Latest Event Updates

The Safety of Modular Construction

Posted on Updated on

Out of all major sectors in the United States, the construction industry has consistently been ranked at the top for fatal injuries. In 2016 alone, OSHA recorded 4,683 workplace fatalities with 991 of them coming from construction or roughly 21% of the total. Of these 991 fatalities, 63.7% of them can be attributed to one of four major accidents, the “Fatal Four:” Falls, Struck by Object, Electrocutions, and Caught-in/between objects. With the heavy machinery, heavy traffic, and sometimes irregular work environment, these four accidents can be incredibly difficult to account for most of the time. However, modular construction presents a solution to these accidents by completely overhauling the construction process. In this post, we will examine how modular construction can help with these 4 main injuries and others, offering an overall safer environment to build.


Hazard Communication

First and foremost, the ability to clearly and accurately communicate current and future hazards is much easier when using modular construction. On a construction site, work can often be chaotic.

Mobile Office Building

Moving from job site to job site, new work processes are created for every job and can sometimes even change from week to week depending on what work needs to be done. This unfamiliarity with work processes creates inefficiencies and flaws with materials and equipment. So, in these cases, workers can end up finding heaving machinery and building materials in places that they do not expect which leads to accidents. At a construction job site, modular construction can help fix this problem in one major way. Rather than having 100 different moving pieces on a job site, a pre-assembled building gives the workers one big object to fixate on. This one big structure allows the construction workers to coordinate and centralize their focus to one main area.

When looking at the “Fatal Four” of the construction industry, improved hazard communication can help solve “Struck by Object” and “Caught In/Between” fatalities by reducing the amount of simultaneous activity at a job site and increasing the mindfulness of a potential hazard.

 


Safety Measures Inside the Modular Construction Facility

Improving site safety does not amount to much if the modular construction environment is unsafe as well… Thankfully this is not the case. Because unlike a traditional stick-built construction process, the majority of modular construction takes place in a factory-like, assembly line environment. The modular construction process itself sets up standardized workflows that encourage specialization and a full understanding of your duties and surroundings, allowing for far fewer accidents to occur in comparison to a typical construction site. The factory will be sectioned off into individual work zones, each providing added value to the structure. Workers assembling the building specialize in a specific task pertaining to the building. Due to this specialization and highly controlled work environment, offsite construction results in far fewer errors in quality and personal injury. In fact, according to “Safety Management in the Construction industry SmartMarket Report,” 73% of modular construction users have a fully inclusive safety program in place in their facilities, in comparison to the 48% of their non-modularized counterparts.

When looking at these two construction types in terms of OSHA’s “Fatal Four” construction accidents, it is easy to see where modular construction excels. To start, falling from a structure is an issue that is not typically incurred in modular construction’s production phase. All fabrication and panel assembly occurs on the shop floor. Although falls can still occur from shorter distances, these are far less dangerous.

In the installation phase of the modular construction process, installers will sometimes have to go to heights of 8’ to 10’ feet for our single-story buildings and structures. For our two-story offices and tower systems, the heights of the structures can be much higher ranging from 20’ to 80’ feet in the air. However, there are still safety advantages to modular construction’s design. For the two-story system, the structure will have no sloped roof, making the installation much safer for the workers. In the case of our prefabricated tower systems, the modular structure has already been 90% fabricated, leaving the module to simply be installed on the top of the structure using a crane to hoist it up. In both cases, the installer/worker in the modular construction scenario will be spending far less time at these dangerous heights, making the job inherently safer.


Heavy Machinery Traffic & Frequency

With the majority of the modular construction process taking place away from the job site, there is a significant reduction of overall foot traffic on site. The work hours that would typically occur in a condensed area is now taking place in a manufacturing facility, providing more space to work. This can help reduce the number of “struck by an object” accidents, the second most common construction accident. Struck by object accidents accounted for nearly 10% of all construction fatalities in 2016. The main protection against these incidents is to stay mindful of operating machinery and being aware of job site surroundings. Additionally, a reduction in the number of workers at a job site reduces the chances of the number four leading fatal accident, “Caught-In or -Between Hazards,” about 7% of the overall total.


