Title:
Lightweight Interior Sidewall and Method for Fabricating the Same
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A lightweight interior sidewall and a method for fabricating the same are provided. The lightweight interior sidewall is formed by a plurality of adjacent slabs. A method for fabricating the slabs includes forming a concrete block made of cement, fine sand, bamboo-shaped short fibers and a lightweight aggregate material, cutting the block to form multiple slabs, and grinding a central region of two sides of each slab to form a longitudinal groove therein. The method for fabricating the lightweight interior sidewall includes disposing multiple slabs adjacent to each other, securing each slab between a reverse U-shaped clamp on the ceiling and a support element on the floor, and filling a cement mortar into the longitudinal grooves to bind the slabs together. The lightweight and robust sidewall can be thereby formed in an efficient manner.



Inventors:
Lin, Pao-sou (Taipei, TW)
Application Number:
12/171137
Publication Date:
01/14/2010
Filing Date:
07/10/2008
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
52/745.09, 52/745.1, 52/745.19
International Classes:
E04B2/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:



Primary Examiner:
GITLIN, MATTHEW J
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
WPAT, PC (VIENNA, VA, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A lightweight interior sidewall formed by a plurality of adjacent slabs, each slab comprising 20% to 60% of cement, 30% to 70% of fine sand, 2% to 20% of bamboo-like shaped short fibers, and 30% to 50% of a lightweight aggregate grain material, wherein each slab has a thickness between 5 to 15 centimeters, and a longitudinal groove is defined in a central region of two sides of each slab and is adapted to be filled with a binder substance during construction.

2. The lightweight interior sidewall as claimed in claim 1, wherein each slab has a length between 1.8 and 5.0 meters, and a width between 0.4 and 1.0 meters.

3. The lightweight interior sidewall as claimed in claim 1, wherein a chamfer is formed on edges of the two sides of each slab.

4. The lightweight interior sidewall as claimed in claim 1, wherein each slab comprises a plurality of glass fibers having a length between 0.5 and 2 centimeters.

5. The lightweight interior sidewall as claimed in claim 1, wherein the lightweight aggregate grain material comprises high clay-containing foamed ceramic grains, and the ratio of the lightweight aggregate grain material is greater than 0.3.

6. The lightweight interior sidewall as claimed in claim 1, wherein each of the two sides of the slab have at least one injection hole perpendicular to the longitudinal groove.

7. A method for fabricating a slab used in lightweight sidewalls, comprising: (1) forming a composite mixture by mixing and agitating together 20% to 60% of cement, 30% to 70% of fine sand, 30% to 50% of a lightweight aggregate grain material, 2% to 20% of bamboo-shaped short fibers and water; (2) pouring the composite mixture into a generally-rectangular mold, and drying the mixture to form a concrete block of at least 40 centimeters in thickness; (3) cutting the concrete block by using a cutting apparatus having a set of parallel cutting blades spaced from each other by at least 5 centimeters to form a plurality of slabs having a thickness of at least 5 centimeters, and grinding a central region of two sides of the slab to form a longitudinal groove therein.

8. The method as claimed in claim 7, wherein step (1) further comprises incorporating glass fibers having a length of at least 0.1 centimeters and/or a foaming agent and/or a water-reducing agent, and step (3) further comprises grinding edges of the two sides of the slab to form a chamfer thereon.

9. A method for fabricating an interior sidewall, comprising: (1) providing lightweight slabs having at least the same thickness and length, wherein each slab has a longitudinal groove defined in a central region of two sides thereof; (2) fixing an elongated clamp of a reverse U-shape on a ceiling at a location for receiving the placement of the sidewall, wherein the clamp has an opening oriented downward and retains a flexible element therein; (3) vertically erecting the slabs adjacent to each other on a floor, and engaging an upper edge of each slab into the elongated clamp; (4) locking a bottom edge of each of slab with a support element used for adjusting the height of each slab; (5) fixing a baseboard at a lower portion of a front surface and a rear surface of each slab, wherein the baseboard is tightly adhered on the floor; and (6) forming an injection hole at an upper region of an interface between the two slabs for injecting a viscous binder substance that fills up each of the longitudinal grooves and a gap between the bottom edge of each slab and the floor.

10. The method as claimed in claim 9, wherein step (1) comprises using a mixture including cement, sand and a lightweight aggregate to form a concrete block, and cutting and grinding the concrete block to form each slab, step (2) comprises using a rubber mat as the flexible element, step (4) comprises using a screw as the support element, and step (6) comprises using a cement mortar as the binder substance.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention generally relates to a lightweight interior sidewall and a method for fabricating the same, and more particularly to a lightweight interior sidewall having high structural strength and a method for fabricating the lightweight interior sidewall in an efficient manner.

2. The Prior Arts

Buildings have been constructed with increasingly higher floors. In order to reduce the load on the building structure, an approach is to reduce the weight of the construction material that is used for the parts of the building above the ground, which more particularly includes the interior sidewalls of the building.

