Cross-laminated Timber (CLT) is increasingly attractive to architects and clients seeking modern solutions to sustainable construction. However, as it is still a relatively new construction method, there is a need for good technical information for architects and structural engineers, as well as for increased production to meet demand. As Europe’s biggest timber exporter, Sweden has a long history of innovation and technical expertise in timber. Swedish mills are now investing extensively in CLT manufacturing capacity, and Swedish Wood has produced a 200-page CLT Handbook for structural engineers and architects, working with leading institutions, such as RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Lund University Faculty of Engineering and Linnaeus University.
The Handbook is available as a pdf on Wood Campus https://www.woodcampus.co.uk/swedish-wood-clt-handbook/, where you will also find the RIBA-accredited CPD module Building with Wood. The Handbook will be updated with amendments and additions resulting from the extensive research and development programmes currently underway by Swedish Wood.
In the UK, the Handbook should be read in conjunction with the latest advice relating to building regulations and fire safety, where the use of combustible construction materials is no longer permissible on the outer walls of residential buildings over 18m (six or seven storeys) high (see https://www.woodcampus.co.uk/cross-laminated-timber-clt/). This means that timber construction systems such as CLT will need separation between the structure and the outer face of a residential building over 18m high. Work is currently underway on robust details to meet the regulations.