FAQ

Architecture & Design

What are the advantages of aluminium in building and construction?

The special qualities of aluminium allow it to be creatively shaped to your design. Its facility for bending, perforating, punching and expanding has naturally made it the modern material of choice for creative wall cladding.

Aluminium has a long useful life and afterwards can be recycled endlessly without any loss of quality. They also underpin the drive for sustainability and “green” construction.

And don’t forget its functional features. Aluminium is both light and strong. After anodizing it is resistant to corrosion, scratch and UV radiation. 55HX®, designed for architectural applications, conforms to the Euroclass A1 fire standard.

Why anodizing?

The anodizing process consists of creating a pure and protective layer of aluminium oxide on the surface of the metal substrate. After anodizing, the aluminium coil/sheet has a superior UV, scratch and corrosion resistance while keeping its natural metallic look.

This is the reason why anodized aluminium is extensively used in exterior building applications.

How can aluminium be further processed? Which are typical applications?

The special qualities of aluminium allow it to be creatively shaped to your design. Its facility for bending, perforating, punching, deep-drawing, and expanding has naturally made it the modern material of choice for creative wall cladding. In combination with either natural or colour anodizing it creates a unique look of the building façade.

Typical Applications:

  • Façades and wall cladding
  • Ceiling panels
  • Balcony balustrades
  • Interior design
  • Noise protection
  • Sun shades and screens
What about maintenance and cleaning of an aluminium façade?

Anodizing is probably the best existing treatment for aluminium used in architectural applications. An anodic film, realized in good conditions, if properly maintained, has a proven service life of in excess of 30 years.

It is recommended to have a cleaning frequency of minimum once a year; due to specific local conditions this frequency can be increased.

The regular cleaning consists of a simple washing with water added with a neutral soft detergent (*) followed by a rinsing with plain water and wiping dry with a soft and absorbing cloth.

To remove a higher degree of soiling, a stiff bristle or nylon brush may be used. The use of aggressive products such as washing powder, dishwasher detergent, strong acids or and strong alkaline products should be avoided. Any contact with strongly abrasive agents such as sand, steel wool or, glass paper will carry a strong risk of surface damage.

*If anodizing is done properly, the aluminium oxide on the surface will be perfectly stable in a pH range between 5 and 8; so cleaning solutions should have a pH figure in this range.

Is aluminium a sustainable material?

Aluminium is Part of the Solution for Reducing Greenhouse Gases and Energy Consumption

Aluminium is a miracle material:

  • It is Infinitely recyclable
  • 75% remains in use
  • Aluminium produced from scrap uses only 5% of the energy compared with primary production (Source: Aluminium Association)

Aluminium is a building material for future generations:

  • It contributes to sustainable buildings
  • Conforms to European Fire Class A1 standard
  • It is neutral and has NO negative impact on air quality, soil, surface and ground water. It is not hazardous to neither the occupants or the surroundings.
  • It saves energy: through insulation in the heating season and shades in cooling season.
  • Aluminium building products are highly durable and contribute to LEED and BREEAM certification.
  • The cradle-to-cradle lifecycle is infinite
  • Aluminium scrap can be 100% recycled without any loss of value or properties.
  • >92% of aluminium products are collected after demolition.
How about fire safety?

In contrast to other cladding solutions in which aluminium panels may be placed on either side of a core material, solid aluminium has an A1 European classification for fire safety, the highest classification for a non-combustible material. ALVANCE’s 55HX®, a high performance aluminium for anodized cladding products has achieved this rating.