Wuhan Built 2 Trillion-dollar Vulcan Hill Hospital in 10 days to save China from COVID-19.

Vulcan Hill Hospital once again refreshed people’s perception: a hospital can be built in 10 days.

Even the project manager Fang Xiang of China Construction Third Engineering Bureau and the Third Company, who has been engaged in civil construction for many years, even said: “According to the conventional process, a project with a construction volume of more than 30,000 square meters will take at least 2 years. The emergency state is temporary. It takes one month for the building, not to mention the construction of a new infectious disease hospital? “

But this is not the first time China’s infrastructure has refreshed people’s perceptions.

In 2003, the SARS epidemic raged and there was an urgent need for a hospital specializing in the treatment of SARS patients. In only 7 days, Xiaotangshan Hospital was built in haste.

However, this time, it was much more difficult to build the Vulcan Hill Hospital than Xiaotangshan Hospital. It coincided with the large number of workers returning home during the Spring Festival holiday. “Not to mention raw material procurement, logistics and transportation, even eating and drinking on the construction site, these logistics are difficult to guarantee. “. A staff member of Wuhan Urban Construction Bureau said.

Even so, the Vulcan Hill Hospital is still like jumping out of the ground: a 50,000 square meter site is leveled in one day; the construction drawings are obtained within three days, and the first model house is built; on the fifth day, the container house is successively on the scene, And built a double-deck ward area steel structure; on the eighth day, completed the foundation concrete pouring, hoisting of hundreds of container board houses in the inpatient building, and the supporting facilities were also built more than half; it took another day to complete the indoor infrastructure and medical supporting facilities installation. On the tenth day, a hospital with 1,000 beds was delivered.

“Behind the speed is the innovation of China’s construction technology.” Wu Hongtao, Secretary of the Party Committee of China Construction Three Bureau and One Company, said that the construction of the two hospitals in Huoshen Mountain and Raytheon Mountain has adopted the most advanced assembly-building technology in the industry to maximize The use of assembled industrialized finished products, at the same time, the overall hoisting after external splicing, on-site construction and overall hoisting are interspersed, greatly reducing the workload and time of on-site operations, and achieving maximum efficiency.

In fact, prefabricated buildings have a history of decades in China. With the demographic dividend peaking, prefabricated buildings are also ushering in new opportunities. According to forecasts by third-party organizations, the market size of China’s prefabricated buildings is expected to exceed 2 trillion yuan in 2020.

In this article, “Jiaziguangnian” will take you to unravel the magic behind prefabricated building technology and the new changes that technology brings to the current construction industry.

Compared with the heat inside the construction site, the supply relay outside the construction site is the most solid thrust of the project.

1. The assembly speed supported by the supplier

On the afternoon of January 23, when Wuhan announced the “closure of the city”, the Wuhan Urban Construction Bureau urgently called for the establishment of the third bureau and other units, requesting it to build a special admission in Wuhan Staff Sanatorium based on the model of Beijing Xiaotangshan Hospital during the fight against SARS in 2003 A hospital for patients with new-type coronary pneumonia-Wuhan Caidian Huoshenshan Hospital.

The construction period of this hospital is only 10 days, but its construction area exceeds 30,000 square meters, and it must accommodate 1,000 beds after completion. This is a big challenge for the project team and engineering team.

However, at this time all construction personnel did not retreat.

Just as they rushed to the construction site, a relay operation from almost all parts of the country was slowly staged.

Even before the workers arrived at the construction site, China Zhongyuan International Engineering Co., Ltd. located in Beijing found out the construction drawings of Xiaotangshan Hospital and sent them to Wuhan to design the construction drawings overnight. On the night of the 23rd, Xugong Machinery and Sany Heavy Industry excavated Construction machinery such as machines have also arrived at the construction site.

Since then, many batches of excavators, bulldozers, mixers, cranes and other construction machinery have been rushing to the construction site of Vulcan Hill Hospital. These machines leveled 50,000 square meters of land within two days and built the first model house on the third day.