Warehouse SafetyOverall, modular construction’s safety has a variety of benefits to offer to both employers and employees. Companies can save on worker’s compensation payouts, and employees have the peace of mind that accompanies a safer work environment. Employee safety is always a serious matter that should be pushed as a top priority for any workplace. The overall number of fatalities has been on a downward trend over the past 10 years, but in order to keep this trend going, new measures must be taken in order to minimize this risk.

We also manufacture a wide range of specialty safety structures. In addition to the construction industry, warehousing has its own safety risks associated with it. “In 2015, the transportation and warehousing industries had the second highest rate of injury per 100 full-time employees, and workers in these industries saw the most days away from work due to these injuries. Manufacturing was tied with construction with the fourth highest rate of injury.” Check out our post “8 Ways Panel Built Can Make Your Facility Safer” to learn more!


If you’re in need of a modular structure or would like to utilize modular construction as a part of your next construction job, contact us at info@panelbuilt.com or give us a call at 800.636.3873. We would love to help you with your project.

 

Advertisements

Sound Proof Wall Applications

Posted on

OSHA Decibel LevelsDecibel ScaleWhen working in a manufacturing or industrial environment, noise levels can vary from facility to facility from the dull sound of warehousing to high decibel, heaving machinery.  And depending on which environment an employee is in, the sound level can have quite an impact, especially for a prolonged period of time. Here’s a chart that shows OSHA’s allowable hours of work for noise levels 90 and above.  As you can see, once the noise level in a work environment goes above 90 decibels, the amount of continued work that is safe in this area is greatly decreased.

To the left is another chart that shows the typical decibel level in a variety of environments, everything from a Jet takeoff level to the decibel of a study room.  If we compare the two charts a construction site, which thousands of Americans work at every day lands in the 2-hour range on our OSHA sustainability chart then, a little higher up, there’s operating heavy equipment, which a worker would only be able to do for maximum 15 minutes at a time.  So, workers in these types of environments need some sort of relief from these high, sometimes chaotic noise levels and oftentimes a soundproof wall or enclosure is required in order to make this possible.  However, soundproof walls have a number of applications rather than a break room for employees in high decibel environments.  In this post, we will go through the variety of environments and applications that benefit from the use of soundproof wall panels.


Custom Modular Office

Heavy Machinery Office

Continuing with our thought above, facilities or job sites with heavy machinery can consistently have decibel levels from 90-120+ which can cause permanent hearing loss if exposed to for a prolonged period of time.  Therefore, any type of office area in this environment would ideally have some sound deadening properties or materials.  For Panel Built, this can include, but is not limited to, adding soundboard to the wall panel, increasing the overall thickness of the panel, or a combination of both of these.

In many cases, these heavy machinery offices are used for supervisors or managers of the facility.  Not only will these office space need to provide enough protection to provide safety for the person’s ears, but it will need to create an environment calm enough for the supervisor to focus and plan for the future.

 


Machine EnclosureMachine Enclosure

Our next application for our soundproof wall panels is for machinery enclosures. This application is similar to our scenario above, but with one slight difference. In heavy machinery offices, the goal of the soundproof wall is to keep the sound out of the office.  For a machine enclosure, the soundproof wall is going to keep the noise inside the enclosure.  The main benefit of enclosing your machinery is to provide noise reduction for a larger area in your facility.  Plus, the enclosure could protect the machinery from damage and help keep it at a stable temperature for peak performance.


Precision Measuring Rooms

Another unique application for our soundproof wall panels is their use in precision measuring rooms.  These rooms require an environment that is strictly controlled in nearly all aspects.  They must keep at a constant temperature, have little to no particles in the air, and must have little to no vibration due to noise.   The environment is so controlled because these measuring rooms use a CMM (or coordinate measuring machine) in order to exactly measure the “physical geometrical characteristics of an object.”  In order to do this accurately, the object being measured can not expand or contract due to heat or vibrate due to noise.  So, in this instance, soundproof panels are just one of the many requirements that must be met for this application.


Breakrooms

Warehouse Breakroom

This application most aligns with OSHA’s guidelines on decibels levels in a work environment.  A breakroom in a manufacturing, warehouse, or construction environment is typically the only way that a company will be able to fully satisfy these regulations.  However, having a comfortable break area away from the often-chaotic manufacturing floor can provide added benefits outside of just satisfying OSHA codes.  As we talked about in a blog post from 2016, “The Importance of Breakrooms in Your Warehouse,” a stressful and chaotic work environment can cause what is known as “brain fog” or brain fatigue in employees, creating a dulling in mental awareness.  Whenever an employee is affected by brain fatigue, the chances of workplace errors and injuries increase tenfold.  For this reason, providing employees with a calm, comfortable break area not only allows them to take a break and relax but could potentially reduce the number of workplace accidents that occur.


