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What is waffle slab?

Hello Friends! Welcome to our blog. We are Dipak Varsani and Stann Maina. We are Civil Engineer and building manager by profession respectively. We are the authors of madaboutconstruction.com. Today we want to mesmerise you with this new slab technology in building construction.

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What is Waffle Slab?

What is Waffle Slab?

The slab with the holes underneath giving an appearance of waffles is referred to as the waffle slab. The waffle slab is usually used where large spans are required so that the column interfering with space can be avoided and where thick slabs spanning between wide beams are required. Wide beams are used instead of high beams so that the interference of the beam with the future services can be avoided.

Why have a waffle slab?

Waffle slabs are relatively lighter and stiffer than their counterpart flat slab, they are also faster to cast than their counterpart. They also use 25% less reinforcement steel and 35% less concrete as compared to the flat slab. These percentages are subject to change depending on the slab design, requirements of the building in terms of the slab strength or aesthetic considerations. Because of this, the waffle slab becomes cheaper than its counterpart. The waffles also experience less floor deflections due to its lightweight nature. It has excellent vibration control and is relatively fire-resistant. it offers good aesthetics to the ceiling finishes.

Where to use a waffle slab?

Waffle slab is best used where vibration is an issue as it acts as a vibration controller, where large slab spans are to be achieved as it minimizes slab deflections and achieves higher stability or in areas that are to have less number of columns like industrial buildings, commercial buildings, airports, theatre halls, post office, hospitals etc. 

What are the advantages of the waffle slab?

  1. Larger spans of a slab can be achieved.
  2. The number of columns can be minimized.
  3. It can carry larger loads than its counterpart flat slabs.
  4. It is a good vibration controller.
  5. Economical as it saves materials.
  6. Lightweight nature, its dead load is less in comparison to a flat slab. 
  7. Vertical penetration through the waffle is easier than in flat slab, especially during service installations that require slab core-drilling or cutting.
  8. It is a fast and speedy construction method.

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