Quick review of the construction process of Vulcan Hill Hospital

Judging from the construction progress chart after the engagement, the hospital building covered by rubbing is indeed shocking, but more important things happen outside the construction site:

According to the construction period, the first batch of box container board houses will enter the construction site on January 27 to start hoisting and construction. In order not to delay the construction period, on January 24, many prefabricated integrated housing manufacturers in Wen’an County, Hebei began to resume work.

Hebei Wendang Integrated Housing Manufacturer is deploying board room materials for Vulcan Mountain Hospital

This prefabricated integrated house is also called box board house. It adopts modular design and factory production. The box is used as the basic unit. It can be used alone or it can form a spacious use space through different combinations of horizontal and vertical directions. The vertical direction can be laminated, and the indoor doors, windows, switches, power supplies, etc. are all equipped at the factory.

This greatly reduces the workload on site. In the construction of the Vulcan Hill Hospital, it took only 5 days from the first batch of box container board houses to be hoisted to hundreds of box container board houses.

The sewage treatment of the hospital is the top priority. On New Year’s Eve, January 24, Xingyuan Environmental Technology Co., Ltd., a subsidiary of New Hope Group, received the task of participating in the construction of the sewage treatment system of Wuhan Huoshenshan Hospital. Subsequently, Xingyuan Environment contracted the Sewage Treatment Project of the Vulcan Mountain Hospital and served as the overall integration of the project, and Yinjiang Environmental Protection was responsible for environmental protection equipment. On January 30, 6 days later, the hoisting of sewage treatment equipment of Vulcan Hill Hospital was completed.

Part of the composite sheet of the Vulcan Hill Hospital project comes from Hangzhou Zhensen Steel Structure Group. On New Year’s Day on January 25, Yin Zhenwei, general manager of Zhensen Steel Structure Group, received an order from the construction team of Vulcan Mountain Hospital to provide 30,000 square meters of grade A fire-resistant composite panels within 5 days. In order to meet the deadline, the company recalled employees to start overtime work on the same day. The next day, 23,000 square meters of plates were transported to the site of Vulcan Hill Hospital.

The main structure of the hospital house requires a lot of steel. At 4 pm on January 26, Hubei Zhongtuo received the task of Hubei Provincial Metal Materials Co., Ltd. to supply 240 tons of steel for the Wuhan Huoshenshan Hospital project. After 5 hours, the materials were sent to the site of Vulcan Hill Hospital.

The adhesives commonly used in prefabricated buildings are provided by Huitian New Materials. These adhesives are used for structural bonding and waterproof sealing of mobile homes and other materials.

It is also reported that Guanglianda, a digital construction platform service provider, has joined 80 building materials suppliers to donate tiles, paints, waterproofing, fans, pipes, cables, water purifiers, firefighting facilities, medical materials 15 kinds of equipment.

In addition, according to the incomplete statistics of “Jiazi Guangnian”, there are more than 20 building material suppliers at Vulcan Hill Hospital and Raytheon Mountain Hospital.

This means that the construction of Vulcan Hill Hospital and Thunder Mountain Hospital has been successfully completed, and there are more than 100 building material suppliers involved in its construction.

When talking about the speed of construction of the two hospitals, Wu Hongtao, secretary of the Party Committee of China Construction Third Engineering Bureau and One Company, said that this benefited from the implementation of prefabricated building technology.

It is popular to understand that prefabricated building is to build a house like “building blocks”, put aerial work on the ground, do outdoor work in the factory building, and let the machine do it manually. Traditional buildings need to be tied and welded on site, while prefabricated buildings are formed at once in the factory by mechanical equipment.

2. Industrialization changes the way of construction

Strictly speaking, it was the second industrial revolution that gave birth to prefabricated buildings. The Crystal Palace in London (which was later destroyed by a fire) was a representative of prefabricated buildings at that time.

