A Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) research team led by Professor Yui-bun Chan from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, with support from UC RUSAL has discovered a new aluminium composite – Fiber Reinforced Aluminium.
This new material is stronger than existing aluminium, cheaper and lighter than steel, and can also be used with insulation panels designed to produce a building envelope system that is safer, cheaper, more energy-efficient and easier to mount. The project is now undergoing its final phase and is expected to complete in 2015.
Fiber Reinforced Aluminium can be used for a wide range of applications primarily in construction as an alternative to steel and cement, and also in electronic products, automobiles, aircrafts, building materials, thus it has the potential to significantly increase aluminium’s global applications.
“Fiber Reinforced Aluminium (FRA) is a mixture of carbon fiber and aluminium. If used together with a phase-change material (PCM), it creates a smart building envelope system which will effectively reduce indoor temperature fluctuation, and halve labor costs and construction time compared to conventional systems built mainly from steel and cement,” said Prof Chan.
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