Our Forensic Wateproofing Expert Delivers a Successful Lunch and Learn Program for SOM Los Angeles

Terra-Petra’s Forensic Waterproofing Expert, Barry Taheri, presented his sixth lunch and learn program for global architecture, planning and design firm, Skidmore, Owings and Merrill (SOM), at their downtown Los Angeles offices on Grand Avenue, on August 29, 2018.

In his presentation, “The Principles of Building Enclosure Systems,” Taheri provided info on the importance of building waterproofing and the benefits of investing in mock-ups, along with a few live demonstrations. Our delicious lunch was catered by Mendocino Farms.

Terra-Petra’s presenter Barry Taheri was more than happy to stay after the presentation to field questions from many of the audience members. We want to thank SOM for their time as we were very impressed with this world-class firm and hope to be able to work with them on projects in the near future.

Contact Terra-Petra for more information on how to schedule a Lunch and Learn Program for your organization.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The Principles of Building Enclosure Systems: Lunch and Learn Program

Terra-Petra’s Forensic Waterproofing Expert, Barry Taheri, recently presented a lunch and learn program for global architecture, planning and design firm, CallisonRTKL at their downtown Los Angeles offices on Hope Street on August 22, 2018.

In his presentation, “The Principles of Building Enclosure Systems,” Taheri provided info on the importance of building waterproofing, and the benefits of investing in mock-ups along with a few live demonstrations.  He plans to present more of lunch and learn presentations in the months to come.  Contact Terra-Petra for more information on how to schedule a Lunch and Learn Program for your organization.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Arcadia Group Manufacturing Plant Tour

2301 East Vernon, Vernon, CA 90058

The Terra-Petra Waterproofing Division would like to thank James Fitzsimmons and the Arcadia Group for their time and generosity in leading us on a very informative tour and presentation of their store front, curtain wall and window manufacturing plant in Vernon CA. James was a very courteous host and allowed Terra-Petra’s Waterproofing Division team an opportunity to see firsthand what goes into the manufacturing of these systems.  Terra-Petra was well represented as members of our consulting, design and field testing teams all participated in the tour.

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Arcadia Group advertises themselves as being a leading single source supplier of architectural building products, curtain wall, storefront, entrance, window and interior framing. Arcadia also offers a considerable source of expertise in architectural glazing systems, and can design custom solutions that will help builders to realize their most challenging concepts. Mr. Fitsimmons explained that he typically communicates and works directly with architects and contractors in detailing and specifying the appropriate system for a given project.

The Terra-Petra Waterproofing Division routinely performs Quality Control/Quality Assurance Testing for numerous window, store front and curtain walls once they are assembled in the field. As such, the tour and presentation gave us a great opportunity to see everything that goes into the engineering, design, manufacturing, assembly and transportation of these systems prior to reaching the job site. The knowledge we gained can only serve to improve our testing capabilities in the field.

Learn more about the Terra-Petra Waterproofing Division. Contact us today.

What is a Passive House? Terra-Petra Waterproofing Division

What is a Passive House?

The Passive House concept represents today’s highest energy standard with the promise of slashing the heating energy consumption of buildings by an amazing 90%. Widespread application of the Passive House design would have a dramatic impact on energy conservation. Data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration shows that buildings are responsible for 48% of greenhouse gas emissions annually and 76% of all electricity generated by U.S. power plants goes to supply the Building Sector [Architecture 2030]. It has been abundantly clear for some time that the building sector is a primary contributor of climate-changing pollutants, and the question is asked: How do we best square our building energy needs with those of our environment and of our pocketbook? In the realm of super energy efficiency, the Passive House presents an intriguing option for new and retrofit construction; in residential, commercial, and institutional projects.

A Passive House is a very well-insulated, virtually air-tight building that is primarily heated by passive solar gain and by internal gains from people, electrical equipment, etc. Energy losses are minimized. Any remaining heat demand is provided by an extremely small source. Avoidance of heat gain through shading and window orientation also helps to limit any cooling load, which is similarly minimized. An energy recovery ventilator provides a constant, balanced fresh air supply. The result is an impressive system that not only saves up to 90% of space heating costs, but also provides a uniquely terrific indoor air quality.

A Passive House is a comprehensive system. “Passive” describes well this system’s underlying receptivity and retention capacity. Working with natural resources, free solar energy is captured and applied efficiently, instead of relying predominantly on ‘active’ systems to bring a building to ‘zero’ energy. High performance triple-glazed windows, super-insulation, an airtight building shell, limitation of thermal bridging and balanced energy recovery ventilation make possible extraordinary reductions in energy use and carbon emission.

Today, many in the building sector have applied this concept to design, and build towards a carbon-neutral future. Over the last 10 years more than 15,000 buildings in Europe – from single and multifamily residences, to schools, factories and office buildings – have been designed and built or remodeled to the passive house standard. A great many of these have been extensively monitored by the Passive House Institute in Darmstadt, analyzing and verifying their performance. Even governmental agencies have adopted passive house standards in their policy-making (read more about the EU Commission’s intent to implement the Passive House Standard.).

Performance Characteristics

  • Airtight building shell ≤ 0.6 ACH @ 50 pascal pressure, measured by blower-door test.
  • Annual heat requirement ≤ 15 kWh/m2/year (4.75 kBtu/sf/yr)
  • Primary Energy ≤ 120 kWh/m2/year (38.1 kBtu/sf/yr)

In addition, the following are recommendations, varying with climate:

  • Window u-value ≤ 0.8 W/m2/K
  • Ventilation system with heat recovery with ≥ 75% efficiency with low electric consumption @ 0.45 Wh/m3
  • Thermal Bridge Free Construction ≤ 0.01 W/mK

What is a Passive House? Terra-Petra Waterproofing Division

The building science research culminated in the development of the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP) which projects detailed heat load, heat loss, and primary energy usage for individual building parameters. The latest version of the PHPP also projects cooling, cooling loads, and latent cooling. Based on feedback from many detailed data logged buildings, the software is constantly refined and incorporates updated calculations for various climates around the world.

