natural form or simply adding color for low expense. Despite the advantageous qualities of this material, it has yet to be largely incorporated into building structures. This study investigates current applications of FRP in the structural realm. Current applications, processes, and methods of using the material are will collected in an innovative architectural structural system with sufficient strength and stability to be self-supportive. The tensile and compressive strength limits of the designed structural system are then explored through digital and physical modeling and are compared to similar solutions of other conventional construction materials. The goal of the project is to determine the plausibility and possible benefits of future use of FRP in architectural structural applications.
Dr. Rui Liu
Composite materials have long be improving the way we build and how long our buildings can last. Fiber reinforced polymer sheeting is one such material that has yet to be fully explored and implemented. It is lightweight, durable, and waterproof; making it an excellent material for a variety of applications.