Construction Methods and Techniques

Building methods, construction processes, and industries engaged in putting together and building structures, especially those that serve as places to live. Building is a long-standing human endeavour. The necessity for a controlled environment to mitigate the effects of climate change was the initial driving force behind everything. By creating built shelters, humanity were able to adapt to a wide range of climates and spread throughout the world. Numerous trends have shaped the history of construction. One of these is the materials’ growing sustainability.

Animal skins, leaves, and branches were among the perishable building materials used in the past. Brick, concrete, metals, and plastics were the last synthetic materials to be employed, followed by stronger natural materials like wood, stone, and clay. Another is the desire for bigger, taller buildings, which has been made feasible by the development of stronger materials as well as an understanding of how different materials react and may be used to one’s advantage.

The ability to precisely regulate air temperature, light and noise levels, humidity, odours, air speed, and other elements that impact human comfort is a third significant trend that relates to the level of control exerted over the interior environment of buildings. An additional pattern to note is the evolution of the energy utilised in construction, from human muscle power to the formidable machines of today.

Building Materials and Technologies:

At first, human shelters were probably temporary, lasting only a few days or weeks. But over time, even makeshift buildings developed into designs as sophisticated as igloos. With the introduction of agriculture and the subsequent tendency of people to settle down for extended periods of time, stronger constructions gradually started to emerge. I

nitially, shelters served as somewhere to live, but later on, they also served other purposes including storing food and hosting rituals in different structures. The line between architecture and building started to blur as certain structures acquired symbolic significance in addition to their functional worth. The building process is complicated right now.

Many building goods and systems are available, with their main focus being on specific building types or markets. Building design is a highly structured process that involves research institutes studying the characteristics and capabilities of materials, code authorities adopting and enforcing safety regulations, and design professionals identifying the needs of users and creating buildings that address those demands.

The manufacturing of construction systems and products, the artisans who assemble them on site, the contractors who hire and oversee the artisans, and the consultants who specialise in areas like construction management, quality control, and construction insurance comprise the highly organised construction process. With the ability to create a highly varied physical environment to satisfy a wide range of societal requirements, construction today represents a significant aspect of industrial culture, a manifestation of its diversity and complexity, and a gauge of its mastery over natural forces.

Planning and Designing Residential Structures

This article looks at the evolution of building today after first tracing its history. See architecture for more on how architectural aesthetics are treated. A more comprehensive examination of the historical progression can be found in the following references: art and architecture, Anatolian; art and architecture, Arabic; Egyptian; Iranian; art and architecture; art and architecture, Mesopotamian; Syrian-Palestinian; African; art and architecture, oceanic; western; Central Asian; East Asian; Islamic; arts, Native Americans; South Asian; and arts, Southeast Asia. Pupils get a 67% discount! Find out more about our exclusive prices for students right now.

The development of building history

Stone Age construction was primitive.

Late Stone Age hunter-gatherers, who roamed over a large area in quest of food, erected the first temporary shelters that occur in the archaeological record. Circular rings of stones that are thought to have been a part of these shelters may be seen in excavations at several pre-12,000 BCE sites in Europe.

They might have erected rudimentary wooden pole houses or constructed thick tent walls from animal pelts, which were probably supported by centre poles. A tent serves as an example of the fundamental environmental control aspects that are relevant to building.

Cold water on human skin absorbs body heat; the tent forms a membrane to shed rain and snow. In addition to decreasing wind speed, the membrane also encourages heat loss from the air above human skin. It regulates heat transfer by keeping warm air inside during cold weather and preventing the sun’s heat-producing rays from entering. It offers visual concealment and light blocking as well. Structure is required to support the membrane against wind and gravity forces.

 Though posts are needed to sustain compression (constraints imposed by compaction pressures), the skin membranes are strong in tension (constraints imposed by stretching forces). In fact, the quest for more complex answers to the same basic issues that the tent was meant to address has occupied a large portion of construction history.

As of right now, the tent is still in use. The Saudi goat hair tent, the Mongolian yurt with its folding wooden structure and felt coverings, and the Native American teepee with its many supports and double membrane are more polished and exquisite descendants of the primitive shelters of the early hunter-gatherers .  One of the main drivers of construction was the Agricultural Revolution, which began approximately 10,000 BCE. Instead of going after their herds or hunting wildlife, people now stayed put to tend to their fields. More permanent dwellings started to appear. Although archaeological records are scarce, the Middle East is home to the remnants of entire communities consisting of circular homes known as tholoi, whose walls are composed of packed clay and which no longer have any evidence of a roof.

Residential Construction Industries:

The Alps still include instances of these more modern beehive houses, known as tholoi, which were constructed in Europe out of dry stone with domed roofs. A rectangular antechamber or entrance hall connected to the main circular chamber first emerged in later Middle Eastern tholoi, representing the first instances of a rectangular plan form in a structure. Subsequently, when additional homes were gathered into settlements and divided into multiple rooms, the circular shape was abandoned in favour of the rectangle.

The construction of masonry was initiated by the tholoi, which signified a significant advancement in the pursuit of sustainability. Evidence of composite construction of clay and wood, the so-called wattle and cob method, is also discovered throughout Europe and the Middle East. Easily cut with stone tools, the walls were composed of tiny trees or reeds. After being buried and bonded laterally with plant fibres, they were coated with moist clay to increase their stiffness and weather resistance.

The roofs have not survived, but the structures were presumably covered with bare thatch or bundled reeds. There are square and round forms, most of which have hearths in the centre.  Although the use of massive timber for frames was constrained by the difficulty of felling giant trees with stone tools, heavier wooden constructions did also emerge in Neolithic (New Stone Age) cultures.

 The rafters had moved from the ridge to the wall beams, and these frames were often rectangular in shape with a row of columns supporting a ridge in the middle and matching rows of columns running the length of the walls.

By sinking the columns deeply in the earth, the frame’s lateral stability was achieved. Plant fibres were then used to bind the rafters and ridge to the columns. Thatch was the typical roofing material, consisting of small bundles of dried grasses or reeds bound together and then overlapped to form lightweight wooden supports that ran between the rafters. A lot of rain can escape through horizontal thatched roofs, but if the angles are set correctly, the rainwater runs out before it has a chance to seep in.

The slope of the roof that would shed water but not thatch was immediately discovered by prehistoric builders. Clay, wattle and cob, thatch, and tree bark—which the American Woodland Indians preferred—were among the many filler materials employed in the walls of these frame homes. When such buildings are constructed today, they are elevated above the ground on stilts for safety and humidity reasons; the walls are left wide open to enable natural cooling and the roof is frequently made of sheets. These kind of dwellings are still seen throughout Polynesia and Indonesia. Bundles of reeds were substituted with timbers in Egypt and the Middle East, creating a different form of the frame.

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