In-situ concreting works on the 601m tall structure core for the Burj Dubai were successfully completed last week.
Climbing formwork has been used over 2 and a half years to reach a height of over 600m, under extreme conditions. This makes the Burj Dubai the world's tallest building.
The construction involved an unusually high proportion of wall-forming operations for a skyscraper. Its honeycombed structural design meant forming 430,000 m² of walls, twice the area of the floor-slabs. A typical storey was finished every three days.
Due to the longevity of the programme, durability of the equipment was imporant as the "forming machine" was to function smoothly for several years.
The Doka system the team used proved very robust and during all of 180 casting sections, only a single change of form-facing was needed.
Samsung's Project Director Kyung-Jun Kim said "As the in-situ concrete core was being built ahead of the floor-slabs, construction progress on the whole building was entirely dependent on the self-climbing Doka formwork solution.
"The Doka climbing formwork system functioned with machine-like precision, allowing us to complete the in-situ concrete core within the original timetable."
Climatic conditions encountered at the site were often extreme. The desert climate next to the open sea can cause great temperature fluctuations between day and night which can lead to violent sandstorms with wind speeds of over 100 km/h.
Conditions such as these challenged both men and materials to the limits.
Health & Safety Manager Mohamed Moizuddin was pleased with the health and safety record. "During the 2.5 year shell construction phase, we didn’t have a single serious accident," said Moizuddin.
"As the Burj Dubai’s groundplan was designed to resemble a desert flower, it has more than twice as many outside edges as a conventional skyscraper and all of these had to be completely safeguarded."
The development is being built by a joint venture of the South Korean company Samsung, the Belgian company Besix and the UAE company Arabtec.
Skidmore, Owings and Merrill LLP (SOM) of Chicago leads the architectural, structural engineering and mechanical engineering of Burj Dubai.