Timber-Concrete Composite (TCC) is a technology which focuses on optimizing performance and material requirements by engineering a structural connection between timber and concrete components. Structural efficiency is gained by creating composite action between the two materials. This hybridization enables designers to reduce cross sections, increase spans, and streamline structures in pursuit of sustainable architecture.
As with other panelized products we have taken a comprehensive approach which encourages the integration of electrical and mechanical systems into structural panels with architecturally exposed timber and concrete. These panels reduce the proportion of the carbon-intensive concrete components by allowing timber to carry the load.
Timber-concrete composite panels can be used as floor panels or wall panels. Either timber panels or beams can be used, and there are many methods of creating composite action between the timber and concrete.
Precast vs On-site Pour
The concrete slab can be poured on-site or precast in a shop environment. On-site pours are generally preferred as they create a structural diaphragm without requiring additional topping or post-fix connections between panels. Pouring the concrete on-site also reduces the weight of the prefab timber panels, making pick times and erection faster.
Mass Timber Panels vs Beams
Either solid mass timber panels (e.g. NLT, CLT, LSL) or engineered wood beams spaced at centres (Glulam, PSL, LVL) can be used as the support for the concrete topping. The choice between the two systems is generally predicated on considerations of servicing strategies.
Composite Connector Choice
There are many options here including bespoke connectors. One common option is to use diagonally inclined screws half-drilled into the timber elements, left protruding into the concrete topping, creating the composite action. There are also many proprietary connectors available, including HBV mesh connectors.
Our TCC Fabrication Process
We fabricate or procure the mass timber panels required, mill any end conditions or openings and install the composite connectors. If precast panels are desired, we pour the concrete in our shop to achieve factory quality. If the concrete is site-poured, we typically do not undertake this.