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Hybrid blog – how to benefit the most from best properties of different materials?

August, 29, 2022

Each construction material has its benefits, and combining timber, concrete and steel in construction creates optimal outcomes. How is that?

Still few years ago, I had difficulties to understand why timber should be used in bigger buildings. Don’t get me wrong; I like timber, and my own house is timber-framed – which is natural in Finland in private housing. Yet, it is made of prefabricated elements.

My point of view changed 3 years ago in Peikko’s sales meeting in North America. Canadian Wood Council explained us that a young, growing forest is a carbon sink – and an old, partly fallen forest is a carbon source instead. Forests, lungs of the globe, need to be maintained. This means that the timber must be harvested to keep the forest as a carbon sink. That harvested timber has to be used somewhere to keep absorbing CO2, and one natural destination is construction. Using timber in construction is indeed good for all of us – it helps our world to maintain the living conditions.

Benefits of different materials

Timber industry makes various usable timber components for frame construction. CLT and LVL slabs, and glue-laminated beams and columns fit as such for the frame construction - Peikko’s strength for decades already. Every material has characteristic properties which make them perfect for construction. Steel has strength and connections, concrete has versatility, fire-resistance and compression strength. What does timber have, other than carbon absorption? Timber is light, stiff, ductile and resists fire to certain limit very well. And it feels warm and cozy.

Peikko has used hybrid structures of concrete and steel for already more than 30 years. Light steel construction components have been delivered and erected and filled with concrete on site. Timber is a natural add-on to our Hybrid Handshake.

We are just in the beginning of our journey towards 3-way hybrid construction. We want to approach timber construction from our roots in precast. And what we want most, is to offer Optimal Outcomes for our customers – now and in the future.

Petri Suur-Askola

Business Development Director

Peikko Group Corporation