Scaffolding: An Essential in Consturction

Looking around nearly any construction site you will almost always see scaffolding erected as an essential part of the sites day to day operations. Scaffolding serves many purposes; firstly, to protect workers from falls or provide a rail so that they can work at height with ease. Secondly scaffolding, when in a modular fashion or along the side of a building can act as a walkway or internal ladder so that other parts of the site can be accessed.

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Scaffolding has been used ever since humans have been building constructions of significant height, given its necessity. In fact cave paintings that date back to over 17,000 years ago in Northern France suggest that scaffolding was used to reach the ceiling. The Ancient Egyptians and early Chinese used it to build many of their taller structures.

Just as changes have been made in our buildings, advances have occurred in terms of the materials used in Scaffolding, with wood and rope being the norm in days gone by, to now having metal scaffolding and fasteners being the most commonplace. However Bamboo is frequently seen in less developed parts of Asia and even the heavily developed city state of Hong Kong, as pictured below.

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Shanghai Metal Corporation, being a worldwide leader in the supply and manufacture of Galvanized Steel are proud to be a part of the formation of tubing that is essential in making scaffolding structures, with a particular emphasis on galvanized steel for use in outdoor applications. This product offers a rust resistance and extreme strength allowing its safe use on a construction site. To find out more about these products or to discuss customization and individual requirements please visit our website Here. For more updates on this and other exciting developments follow us on FacebookTwitter & Linkedin. By scanning the QR code below with your Smart Phone you can connect to our app.

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Dominick F.//SMC Editor

Sources: Wikipedia; Raynes Park Scaffolding;

Aluminum: Metal of the Future

Aluminum is seeing a marked increase in use in Automobile manufacture over the traditional metal; steel. This trend has been driven by two major factors. Firstly the market price for aluminum has fallen by over a third since its 2011 peak, making the metal and attractive option, despite it costing more than three times as much as steel. So what else is driving this trend? The intrinsic properties of aluminum make it suitable for vehicle manufacture; particularly its light weight. In a society that is increasingly concerned about fuel economy and pollution this is of particular importance, as lighter cars mean that less gasoline needs to be used to propel them.

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So one can pose the question; how real is this trend? As mentioned in our previous article on the new Ford F-150 pickup truck, it is the first modern-mass produced vehicle to have its body completely composed of aluminum. However there are other examples, particularly in the luxury automobile segment that also have aluminum bodies, like the Audi A8 and Jaguar XJR.

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This is just the beginning of the aluminum switch, as we can see the strong investment in technology and infrastructure. The biggest example of this being Alcoa Inc. and Novalis (the largest metal manufacturers in the United States) spending a combined $US 1 Billion on upgrading factories just to produce aluminum sheet metal for automobiles. This is not an intrinsically US phenomena, with Hindalco spending $US 550 Million upgrading aluminum sheet metal for automobile manufacture plants in Germany and China.

As a world leader in aluminum production and supply Shanghai Metal Corporation stocks this material in a range of forms and can customize specifications to suite your requirements. To contact us please visit our website Here. For more updates on this and other exciting developments follow us on FacebookTwitter & Linkedin. Or by using your smart device, scan the QR code below!

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Dominick F.// Editor SMC

Sources: The Wall Street Journal; Anish Kelkar, Richard Roth, and Joel Clark; Wikipedia; Motor Trend; Forbes

Galactic Prefab Offers Vacations in Space

Space tourism is an extreme form of travelling that has been experienced by only a few people. Due to the high prices of such service providers as Richard Branson‘s Virgin Galactic, only the wealthiest can spend a vacation in space. A Russian space pod design company Orbital Technologies is trying to take space tourism more mainstream.

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An article on Wikipedia has gathered a list of all of the world’s eight space tourists. The lists also showed that in order to get to space, those people spent US 20 to 40 million. Orbital Technologies’ service is much more cheaper.

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A Soyuz rocket will take you to a two day voyage in space with about $US 826,000. Five nights weight in $US 165,000. With that price passengers can stay in a comfortable solar-powered Commercial Space Station (CSS) orbiting the Earth within a 217 mile radius. The passengers can view the cosmos through portholes.

