Best Material for Construction: Building materials such as stone, bricks, and concrete are utilized to construct structures. Each material possesses unique properties that distinguishes it from the others. In other words, because all these materials have distinct pros and cons, the best material choice should give a balanced set of properties ranging from strength to durability, availability, cost, protectiveness, and finally, ease of application.
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Natural stone is the most fundamental among all natural building materials. Persons around the world have combined them to create houses that are suited to their local climates. Generally, stone is used as the fundamental structural component of buildings.
For as long as the history records, stone structures have existed. It is the most durable material ever used in construction and is readily available. In addition, stones are significantly durable. It never rots, corrodes, or burns easily. It lends a sense of strength and permanence to the structure of buildings.
Generally, stone buildings can be found in most big cities, and some civilizations, such as Egypt’s Pyramids, were entirely constructed of stone. Because stone is such a dense material, it provides excellent protection. Its primary disadvantage is its weight, which is significantly greater than that of bricks and concrete. As a result, the expenses of transporting from the quarry to the job site will be high. Also, constructing stone structures is an excruciatingly time-consuming endeavor.
By contrast, bricks are typically made of clay. Clay brick blocks are formed in moulds by the extrusion of clay thru a moulding device followed be cutting into the required size. These heat-hardened blocks are significantly more flame retardant and moisture resistant than concrete, especially in densely populated cities.
Because of its higher flame retardant property, it provides good resistance to heat damage due to fires, that is beneficial for protection. In addition, its moisture resistance, which prevents water particles from eroding the brick’s strength, as water from various sources, such as rain, disrupts the brick’s solid-bonds. This will result in a relatively long life for the building.
Bricks are highly resistant to compressive force, which is beneficial for the construction of skyscrapers. Also, bricks are well-known for their ability to fit regular shapes, most notably polygonal shapes. However, while bricks are durable, they are not as durable as stone. Also, bricks are not as expensive as stone or as inexpensive as concrete; they cost in the middle.
Concrete is made by mixing water, cement, and aggregate. After mixing with water and placement, concrete solidifies and hardens due to a chemical reaction called cement hydration. Water goes into reaction with the cement, which bonds all the ingredients together, forming a stone-like material that gives the structure its strength.
Additionally, it is frequently applied in structures due to its relatively less duration of operation. Due to the fluidity of concrete before it solidifies, it can be shaped into a variety of shapes, which aids in the design of complex shapes for buildings. Also, the raw materials used to manufacture it are more readily available than those used to manufacture bricks.
Concrete provides a relatively high compressive strength, which means it can withstand a great deal of compression. However, concrete has a relatively low tensile strength, it is frequently reinforced with steel reinforcement. In the modern era, concrete has been the dominant building material. While concrete is inexpensive and durable, it is considered to be less strong and durable than brick and stone structures, but this does not alleviate all the benefits that are achieved through the use of concrete.
In hot days, concretes are more susceptible to stretching forces caused by thermal expansion. As a result, as it stretches beyond its breaking point, it cracks. Design should consider such thermal stress if concrete is expected to perform in such a hot weather.
In comparison to stone and bricks, concrete exposed to long-term forces is vulnerable to creep, which can lead to a building to be unsafe. However, if concrete was designed to perform against creep, good performance can be attained.
Stone can be used as a building material. Stone is the strongest, but it requires a significant amount of energy, time, and expenses. Also, it is not as popular as it was in current days so you may not easily find skilled labor to work with stone, that is of course after you have decided to go for the extra expenses.
For the required service life of a regular structure which typically ranges about 50 years, bricks and concrete can provide a great performance if properly designed and maintained throughout the service life.