Home > Why X-LAM?
Cross Laminated Timber can be used to form walls, roof and floor panels as well as shear walls. Panels are available in Spruce, Douglas Fir and Larch and will always be supplied as PEFC or FSC certified.
One of the major advantages of Cross Laminated Timber (X-LAM) is its inherent fire resistance. The panels can be designed to accommodate substantial fire resistance and unlike steel remains structurally stable when subjected to high temperatures. X-LAM panels can be produced with fire resistances of 30, 60 and 90 minutes.
X-LAM has aesthetic appeal and is available in a wide variety of surface finishes. Higher quality finishes can be used where an exposed timber finish is desirable, while lower quality finishes can be specified where panels are hidden. Openings can also be pre-cut or routed in the factory for windows, doors or services.
Cross Laminated Timber is factory manufactured to exceptional levels of accuracy to ensure minimal defects. This improves construction and project delivery time, reduces costs, saves money and maximises efficiency on all levels. Key benefits of using X-LAM are:
- Structural integrity
- Precision engineered using CAD/CAM technology and CNC machinery
- Aesthetic appeal
- Superior span distances
- Low carbon construction
- Ease of onsite use
- Better health and safety record
- Improved resource efficiency
- Quicker return on investment
- Lighter frame and reduced overall weight
- Excellent thermal and acoustic insulation
X-LAM is a very stable timber solution which has little shrinkage or movement post construction. It has proven multi-storey capability, up to 11 storeys in the UK and a structural capacity beyond this. Long span floors without intermediate beams are easily achieved, such as 8.0m classroom floors being constructed in 200-250mm panels, dependant on loading conditions. Typical walls for 5-6 storey construction are often in the region of 100-140mm thick.
X-LAM offers significant advantages in fire protection compared with reinforced concrete or steel. During a fire, a charred layer forms around the un-destroyed core of the X-LAM which retains its load bearing capacity, thus reducing the entry of oxygen and heat from outside and significantly delays the further spread of flame.
X-LAM walls with plasterboard will also provide acoustic performance in excess of Building Regulations and will make substantial contributions to the U value requirements. Many different combinations of X-Lam walls and floors with varying acoustic build-ups have been tested and verified data is available.
With eco-credentials of the highest importance in the construction and modern trading world, having the correct accreditation and certification is fundamental to success. Timber is the number one renewable mainstream construction material and can produce greener buildings with a lower carbon footprint.
The X-LAM Alliance adopts and applies Best Practice sustainability principles through all aspects of its processes, from raw material procurement through to manufacture, offsite processes and onsite assembly.
Offering only PEFC or FSC certified timber ensures clients maintain a fully transparent Green Supply Chain. Chain of Custody certification means that all levels of the supply chain can prove legality and sustainability of the construction products used and be certain that the X-LAM is sourced from well managed forests.
Air leakage is a significant cause of heat loss, and is therefore a major contributor to energy inefficiency in buildings. Airtightness characteristics of X-Lam structures are excellent and values of and around passivhaus standards can be achieved as the connections are typically lapped, screwed and taped.