TS3 long-term test stand removed



The TS3 long-term test stand at the Bern University of Applied Sciences has delivered important results for the successful development of TS3 technology and has helped the technology to achieve a market breakthrough. Now it has been dismantled. In keeping with the circular economy, the cross laminated timber boards are being used to create a new object: two box girder elements for heavy-duty bridges.

The new TS3 technology enables large surfaces made of wood. Ten years of research together with the Bern University of Applied Sciences and ETH Zurich were necessary to develop the technology. An important milestone was the long-term test stand in the courtyard of the Bern University of Applied Sciences in Biel. It has served well and has now been dismantled.

Successful market entry for TS3 technology 

The long-term test stand was officially inaugurated on 16 May 2018. In the same year, construction work started on the world's first apartment buildings with TS3 technology in Grossaffoltern (BE). Since then, 15 projects with around 6,000 square metres of space have been realised - not only in Switzerland, but also in Austria, Canada and the USA. These include lighthouse projects such as the world's largest continuous cross laminated timber panel as the flat roof of the new Handl production building in the Austrian Tyrol. Or the Fasanenhof apartment building in Frenkendorf, which is currently being completed with a total of 15 flats. In the current year, another 10,000 square metres will be added. Here you can find an overview of the completed projects. 

Further research and development work is necessary to ensure that TS3 building projects can be constructed even more efficiently and cost-effectively and that the technology establishes itself successfully on the market. 

Further research projects 

The CTI research project Timber Structures 3.0-Technology, which included the long-term test stand, was successfully completed at the end of June 2020. Information on the research project can be found on the BFH website. 

As a follow-up project, the Innosuisse research project "Achieving market maturity of the two-axis load-bearing flat deck system in timber construction" started on 01.01.2021. Over the next three years, TS3 will research and optimise the TS3 system together with Henkel & Cie AG and Schilliger Holz AG as well as the research partners ETH Zurich and Bern University of Applied Sciences. Innosuisse is supporting the research institutes with around 700,000 CHF. The implementation partners are making the same contribution again. 

Two work packages are being processed at the Bern University of Applied Sciences. On the one hand, the Institute for Timber Construction, Structures and Architecture IHTA is optimising the construction site suitability of TS3 under the title "Pour to solid (PTS) to market" under the direction of Prof. Dr. Steffen Franke. On the other hand, the industrialisation of the technology is being further developed by Prof. Dr. Klaus Rehm at the Institute for Digital Building and Wood Industry IdBH. At the ETH, the Institute for Building Materials of Prof. Dr. Ingo Burgert is researching the interaction of the wood-adhesive system, and at the Institute for Structural Analysis and Design of Prof. Dr. Andrea Frangi, a two-axis load-bearing hollow core ceiling is being developed, which will be integrated into the TS3 system. Together, the work packages will lead to an increase in the load-bearing capacity, an extension of the application range and finally also to an increase in efficiency in the application of the TS3 connection. 

New object from old panels 

In keeping with the spirit of the circular economy, the cross-laminated timber boards from the long-term test stand, which has been at BFH in Biel since 2018, are being reused for an initial exhibition object. Two box girder elements of a two-lane road bridge will be created on a scale of 1:1 from the boards of the test stand. The elements show parts of a road bridge across the axis, which could, for example, lead over a four-lane motorway. A prestressing in the webs of the box girder makes the large spans possible with simultaneous high loads from the road traffic. The bridge will be inaugurated on the occasion of the 4th International Conference on Timber Bridges in spring 2022.



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