Mezzanine floor is an obvious solution when it comes to expanding floor space. For omni-channel businesses and in retail environments it not only enlarges work space and makes it more flexible, but also creates novel designs. In warehousing and production, where automation is expanding, custom-made mezzanine floors that hold pallets and racking are adaptable to various loads and traffic. They can accommodate conveyors to transport goods from the mezzanine level down to the ground floor. They also guarantee expansion of used space to maximise the output. In self-storage that is usually made for certain purposes and is hardly flexible mezzanine flooring helps meet various needs of different groups of customers. To get the right type, calculations of load capacities and point loads are necessary. Various deck materials are available to suit different purposes. During design process compliance with building and fire regulations is crucial.
Standard mezzanine floors
One of the main advantages of using mezzanine floors used to be their relatively low costs due to materials used. In the past it was mainly tubular steel with wooden decks on top. Simple design provided cheaper solution but definitely not the safest one. Another popular way was using concrete blocks with timber and plywood decking to cover it. The above two constructions were in use for about a century and then the new way came into light – structural steel and timber. Nowadays, it consists of four basic elements. Three are made of steel: vertical columns, steel I-beams and smaller purlins. Decking on top of purlins is usually wooden or also made of steel. Painted or coated finishes are widely available. Additional elements include handrails, staircases and gates amongst others.
Standard mezzanine floors in use these days have point load capacity of approximately 600kgs max. This means that the use of automated picking machines, sorters, conveyors and pallet trucks is safe on mezzanines up to 600kgs. Depending on application, this figure can be lower, for example for office uses. However, medium industrial storage has higher requirements, not to mention heavy duty storage. Some companies manufacture mezzanines with higher capacities up to 1000kgs and 1500kgs, for example, for hand platform trucks. Such structures are demountable and perform at a standard deflection rate.
Mezzanine floors of tomorrow
There is however a brand-new mezzanine floor system that is so far the best there is on the market. It has been developed to improve current technology and meet heavy duty customer needs. This solution was certified by Steel Construction Institute as being 7 times stronger than the standard product. This is achieved by the unique shape of the steel b-deck, as you can tell from the picture above.
Manufacturing, production or retail environments need flexibility that would help them rapidly adapt to new requirements to stay at the forefront of the industry. To achieve that, they need flexible space. This is exactly what this b-deck mezzanine offers. It overcomes challenges of size and weight of products and compatibility with, for example, Advanced Guided Vehicles. It supports hand and power trucks, as well as other material handling equipment of up to 2000kgs. Other than improved strength, it offers 75% reduced deflection, lower vibration response and enhanced fire retardancy in comparison to the standard product. The above features are possible by using the new b-deck profile made from extra strong steel. Not only does it improve performance, but also reduces project cost. It ensures the use of less raw material and makes the product lighter. It does not generate any additional costs because it is a part of the cold roll-forming process.
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