SCIF Rooms

This application uses our soundproof wall panels in a completely different setting and for an almost entirely different purpose.  A SCIF room (or Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility room) is a US Department of defense term for a fully secure room.  The purpose of this room to completely suppress and eliminate the possibility of data leakage from the inside of the room.  This is accomplished in a few different ways from the construction and layout of the room to the protocols of the people inside of the room.  For sound suppression, the SCIF rooms must meet ICD/ICS 705 Technical Specifications for STC 45 and STC 50 requirements.  Ultimately, these rooms have to be secure enough to keep people, data, and sound from involuntarily entering or leaving the room.


Each of our wall panels will have a varying amount of sound reduction depending on which of the panels you are looking at and how much sound reduction is needed for the project.  The STC rating of the structure or room is going to have the greatest impact on the reduction of sound inside/outside.  STC stands for Sound Transmission Class.  The higher the STC rating of the room, the more sound reduction the room will have.  To the right is a listing of the STC ratings for our panel types.

 

Weatherproofing Prefabricated Buildings

Posted on

When designing any type of facility or new construction, taking into account the surrounding climate will be very important in order to take proper precautions against future weather problems.  Things like overbearing heat, high winds, heavy rain, etc. can take a major toll on a structure that is not built to deal with these issues.  Panel Built provides a number of products and designs that can help you solve these problems in your facility.  Our salespeople and dealers have great experience in all of the tips and tricks to protect your employees and property.

In many cases, it can be very tough to determine which problems need addressing in your project.  Depending on your location, you could have a wide range of potential issues.  For this reason, our local Panel Built dealers make great liaisons between us and the end customer.  Our dealers are able to provide the customer with the proper information and most prevalent weatherproofing needed in that particular area.  Here are some of the most common ways we help with weatherproofing for our customers.


Toll Booth

Wind Loads

For example, in your project is located in an area prone to hurricanes, there will need to be special steps taken for exterior buildings to withstand a potential storm. Looking at this chart, the large portion of the Southeast falls in this category, and builders in these areas have to take this into account.  For Panel Built, we have to ensure that our guard shacks will be able to hold a wind load of 180 mph.  In a category 5 hurricane, there can expect to be sustained wind speeds anywhere from 160 mph to 190 mph, so the guard houses will be able to take some of the worst winds possible.

For our guard booth, to stand up to these high-speed winds, we have to construct a special panel.  Our guard booths come with a standard wind load rating of 90 mph.  However, by adding steel channel to the panels, we can increase that rating.  For 110 mph ratings, 2 steel channels are needed per panel.  For 120 mph ratings, 3 channels are needed per panel, and so on. By adding the steel channel, the panels themselves become studier, allowing them to withstand a stronger wind load.


Rain Guards

For our exterior buildings, rain guards can be very convenient especially in high precipitation areas. These rain guards protect the occupants from getting rained on during their daily routine.  Seen most often on toll booths and guard houses, these are placed along the tops of the windows that are often open and closing.  This will provide an extra shield to keep the rain off the booth occupants. These rain guards can also be placed over doors and other openings.


HVACsGuard House with HVAC

Another point that is vital for the weatherproofing of your project is the HVAC system that will be installed in it.  There are some projects where heating and cooling will not be an issue, but these are few and far between.  Most projects will require it.  Especially when looking at an exterior structure in a harsh environment (either hot or cold) a strong HVAC unit should be considered.

For example, a guard house placed in Florida.  These buildings will typically be designed to have a 360-degree field of vision.  That means there will be windows all the way around the structure.  It will be very easy for heat to enter into the structure, and difficult to escape. During a Florida summer with heat around 100o F, the guard house would be more akin to an oven. For this reason, a constant, high level of airflow through the guard booth would be vital to the occupants.

