Tata BlueScope Steel is working towards creating sustainable and innovative building materials and products that will help reduce adverse impact on the environment. Typically, an ‘environment friendly’ building material is one which is non-toxic, reusable, renewable and/or recyclable. Steel has been traditionally known for its strength, durability and functionality. It is now increasingly being recognised for its environment-friendly benefits. Coatings on steel further increase its life many fold and enhance its environment friendly features. Coated steel can be applications like roofing, wall cladding, partitions, gutter, downpipe, fascia, ridge and other building components.
There is no question anymore about the positive effect of using non-toxic coated steel materials to reduce or eliminate indoor air pollution. Coated steel is naturally termite-proof and does not have to be treated with pesticides or other chemicals. Other benefits of using coated steel include the reduction in installation costs by increasing productivity and using less energy and water, no disturbance to local flora and fauna and reduction in heat island effect because of lower thermal mass and higher thermal reflecting properties.
The Coated Steel Business of Tata BlueScope Steel offers 55 per cent Al-Zn alloy coated Zincalume steel and pre-painted 55 per cent Al- Zn alloy coated Colorbond steel.
These coated steel products boast of several environment friendly features including the following:
Reusability: Zincalume steel and Colorbond steel have great reusability. Undamaged components made of Zincalume steel and Colorbond steel can be easily reused at other locations in same original shape or modified shape. Also demolition or removal processes involved in replacement and reuse of steel material is without air pollution/dust.
Reduced material requirement: Long life of Zincalume steel and Colorbond steel reduces material consumption and thereby saves resources. It ensures reduction in material consumption by usage of thinner, high strength material of 550 MPa minimum Yield Strength instead of typical 250/300 MPa Yield Strength material. Being lighter (in weight), it also provides an opportunity to reduce supporting structural material requirements. Additionally, Zincalume steel and Colorbond steel usage in construction may enable longer spans and require fewer supports. All this in turn reduces transport costs and fuel usage also.
Resilience: Zincalume steel and Colorbond steel are long lasting and durable with up to four times the life of comparable zinc coated/pre-painted zinc coated steel in similar applications and environments thus reducing the frequency of replacement of materials.
Recyclability: The base steel of Zincalume steel and Colorbond steel has recycled steel. It can be further recycled after every life. While the greater part can be recycled, if not recycled it becomes natural part of earth as Iron oxide.
Water Harvesting: Because of usage of ‘heavy metal (Pb/Cr/Cd) free’ paints, runoff water from Colorbond steel can be harvested for reuse.
Thermal Efficiency: Colorbond steel with Thermatech Solar Reflactance technology incorporated in its paint system offers better thermal efficiency. Thermatech technology reduces the amount of heat transferred inside the building, which results in better thermal performance and cooler comfort. In hot weather, Colorbond steel can reduce peak roof temperature up to 60C. It can also reduce annual cooling energy consumption by up to 15 per cent (depending on the level of insulation, colour, building shape, orientation and function). Colorbond steel is available in a range of 8 standard colours and a range of non-standard colours with high SRI values.
Zincalume steel, due to its specific surface coatings, retains its bright surface for longer. The surface reflects more heat thus transferring lesser heat inside ensuring better thermal performance and comfort for longer duration.
Passive Design: Zincalume steel and Colorbond steel are amenable to designs that improve shading. Properly insulated Zincalume steel roofing and cladding provides a draft proof envelope to retain cool air inside the building for increased comfort.
For above reasons both Zincalume steel and Colorbond steel are extensively used as construction material for buildings. With these benefits the cost to maintain a comfortable atmosphere is reduced, dependence on energy resources and general air pollution is lower thereby providing a healthier life.
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