Innovation is developing during the ecological and energy transition to promote sustainable construction across Europe and internationally. Emergent solutions target energy and environmental performance and quality and safety of buildings, while protecting the health and comfort of inhabitants. CSTB assists professionals by supporting this development from concept to market. The Building Test Expo Show is a major event, which is to be held in Brussels from June 17 to 19. This international meeting focuses on themes such as large scientific and technical facilities, news about European assessment and certification, research projects related to the construction challenges of tomorrow.
From June 17 to 19 this year, CSTB invites companies involved in construction to visit its stand (D9) at the Building Test Expo show dedicated to technical state-of-the-art solutions for tests and certification in construction. CSTB experts will listen to professionals. They will present major scientific and technical facilities and assessment services to them, dedicated to the development of high quality innovation. A conference will also be held on International HQE Certification.
CSTB's major facilities enable global approaches and new investigation scales, as a result of the range of services that they provide. A close-up on Vulcain and The Labe.
Vulcain: a unique laboratory in Europe, dedicated to research on fire resistance of innovative structures. This platform is designed for the development of extreme temperature loads and unconventional mechanical loads, and contributes to reinforcing fire safety for tomorrow in a quickly changing building sector.
The Labe (European Acoustic Laboratory for Buildings): this major very high performance acoustic measurement facility can be used to test products used in buildings and in industry according to European standards. Nine stations installed on 2 000 m² are dedicated to tests in order to satisfy needs as quickly as possible.
Assessment is a voluntary approach, but for non-traditional techniques it is often the only means recognised by everyone concerned on the market to determine the degree of confidence essential for smooth execution of a construction project. The Technical Assessment and the European Technical Assessment are two assessment procedures. CSTB is appointed to investigate requests.
The Technical Assessment is used to provide independent and objective information about the predictable behaviour and durability of structures made using an innovative product or system applied in a specific application field.
The European Technical Assessment (ETA), that succeeded the European Technical Approval in July 2013, is a first step in producing a declaration of performance and applying CE marking on a product not covered or incompletely covered by a harmonised European standard.
"Develop and promote a global sustainable construction assessment system taking account of the local context, the climate and construction habits: this is the purpose of the HQE International Certification" according to Bruno Mesureur, CSTB’s Manager of Standardisation, Marketing and International Development. "The beHQE movement brings together players from around the whole world - architects, engineers, operators, investors, end users, consumers, institutions - around an improvement objective and an approach based on performance-driven standards. The HQE association provides its recognised know-how in quality of the environment and is continuously innovating so that international HQE™ certification reference systems are applicable for the buildings of tomorrow. Cerway is the single international certification operator for HQE buildings, to assist professionals in their approach".
The 6th edition of the European Conference of the ECTP (European Construction Technology Platform) on research, development and innovation in Construction will be held on the Building Test Expo show site from June 17 to 19. This year, the emphasis will be on the future of the Built Environment.
"The built environment (homes, offices, transport infrastructures, cultural places, etc.) is where we spend more than 80% of our time" says Luc Bourdeau, Secretary General of ECTP and E2BA, Manager for European Affairs at CSTB's Research and Development Directorate. "The quality of the built environment therefore directly impacts the quality of our life. But the built environment is also crucial to many industries and services. Consequently, it plays an important role in many economic sectors. Challenges such as management of energy, the impact on the environment, safety and more generally quality of buildings are becoming increasingly important and need to be tackled within an integrated approach. Socio-cultural aspects such as our usages, life styles, history and cultural sensitivities are also essential. Everything related to how the built environment functions must be taken into account in changes to construction and development. How can these different criteria be reconciled? The 6te ECTP conference focuses on this subject so that progress with the built environment can be made over the next 25 years".
EOTA is composed of about fifty Technical Assessment Bodies that accompany innovation in construction across Europe. This organisation will organise its coming General Assembly on the Building Test Expo Show site in Brussels. A key meeting providing an opportunity for collective continuity in terms of implementation of the European Regulation for Construction Products.
"During the last three years, and more precisely since July 1 2013, EOTA and its members have redefined their working rules to fully satisfy the expectations of the European Regulation for Construction Products (EU Regulation No. 305/2011) and enable its specific implementation" says Yannick Lemoigne, Head of CSTB's Certification Unit and President of EOTA. "The EOTA General Assembly adopts good practice rules for the organisation".
"At the moment, our Members have already delivered more than 150 European Technical Assessments, and the first European Assessment Documents were recently adopted in April 2014. EOTA and each of its members are clearly positioned to provide assistance with marketing and free circulation of non-standardised innovative products. Their combined action enables preliminary standardisation of product performance".
EOTA is an international non-profit making association based in Brussels. EOTA coordinates actions of its members, Technical Assessment Bodies, according to EU Regulation No. 305/2011 (CPR). It also develops and adopts European Assessment Documents. The objective is to define harmonised methods across Europe and to determine performances of non-standardised construction products.
The mission of each Technical Assessment Body is to reply to a request by a manufacturer who would like to have a European Technical Assessment for a product, with the purpose of producing a Declaration of Performance for the product and to apply CE marking to confirm that the product complies with this declaration.