In the mid-19th century, the industrial power of Great Britain decided to hold a Universal Industry Expo (the first World Expo) in May 1851. However, the year before the Expo was held, the venue design could not be determined.

At the last minute, greenhouse designer Joseph Paxton designed a venue built of wood, iron frames and glass in 9 days.

London Crystal Palace

As a result, this plan won the favor of the Royal Commission. The “Crystal Palace” has a length of 564 meters (equivalent to 1851 feet, to symbolize the construction in 1851), a width of 124.4 meters, and an area of ​​74,000 square meters. The shape of the stadium is a stepped rectangular parallelepiped, and only iron frame and glass are displayed on each side, without any extra decoration, which fully reflects the mechanical characteristics of industrial production.

The completed “Crystal Palace” is the world’s first large-scale prefabricated building, and was even rated as a miracle of British architectural engineering in the nineteenth century.

What is amazing is that such a large building has a construction period of less than 9 months.

The “British speed” of that year benefited from the large-scale production of standardized industries in the United Kingdom. For example, the largest area of ​​glass that can be produced at that time was 25 cm × 120 cm, so the panes made of iron frames of the crystal palace all fit this size or the scaled size. This modular architectural design greatly reduces construction costs and installation time.

The prefabricated buildings really ushered in development in the 1950s.

After World War II, European countries, Japan and other houses were seriously damaged, and there was an urgent need to solve the housing problems of a large number of residents. The prefabricated buildings with low manufacturing cost and short construction period meet this rigid demand.

At the same time, the third industrial revolution (technical revolution) emerged, and mechanized and automated production lines became the mainstream of the industry. This provided good economic and technical conditions for the development of prefabricated buildings. The brick walls that were originally on the construction site can be advanced Put into the factory for prefabrication, the concept of standardization and modularization of prefabricated buildings began to form, and the development of prefabricated buildings has a market-based foundation.

Japan, which desperately needs to build houses, formulated the “Five-Year Plan for Promoting Standardization of the Housing Industry” in 1969, followed by investigation and research on materials, equipment, product standards, residential performance standards, and structural material safety standards, and strengthened residential products Standardization.

By the 1970s, the size and functional standards of component parts in Japanese houses began to have a fixed system. As long as the manufacturers produce the structural parts in accordance with the standards, they are common in the assembled buildings. To this end, Japan has established an excellent housing parts certification system, which comprehensively reviews the quality, safety, and durability of housing parts.

After decades of development, Japanese residential production has been able to “make houses like cars”. Curing product standards, machines producing a large number of parts, and detailed construction processes have made Japan an iconic country for residential assembly.

Today, Japan builds about 200,000 low-rise residential buildings every year, with a construction area of ​​about 3 million square meters. Most of them are light steel structured prefabricated houses, and their prefabricated construction penetration rate is even close to 90%.

In addition to houses that rise rapidly, it is more important that the leading countries in this field have accumulated a series of industry standards and systems.

After decades of development, highly industrialized developed countries have developed various types of prefabricated building special systems, such as the British L-plate system, the French prestressed assembly frame system, the German prefabricated hollow formwork wall system, the U.S. prefabricated assembly parking building system , Japan multi-layer prefabricated housing system, etc.

By 2017, the penetration rate of prefabricated buildings in the United States, France, Singapore and other countries has reached or exceeded 70%. In contrast, the penetration rate of prefabricated buildings in China was only 8.4% in 2017, and the gap was very wide.

Actually speaking, China’s prefabricated buildings are not too late.

In the 1950s, China proposed to use the experience of the Soviet Union and Eastern European countries to promote standardized, factory-based, and mechanized prefabricated components and prefabricated buildings in the “Five-Year Plan”.

Even in 1959, China established the first modern prefabricated building, the Beijing Minzu Hotel, which used prefabricated prefabricated frames for the first time.

Beijing Minzu Hotel

Immediately after, the establishment of the Beijing Civil Aviation Building in 1964 became the earliest assembled monolithic reinforced concrete frame structure in China.

