Stainless steel's non-magnetic properties were an important factor in the design, building and construction of the University of New South Wales' (UNSW) new Analytical Centre.
The facility has been designed to enhance the performance of high-tech analytical equipment such as the UNSW's nuclear magnetic resonance instruments (NMRs).
The centre is one of six components in the North Mall Development Zone (NMDZ) project, located within the Kensington Campus of the University of New South Wales (UNSW).
According to Mr Ed Smith of McLachlan Lister, the Project Directors of the NMDZ, building will accommodate both staff and equipment from the University's existing Electron Microscopy Unit (EMU), Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) and centre and eight other technical scientific instrument centres.
“The five NMRs within the Analytical Centre will emit very strong electromagnetic fields. A standard ferrous concrete reinforcement would adversely effect these fields and consequently the performance of these machines”.
ASSDA member, Ancon Building Products supplied 150 tonnes of 304 and 316 grade stainless steel ribbed reinforcement bar for the concrete slabs, beams, piles and columns.
Both 304 and 316 stainless steel are non-magnetic and strong enough to replace carbon steel reinforcement bar in the design.
Some stainless steel pile cages were passivated after welding. Ancon Building Products cut and bent all bars to schedule, longer bars were created using stainless mechanical couplers, which were custom fabricated.
This article featured in Australian Stainless Issue 36, Winter 2006.