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Researchers use U. of Arkansas buildings as testbed for CLT panels

Investigation could influence future use of the materials.

September 13, 2019 |

Courtesy Pixabay

A new residence hall on the University of Arkansas campus will serve as a testbed for researchers to study Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT) panels.

Professors in the university’s Fay Jones School of Architecture and Design and the College of Engineering are collaborating to measure and analyze the moisture content of the panels used in the buildings. Adohi Hall is the nation’s first large-scale mass timber residence hall project, according to a university news release.

Construction on the residential areas of Adohi Hall was completed this summer. The hall consists of two five-story residential buildings connected by a third building that provides a common area. To monitor the effects of rain and humidity, sensors were placed in CLT panels in moisture-prone areas—bathrooms, kitchen and laundry areas, and near the exterior of the buildings.

The approximately 200,000 sf project with 708 beds was designed by Leers Weinzapfel Associates of Boston, Modus Studio of Fayetteville, Mackey Mitchell Architects of St. Louis and OLIN of Philadelphia. CLT panels were used in floors and ceilings. Columns and beams were made from glue-laminated pieces, which are bonded together with the wood grain of each layer running parallel rather than perpendicular, as CLT panels do.

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