January 8, 2023
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HJ3 Testimonial - Commercial Building Reinforcement

Enhancing High-Rise Buildings with GFRC and HJ3's Carbon Fiber Solutions

In the early 1970s, commercial high-rise buildings embraced innovation by incorporating Glass Fiber Reinforced Concrete (GFRC) panels into their façades. Compared to traditional pre-cast concrete panels, GFRC panels offered remarkable advantages due to their lightweight and slender construction, reducing superimposed loads on the structures. However, these pioneering GFRC façades faced a challenge; their long-span design resulted in significant flexing under wind loads, leading to severe cracking and water leaks.

HJ3's cutting-edge carbon strengthening system emerged as the solution to confine cracks and protect the panels from further water infiltration. As wind loads took their toll on the building's GFRC exterior, causing fatigue and cracking, HJ3's innovative approach came to the rescue.

The issue lay in the long-span construction of the panels, which left them vulnerable to cracking. Additionally, the panels were anchored to the building using a rigid system, allowing for no panel movement. Consequently, the GFRC panels began to crack, facilitating moisture penetration and mold growth.

The restoration process involved a meticulous approach. First, the surface of the GFRC panels received a thorough cleaning through high-pressure water blasting. All cracks were skillfully injected with a high-strength epoxy, reinforcing the structural integrity. HJ3's carbon fabric and resins were pre-cut and pre-batched, streamlining the installation process and enabling precise coverage of corners and expansion joints.

Upon installing the carbon repair system, a UV-resistant gray top coat was meticulously applied to meet the client's aesthetic expectations, ensuring the structure's appeal was maintained.

HJ3's carbon fiber system effectively fortified the existing GFRC panels, empowering them to resist wind loads, cracking, and fatigue. Furthermore, the material served as an efficient waterproofing membrane, preventing any future moisture penetration. A significant cost savings of $3 million was achieved when compared to the expense of replacing the entire GFRC facade with new panels. Remarkably, residents were able to continue living in the building throughout the entire repair process, minimizing disruption and inconvenience.

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