Since then, “in-situ pouring” large formwork systems and modular steel structure buildings have appeared one after another, gradually forming a series of prefabricated concrete building systems. By the early 1980s, thanks to the rapid release of people’s living needs, the application of prefabricated concrete buildings entered its heyday.

Although industrial production has contributed to the improvement of prefabricated building systems, most designs and constructions are relatively rough. The vertical walls of some prefabricated buildings have cracked and poorly stitched after use; in addition, due to the lack of seismic design in early prefabricated buildings, a large number of prefabricated houses were seriously damaged after the Tangshan earthquake.

In the late 1980s, domestic prefabricated concrete buildings were gradually replaced by cast-in-place concrete building systems, and the development of prefabricated buildings has been stagnant for a long time.

3. Chinese problems under prefabricated construction

In 2013, the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development issued the “Twelfth Five-Year Plan for the Development of Green Buildings and Green Ecological Regions.” After a lapse of more than ten years, it clearly proposed that China should accelerate the formation of industrialized building systems such as fabricated concrete and steel structures.

In 2016, the State Council’s “Guiding Opinions on Vigorous Development of Prefabricated Buildings” put forward “strive to spend about 10 years to make prefabricated buildings account for 30% of the new construction area.”

In 2017, the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development further clarified the development plan for prefabricated buildings: by 2020, the proportion of prefabricated buildings in the country will be more than 15% of new buildings, of which more than 20% will be promoted in key areas, and more than 15% will be actively promoted. The area is more than 10%.

For a time, the prefabricated building took the fast lane again. A set of data at that time showed the upsurge of prefabricated construction: from 2011 to 2017, the size of China’s prefabricated construction market increased from 4.32 billion yuan to 46.23 billion yuan, with a year-on-year increase of 970.14% and a compound growth rate of about 35% .

According to the “Prospective Analysis Report of China’s Prefabricated Construction Industry Market 2018–2023” released by the Prospective Industry Research Institute, it is expected that the requirements of “the prefabricated buildings will account for more than 15% of the new construction area in 2020” according to the above plan It is estimated that the prefabricated building area in 2020 is expected to exceed 80 million square meters. Measured at 2,500 yuan per square meter, the market size will exceed 2 trillion yuan.

This time, prefabricated buildings have high hopes.

Pollution on construction sites is almost known to everyone. Construction site dust, construction waste, etc. are one of the sources of a lot of pollution in each city during the construction phase. The prefabricated construction technology has moved the process of building parts on the site to the factory, which has greatly reduced dust pollution and can also reduce construction waste by 70% to 80%.

In addition, one of the more prominent advantages of prefabricated buildings is that they greatly shorten the construction cycle. Generally speaking, compared with traditional cast-in-place buildings, prefabricated buildings can shorten the construction period by 25% to 30%, save water by 50% to 60%, save about 80% of wood, and reduce construction energy consumption by about 20%.

Another practical issue is that China ’s labor force is declining and costs are rising.

The Chinese prefabricated buildings that did not start late have not made great progress, there is another problem-reform and opening up have released a lot of labor, especially after the country “allowed collective and individual construction of the construction industry” and “migrant workers can enter the city” in 1984. A large amount of cheap labor has flocked to the construction industry, and intensive labor has made up for the need to improve construction technology.

In the 1980s, Shenzhen International Trade Building once created the “Shenzhen Speed”. The 53-story building was built in only three days at the fastest time. The most frequent scene of CCTV’s “News Network” when reporting on Shenzhen was the tallest building in China. Since then, “Shenzhen Speed” has spread throughout the country. The reason for this speed is that the building has successfully used the slipform process, and the second is that a strong “manpower” piled up. In order to build the building at that time, it was alleged that the construction agency, China Construction Third Engineering Bureau, selected more than 1,000 skilled workers from Wuhan and Jingzhou.

