Uncommonly mild January temperatures are a lucky draw for the concrete crews at the Wyss Campus south of Lander. With foundations over 50% complete, project management is finalizing the sourcing of materials for the superstructures that will bear on new concrete. For our building, the structure, sheathing, and insulation are combined in a building system that incorporates series of "Oreo-like" panels (cream = insulation, cookie = wall sheathing) coverd with additional insulation to achieve a thermally superior building envelope. These structural insulated panels, or SIPs, come in pieces up to 8' x 32' and are erected using a variety of cranes and forklifts. Carpenters afix OSB-clad foam outside the SIP wall before installing any windows or siding. SIPs are also used for flooring and roofs held up by combinations of timbers, laminated beams and columns, and long laminate trusses built up with steel brackets. For all this to work, the foundation must be stout.
And these are- 50% fly ash replacement is double the recycled content of stock concrete in our local plant and leads to strengths exceeding both design specifications and columns formed with standard comperable recipes. By the time the forms come off these walls, we'll be hustling to frame floor supports and hang steel girders for the SIPs that will arrive fresh off the production line. But there is still steel to wire and forms to place before the main classroom building is ready. The total foundation is completed in five pours over a series of weeks with the last pour needing all the wall forms the sub has available. We will likely pour more then 80 cubic yards in the last session, expected with continued mild weather later this week.