Knauf Australia recently launched a very valuable and handy online solution to help clients and customers work out what fire, sound insulation and thermal properties are required for their specific building and application type to comply with the acceptable or deemed-to-satisfy provisions of the BCA 2019.
The National Construction Code (NCC) 2019 has been adopted by all states and NT from 1 May 2019, and will be adopted by ACT from 1 September 2019. NCC Volume One and Volume Two jointly make up the Building Code of Australia (BCA).
The driving force behind Knauf’s latest online solution is Digital Engineering Manager and Senior Technical Services Engineer Shailesh Koirala. Shailesh combined his knowledge of IT and coding with his extensive knowledge of the Code and its requirements to develop the BCA 2019 Deemed-To-Satisfy Provisions Finder.
Congratulations on creating this great online tool. Who will benefit from using the BCA 2019 Deemed-To-Satisfy Provisions Finder?
Thank you. Anybody involved with building construction in Australia will benefit from this tool, including architects, builders, certifiers, building materials manufacturers and suppliers, contractors and even home owners who are interested or required to know what fire resistance, sound insulation and thermal resistance would comply with the 2019 edition of the Building Code of Australia (BCA), including National Construction Code (NCC) Volume One (for Class 2 to 9 buildings) and Volume Two (for Class 1 and 10 buildings).
Is this tool unique to Knauf Australia?
I have not noticed any such interactive and comprehensive online tool available in Australia yet. Although the tool is uniquely developed by Knauf, the information obtained from the tool reflects the relevant clauses of the NCC 2019, regardless of the manufacturer. My main intention was to offer a tool that is very easy to use and that can help anybody, including ourselves.
What were your biggest challenges in creating the BCA 2019 Deemed-To-Satisfy Provisions Finder?
The biggest challenge was to interpret the fire related provisions in NCC Volume One (for Class 2 to 9 buildings) and digitalise them into a proper database. The fire provisions depend on three different sections, Section C, Section D and Section E and include so many special circumstances that offer concessions to the standard fire requirements. More than 2000 rows of data input were required to represent the fire related deemed-to-satisfy provisions only.
What was your inspiration for designing this tool?
People often ask us what is required in the BCA in terms of fire resistance, sound insulation and thermal resistance. And more often, we need to know the relevant clauses in the latest building code to ensure that our system offerings match the fundamental requirements. I realised that the BCA 2019 Deemed-To-Satisfy Provisions Finder will be a very valuable addition to our existing offering in the Knauf Knowhow Suite.
Is the new online tool easy to use?
The tool is very user-friendly and easy to use. You just need to select your building and application type and all the BCA requirements relating to fire resistance, sound insulation and thermal resistance will be in front of you. The tool not only tells you what specific performance criteria comply with the BCA, it also lists the relevant clauses of the NCC so that you can refer to the right place in the NCC to obtain more detailed information. There is also a link to Knauf’s online System Selector, where you can find a suitable Knauf System to meet the requirements.
Will it remain current and up to date with any changes?
Of course, we always keep a close eye on the ABCB website to see if there are any changes in the NCC. The application is developed fully in-house; updating is just a matter of a few hours’ work.
What do you want to tell users about using this tool?
Although I’ve taken extreme caution in creating the database and the application, there may still be errors and there are always ways to improve. I sincerely welcome any suggestions and comments regarding the tool. I would also like to emphasise that the tool is only a guide to the BCA and it may not include all aspects of construction. It is not intended to replace the NCC or professional services regarding building code compliance.