In construction, another factor of importance is the time required for completing the construction project, which requires the implementation of efficient fabrication methods at each phase of the construction project.

The conventional prior approach for fabricating construction slabs made of concrete reinforced with a plastics net and glass fibers. This approach proposes a fabrication method in which a continuous block of material is formed, and is then cut into multiple slabs. Unfortunately, when the fabrication process is not performed in the proper humidity and temperature conditions, the achieved material may not be sufficiently dried, and consequently may be subjected to undesirable deflection. Conventionally, the block of material formed with the foregoing method has a 5-ply structure, mainly composed of a net structure combined with fiberglass-reinforced plastics (FRP) cement mortar.

In the aforementioned method for forming a sidewall, an intermediate layer of the sidewall is first placed on the construction structure. A surface layer of a thickness between 3 and 15 millimeters, with protection and decoration functions, is then pressed and adhered on each of the two sides of the intermediate layer. Because it requires multiple stages for forming and assembling the intermediate and surface layers, the aforementioned fabrication method is time-consuming. In addition, the adhesion of the surface layers on the intermediate layer may be particularly cumbersome. Consequently, the foregoing method is not efficient and is usually not implemented.

Another conventional prior approach for fabricating a sidewall, in which fibers are combined with foamed concrete to form a slab. A central layer of the slab includes multiple cross-interlaced FRP or parallel FRP filaments. To assemble multiples slabs together to form a sidewall, the outer edges of each slab is provided with a plurality of recessed slots for receiving the placement of a plate body that operates to prevent a separation of each pair of assembled slabs. Unfortunately, the application of this method also raises a number of problems. First, the plate body and the slots of the slabs usually do not tightly join together, which may create cracks when earthquakes occur. Second, because no strong joining means is provided, each pair of slabs can be hardly kept secured with each other when one slab on one side of the sidewall receives a collision. In these situations, the hit slab may separate from its adjacent slab.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

A primary objective of the present invention is to provide a lightweight interior sidewall that has high structural strength after construction.

Another objective of the present invention is to provide a method for fabricating a slab that can be used to form a lightweight interior sidewall.

Yet another objective of the present invention is to provide a fabrication method that can form a lightweight interior sidewall in an efficient manner, so that the whole building construction time can be reduced.

Accordingly, a lightweight interior sidewall and a method for fabricating the same are provided. The lightweight interior sidewall is formed by a plurality of adjacent slabs. A method for fabricating the slabs includes forming a concrete block made of cement, fine sand, bamboo-shaped short fibers and a lightweight aggregate material, cutting the block to form multiple slabs, and grinding a central region of two sides of each slab to form a longitudinal groove therein. The method for fabricating the lightweight interior sidewall includes disposing multiple slabs adjacent to each other, securing each slab between a reverse U-shaped clamp on the ceiling and a support element on the floor, and filling a cement mortar into the longitudinal grooves to bind the slabs together. The lightweight and robust sidewall can be thereby formed in an efficient manner.

In one embodiment, a fabricated slab may have a thickness between 6 and 17 centimeters. In contrast to prior art techniques requiring the use of surface layers, the slabs fabricated according to the present invention can be used to directly form a sidewall. In addition, as a strong binder substance is used to couple the slabs to form the sidewall, the conventional drawback that the sidewall are easily broken and separated due to the use of joining plate elements in a groove of the slabs may also be overcome.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The present invention will be apparent to those skilled in the art by reading the following detailed description of preferred embodiments thereof, with reference to the attached drawings.

FIG. 1 is a front view of a lightweight interior sidewall according to an embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view taken along the section line II-II shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view taken along the section line III-III shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is an enlarged cross-sectional view of another embodiment taken under a same angle of view as FIG. 2;

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of a concrete block used for fabricating a sidewall slab according to an embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 6 is a perspective view of a single slab that is cut from the concrete block of FIG. 5;

FIG. 7A is a front view of an apparatus used to form the slabs of FIG. 6;

FIG. 7B is a left view of the apparatus shown in FIG. 7A;

FIG. 8 is a cross-sectional view taken along the section line VIII-VIII shown in FIG. 1; and

FIG. 9 is an enlarged view illustrating the composition of a sidewall slab material according to an embodiment of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

Referring to FIGS. 1, 2 and 3, the present invention describes a method for fabricating a lightweight interior sidewall 1. In one embodiment, the method comprises the following steps:

Step (1): Two lightweight slabs 2 (as detailed below) having at least the same thickness and length are provided, in which each slab 2 has two sides, and a central area of each side has a longitudinal groove 21.

Step (2): an elongated clamp 4 of a reverse U-shape is fixed on a ceiling 3 at a location for receiving the placement of the sidewall 1. The clamp 4 has an opening oriented downward for retaining a flexible element 41 therein.

Step (3): as shown in FIG. 1, the slabs 2 are vertically erected adjacently to each other, an upper edge of each slab 2 being engaged into the elongated clamp 4.

