The Rise of Aluminum Composite

In 1969, Alusingen and BASF invented Aluminum Composite Material or ACM. Their invention produced beneficial results, and soon came into the view of Alusuisse, which was quick to nab it.

At that time, Alusingen had patented the process to create Aluminum Composite Material. The patent prevented any other company to create aluminum composite materials for 20 years, from 1971 to 1991.

When the patent finally reached its expiry date, several companies were quick to jump into the game. Notable names among such companies include Alcoa, Mitsubishi, and Etem. Of course, each developed aluminum composite materials under a different name. This in turn gave rise to other producers who also began to develop aluminum composite material.

The Manufacturing Process of Aluminum Composite Material

Aluminum composite material is manufactured using two aluminum sheets, typically with a thickness of 0.5 mm sandwiching a core of low-density polyethylene. In total, the thickness of the aluminum composite material is 4 mm.

Co-extrusion, extrusion lamination, and lamination with adhesive films are three technologies used in the manufacturing process of aluminum composite material. However, a surprising fact is that the use of the material during the construction and design process of buildings was not discovered until the mid 80s.

The Advantages of Using Aluminum Composite Material

It took architects almost eleven years to discover the true use of aluminum composite material. When they uncovered the advantages of using the material, several picked it up, using it readily in their designs. The primary advantages of using aluminum composite material are:

  • Remarkable strength-to weight-ratio

  • Light-weight and durable

  • Wider selection of finishes than sheet metal and plate metal

  • Increased flexibility and adaptability

The availability of the material resulted in several designers suggesting the use of aluminum composite material. Architects found the material’s ability to create beautiful and attractive façade for buildings wonderful.

Architects were not the only ones taking advantage of aluminum composite material, but other industries such as the oil and car manufacturing industry began to use it as well. These industries use ACM as part of their branded image, incorporating ACM finished in their specific brand colors into their building façade and signage.

The Present Day Market for Aluminum Composite Material

The market for aluminum composite material has grown since 2006, amounting to over 16 million. You can see architects using the material as column covers, curtain wall system, soffits, interior finish material, and fascias.

Will you be using aluminum composite material for your next construction project? If you are, have you thought about where you will get it? We can help you with both of these questions. First, your design will benefit from using ACM, as you will be able to find the perfect finish and color. Second, you can contact us to learn more about using our products in your next project, and we will be happy to assist you in any way we can, from finish selection to design support and value engineering.

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