 


Machine Enclosures

 

Equipment EnclosureIn some instances, a company will need to provide weatherproofing or soundproofing for equipment or machinery in their facility.  A company can decide to do this for a number of different reasons.  First, if they have just purchased new machinery, they might want to ensure they get the most out of it that they can.  If the new machinery is stationed outside, this will require that the company build an enclosure around the machinery.  This machine enclosure will offer protection to the machinery against the elements and potentially prevent damage from water or extreme temperatures.  In the long run, these enclosures offer protection to companies’ investments in machinery and equipment.

Similarly, machine enclosures often have very strict HVAC requirements.  Oftentimes, the machine will need a specific environment to run optimally.  This can be affected by things like temperature and humidity both of which can be altered by an appropriate HVAC system.   Having the right sized HVAC system is important for this environment.  If the system is too big for the enclosure, it will not be running long enough to regulate the humidity in the air, and if it is too small, it will not effectively regulate the temperature.

 


Severe Weather Plan

Finally, no matter how well a facility is weatherproofed, there are still additional steps to be taken. No weatherproofing is complete without a thorough severe weather plan.  Having a severe weather plan includes having a clear tornado safety route and plan in place in a pre-designated safety area.  These plans should be posted throughout the facility with occasional drills in order to promote plan understanding and readiness.  Having a severe weather plan includes having an emergency medical kit on hand at all times for any potential injuries that may occur.  In the case of a tornado, ensure your pre-designated safety area is in your bottom floor, away from windows and corners.

7 Applications for your Modular Cleanroom

Posted on

Cleanrooms provide an environment that has grown more important to manufacturing, especially as engineering has become more precise over time.  The design of many products, equipment, and manufacturing parts require precision cutting and measurements to ensure perfect performance.   Therefore, the environment these pieces are manufactured in needs to be highly controlled to make sure they flawlessly crafted.  In this scenario, a cleanroom environment has incredibly low levels of pollutants (dust, microbes, chemical vapors, aerosol particles, etc.) per cubic meter.  The number of allowable pollutants per cubic meter is how cleanrooms are typically classified, ranging from ISO 1 to ISO 9 (with ISO 9 essentially being standard room air).   Overall, these rooms have multiple applications and in this post, we will go over some of their unique and often overlooked functions.


CMM Rooms

A CMM room (or a coordinate measuring machine room) requires a controlled environment that is completely free of dust particles or other contaminants.  This is because coordinate measuring machines are tasked with measuring the physical geometric characteristics of an object through the use of a probe that may be “mechanical, optical, laser, or white light.”  The machine uses these probes to make contact with or bounce off of the object to measure its size and position with micrometer precision typically, because the machine is so precise, any type of dust or airborne particle landing on the object or moving through the air between the probe and the object, could completely throw off the measurement.  Oftentimes, these machines are used in a manufacturing environment to test a part or assembly against the objects intended design.


Microelectronics Manufacturing

In the world of microelectronics, the code for production includes some of the strictest standards of environmental control of all manufacturing types. For microelectronics, there is an extremely small margin for error in their manufacturing process.  Even the smallest imperfection due to pollutants could create a critical error in the end product.  Because of the sensitivity of this product type, microelectronics are almost exclusively manufactured in a high-level cleanroom environment.   The controlled level of contamination that a cleanroom provides allows for more standardized product manufacturing and fewer mistakes in the overall production process.


Pharmaceutical Packaging

The purpose and emphasis of pharmaceutical packaging is to keep the products away from any contamination whatsoever.  The contamination of pharmaceutical products can happen in one of three ways: physical contamination which refers to the particles a cleanroom would protect you from, chemical contamination, and biological contamination.  Although a cleanroom cannot prevent all of these contamination types by itself, it plays an important role in ensuring a Pharmaceutical company is doing whatever it takes to ensure the highest level of care possible is taken to ensure the safety of their products.


Gown Rooms

In many cleanroom applications, a gown room will be required as a sort of buffer zone between the operating cleanroom and the outside.  In most situations where a gown room is needed, it is because the type of work involved requires very strict contamination levels.  The gown rooms are typically equipped with a sterile changing station for the employees and an “air shower” (Air showers are specialized enclosed antechambers which are incorporated as entryways of cleanrooms and other controlled environments to reduce particle contamination. Source: Wikipedia).  With this gown room acting as a buffer, the actual classified cleanroom will be able to function under proper ISO specifications.


