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May 23rd, 2013

Structural Clay Division and brick industry leaders meet in Salt Lake City

Published on May 23rd, 2013 | By: Jim Destefani


A highlight of the meeting was a tour of Interestate Brick, a 122-year-old facility set against the Salt Lake City area's mountain backdrop.

A highlight of the meeting was a tour of Interstate Brick, a 122-year-old facility set against the Salt Lake City area’s mountain backdrop. Credit: ACerS

The ACerS Structural Clay Products Division (SCPD), in conjunction with the National Brick Research Center (NBRC; Anderson, S.C.), held its spring meeting May 13 and 14 in Salt Lake City. This is the first year ACerS SCPD and NBRC have held a joint meeting, and the event was very well received by attendees, according to ACerS’ Greg Geiger who was there.

The meeting kicked off with an evening reception on May 13th. On the 14th, Interstate Brick (West Jordan, Utah) hosted a tour of its 122-year-old plant. Before the tour, SCPD Chair James Hopkins of Swindell Dressler presented a certificate of appreciation from ACerS SCPD to Interstate Operations Manager Gerry Gunning.

Interstate engineer and SCPD Secretary John Hewitt, top, and a tour attendee observe packaging of Interstate's Atlas bricks.

Interstate engineer and SCPD Secretary John Hewitt (top) and NBRC's John Sanders observe packaging of Interstate's Atlas reinforceable brick. Credit: ACerS

The plant currently uses 10 body mixes from clay sourced from eight area mines to produce 16-inch hollow reinforceable and veneer brick as well as pavers, thin brick, and residential and commercial veneer between 8-12 inches long.

Interstate is best known for its 16-inch Atlas reinforceable brick, which attendees saw in production during the tour. The material permits construction of taller, thinner walls that can withstand earthquakes, extreme wind conditions, and fire. The company’s 16-inch Emperor face brick can be scored to look like smaller bricks, allowing masons to increase output. The tour concluded with lunch for attendees.

SCPD Chair-elect Greg Grabert of Basic Machinery presents a certificate of appreciation to outgoing Chair Jim Hopkins of Swindell Dressler.

SCPD Chair-elect Greg Grabert of Basic Machinery (left) presents a certificate of appreciation to outgoing Chair Jim Hopkins of Swindell Dressler. Credit: ACerS

The afternoon technical session featured nine speakers on topics ranging from efflorescence to thin brick production and testing. Chip Clark from the Brick Industry Association (Reston, Va.) gave an informative presentation on the Building Information Modeling for Masonry (BIM-M) initiative. The goal of BIM-M is to unify the masonry industry and supporting industries by developing and implementing BIM for masonry software to facilitate collaboration among owners, architects, engineers, manufacturers, masons, contractors, construction managers, and maintenance professionals. Clark said brick manufacturers can contribute to BIM-M by providing data used in the software’s Masonry Unit Model Definition, including product dimensions; elective tests; and physical, thermal, and sound properties that should be included in the database.

The event concluded with NBRC’s general membership meeting followed by a review of its research program. Full meeting details, including corporate sponsors and PowerPoint presentations, are available here.


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