New to Steel Buildings?

Metal Building Systems, or Pre Engineered Buildings may be a relatively new concept in India but it is quite an old concept for countries abroad. The concept dates back to early years of the last century. Hence, most multinational customers coming to India have experienced the benefits of PEBs for their projects. The number of such customers coming to India every year is quite significant.

Due to their unique advantages, especially faster construction, cost-efficiency and superior aesthetics, these structures find application in many areas such as Manufacturing, Automobile, Aviation, Railways, Warehousing and Commercial. In addition, there are also some untapped segments/opportunities to grow the PEB share in the construction pie.

The history of construction in India dates back to many centuries during which the country has witnessed a rich architectural evolution spanning across many civilizations that prospered here at various periods in time. Each civilization is known for its unique culture, tradition, people, currency, language and last but not the least, materials used for construction of buildings. If clay bricks were used as building materials during Indus Valley Civilization, stones were used to make buildings and temples during the rules of many dynasties during the medieval times. Marbles emerged a favourite material for construction that was used for making some of the best known architectures like the world famous Taj Mahal during the Mughal empire and Victoria Memorial during the British Raj. It was only during the modern times that concrete has dominated the Construction Industry and is used for almost all type of buildings and structures.

However, it is steel that is fast emerging as the preferred material of the present and future for construction of buildings and structures. And this is where Pre Engineered Buildings or Metal Building Systems mark a new beginning ... a beginning from steel in buildings to buildings in steel.

The concept of Pre-engineered Buildings originated from United States of America in the early years of this century. Applications could range from the smallest structure such as parking sheds to very wide clear span structures in the form of an Aircraft Hangar. Pre-engineered buildings can be commonly identified in the Industrial, Infrastructural, Logistics, Warehousing and Commercial sectors. Short delivery time combined with Cost effectiveness and aesthetics make PEB an attractive proposition for the prospective Customers in the above mentioned sectors. Pre Engineered Buildings typically refer to Buildings which rely on Standard Engineering Designs for a variety of Off-the-shelf configurations, wherein each component of the building comes pre-punched, marked, completely constructed to specifications ‘off-site’ and shipped to site for assembly and erection. It requires minimum ‘on-site’ work and the erector has to simply assemble the pieces together at site by bolting. These are different from Pre-fabricated buildings, mostly small structures such as Toll Booths, Household Sheds etc, which are manufactured and substantially assembled at the factory. However, in today’s context, where the industry has started to offer custom-designed metal buildings to suit the particular requirements of each client, the term PEB has become somewhat a misnomer. Though Metal Building Systems is more apt, the structures continue to be referred to by its common and popular term, ‘Pre-Engineered Buildings’.

Time is precious and this is where PEBs obviously score over any other building system. PEBs have many advantages over conventional erection practices and are very well suited for a wide range of applications. These are faster to construct, are cost economical over life cycle as they are maintenance free, offer architectural flexibility, look pleasing. One can expect world-class quality of product and services as well as the best-in-class safety practices from players like Tata BlueScope Building Solutions due to their single source responsibility for the complete PEB solution. Pre Engineered Buildings are known for faster engineering and manufacturing of buildings, delivery and erection at sites. Though the time varies from project to project, typical time taken for completion of a regular size and complexity of project is 12-16 weeks. Due to no maintenance requirements and no painting requirements for the structure for years altogether, Life Cycle Cost of such buildings is typically lower than that of any other conventional Structure. Well established leadership of PEBs in USA, China, Saudi Arabia, South East Asia and now in SAARC region proves the usefulness and affordability of PEBs.

Time is precious and this is where PEBs obviously score over any other building system. PEBs have many advantages over conventional erection practices and are very well suited for a wide range of applications. These are faster to construct, are cost economical over life cycle as they are maintenance free, offer architectural flexibility, look pleasing. One can expect world-class quality of product and services as well as the best-in-class safety practices from players like Tata BlueScope Building Solutions due to their single source responsibility for the complete PEB solution. Pre Engineered Buildings are known for faster engineering and manufacturing of buildings, delivery and erection at sites. Though the time varies from project to project, typical time taken for completion of a regular size and complexity of project is 12-16 weeks. Due to no maintenance requirements and no painting requirements for the structure for years altogether, Life Cycle Cost of such buildings is typically lower than that of any other conventional Structure. Well established leadership of PEBs in USA, China, Saudi Arabia, South East Asia and now in SAARC region proves the usefulness and affordability of PEBs.

Pre-Engineered buildings use a predetermined inventory of raw materials that satisfy a wide range of structural and aesthetic requirements. The individual components required to make the PEB are pre-engineered with respect to their shapes, connection details and support arrangements. This results in faster design and detailing of the structure combined with speedy fabrication.

A typical pre-engineered building makes use of three distinct product categories:

  • Primary structural framing (mainly columns and rafters) consisting of built-up “I” sections, both prismatic as well as tapered
  • Secondary framing consisting of Cold formed “Z” and “C” sections used as roof purlins, wall girts and eave struts
  • Roll formed profiled sheeting used as roof and wall panels.

The arrangement and nature of connections resulting from the assemblage of the above to form a structure is pre-engineered resulting in the development of hundreds of typical details. These details greatly reduce the design and detailing time as most of the details are typical and standard for most buildings.

Use of built up tapered sections in columns and rafters results in considerable weight savings as compared to conventional hot rolled prismatic sections. Savings can be as high as 30 to 35 % added to the fact that material is used only where required from strength point of view. Use of cold formed sections for roof purlins and sidewall girts in the shape ‘Z’ greatly helps in reducing the weight to the tune of 30% as compared to the use of hot rolled channels used in conventional steel structures. The concept of lapping of the ‘Z’ sections is a unique feature which is the one of the reasons for the savings. Scrap costs are greatly reduced from the production processes of the built up and cold formed sections. Cost of foundation is less. This is due to the use of wide clear span structures combined with longer economic bay spacing resulting in less number of footings as compared to conventional structures.

Design is based on AISC & MBMA Codes. Specialized computer analysis and design programs optimise steel design and make it quick and efficient. Primary framing members are tapered with varying depth of built up sections with large depths in areas of highest stress. Primary (Built-up) sections are fabricated from hot rolled steel plates conforming to ASTM A 572M Grade 50 or equivalent with minimum yield strength of 345 MPa. Flanges are welded to the web by a continuous submerged arc welding process. The Built up frames are normally shot blasted & primed with one coat of primer paint for superior paint adhesion. For Wall and Roof sheeting, Zinc and Aluminum coated steel sheets are used after rollforming into various profiles. Customers have the freedom to select roof and wall cladding for their buildings from a wide range of colours and profiles.