Grow Rooms

One of the most important aspects of a modular cleanroom is that they provide a consistent, quality controlled environment, a type of environment that can be repeated again and again.  This is important to the manufacturing and cultivation of goods because it ensures a consistent quality of product.  This same principle applies to cultivation and growing of sensitive plants or crops that require controlled conditions.  These rooms provide the proper ventilation (the correct combination of carbon monoxide and oxygen) to provide the optimal growth rate of the crop.  Plus, the rooms can be equipped with heat lamps in order to keep a constant, growth-friendly temperature for the plants.


Powder Coating

As a powder coating enclosure, cleanrooms play two large roles in improving the quality of service.  First, similar to our previous applications, the cleanroom will provide a consistent environment that will be low with pollutants and contamination.  For powder coating, contaminants can become stuck between the powder coating and the material being powder coated, creating an uneven finish on the final product.  Second, the cleanroom system can provide constant positive pressure on the enclosure, meaning there’s a constant influx of air into the room.  This inflow of air keeps the powder coating particles inside the enclosure, keeping them from in contact with any items outside of the enclosure.


Vivarium

Finally, a cleanroom provides the proper environmental controls to house a vivarium or an enclosure used for keeping plants and animals for observation or research.  Vivariums can change a lot in shape and size due to their function.  For our cleanroom application, your vivarium will typically be more large scale and scientific application.  The main environmental controls that go into a vivarium will include the lighting, temperature, humidity, ventilation, and openings.  All of these factors must be highly controlled and consistent for the vivarium to correctly operate.  For instance, plants and animals from a tropical climate will be more accustomed to highly levels of light, temperature, and humidity than ones from a sub-arctic climate.  Therefore, these variables in habitat must be taken into account when placed in a vivarium.  Not only will a modular cleanroom allow you to keep these variables under control, it will also allow you to create an enclosure specially designed for your application.


Overall, modular cleanrooms have a number of applications and can be utilized in a number of scenarios that required a consistently controlled environment.  If you have any questions about modular cleanrooms or if you would like to start a modular cleanroom project, you can call us at 8006363873, email us at info@panelbuilt.com, or visit our request a quote page.

Advantages of Modular Substation Buildings

Posted on

Substation buildings and enclosures require very strict standard and code requirements due to the high levels of electricity flowing through the equipment.  Panel Built’s modularized substation buildings not only meet all of these high standards but will meet them swiftly and affordably.  Our exterior modular enclosures are entrusted with preserving many different types of equipment and machinery, from high-grade water pumps to laser work areas.  Therefore, our areas can be highly specialized to fit nearly any environment or application.  In this instance, the building would need to have the structural integrity to properly house the substation, however, modular construction can allow for added benefits over tradition substation enclosures.


Why a Modular Substation Building?

With our unique building system, the panels for the substation will be constructed in a controlled, manufacturing environment; this manufacturing process allows for a few advantages.  The first advantage is that this controlled environment allows for the protection of the substation building materials. In traditional construction, a building or enclosure is construction in an open area, exposed to the elements.  If a storm happens to come through during the process, the precipitation could soak into the building materials, potentially harming their strength and durability. Also, the controlled manufacturing ensures that every wall panel produced exactly the same, protecting the panels from construction errors.

Another benefit Panel Built offers to substation manufacturers is our ability to construct an enclosure to their exact specifications.  Although our wall panels are pre manufactured, Panel Built designs and engineers every structure exactly to the customer’s specifications and requirements. In fact, one of the greatest advantages of our product is its customization.  In the instance of a modular substation building, the enclosure can be designed to fit into the preexisting architecture of the substation (for high-end applications), or it can be made as simply, and affordably as possible.  Since we place such a high emphasis on customer satisfaction, we even offer to help in the design process in order to help you find the best solution to you space needs.

Substation BuildingTurn-Key Substation Building Solutions

Panel Built’s substation buildings provide all of the benefits of modular construction with the added bonus of providing a turnkey product.  Time is a luxury most companies cannot afford.  We understand this problem, which is why our turnkey solutions allow you to complete your project as quickly as possible with little to no downtime.  Plus, only having to deal with one company to finish your job reduces the overall hassle of the project, minimizing the coordination effort needed to get everything done. We ship to all areas of the United States for our projects and offer corrosion resistant, paintable walls, perfect for a substation. Every step of the way from designing, engineering, manufacturing, shipping, and installation Panel Built will ensure the entire project goes a smoothly as possible.

