Elbe Decken

Opportunities for precast prestressed concrete floor slabs in building projects

In many European countries, like Belgium or the Netherlands, up to 70 % of all building projects are implemented by means of precast prestressed concrete floor slabs in the meantime. Despite their economic benefits, the floor slabs are still not much known in Germany. Prestressed concrete slabs, for example, can basically be used for any type of building, from an office to a hotel through to a residential building.

Ideally, it is checked already in advance or within the tendering procedure, whether a prestressed concrete slab fits into the respective project, and whether this kind of construction might even be the best solution. It combines numerous aspects of modern and sustainable construction, along with the advantages of a precast concrete product.


Savings potential through prestressed concrete slabs

The positive properties – load-bearing capacity, clear span and flexibility – of prestressed concrete slabs not only allow efficient construction of high quality, but also streamlined construction processes, shorter construction times and more flexibility when it comes to space utilization. Well-proven and constantly further developed for decades, prestressed concrete slabs convince, apart from their fast installation within a few days, often also by cost savings of up to 15 % of the overall budget.

For one thing, the savings are due to the rapid installation of the floor units. Here the rule applies, the more floor slabs are integrated in planning and site logistics, the more streamlined the processes and the faster the shell construction is completed. For another thing, the clearly defined and often lower material costs of prestressed concrete slabs also contribute to cost savings.


Climate slabs to control the room temperature

The prestressed concrete climate slab, which is in compliance with regulations, was developed in 2007 and is even revolutionary in the field of energy-efficient construction. Because the slab combines the advantages of precast prestressed concrete floor slabs with an excellent energy efficiency and room air conditioning. Heating and cooling are just „supplied“ by the thermal functions of the climate slab (in standard sizes of up to 14.00 m span and 1.20 m width). A high thermal comfort is provided by concrete core activation. Due to the fact that the ductwork for heating and cooling is integrated in the climate slab, reductions of effort, costs and risks are in particular possible in the field of building services equipment (HVAC). But beware: not every prestressed concrete floor slab declared as „climate slab“ is in compliance with approvals. In order to ensure the quality of a floor slab, the manufacturer should prove that his climate slab is in compliance with established approval standards.

For the new construction of office and commercial buildings, hotels, residential buildings, school and public buildings, and above all hospitals, clinics, nursing homes and senior citizens residences this type of ceiling is an alternative worth considering.