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The price includes luxury gourmet meals that are prepared on Earth. Unfortunately alcohol is not allowed in the space flight. The passengers can use an air-flush toilet and take shower in a fully sealed water cubicle. They sleep vertically or horizontally in zippered sleeping bags that prevent them flying around in zero gravity.

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The galactic prefab is also used as pod for scientific research during off-seasons. It is also used as an emergency stations for space crafts that get into trouble in space.

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One interesting fact about space tourism is that it slows down aging but just a little bit. According to a theory of time dilation, say, a six month trip to space slows down aging by 0.007 seconds. Thereby arithmetically speaking, a five day voyage in a space hub would slow down aging by 0.002 seconds.

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Space pod is a futuristic application of prefabricated building. For many years people have built prefab homes, hotels and hospitals etc. Shanghai Metal Corporation is also a provider of prefabricated building projects. To learn more about our projects, please visit our website. Please also look at our Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram profiles. If you liked this blog, please feel free to share it.

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#BuildingValueAcrossTheGlobe

Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: Inhabitat, Designboom, How Stuff Works?, Wikipedia, Tuvie.com

Fords Revolutionary 2014 F150 Pickup

First the first time ever a motor vehicle manufacturer is using a nearly all Aluminum metal body in one of its pickup trucks, why you ask?

In 2010 President Obama introduced new tough fuel-efficiency standards for vehicles, which meant that they needed to start reducing gasoline consumption per mile traveled. This is exactly what ford managed to do, by switching from Aluminum to steel Ford shaved 700pounds off the weight of the vehicle which is roughly 15%. So what effect did this have on petrol consumption? Reducing the weight so dramatically has reduced combined urban and highway consumption to 17 miles per gallon which is more than 25%.

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This lighter body also opens up the doors to more potential fuel savings. As the vehicle is lighter it no longer requires the same heavy hitting 3.5L V6 engine so by replacing this with a more economical motor will further increase this vehicles potential to save fuel which is important as efficiency regulations are incrementally ramped up past 2020. Further more if other technologies such as auto stop/start and hybrid engines are installed this can be further maximized.

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With the F150 being fords most profitable vehicle worldwide this is also somewhat of a gamble for Ford to be making, given that aluminum has somewhat of a reputation for being weak- after all it is the basis of kitchen foil, right? Wrong! When aluminum is combined with small amounts of other metals to form and alloy it is actually just as strong as steel. So in an industry already struggling this could put Ford in a strategically beneficial position or isolate ignorant consumers.

As a world leader, Shanghai Metal Corporation (SMC) offers Aluminum in various type and size with offices and subsidiaries located throughout  Asia, Europe, Australia, and the Americas. More information on aluminum can be found on our website here. Be sure to join the conversation in our LinkedIn groupFacebookTwitter & Tumblr. You can also scan the QR code below with your smart device to connect with us on these platforms.

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Dominick F.//SMC Editor

Adapted from: The Wall Street Journal, M. Ramsey July 26 2013

Sources: The Wall Street Journal; ExtremeTech; Lesgrenoules

#BuildingValueAcrossTheGlobe

Aluminum- A Question of Supply & Demand

Underpinning this update is news coming out of Tokyo of a record premium price paid by two Japanese buyers for bulk Aluminum through the London Metal Exchange (LME) which is due to be shipped in the October-December Quarter by British-Australian mining giant Rio-Tinto Ltd. Sources close to the negotiations say that Rios offer of $420 per tonne beat other producers offer of between $435 and $460 from suppliers such as Alcoa.

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This comes of the back of American Alcoa Inc’s  April report that global aluminum demand will exceed production this year, putting an end to nine years of surplus supply of Aluminum driven by high Chinese production. Naturally this excess supply lowered global prices, which for an industry worth $90Billion dollars a year globally will see its impacts felt right throughout the global economic system.