Proven Strength

Probably the most important task for these buildings is always holding their structural integrity. With the equipment and transformers inside, any type of weakness in the building could cause a total failure of the entire system. Therefore, only the strongest buildings and the best materials may be used.  Before your modular building is installed into its site, the structure must first be shipped, sometimes fully intact. Because you cannot always ensure smooth sailing and perfect road conditions, our buildings are designed to withstand the rigors of transportation and assembly. Therefore, modular buildings must inherently be built stronger in order for them to retain their structural integrity through and after transportation.


The Substation Enclosure Benefits

Oftentimes, the most critical aspect of a substation building project is the lead-time from start to finish. With a modular substation building, you can shorten some of the processes in this realm. First off, the construction phase and the site development phase of the project are allowed to occur concurrently, leaving only the installation left for the project to be completed. Because these two parts are done at the same time, modular construction projects can be completed 30% – 50% quicker than their conventional construction counterparts. Secondly, since construction takes place in an assembly-line, factory-like setting, there is a smaller chance of unexpected delays in the construction process, allowing you to better control the project timeline.

Substation EnclosureOverall, using modular construction to help aid in the completion of your substation project can produce benefits in a number of avenues.  In fact, based on a survey of contractors from McGraw-Hill Construction, of the contractors that utilized prefabricated construction in their projects, 75% saw improvement in project schedule, 74% saw decreases in project budget, and 46% saw an increase in site safety. Plus, Panel Built modular buildings are 100% portable, allowing you flexibility in the future if needed.  Due to its assembly line mentality, the manufacturing process is streamlined, leaving only the installation left to complete on site.  For a substation building, this means when all the equipment is put in place, the substation enclosure can be installed immediately, leaving minimal downtime for you.


If you have a substation building or substation enclosure question or inquiry, just call our sales team at 800-636-3873,  email us at info@panelbuilt.com , or Request a Quote.  For your substation needs, we strive not just to meet all of your quality goals, but to far exceed them.

How to Improve Your Warehouse Mezzanine

Posted on

For most companies looking to expand the room in their warehouse facility, the mezzanine platform will have a distinctive purpose to that facility. Whether the structure will function as a work platform, storage area, or if it is going to hold equipment, it will require different specifications and features in order to function properly. A mezzanine in an area with heavy foot traffic may need more safety features, or a storage platform could require a vertical reciprocating conveyor to move inventory back and forth. All in all, there are many ways to optimize your mezzanine to fit all of your unique needs.


Resindek Mezzanine Flooring1. Finding the Hand Rail to Fit Your Needs

Panel Built mezzanine and storage platforms will provide you with a number of different hand railing options to best fit your application. Depending on the use of your warehouse mezzanine system, you may have certain regulations or codes with which to build your mezzanine. If your mezzanine is open to the public or is in an area with high traffic, there will be higher more strict building codes placed on it. In these high traffic areas, IBC railing provides rails of 42” high and 34” high on both sides of the mezzanine’s stairwell. While OSHA standards require railings on open sides of the stairwells and a handrail on a side, preferably the right side descending at 34” high.


2. Utilizing Barrier Railing

For all facilities, safety is one of, if not the most important rules. Barrier railing, also known as safety railing, provides you with some extra assurance, especially in areas with heavy forklift traffic. The Barrier railing is constructed of high strength steel and is designed to withstand heavy impacts. When placed around the columns of your warehouse mezzanine, the railing will help prevent damage to your recent investment.


3. Safety GatesSwing Gate

 

For mezzanines used as storage platforms, safety gates provide you with a secure option to safely move inventory on and off the level with ease. The main benefit of pivot gates is their ability to always have the mezzanine closed off from the facility floor. The gate’s arms will only allow one side of the gate to be open at a time, protecting your employees. This safety net allows for your facility workers to operate the gate and transport inventory with peace of mind. Panel Built also offers a number of additional gate options for your mezzanine. Swing gates, lift out gates, and slide gates allow for extreme convenience while moving inventory, just having to push the gate open or remove a section of the mezzanine railing.


4. Wire Partitioning and Lockers

Many companies take advantage of the extra space a warehouse mezzanine provides by creating a locker room like environment underneath the structure. The wire partitioning allows for you to keep a visual on the contents of the storage unit, while still keeping them protected. With an up against the wall mezzanine, the wire lockers can be placed against the wall, occupying all the vertical space between the warehouse floor and the bottom of the mezzanine deck. This provides you with maximum storage space, while only taking up minimal room on the warehouse floor.


