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The Advantages of Hollowcore Concrete

2 minutes estimated reading time

Updated on March 8th, 2024

What does the dome of the nearly two-thousand-year-old Roman Pantheon and hollowcore concrete planking have in common? Both use strategically placed hollow chambers to save weight without compromising strength or durability. The Romans did it by adding small, hollow clay containers to the concrete mix as they poured the dome. Hollowcore concrete uses different technology, but the impact is similar: a strong, long-lasting structure that saves weight. It can also span longer distances, and handle higher loads compared to steel joists or traditional “poured in place” concrete.

Time Saver

Precast hollowcore concrete planking can save time because it’s delivered to the construction site ready to install, unlike poured-on-site concrete which needs time to set. And unlike wet concrete, it’s virtually immune to adverse weather conditions. Mack’s erecting crew can often set 8,000 square feet of hollowcore pieces a day.

Superior Strength Without Added Bulk

It’s unusually strong, too: an eight-inch slab of hollowcore concrete can span up to 30 feet. Conventionally reinforced poured-in-place concrete may have to be a foot thick or more to do the same or a comparable steel bar joist would have to be 16 to 18 inches deep. Conserving this depth of slab can contribute to keeping an entire building shorter helping

Hollowcore concrete enables developers to shave height off multistory buildings, saving both time and money on the required exterior finishes.

Easy Maintenance and Fire Rated

Lower maintenance requirements enhance its cost-effectiveness since regular pressure washing or exposure to harsh chemical environments don’t negatively affect it as they would steel. Plank doesn’t require additional fireproofing unlike steel and meets a 2hour fire rating once grouted.

Plank Can Contribute to LEED Requirements

Mack uses recycled content in its hollowcore concrete mix and only ships jobs within 500 miles or less. These can contribute up to two points toward the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System™ for certification in sustainable design.

Contact the Mack Industries team of estimating, sales, project managers and engineers is happy to provide the design assistance you need when specifying hollowcore concrete planks!