Further driving this global market phenomenon is the closure of many smelters despite forecasts for global Aluminum consumption to increase by 7% throughout the year 2014, with a lot of this stemming from Aerospace and automobile industries.  The closure of smelters outside of China, in particular Japan, USA and Europe.

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The properties that make aluminum a metal so useful are its lightness, corrosion resistance, non-magnetic, non-toxic, good reflector of light waterproof and odorless, very ductile and also cheap comparing to other alloy.

As a world leader, Shanghai Metal Corporation (SMC) offers Aluminum in various type and size with offices and subsidiaries located throughout  Asia, Europe, Australia, and the Americas. More information on aluminum can be found on our website here. Be sure to join the conversation in our LinkedIn groupFacebookTwitter & Tumblr. You can also scan the QR code below with your smart device to connect with us on these platforms.

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Dominick F.//SMC Editor

Sources; Reuters; Bloomberg; Wikipedia; Yahoo! Finance; Cedar Recycling

#BuildingValueAcrossTheGlobe

Shipping Container Bunkers – The Cure for Natural Disasters and Terrorism?

Due to their widely applicable physical features, shipping containers have become a good alternative for affordable housing, mobile retail and building hotels just to name but a few. Shipping containers can also be used as protective shelters for natural disasters or terrorist attacks.

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There are a lot of options for choosing appropriate material for building a safe bunker. Even though shipping container is not possibly the best alternative, due to its wide availability and cheap price, for average consumers it is perhaps the only option. A used shipping container can be purchased with approximately US$ 2000. The United States use over a million shipping containers annually to import products from abroad but because it is expensive to ship them back, most of them stay in the US. According to some estimates there are over 700,000 used shipping containers laying in US ports waiting for new use.

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Even though containers’ walls are designed to resist rough weather even in extreme conditions, most people like to bury their container bases in order to make it invisible. Still, one needs to take into consideration that the containers’ steel roofs are not made to last heavy loads. Containers are designed to lie on their four strong corners. The four corners also enable stacking various layers of containers. So therefore, after digging a hole for the container one should design a frame that supports adding a gabion basket on the container. The gabion basket filled with rocks will protect the container. See original articles for more detail.

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Where the containers’ exterior surrounding has some limitations, the interior design is basically free for users’ own imagination. Today some containers come with a electric generator and bathroom solutions making the containers livable apartments.

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Shanghai Metal Corporation has a long experience in offering high quality containers for shipping and housing. For more details of our containers and container houses, please see our website. Please also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram. You can also download our mobile application by scanning the QR code below.

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Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: Ttora.com, Treehugger.com, Foreign Policy Research Institute, Sourceable.net, Prepper-recources.com, Containerauction.com, Emyplanb.wordpress.com, followingfuji1.blogspot.com, Luxtica.com,

Can Container Pop-up Shops Challenge e-Commerce?

E-commerce enables new innovative retailers to a start a business with a relatively small initial capital. As it is easy for new businesses to emerge and new products to be offered with affordable prices, e-commerce can benefit the sellers, buyers and societies. Still, the advantages of traditional retailing exist and, luckily, the cost-related disadvantages might  be diminished with the use of shipping containers.

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The use of shipping containers in retail real estate can break most of the disadvantages related to traditional retailing. By default traditional retailing suffers from high fixed costs, long leases, expensive rates and inflexible terms to name but a few. Also, as setting up a store takes forever, the costs tend to add up. Even though shipping containers are not originally designed to be used as real estate, they still are the most optimal solution.

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Shipping containers are designed to be shipped in extreme weather conditions in rough seas. Therefore they offer the best protection towards any weather, even against hurricanes. They are built of durable material and are sized according to international standards. Therefore they are also modular and stackable allowing retailers to compile a retail center according to her own taste in a very short time period. Even a shopping mall can be built in three to four months from scratch. Containers are also affordable, say, a used container may be sold by about US$1000.

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E-commerce can not fight back traditional commerce in certain areas. Security issues are always on top when establishing an online store. Possible credit card frauds might scare the customers away which forces businesses to invest a lot of money to buy expensive information security services and develop a a secure payment infrastructure. Also it is very likely that an online retailer might suffer major goodwill losses as customers become disappointed when the received products do not match with the products viewed online.

