Afaconsult is at the forefront of integrated project work in Portugal. Over the years, it has explored and developed internal skills in the following areas of engineering:
afaconsult's approach to structural design is based on close collaboration from the outset, developing creative solutions and enabling innovative concepts. These challenges are understood as a stimulus for the emergence of systems in which structure and form complement each other in the pursuit of conceptual rigour. This approach contributes to a continuous increase in know-how, always with the final quality of the project in view, where, in addition to the usual safety checks in terms of strengths, the considerations of durability, sustainability, and comfort are becoming increasingly important.
Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning
Our philosophy is to design clean and efficient solutions that result in sustainable systems. afaconsult strives to strike the right balance between the technical and financial demands of the project and the energy requirements of the environment. The implementation of solutions for the increasingly demanding requirements of architecture is one of the main objectives of this discipline, because the feeling of confort within spaces depends on that approach.
Water and Drainage
afaconsult's approach to water designs seeks flawless solutions that are also suitable from the point of view of operating and maintaining installations. An adequate reading of the general project, namely building architecture, interdisciplinary dialogue, and detail execution are all aspects that afaconsult pays special attention to since we know that these are decisive factors for the success of the project and the works overall.
Fire safety in buildings is of the utmost importance with implications for various areas of building design. Architecture and structures (passive safety), hydraulics, mechanics, and electronics (active safety). afaconsult's main objective is to prepare safety studies that suit each case, in order to develop safe buildings. To that end, we adopt measures that reduce the risk of fire and hinder the propagation of fire and smoke, allowing for a quick and safe evacuation of the building's occupants.
Electricity and Communications
To ally market growth with solutions, afaconsult's objectives are electrical equipment and communications towards promoting innovative outcomes in illumination, aiming to create environments adjusted to a building's different uses. The design of Centralized Technical Management studies is seen as a way to minimize energy consumption and improve the comfort of a building's users at the same time.
One of the areas in which afaconsult has consolidated knowledge and experience is undoubtedly Geotechnics. In large projects we have had the opportunity to study and implement groundbreaking solutions in different stages of construction: foundations (superficial and deep), excavations, containment, and underground projects. We have developed a sensitivity to the importance of geotechnical aspects and their implications for structural behaviour, technical viability, and solution optimization. The role of geotechnical knowledge in the overall conception of the project and its importance to the success of our project integrated strategy is a permanent concern to us.
In view of the increasing complexity of buildings, afaconsult's projects in the Gas speciality field aim to establish optimised pipe routes and supply points, whilst observing the implementation of all the safety and economic-efficiency requirements.
Acoustics is a field of engineering that supports the architecture of spaces that require flawless sound quality. afaconsult, in partnership with DHV Architectural Acoustics (The Netherlands), is ready to develop studies in this specialisation to enable an ideal conceptualisation of spaces, in accordance with Portuguese and European by-laws and regulations. Architectural acoustics is becoming more and more essential in high complexity projects, increasing the challenges and “amplifying” the importance of this specialisation.
The electromechanical design stage endows buildings with secure means of vertical and horizontal displacement appropriate to the building's height, and the proper size for the expected flow of people, paying close attention to the specifications of the finishes, according to the architecture design, in the same manner as the combination of these resources with management systems that contribute to lower energy consumption and waiting times.
afaconsult's experience in this field encompasses from new bridge and viaduct projects to the inspection and reinforcement of existing structures. These structures are seen by their designers as important landmarks, adding the responsibility of conceiving more than just a merely technical design.
Lighting technology is one of the major specialisations in a good architectural project. afaconsult develops it simultaneously from a point of view of architectonics and comfort. A good lighting project uses light and shadow effects, to emphasise a good architectural design, combining natural lighting, calculation, and transportation with the complementary study of good artificial lighting. The aim is to increase visual comfort, improving task performance together with electric power savings.
BIM means "Building Information Modeling". It is a set of information represented in a 3D model, generated during design phases, that can be used throughout the life cycle of the building for different approaches. With this Model, the architecture, structures, and various disciplines are simulated in three dimensions, a procedure that helps the design team to make decisions during any stage and enables us to ensure overall compatibility before construction. It is thus a powerful tool in the development of increasingly ambitious projects.
Energy Certification Systems
afaconsult has developed services that enable it to provide clients with services that result from the application of ECS, including: assessing the energy performance and indoor air quality in buildings still in design to issue the Energy Pre-Certificate and consequently, the respective Energy Certificate upon completion of the construction; perform periodic Energy and Indoor Air Quality Audits, which can be used as a basis to perform Energy Rationalization and Environmental Correction Plans.
Regarding operations that normally imply big costs, with a large number of participants, professional management that guarantees the resolution of all problems in a timely manner is determinant to success. During the project phase, afaconsult's seeks to develop efficient solutions, from the cost/durability point of view, which reflects, above all, on the ease of use of the projected Infrastructures.
With a vast experience in this specialised area, afaconsult can offer a complete design service with in-house expertise. The constant improvement in petrol station equipment design and the increasingly demanding requirements of customers mean that engineers involved in these projects must keep their know-how up to date.
The complexity of demolishing buildings and a growing environmental awareness mean a multidisciplinary approach within demolition subcontracting is mandatory. afaconsult, in conjunction with its consultants in the environmental area, prepares Demolition projects with the objective of: » Defining the correct sequence for dismantling » Defining the proper method, techniques, and adequate for the demolition » Quantifying and classifying the type of waste resulting from demolition » Establishing a Waste Management Plan.
Health and Safety at Work
When Decree-Law 273/03 of 29 October came into force, it regulated Occupational Health and Safety at Work in construction sites, becoming a relevant part of all building projects and works. Health and Safety Plans became mandatory for any Project or work. Health coordinators also became essential at both stages of work. It is a part of afaconsult's services to respond to the challenges in this area, namely, supporting the Builder regarding their legal obligations pursuant to the Decree-Law.
In close proximity with the environment, Waste Management is becoming a speciality field of it's own, where project licensing is increasingly becoming a requirement imposed by local government regulations. afaconsult is well aware that this area will experience exponential growth in its importance and is prepared to respond to its study, not only on the level of simple calculations and location of containers, but also on the level of more elaborate systems, such as waste vacuum suction and waste compaction.