Owens Corning (NYSE: OC) Cem-FIL® alkali-resistant (AR) glass fibers will take the field at the opening match of the 2010 FIFA World Cup at Soccer City Stadium in Johannesburg, South Africa, June 11.
The newly redesigned stadium features fibreC® concrete panels from Rieder Smart Elements, reinforced with Cem-FIL® AR fibers, which reduce the weight and thickness of the concrete by up to 10 times compared to conventional panels. They are 100 percent recyclable; and enhance building life and durability with resistance to corrosion, fire, UV light and temperature variations.
"The world continues to raise the bar on sustainability in building materials," said Owens Corning Chief Sustainability Officer Frank O'Brien-Bernini. "Demand is increasing for resource-efficient, lighter, stronger, more durable and more recyclable materials. Products such as Owens Corning Cem-FIL® glass fibers are quickly becoming must-haves in order to meet evolving building standards."
O'Brien-Bernini added that despite slower construction growth in many markets around the world, demand for fiber additives in cement and concrete is forecast to increase 6.6 percent per year through 2012. "The use of Cem-FIL® in buildings like Soccer City Stadium is certainly helping drive that momentum," he said.
The Rieder fibreC® panels featuring Owens Corning Cem-FIL® AR glass fibers provide these advantages:
- Cem-FIL® fibers deliver significantly higher tensile strength than steel at much lighter weight and lower mass.
- Cem-FIL® fibers provide excellent weatherability, fire resistance (class A1 according to the DIN standard) and durability to reduce maintenance and extend useful life.
- After grinding, old panels are recyclable with up to 15 percent regrind utilized for the fabrication of new fibreC® panels, while 100 percent regrind can be added to concrete mixes. The composition of fibreC® panels allows the material to be recycled, so it is listed in the GreenSpec® directory as an environmentally preferable product and evaluated for U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) LEED® credits.
Design freedom is another advantage of the glass-fiber-reinforced fibreC® panels. The façade of the stadium evokes a traditional African calabash cooking pot, requiring markedly curved panels. By enabling thinner and lighter panels, Owens Corning Cem-FIL® glass fibers help make it possible to create these sculpted forms without compromising strength and resilience. The fibreC® panels are available in standard and custom colors; a palette of earth tones was chosen for the stadium cladding.
"Products like Cem-FIL® are indispensable in changing the way building materials can perform," said Rieder Chief Executive Officer Wolfgang Rieder. "The world is changing and the solutions we deliver must change along with it. This is a revolutionary time for the construction industry."
Chosen as one of 10 venues that will host 2010 World Cup matches, Soccer City Stadium began renovations in January 2007 and was completed in October 2009. The three-tier stadium soars 60 meters (197 feet) into the air, stretches across 300 meters (984 feet) and can accommodate 95,000 fans.