The Biannual Symposium of IMCA (Mexican Institute of Steel Construction) took place in Guadalajara 6-9th March.

The event gathered more than 250 manufacturers of steel structures, service centres, steel processors and professional designers, and focused on competitiveness and continuous improvement in the steel construction business.

The Symposium considered issues related to process integration in steel construction through BIM (Building Information Model) systems and the adequate execution of connections. Also, quick standard solutions with steel structures for bridges and buildings were presented, and the evolution of Mexican codes regarding steel construction were analysed.

Alacero showed statistics and conclusions on the effect that Chinese imports of construction products that increased more than 20 times since 2005 − have had on both the steel and construction domestic industries. “The arrival of products in conditions that not always conform to fair trade practices, constitutes a threat to our industries´ competitiveness and to the quality of our constructions” – emphasized Alberto Pose, the representative of Alacero at the meeting.

In a meeting specially dedicated to university lecturers, Mr Pose reviewed the formative activities that Alacero develops to encourage and improve knowledge about using steel in construction for architecture and engineering students. He also presented the initiatives that the organization will undertake during 2013: virtual seminars for faculties, the conclusion of an e-book about seismic-resistant design that incorporates composite steel-concrete construction, as well as some other research and promotional activities on steel construction sustainability.

Mr Pose also highlighted the forthcoming launch of a Virtual Improvement Course for Steel Construction Detailers, that begins on April 15th. Alacero prepared this course as a response to the steel structures manufacturers´ concern about the need of training for technicians to enhance competitiveness.

One of the most important announcements made by IMCA during the Symposium was the launch –considered for the third quarter of 2013- of a new edition of the IMCA Manual of Steel Construction, which previous editions became bestsellers among technical books in Mexico. This version will include charts on the properties of steel profiles and sheets, a Code of Good Construction Practices, and a Spanish version of the North American specification (ANSI/AISC 360-10) for steel construction, a version of which Alacero has already published in 2012.