Looking at the number of Chinese labor force in the construction industry, China’s construction industry employees have been rising for the past 40 years, and now the construction industry has reached 55 million people. However, with the advent of aging and the peak of the demographic dividend, the upward trend is getting slower and slower; in contrast, the labor cost of China’s construction industry is constantly rising, and even rising faster and faster.

Of course, in the construction industry today, the speed of building a floor of 5 days or even 3 days will be reached, but this speed mainly depends on the mechanized process, which is quite different from the previous relying mainly on manpower.

“Now when you go to any construction site, you will see that there are almost all middle-aged and elderly construction workers on the construction site.” Su Qing, a project leader in Wuhan, told Jiajiaguangnian.

“The average age of construction workers on our site is close to 50 years old, and there are basically no young people. The only few young people are either managers or people who understand mechanical technology.” Su Qing said.

This phenomenon is not alone. According to statistics, the average age of management personnel in China’s construction industry is between 47 and 48 years old, and it shows a trend of increasing year by year, which far exceeds the average age of a company’s management.

In the future, as the aging intensifies, this problem will become more and more prominent. “Ten years later, when the current workers are old and the young people can’t connect, what should I do? This problem is very realistic, so the construction industry must go through assembly.” Su Qing, a project leader in Wuhan said.

But at present, assembly is not as accepted as expected.

A person in charge of a prefabricated project told “Jiazi Guangnian” that the prefabricated construction in China is only in its infancy. “The prefabricated construction projects we do are mainly government projects, such as resettlement houses, hospitals, schools, etc.”

In fact, in addition to policy encouragement, local governments will also force certain projects to achieve a certain percentage of prefabricated buildings. In 2019, most local auctions in Nanjing basically require 100% of the prefabricated construction area of ​​real estate companies.

“If I choose voluntarily, I will choose pouring construction.” The person in charge of the above project said.

He said that prefabricated buildings are currently difficult to popularize on a large scale in China, and one of the reasons is equipment constraints. Construction cranes have load-bearing restrictions, and concrete prefabricated walls can easily exceed the load-bearing capacity of tower cranes. Another reason is that the prefabricated walls of domestic prefabricated buildings lack uniform specifications, and there are differences in wall thickness, length and width, which brings many problems for later assembly.

Moreover, the production of accessories for domestic assembled buildings has not been mechanized on a large scale, and still requires a lot of labor, which leads to higher construction costs than traditional on-site pouring methods.

“A prefabricated resettlement house project I once worked on costs as high as 2,000 yuan for one prefabricated wall, while the cost for the same traditional brick wall is more than 600 yuan, which is quite different.” The person in charge of the above project construction said.

Not only are construction workers waiting to see, but even home buyers are also suspicious of prefabricated buildings. “When I heard about prefabricated buildings, my first impression was simple houses, resettlement houses, rough, leaky, and poor quality. If I buy a building, I will definitely choose the traditional cast-in-place building.” A friend told Jiajia Light Year .

Taking only the two Wuhan hospitals that have received much attention this time as an example, the Vulcan Hill Hospital uses a container room, and the Thunder Mountain Hospital is a temporary steel frame building. Whether the two hospitals will continue to use the hospital after the epidemic situation is still to be determined after the epidemic situation.

The Xiaotangshan Hospital 17 years ago was demolished after use.

At a Hubei Province real estate industry assembly-type development seminar in July 2019, the participating experts summarized the four major problems of assembly-type construction that are difficult to popularize: all upstream links in the industry are fighting alone, and integration benefits are difficult to play; design integration Low; overall project cost is high; lack of industry standards, social recognition is not high.

4. New opportunities for building digitization

The current focus is not on whether prefabricated buildings are feasible, but how to make prefabricated buildings feasible.

