CLT Construction System – Cross Laminated Wood

CLT is a system of Contralaminated Wood (or Cross Laminated Timber – CLT) noted for its strength, appearance, versatility and sustainability. This product is made up of wooden panels made from layers of solid sawn wood and joined together in a cross shape by means of structural glue.

This system of pieces of great structural stability, rigidity and shape makes the system adapt without problems to floors, walls, mezzanines and ceilings.

CLT is manufactured in custom dimensions and the size of the panels varies according to the need of the project, while the length is generally limited by transport restrictions.

CLT-based buildings take less time to build.


This is because mass wood panels are prefabricated, smaller teams can assemble structures more safely and in less time. The speed advantage is amplified because manufacturing can be done simultaneously with on-site work and the foundation, which reduces downtime between construction phases and shortens construction time.



The Strength of CLT


CLT panels are made of layers of lumber boards (usually three, five or seven) stacked crosswise at 90-degree angles and glued into place. The panels can be manufactured at custom dimensions, though transportation restrictions dictate their length.

Applications for CLT include floors, walls and roofing. The panels’ ability to resist high racking and compressive forces makes them especially cost-effective for multistory and long-span diaphragm applications.

Some specifiers view CLT as interchangeable with other wood products and building systems. Like other mass timber products, CLT can be used in hybrid applications with materials such as concrete and steel. It can also be used as a prefabricated building component, accelerating construction timelines.

Several factors contribute to a growing market for CLT and tall wood construction: advances in wood connectors, the development of hybrid materials and building systems, the commercialization of CLT and growth in off-site fabrication.



How CLT Can Be Used


Alternating grains improve CLT panels’ dimensional stability. The lumber boards typically vary in thickness from 5/8 inch to 2 inches and in width from 2.4 inches to 9.5 inches. Finger joints and structural adhesive connect the boards.

In structural systems, such as walls, floors and roofs, CLT panels serve as load-bearing elements. As such, in wall applications, the lumber used in the outer layers of a CLT panel is typically oriented vertically so its fibers run parallel to gravity loads, maximizing the wall’s vertical load capacity. In floor and roof applications, the lumber used in the outer layers is oriented so its fibers are parallel to the direction of the span.

CLT’s ability to resist high racking and compressive forces makes it a cost-effective solution for multistory and long-span diaphragm applications.


Source: ThinkWood

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