Articles

Are de-icers safe for concrete?

Canadian winters are harsh. As temperatures dip below freezing, ice can form on roads and walkways and make them hazardous. One method of keeping ice away is the use of de-icing agents. The oldest and most commonly used compound is salt. However, the use of salt needs to be controlled as it can sometimes be more hurtful than helpful.

Oil Heating Systems

An estimated 1.2 million households in Canada are heated by fuel oil. These households are predominantly located in rural areas. Though a functional and efficient heat source, these systems pose various risks to the homeowner. Their failures can result in the escape of hundreds of liters of oil into the surrounding environment - below foundations, and into wells, sumps, weeping tile, and groundwater. The associated remediation work is costly and can easily exceed the property value.

Struck by Lightning

Lightning can be considered as the mother of all electric arcs; a tremendously powerful electric discharge between two environments with opposite electrostatic charges. It is a spontaneous event, aiming to restore the equilibrium between the earth and sky.

Problems relating to exterior insulation and finishing systems (EIFS)

With the increased environmental awareness and new energy efficiency regulations for buildings, owners, building operators, architects and engineers are constantly on the look out for new innovative products to meet the latest needs. A more efficient building envelope with better insulation is an alternative that can help meet new energy efficiency regulations for buildings. In such, additional insulation via an exterior insulated finishing system can be an appropriate solution for existing or new buildings.

The burglar alarm system: a powerful tool for fire O&C investigations

Fire alarm panels certainly provide important information during an investigation to determine the origin and cause of a fire. But, what about burglar alarm systems? Although this equipment is designed to prevent theft and property crime, it may also provide crucial information to an investigator on the scene of a fire.

Structural Behavior of Concrete

Concrete is a material known for its great strength. Regardless, there are a few weaknesses, which must be taken in consideration in the design of concrete structural elements. Basically, concrete is made of three main ingredients: Portland cement, water, and aggregates (sand and stone).

 

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