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Enhancing construction sustainability of the Oxford Jesus College Northgate House

Consultant
Education
United Kingdom
Mass timber

Smith & Wallwork, faced water damage risks during the construction of the Northgate House in the center of Oxford. Traditional moisture monitoring methods proved inadequate.

In response, Tector's wireless sensors were strategically placed, providing real-time data on moisture, temperature, and humidity. This proactive approach enabled the building owner to detect another leak that they initially thought had been fixed, which could have led to structural risks and another round of costly repairs if it had gone undetected.

“Tector detected a leak that might have gone unnoticed and fixed it immediately. The way they present data is very smart, they monitor temp and humidity and overlay geolocation data (what was the rain event that caused it) Very clever. Very powerful.”
Simon Smith
Consultant Engineer, Smith & Wallwork

Challenge

As pioneers in mass timber construction, Smith & Wallwork faced the challenge of managing water damage risks, monitoring CLT flat roof to ensure the timber was drying out as expected and ensuring compliance with evolving regulatory standards.

The installation of moisture sensors was prompted by historic water leaks during construction, requiring proactive measures to monitor moisture levels and mitigate potential structural damages.

Traditional approaches to moisture monitoring were either cost-prohibitive or lacked the accessibility and ease of implementation required by Smith & Wallwork.

Solution

Smith & Wallwork strategically positioned Tector's wireless sensors within the timber structure.

“Installation doesn’t have to be done by a specialist. A lot easier and cheaper than consultants. Tector requires no training, very intuitive, user friendly” - Simon Smith, Consultant Engineer, Smith & Wallwork.

Tector’s solution offered real-time data on moisture levels, temperature, and humidity in easily understandable dashboards, accessible anywhere with internet connection.

Tector sensors were strategically installed across each building floor, targeting areas prone to potential water ingress. Within the platform, a comprehensive overview describes the precise locations of these sensors, together with environmental isolation and ventilation status.

This contextual information is essential for accurately interpreting the sensor data.

“Tector detected a leak that might have gone unnoticed and fixed it immediately. The way they present data is very smart, they monitor temp and humidity and overlay geolocation data (what was the rain event that caused it) Very clever. Very powerful” - Simon Smith, Consultant Engineer, Smith & Wallwork

The proactive monitoring enabled early leak detection and drying process supervision. This approach minimised structural damage risk and supported the firm's sustainability goals.

Impact

By detecting and addressing leaks in real-time, Tector prevented potential structural damage that could have otherwise gone unnoticed, thereby safeguarding the integrity of their timber constructions.

The platform's intelligent data presentation, incorporating temperature, humidity, and geolocation data, empowered the firm with actionable insights into moisture levels and potential risks, enabling informed decision-making and proactive risk management.

Tector’s solution safeguarded not just a building, but a symbol of learning and progress. Armed with actionable insights, Smith & Wallwork forged ahead, their commitment to sustainability, just like the wise folks in Oxford, always looking to the future while respecting the past.