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BUILDING CONSTRUCTION TECHNOLOGY, Part 1

 BUILDING CONSTRUCTION TECHNOLOGY, Part 1

BUILDING CONSTRUCTION TECHNOLOGY, Part 1



Take a fistful of dry, cultivated soil from the garden, squeeze tight and note that it compresses. While it is the ideal medium for growing edible and non-edible plants, structurally, vegetable soil (topsoil) is not load-bearing. Walls/buildings must be founded on load-bearing subsoils or rock. The Traditional Strip Foundation is designed /calculated to take the weight of the building (house) and to transmit the total load onto the subsoil at an appropriate depth. In Relevant Pics below, study and fully understand why I included the first one.
I had just finished rotovating our vegetable plot. We are now looking at friable topsoil; these are my footprints; in fact, these are two impressions of my right foot. For the left impression I’m wearing my garden/builder’s boot; for the right I changed to my shoe (slimmer and shorter). Lifting my left foot off the ground, my bodyweight of approx. 76 kg is concentrated on the soil under
each, in turn. Note that the impression by the shoe is
significantly deeper (check out the shadow), the smaller area of the shoe creating the more concentrated load. The bearing capacities of the various subsoils differ ignificantly and the foundation type will be designed/modified accordingly by the Engineer. Obviously we don’t found buildings on topsoil, but my footprint would have made no impression on most subsoils.

There are many different types/amalgams of subsoils (check your texts for a chart showing subsoil types and comparative load-bearing capacities). Where a subsoil would be likely to compress under a building/house founded on a strip foundation, a Raft Foundation will be considered, where the load will be spread over the entire footprint of the building, instead of being concentrated on narrow strips of subsoil. Put simply, the raft is a continuous slab of reinforced concrete.

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