The new lactoferrin facility for Bega delivers a highly technical building structure, designed to incorporate a myriad of specialist plant equipment and services.  

The new facility will be used for a variety of activities, including process and manufacturing, packing, storage, plant and control rooms. In order to meet the operating requirements for each of these spaces, several different design types are used throughout the building. Precast concrete walls and in-situ concrete suspended slabs have been used to support the heavy and vibration-sensitive plant equipment, whilst light-weight insulted sandwich-panels are used to form the trafficable ceilings and internal partition walls.

The processes areas are required to be a ‘clean space’ and all connection details between structural members were required to be either concealed within insulated wall panels or a separate sheath. To enable future installation or replacement of large processes equipment, a section of the external wall consists of insulated panels, rather than precast concrete, and a portion of the roof structure above the spray dryer unit has been designed to be removable to provide future access to equipment.

ACOR Consultants delivered Structural and Civil Engineering Design for the entire project and provided design finalisation and Construction Assistance for the Building Services.  The team also led the management and coordination of BIM, integrating documentation from other disciplines to help streamline the contractors building methodology.

Adding value though BIM coordination

This service included hosting the central model through Autodesk’s BIM360, coordination of weekly updates for all user models, collation of individual models to form a federated model available for viewing by all consultants via Autodesk’s Navisworks and conducting weekly clash detection meetings and distribution of interactive action lists.

Integration with existing services

An external pipe bridge, constructed to transport raw materials to the new building, was required to traverse across a roadway within the site and over the top of the existing packing building. A major challenge was producing a bridge design which did not clash with existing underground services and structure. The pipe bridge column footings required coordination with existing underground services, easements and the packing room floor plan so as not to impede the access requirements for forklifts and other various packing-related activities.

A model of the proposed pipe bridge framing was incorporated into a 3D scan of the existing packing building in order to undertake a clash detection and to confirm levels and set-out to enable fabrication of the structural steel framing for the pipe bridge.

Extensive coordination was also required between ACOR, the builder and the ceiling panel manufacturer throughout the installation of the trafficable ceiling to ensure that adequate support was provided at each penetration location, which included mechanical vents and lights.

Designing for fast track construction

The rationale to have the ‘shell’ of the building constructed as quickly as possible was driven by the extensive internal works to be undertaken, including mechanical, electrical and processes infrastructure and the installation of insulated wall panels and trafficable ceilings. Precast concrete was selected for the external walls of the building due the speed of manufacture and installation, meaning that the steel superstructure could be fabricated whilst the precast panels were erected.