Step (4): a bottom edge of each of slab 2 is locked with a support 5 used for adjusting the height of each slab 2.

Step (5): a baseboard 51 is fixed at a lower portion of a front surface and a rear surface of each slab 2 and is tightly adhered on the floor 6.

Step (6): an upper region of an interface between the two slabs 2 is provided with an injection hole 22 through which a viscous binder substance can be injected to fill up the longitudinal grooves 21 and a gap between the bottom edge of each slab 2 and the floor 6.

More specifically, the aforementioned step (1) comprises injecting a composite mixture including cement, sand, bamboo-shaped short fibers and a lightweight aggregate into a mold to form a concrete block, and then cutting and grinding the concrete block to form a plurality of slabs 2. FIG. 9 is a schematic view of the fabricated slab 2. As shown, the slab 2 comprises glass fibers 25 mixed with cement 26, mortar 27 and a lightweight aggregate material 8. The glass fibers 25 may take the form of bamboo-shaped short fibers, which are made from fiberglass-reinforced plastics, plastics/steel or other polymer materials. The bamboo-shaped structure of the fibers 25 reinforces the resistance of the slab 2 against bending stress and collision-induced cracks. In step (2), a rubber mat may be used for the flexible element 41 so as to cushion any displacement between adjacent floors. In step (4), screws may be used for the support member 5, which may also be locked with bolts if necessary. In step (6), a cement mortar may be used as the binder substance.

Referring to FIG. 4, a shoulder portion 23 may be pre-formed at an upper portion of each slab 2 to receive the insertion of the clamp 4, thereby improving the aesthetic appearance of the sidewall 1. As shown in FIG. 3, furthermore, the baseboard 51 can be an elongated plate or an L-shaped plate for steadily securing the slabs.

FIGS. 5-7 are schematic views illustrating a method for fabricating a slab in accordance with to an embodiment of the present invention. The method comprises the following steps:

Step (1): forming a viscous composite mixture by mixing and agitating together 20% to 60% of cement, 30% to 70% of fine sand, 30% to 50% of a lightweight aggregate grain material, 2% to 20% of short fibers made of bamboo-shaped glass fibers, and water.

Step (2): pouring the aforementioned mixture into a generally-rectangular mold, where it dries to form a concrete block 20 of at least 40 centimeters in thickness, as shown in FIG. 5.

Step (3): cutting the concrete block 20 by using a cutting apparatus 7 having a set of parallel cutting blades 71 spaced from each other by at least 5 centimeters (as shown in FIGS. 7A and 7B) to form a plurality of slabs 2 having a thickness of at least 5 centimeters, as shown in FIG. 6. In addition, the longitudinal groove 21 may be pre-cast or formed along each of the two side of the slab 2 by grinding.

It is worth noting that in step (1), in addition to using bamboo-shaped glass fibers of a length between 0.3 to 3 centimeters, a foaming agent and/or water-reducing agent may also be incorporated into the composite mixture. Furthermore, step (3) may include an extra grinding operation to form a chamfer 24 on edges of the two sides of the slab 2.

As described above, the present invention provides a lightweight interior sidewall 1 that can be fabricated in an efficient manner by adjacently assembling multiple slabs 2. Each slab 2 has a thickness between 5 and 17 centimeters, and including 20% to 60% of cement, 30% to 70% of fine sand, 30% to 50% of a lightweight aggregate grain material, and 2% to 20% of bamboo-shaped short glass fibers having a length between 0.3 and 3 centimeters. A central region of two sides of each slab 2 includes a longitudinal groove 21 that is filled with a binder substance during construction (as shown in FIG. 8). In addition, exhaust holes 61 may also be provided to evacuate air when the binder substance is filled along each longitudinal groove 21. The slab 2 has a preferred length between 1.8 and 5.0 meters, and a width between 0.4 and 1.0 meter. A chamber 24 is provided on edges of the two sides of the slab 2 for filling in a cement mortar (as shown in FIG. 8) or fitting in a T-shaped decorative strip (not shown).

Furthermore, the slab may further include a foaming agent and/or a water-reducing agent. The lightweight aggregate grain material may include high clay-containing foamed ceramic grains or other similar lightweight materials, in which a preferred ratio for the lightweight material is greater than 0.3.

A concrete block formed from a composite mixture according to the present invention can be processed through one cutting operation to produce more than 10 slabs having the same size. The cutting operation may be performed on a conventional cutting apparatus (such as those used in marble factories), or on a longitudinal cutting apparatus 7 as shown in FIGS. 7A and 7B. When the cutting apparatus 7 is used, the concrete block passes through a support frame to be cut by a set of blades 71 repeatedly moving up and down. Meanwhile, a set of grinding wheels 72 may be used to form the longitudinal groove 21 and chamfers 24 on each slab 2.

Although the present invention has been described with reference to the preferred embodiments thereof, it is apparent to those skilled in the art that a variety of modifications and changes may be made without departing from the scope of the present invention which is intended to be defined by the appended claims.