The only European patent for a building made entirely of plastic ! The invention was a response to an idea for a prefabricated, mobile, demountable building system that could be used for everything from houses and schools to hospitals and disaster relief shelters. The additional, self-imposed restriction is that every element must be lifted by no more than two people with no mechanical aid.
In fact the ‘plastic’ or advanced composite material used has twice the strength of steel and half the weight of aluminum. It is primarily pultruded GRP in profiled sections or hollow boxes, just like steel, but the flat sheets are from truck body construction. For economy all components have to be mass produced by water cut flat sheets and all joints are adhesive fixed. There are no mechanical fasteners except as the restraint to the cantilevered panels before they are fixed as three pin arches.
The product was once under consideration by international governments for medical and field facilities and developed through the prototype phases with Sheffield Hallam. Development work stopped in 1993 but new applications have recently been considered including a beach house in Devon.