Terra-Petra Waterproofing Division is available for you water management and consulting services.

Contact us for further information.

Terra-Petra Waterproofing Division provides inspection services for new Trammell Crow Residential project in West Hollywood

Domain, a mixed-use development from Trammell Crow Residential, is now complete in West Hollywood. Terra-Petra Waterproofing was called in to provide building waterproofing inspection services prior to final close of project.

Located at 7141 Santa Monica Boulevard, just east of La Brea Avenue, the property features a seven-story building containing 166 apartments atop 9,000 square feet of ground-floor commercial space.  The newly opened mix of studio, one- and two-bedroom apartments.

Architecture firm Studio One Eleven designed Domain, which features a three-story opening along Santa Monica Boulevard.  Building heights gradually step down as the property approaches the lower-scale residential neighborhood to the north, creating space for outdoor decks.  Other amenities are located within a central courtyard, including a swimming pool.

The Use of Electronic Leak Detection (ELD) on Waterproofing Membranes over Concrete Surfaces

Waterproofing membranes are a key element in building enclosure systems—a key element that ultimately gets covered up by a variety of finish materials including landscaping, green roofs, topping slabs, pavers and so on. As most of us know, excavation to expose a failed waterproofing membrane for repairs can be prohibitively expensive and in some cases impossible. For this reason, many designers are choosing to specify integrity testing to verify that the waterproofing membrane is free of discontinuities and penetrations through the membrane prior to the installation being permanently covered. When integrity testing is not specified, many contractors are often performing this type of testing voluntarily to avoid future problems or “call-backs.”

The most common integrity testing method is the flood test. Flood testing is typically performed by flooding waterproofed horizontal surfaces with at least two inches (50 mm) of water for a period of up to 48 hours. Temporary dams are often constructed to partition the test areas, provide an up-turned plaza edge and control the depth of the flood testing. During the flood test, access to the underside of the flooded areas is necessary for a visual inspection of water leakage. However, in the case of a membrane failure (leak), flood testing indicates only where water is penetrating through the entire assembly within the test area, not the location above where water is breaching the membrane. In addition, flood testing cannot be performed on vertical surfaces or at locations where the underside of the slab is not accessible.

The aforementioned restrictions and lack of conclusive data associated with flood testing has enabled Electronic Leak Detection (ELD) to gain momentum as a viable alternative to traditional flood testing. This article will focus on the different types of ELD and the applications where ELD is or is not well-suited.

 
READ FULL ARTICLE HERE

Terra-Petra ELD information

Detec Systems Training for the Terra-Petra Team

Certified ELD Field Testing Crew, from left to right: Diego Saucedo, Project Coordinator Andrew Alvarran, Anthony Avina, Alvaro Arellano, Director of Field Operations Daniel Valdez and Chad Herrick of Detect Systems.

Certified ELD Field Testing Crew, left to right: Diego Saucedo, Project Coordinator Andrew Alvarran, Anthony Avina, Alvaro Arellano, Director of Field Operations Daniel Valdez and Chad Herrick of Detect Systems.

Detec Systems visited Terra-Petra’s Los Angeles office this week to conduct a comprehensive education and training session to promote their innovative product line of leak detection technologies. Detec provides leading-edge technology in the field of electronic leak detection (ELD), by way of membrane integrity testing and scanning, and automated structure monitoring. The training session included a classroom like session followed by field training on a jobsite.

detec-system-training12

The Terra-Petra Waterproofing Division is certified to conduct ELD testing throughout Southern California for numerous types of fluid-applied waterproofing and roofing systems in compliance with ASTM 7877-14. This includes any thermoplastic roofing system, any asphalt based waterproofing, traffic coatings, hot and cold fluid applied membranes and some bentonite systems (as long as they have thermoplastic reinforcement).

Terra-Petra employs the use of the Detec Systems Roof Membrane Integrity Scanner (RMIS) to accurately identify breaches in new and existing membrane systems. Many contractors are using a 24-48 hour flood test to check for breaches in these types of waterproofing assemblies. While this method can identify water leaks, it is time consuming and less cost effective. The benefits of the RMIS technology is that breaches and other imperfections can be identified, repaired and re-tested the same day, saving valuable time, resources and money for any project.

Please contact us for a quote.

Terra-Petra Inspector Anthony Avina being trained to perform ELD Testing on vertical surface.

Terra-Petra Inspector Anthony Avina being trained to perform ELD Testing on vertical surface.

 

ELD Testing at penthouse pool using the Detec RIMS System

ELD Testing at penthouse pool using the Detec RMIS System

See more photos here.

Mixed-use project, called Metropolis, is unprecedented for Downtown L.A.

If you travel down through the Downtown LA area on a regular basis, you have probably noticed the every-changing skyline. As an environmental engineering firm, Terra-Petra is taking part with many of these new projects. One of which is called the Metropolis (you can't miss this large mixed-use community steadily growing along the 110 freeway). The Terra-Petra Waterproofing Division is consulting on the building envelope waterproofing system for the Metropolis project and inspecting all of the waterproofing as it gets installed. 

Read more about Metropolis and other projects currently being led by Chinese developers in Downtown Los Angeles.

Screenshot 2016-08-31 at 10.19.27 PM