Currently, there are a wide array of construction materials available for architects, constructors, and builders. Selecting and buying suitable building material for the demanding project depends on numerous factors, including price, versatility, durability, finishes, and purpose. Thus, clients and architects must choose the most suitable construction materials for their projects and applications. One of these materials widely used in modern and industrial cities such as Toronto is Aluminum Composite Panel (ACP), also known as ACM panels claddings and roofing systems. In the current industry, Aluminum composite panels are utilized not only for construction but for other applications in different industries.
Aluminum Composite Panel (ACP) Structure
ACM panels are also referred to as aluminum composite sheets, sandwich panels, and ACM materials. As told, these modern products are widely used in construction projects and other industries. The thing that made ACM panels unique and different compared to other building materials is their structural properties which provide outstanding quality and functionality among other particles.
The importance of each construction material is summarized in its structure. In other words, if the architect or customer wants to know whether the building material features the suitable quality and characteristics for the demanding project, they will need to learn about its structure and form.
Aluminum Composite Panel (ACP) Core Material
The Aluminum Composite Panel (ACP) features a three-layered structure, including two sheets of aluminum and one fire-retardant core substance. This central core of ACP materials is the essential part of these building materials. However, at first, some issues started when the fire behavior of these construction materials went under question. The early aluminum composite panel featured a PE core substance that is sustainable to fire and spreads quickly. This problem is solved with various solutions. However, some countries abandoned PE cores, and others allow builders to utilize them for low-rise buildings.
Though the former systems seemed to be reliable, modern manufacturers provided better resolutions for aluminum composite panels. They typically utilize fire-retardant (FR) substances to make ACM panels safer than other construction materials. These solutions are perfect for exterior applications, including using ACM panels for cladding systems where safety plays a massive role in the building’s facade. The FR core materials can be varied depending on the local building codes and requirements. However, the common fire-retardant substances are mineral materials and honeycomb, which manufacturers utilize in their aluminum composite panels.
Coating Materials on ACM Panels or ACP Finishes
Although the substance used in the structure’s core is of great importance in an Aluminum Composite Panel (ACP), coating materials on ACM panels are also essential and affect the overall quality. Generally, manufacturers utilize two types of coating for these construction materials. The first one is PE finish, which is the same as for PE core. Thus, this can cause issues similar to the core material. However, it is possible to utilize this coating as the leading material on the surface for interior applications. Some of the internal usages of the PE coating include perforated and decorative panels, wall partitioning, and false ceiling.
On the other hand, experts recommend using coating materials such as PVDF or Nano aluminum composite panels for cladding systems and other external applications. These coating types provide better durability and quality and offer better safety and resistance against fire. Additionally, Nanocomposite panels are anti-dirt and water-retardant. Thus, they will require lower maintenance, and cleaning them is very straightforward.
Best Qualities of ACM Panels
The aluminum composite panel (ACP) has advantageous characteristics, qualities, and features, making it the perfect material for building cladding systems and facades. Due to its structural components and properties, ACP material is one of Canada’s most used building materials. The followings are the primary and beneficial characteristics of aluminum composite panels (ACP).
- Flexibility, Versatility and Durability: One of the unique characteristics of an aluminum composite panel (ACP) is its flexibility, versatility and durability. Most construction materials do not feature three of these properties at once. It is accessible to fabricate and installs ACM panels, and they will last more than 30 years if maintained properly. Due to the versatility of ACP materials, manufacturers can produce various cladding products with different styles and shapes, allowing architects to create limitless designs for their clients.
- Chemical and Water Resistance: ACM panels are manufactured in a way to withstand harsh weather conditions. These building materials are water and chemical resistant, and they can be utilized in different portions of a facility. This advantage of ACP materials makes them the perfect cladding materials for locations with high humidity and temperature change. However, if these panel systems are not installed properly, they can have leakage. Thus, it is essential to follow a rainscreen installing instructions precisely.
- Lightweight Material: Most clients should pay considerable money to labor costs when constructing a new building. However, due to the lightweight characteristic of an aluminum composite panel (ACP), it is easy to install these building materials for cladding systems resulting in lower labor costs.
- Aesthetics: Architects prefer using metal wall cladding systems, including ACM panels, which are the perfect materials for building facades, as they are modern, flat, and sleek. Most manufacturers create ACP materials in different color finishes and textures. Even ACM panels with wood pattern finishes are available for clients who prefer to have a mixture of contemporary and classic designs for their building’s cladding system.