Understanding heat, air, and moisture control

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Many designers and specifiers understand controlling air, vapor, and thermal transfer helps mitigate moisture problems within the building envelope. Moisture accumulation is a performance adversary that can lead to structural deterioration, finish damage, organic growth, and reduced building longevity.

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A faster, simpler way to a Level 5 finish

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Drywall is often misperceived as a building material that does not demand the skillful manipulation of a traditional construction material. However, anyone who has worked with drywall knows the product is not so cooperative.

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Aesthetics versus function: Resolving issues with exposed drip-edge flashing on masonry walls

Photos © Robert Benson Photography

Designers are creating new and exciting contemporary masonry designs that demand clean, smooth wall plane elevations. One challenge that can interfere with unobstructed aesthetics is the visual effects of masonry drip-edge flashing. This potential obstacle has also carried through to traditional masonry design. Designers and specifiers can find it difficult to balance design and functional water management requirements.

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Integrated wall retrofits: Solutions for existing masonry construction for commercial buildings

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Sixty percent of U.S. commercial buildings were constructed before 1980. Retrofitting them for energy efficiency is essential to achieve the Department of Energy (DOE) Building Technologies Office’s (BTO) goal of halving building energy use by 2030. Most existing buildings have masonry construction with uninsulated wall assemblies, which offer good potential for wall improvement strategies.

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Choosing fiberglass or stone wool for fire and acoustics

This blown-in-blanket fiberglass system was specifically designed for closed cavity applications. It fills all voids and gaps, significantly reducing unwanted noise.
Photos courtesy CertainTeed

Both fiberglass and stone wool insulation have merit, promote fire protection and sustainability, and offer value to architects, contractors, and property owners alike. This article’s intent is to present a scientific examination of the benefits of using each, in particular with respect to meeting fire and acoustic requirements and codes.

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Steel curtain walls that get the curtain call

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Modern curtain wall systems require structural supports as strong as they are versatile to keep pace with today’s increasingly large free spans, challenging angles, and sophisticated glass-clad aesthetics. While steel curtain wall frames have long met strength criteria, they have only recently provided the necessary design flexibility.

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