5. Vertical Reciprocating ConveyorsVertical Reciprocating Conveyor

Similar to an elevator system, a vertical reciprocating conveyor travels up and down to transport objects from one level to the next. However, unlike an elevator, a VRC is not constructed for human transportation, but strictly inventory and goods. This conveyor system offers the quick and convenient transportation of goods from your mezzanine level to your warehouse floor, without the use of a forklift. No matter what inventory needs to be transported, the VRC allows you to move it in the easiest and most consistent way possible. Your VRC can even include added features in order to perfectly fit the need of your warehouse. We can add additional railing, chains, or wire mesh to the sides of the platform in order to ensure the greatest safety measures possible. These conveyor systems provide the most benefit to your warehouse mezzanine system when it is being used as a storage platform, rather than an equipment or work platform.


6. Modular Offices

In many situations, warehouses or manufacturing facilities need to add an office area to provide a controlled and calm work area away from the warehouse floor. In these instances, a warehouse mezzanine can be the perfect structure to place a modular office on top of, or underneath it. The benefit of adding a modular office to your mezzanine is, of course, that you do not have to take up any unnecessary space on your facility floor. This type of office is perfect for a supervisor type, who would need to have a workspace overlooking the warehouse floor. It can also be manufactured to reduce noise, creating a calmer working environment away from the facility. For this reason, a modular office on a mezzanine is one of our most popular modular construction options for its convenient location and its ability to keep space free on the warehouse floor.


7. Ladder OptionsCage Ladder

Depending on the purpose of your mezzanine, using a ladder system as your main entrance could provide your warehouse with certain benefits. If the mezzanine system is going to primarily be used as a storage or work platform, a ladder system could be a viable option, or if combined with a pivot gate or VRC, they would even work with a storage mezzanine. The main benefit of utilizing a ladder in place of a stair system is that the ladder system is going to take up less area on your warehouse floor. If your mezzanine system needs to maximize its total usable area, the ladder system would best allow you to accomplish that. However, with the ladder system, more safety precautions must be taken. For this reason, most companies will use a caged ladder to reduce the chance of employee accidents or if a worker does fall, they have a chance of catching themselves or pinning themselves against the ladder’s cage.


8. Mezzanine Decking Options

Advantech

The most common of our warehouse mezzanine decking options, Advantech is a high-quality flooring material that has properties similar to plywood and Oriented Strand Board. However, it provides advanced strength, stiffness, and moisture resistance. This type of decking is considered the most economical option of the materials that we offer.

ResinDek

Similar to our Advantech option, ResinDek provides a higher density composite flooring recommended for mezzanines require a solid floor, subject to heavy loads from the use of pallet jacks, carts or dollies. This option is typically installed over 20g corrugated steel decking and has a load capacity of up to 2000 lbs. Its surface is skid resistant and easy to clean.

Steel GratingMezzanine Decking

This type of flooring is preferred by many warehouses, in many applications, due to its insurance implications. Welded grating, a common choice in waste management, mining, and food service industries, allows for air, light, and water to pass through the deck surface

Diamond Plate

If durability is a serious factor in your warehouse mezzanine decision, you may want to consider a diamond plate floor. Heavy duty steel tread plate (diamond plate) is generally installed over Advantech. Advantech is mounted over corrugated steel deck to provide greater durability with higher point load and wheel load capacities. It also enables a quiet floor for the work environment as opposed to having diamond plate directly over a steel deck.

Concrete

If you are looking for the most durable decking option possible, concrete should be your first choice. With a high point load and minimal transmission of noise through the deck, concrete should be used in high capacity industrial and military applications where the mezzanine is considered to be permanent.


Overall, when taking all of these options into consideration, you should be able to design a warehouse mezzanine system with all the accessories to perfectly fit your facility’s needs. The most important aspect of the entire project is understanding how your new mezzanine will fit in your facility and your facility’s work processes. If your mezzanine is functioning primarily as a storage platform, a gate or vertical reciprocating conveyor may be all you need to fit your facility. However, more intricate designs and more unique purposes may require a combination of these accessories. Ultimately, if you can dream up your own perfect warehouse mezzanine system, we can help you build it.

Click here to request a free quote

and get your Modular Project started!