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Containers shops as a form of traditional commerce enable face-to-face communication with customers and thereby better possibilities to create mutual trust between sellers and buyers. It will also be possible for sellers to present more expensive alternatives and thereby collect bigger profits. Container shops are not also tied to a fixed location but can be relocated many times.

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By default, container shops can not get to the same cost category with e-commerce. Nevertheless, in a long term even maintaining an online store raises its maintenance costs and online retailers will be forced to start reaching for the advantages gained only via traditional commerce. The good thing is that, one is not forced to choose only one option. One can have them both, and create a combined retail infrastructure that has all the advantages of both online and offline retailing.

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The suggested hybrid solution can only be implemented with shipping containers. Shanghai Metal Corporation has a long experience in offering shipping containers for the use of housing, hotels and offices. To learn more about our container solutions and how to order, please view our website. Please also follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram. You can also download our new mobile application by scanning the QR code below.

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Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: Wikipedia, Academia.edu, Treehugger.com, Dutchcorner, Stumuxlow, Remodelista, Archdaily, WordPress, Peggychow.com, Tourismtrends

Meet Our CEO Mr. Bryan Wang

As a proven leader and strategic thinker, Mr. Bryan Wang has been leading Shanghai Metal Corporation for roughly fourteen years now. Throughout his journey, Mr. Wang has learned many valuable things about the role of leadership and the evolution it has taken. Passionate about business, more specifically the business of world’s best steel products, Mr. Wang is driven by the belief of a customer-driven culture, as well as the principle of supporting and promoting the professional development of the employees at SMC.

We met Mr. Wang for a brief interview to ask him questions to understand better his role as a decision-maker, leader and a respected role figure for people starting out in their career life. Below you can read the extract of the interview.

How do you know that you are leading well?

It is the company’s profit that tells me if we are doing well or not. If the profits get better it means that we are doing good. Also, I look if people are happy. It is very important to me that everybody is happy because if they happy, they work better. So I am always looking out for the working environment, for example, if they like the afternoon tea that we provide, I am happy. Also, I am always thinking how to make things fair to everyone, as well as productive and effective for us. They should be compensated for the hard work they have done.

How do you know that you have made the right decision?

My brain is little, that is why I need more people to help me, to help SMC. Actually I need people who could help from inside their hearts. I am the kind of person who always support people, and I also expect constructive discussions so we could learn from each other. That is actually the role of a manager, to help other people to reach the goal set for the team. They are supposed to work as a team and support each other. But I also think that a good manager should also help each one to reach his/her own success because it is very important to become successful and I want my employees to be very successful. I am learning every day with everybody working here. Every day. From this learning process I could also see who is good and who needs more support. And finally, when I spot a problem in the company for example SMC getting more competition, it is time to act upon it and try to revert the situation so we acquire a more favorable position in the market.

How have the foreign interns helped your company as a whole?

I see the foreign internship program as a window, a motor, an engine to help SMC build an international image all over the world. The way I see them is a source of good and fresh ideas. And I think this is very important in the company. Ideas. Of course not all ideas are good, but I hear all of them and then evaluate each one of them. What I expect from them is that they understand how SMC works. I mean, they have to grasp how the system works here, especially in the beginning. That is important so that business and daily tasks could run smoothly. I am also concerned if they are happy and if they are doing a good job. On the other hand, I think the local people need to change a little bit to accommodate the foreign interns in to the local habits.

What do you look for in a good candidate to work at SMC?

I look for people who are hard working, who contributes to the company, and have good results. Especially in the beginning, when you have to pay more attention to learn all the new things about the company, it is important to follow the company’s rules. Of course you can think about our process and make recommendations and suggestions in order to change what has not been working well. We have our KPI metrics to see who is doing well and who is not. We need good people, the ones who think about the company in the long-term. I am always following each one’s performance, but I also have an immediate sense of how a person is by just talking to this person for one minute. One minute is all it takes to know how a person is.

