HOUSTON-Ten companies that make foamed plastic components used in concrete construction have joined forces to create a trade group, the Insulating Concrete Form Association. Most of the systems use hollow blocks made from expanded polystyrene, or extruded PS sheet, held together with plastic or steel ties. Concrete is poured inside to create a wall combining strength and high insulation values.
ICFA, based in Glenview, Ill., was formed to promote the industry and work on standards, said Eric Plane, executive vice president of AAB Building System Inc. of Torrance, Calif.
Foam/concrete system firms were located near each other in the Astroarena building in Houston. The technology got a visibility boost at the Portland Cement Association's New Concrete Village in the parking lot outside the hall. During the show, workers erected a house using AAB's expanded PS block system.
Most of the foam/concrete system suppliers are small companies that use expanded PS blocks. But one large newcomer has jumped into the market: extruded PS sheet maker UC Industries Inc., a unit of Owens-Corning Fiberglas Corp. of Toledo, Ohio. UC of Parsippany, N.J., and R-Forms Inc. of Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., displayed their system in Houston. R-Forms injection molds the components that tie together the PS sheet.
Member companies are AAB Building System; American Poly-steel Forms of Albuquerque, N.M.; EnerGCorp Inc. of Phoenix; Greenblock EPS Building System of Woodland Park, Colo.; I.C.E. Block of New Carlisle, Ohio; Lite-Form Inc. of Sioux City, Iowa; Polycrete Industries Inc. of Anjou, Quebec; Quad-Lock Building Systems of Bellingham, Wash.; R-Forms; Owens-Corning; and Reddi-Form Inc. of Oakland, N.J.