Just after the completion of the Vulcan Hill Hospital, China Industrial Internet Enabling Platform Root Interconnect showed a set of data from Sany’s machinery on-site operations, and looked at the progress of the project from another perspective:

On January 24, the Vulcan Hill Hospital started construction, and about 200 excavators, including Sany Heavy Industry, were assembled on site. The excavator operation time increased by 11 times in one day, and began to work with rollers and bulldozers to level the land, etc. jobs;

On the 26th, most of the land leveling work was basically completed. The laying of the underground pipe network and HDPE (high density polyethylene) film was fully started. The concrete pump trucks began to enter the site one after another. At the same time, the crane operation data appeared and began to cooperate with the on-site pipeline laying and container board houses. Material entry and other work;

On the 28th, the excavator operation data peaked for the first time, which was 30% higher than the two days before and after; in addition, the operation data of mixer trucks, cranes and other equipment rose rapidly, of which the working hours of mixer trucks increased by nearly 50 times; The data also started from scratch, showing that the site started working on the foundation while starting concrete pouring;

On the 29th, the operating data of concrete pump trucks and mixer trucks reached the peak, and the operating data of cranes increased by nearly 4 times compared with the previous day, from a low level to more than 10 hours, and officially entered the lifting stage;

Since then, the operating time of the crane has remained at a high level until it fell back on February 2. The total installation of 1,000 beds on site took about 5 days, and an average of 200 beds can be installed every day;

On the 30th, each excavator’s effective operation lasted up to 13.3 hours, which was 30% longer than the two days before and after. At the same time, the data of the mixer reached its peak on January 31. The data can also be inferred. The construction area has been expanded or completed in two stages.

All these data come from the on-site machinery of Sany Heavy Industry. Under the industrial Internet, traditional buildings are also beginning to become digital.

Compared with traditional empirical management, such data more intuitively shows the progress of the project and changes in operations, and even more precise in mechanical scheduling.

A person close to Sany Heavy Industry told “Jiazi Guangnian” that in 2008, Sany Heavy Industry began industrial Internet application; in 2013, it began to process information. This means that cameras, sensors and actuators embedded in the construction site will collect real-time data about machinery, workers and materials.

The collected data and information can allow stakeholders to understand the status of construction projects under construction. With IoT devices, construction companies can actively monitor fuel consumption, available resources, and worker behavior. In addition, IoT devices also help security managers monitor assets and check machine operation and maintenance status in real time.

The most traditional construction industry has also begun to go digital.

Technological advances have begun to remove barriers to the popularization of assembled technologies, especially those involving inflexibility. Digital tools, such as Building Information Model (BIM), can easily assemble prefabricated components into traditional buildings, and establish a more elaborate and flexible prefabricated component system to realize the collection, transmission, feedback and three-dimensional dynamic visual management of building information. In addition, advances in digital production methods, such as robotics and 3D printing technology, can also make the ideal “batch customization” into reality.

Wang Tiehong, president of the China Construction Industry Association and former chief engineer of the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development, said that the technology of the construction industry has crossed the main line, and the core is the profound and widespread impact of digital technology on the development of the construction industry.

“The main responsible comrades of many large construction companies have paid full attention to the development of technological innovation in this field, taking the lead in the comprehensive application of BIM (building information model) and cloud computing, big data, Internet of Things, mobile Internet, artificial intelligence and 3D printing, VR / AR, digital twins, blockchain and other digital technologies. This is a way for the Chinese construction industry to keep pace with the construction industries of some developed countries. Direction of the field. “

The wish is beautiful, but this path is not easy-in the extreme case of the epidemic, the advantages of relatively few artificial buildings and fast speed are amplified; but when we gradually return to the normal economic track, we can really resolve to invest Construction companies that are not currently favored by the “fabricated future” may not be the majority of the market.

But the opportunity to “change the dynasty” has always belonged to only a few people. The penetration rate of prefabricated buildings from less than 10% (China’s current level) to 70% (internationally developed level) will benefit a group of companies that seize the future and profoundly change the fundamentals of China’s “infrastructure madness”:

Diligence and more people can produce miracles, and technological means are closer to the miracle itself.

🇨🇳This original English article was published by ChinaPotion. Please contact us for any deeper insight & data; or to report unique tech stories in China.

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