What is the secret behind the success at SMC?

Openness and fairness. These are the secret behind the success at SMC. I appreciate everyone’s suggestion. And to me this is the best way to find out what the problems in the company are. I won’t know what the problems are if you don’t tell me. That is why I think it is important to have an open and fair conversation so we could spot any problem or things that are running perfectly in the company, hence act immediately.

Can you give any tips for people starting out?

In the beginning you have to work very hard and follow people’s and company’s instructions. This is relevant in order to understand how the process works as a first step. After that, you have to think and reflect on what you have seen and give a clear reason to what and how things could be better. Smart thinking is important. Also, you have to look after the places you worked at. For example, if you come to leave the company one day, it is not good for this person to talk bad things about the company that he/she just left. Hurting the image or reputation of the company is not seen as a good quality in a person who does that. One good thing is to always look at the bright side, what you learned while you were working there, and appreciate the opportunity and the lessons learned. Say thank you is a way to appreciate things in life. Finally, you have to be honest and trustful. No company wants to hire people who do not have these qualities. So those are the aspects that one must look at once starting out in their career life.

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Shanghai Metal Corporation (SMC) serves the world’s businesses as an integrated global manufacturer, exporter, and supplier with offices and subsidiaries located throughout Asia, Europe, Australia, and the Americas. SMC manufactures a wide-array of value-added Metal Products, Building Systems, Shipping Containers, and Machinery. Just as crucial to this leadership is our commitment to environmental stewardship and sustainability, safeguarding our planet for our family and friends across the globe, which embodies our company’s commitment to Building Value Across the Globe.

To find out more, please visit our websiteLinkedInTwitter, Facebook and Instagram. Or you could try our new mobile app by scanning our QR code

You can also read more articles by our team at SMC:

Shanghai Metal Corporation: Building Value Across the Globe

Multiculturalism in the Workplace

Shanghai Metal Corporation Welcomes Our July Interns!

SMC explains why Logistics is Fundamental to Supply Chain Success 

SMC Welcomes International Interns

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SMC #BuildingValueAcrossTheGlobe

Camilla G.//SMC Editor 

The World’s Biggest Mobile Fridge Sailed in Paris

The Eiffel Tower, Louvre, Notre Dame, Versailles, Moulin Rouge, those are the places to visit in Paris. In 2009, the city of love also became famous of a creative marketing campaign.

The Korean electronics company LG set up a creative marketing campaign for their ecological fridge. The company, one of South Korea’s largest chaebols, turned a 70 meter container ship into the world’s biggest fridge that sailed up the Seine from Le Havre to Paris between June 22 and June 25. The vessel transported cooking ingredients that the famous 3-star Michelin chef Alain Passard cooked for visiting journalists.

LG’s ecological fridge uses a patented “Linear Compressor” technology that is to lower energy consumption up to 20 percent compared to other conventional fridges. The new fridge technology has also received an A+ rating from the EU.

Refrigerated containers, or reefer containers, are mainly used for shipping temperature sensitive products even with extremely long distances. Reefer container technology enabled for instance the shipping of Camel Milk from the United Arab Emirates to Europe. Please, read the whole story here.

LG converts container ship into a huge advertisement for eco-friendly fridge

As businesses are getting more aware of the benefits of refrigerated containers, new uses for them are emerging. Reefer containers are basically tools that combine mobility and cold chain. One can set up a temperature sensitive business and still vary its location. For example, Atlanta’s Botanical Garden used a refrigerated container to set up a mobile bio-secure research laboratory for their research  on frogs in 2011. Reefer containers are also convenient in, say, open-air events where organizers need to keep their heavy loads of Red Bulls and Coca-Colas chilled all the time.

Like LG, Shanghai Metal Corporation‘s reefer containers also use environmentally friendly and energy efficient technology that generate a really low CO2 footprint. We also apply high standards in their quality assurance. To learn more about our refrigerated containers, please visit our website. Please also follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original stories: Container Technology Inc., SlipperyBrick.com, Gcaptain.com, Btwins.net, Stickboydaily.com,