Modular Office Wall Panel Types

Posted on

Although Panel Built’s typical modular office uses our standard vinyl covered gypsum wall panel, we offer a wide variety of different modular office wall panel materials, each with their own specific benefits. We provide all of these different options because we pride ourselves on always delivering the perfect structure for our customers’ needs. We have manufactured modular warehouse offices and exterior buildings for a variety of unique purposes, climates, conditions, and work environments.


Fire Rated Wall Panels

So, why would your facility need a fire rated modular office?
Insurance companies will often require that buildings that come in contact with flammable materials receive higher fire ratings. If your warehouse holds flammable liquids (any liquid with a flashpoint at or below 199.4 degrees), your insurance company could require any modular office building to hold a specific fire rating for liability purposes.

One Hour Fire Rated PanelBut more importantly, in a facility with a higher level of risk, these fire rated wall panels provide exceeding protection to your employees. Not only will the wall itself provide valuable protection, but it can also provide a comfortable work setting for employees or housing for equipment.
To receive the 1 Hour Fire Rating, these panels were tested by a certified independent laboratory and the results met the ASTM Method E119-00a Fire Test for a fire endurance rating of 60 minutes. The panels are blasted with flames for one hour followed by a blast from a fire hose. The wall must remain intact to receive the 1 Hour Fire Rating, and these structures meet the punishing standards.
Typically, these fire resistant panels will consist of 26 gauge stucco embossed steel with a 5/8” Type X Gypsum board behind it and 2” mineral wool core. However, these panels can be modified to have a vinyl covered gypsum exterior per customer request.


Steel Wall PanelsSteel Gypsum Wall Panel

Typically, one of our standard modular offices will be built with a gypsum interior layer and a gypsum exterior layer. However, sometimes having steel paneling over the gypsum board will provide a better fit for your facility. That is because these panel systems provide an extra layer of protection for your modular office, allowing for incredible durability. This specific type of wall panel can come in handy in a warehouse or facility that sees a lot of foot traffic or forklifts moving back and forth. By being able to absorb more damage than your typical modular office, these specialized panels can actually save you money later on in potential repair costs. These steel panels come in three basic colors, white, saddle tan, and gray, but can be powder coated to a number of different color options.


Gypsum BallisticBallistic Rated Paneling

 

For both interior and exterior modular buildings, Panel Built offers a ballistic rated option for companies that face a high threat level or the do business in a more hazardous sector. Typically, our ballistic rated panels are sought after for the bullet resistance ratings (either NIJ or UL). These exterior buildings are often used to house guards or military officers as a form of access control for a facility or military base.
However, these wall panels have can also be utilized in other beneficial ways. In certain laboratory testing environments, our ballistic panel with gypsum board provides you with the aesthetics of an office environment with the added protection of ballistic fiberglass. This type of shelter will safeguard the outer environment in an area where projectiles or potentially combustible materials are being tested.


Gypsum with SoundStop BoardSoundProof Wall Panel

Our standard 3” gypsum/gypsum wall panel with a polystyrene core has a sound transmission coefficient or STC of 31 which provides a good amount of sound dampening for your new office space. If you are placing your new modular office building in a manufacturing environment or just a particularly noisy facility in general, adding the SoundStop board to your wall panel can improve the soundproofing even more. 1/2” of the SoundStop board itself provides an STC of 23, providing a noticeable noise reduction to the inside of the structure.  As the typical warehouse has a decibel level of around 70, and manufacturing environments can have a range of 80-100, some additional soundproofing may be necessary for your office location, in order to pass OSHA requirements.


Fiberglass Reinforced Panel FRPFiberglass Reinforced Panels

Fiberglass Reinforced Panels consist of two .08” sheets of FRP and a 2.8” polystyrene core. This type of wall paneling will provide a high degree of flexibility, chemical resistance, easiness to clean, and scratch resistance. Because of this wide array of benefits, FRP has a number unique applications. They are most commonly used in kitchen, bathroom, hospital, and classroom settings for their ability to be easily cleaned. Due to their non-porous surface, they can be cleaned with a combination of water, a mild cleaner, and a sponge, providing for easy cleanup in most situations.

For any further questions about our modular wall panels or our modular offices in general, you can contact one of our sales reps, request a quote online, or email us at info@panelbuilt.com with your inquiries.