I have written about these panels in previous posts. However this post will be specifically about the composite panels and nothing else.
To begin, allow me to give you some background information on the panels themselves. These panels are designed to replace the steel, and polymer panels that pool builders use to build vinyl liner in ground pools. This panel is entirely non-corrosive, as strong as steel, and the only true composite panel on the maket. This differs from polymer or structural foam panels in that there is no longer a concern about the structural integrity of the panel.
So how is this done? I’m glad you asked. A polymer panel is made using the process of injection molding. This is a process in which small pieces of plastic are heated up and injected into a mold. It is then forced by expanding gas into every nook and cranny of the mold. You may have seen other products that are manufactured this way. They include those plastic lawn chairs, plastic storage containers that are in most of our attics, and garbage cans. The problem with this material is that it is nothing but plastic, and as most of us know, it is brittle in the cold and becomes soft in the heat. This is not the most ideal material to build a pool out of being that a pool is in most cases exposed to both heat and cold. I have seen examples of when this material fails in swimming pool applications. I have personally experienced this type of failure on a job site while building a pool. We built the walls of the pool, straightened them, and left to get some lunch. When we came back, the heat of the sun on them was enough to cause them to warp and we had to straighten them again. That is not the worse case scenario. I have also seen photos of enormous holes in the polymer panels well after the pool had been installed.
Only Alpha’s composite panels are not only composed of a different material but they are also manufactured in an entirely different way. Only Alpha’s composite panels are compression molded using a thermally set sheet molding compound (SMC). This SMC is also reinforced with eight to twelve inch fibers. Workers take a single piece of SMC that is pre measured to an exact amount and insert it into the mold. Then using intense heat and pressure, the material is spread out throughout the mold. Again this material is thermally set, that means that once the part comes out of the mold it will never lose its shape when exposed to hot or cold temperatures. In addition to that the woven fibers throughout the panel give it unparalleled strength. You can see for yourself how strong these panels are by clicking here Fiber Reinforced Composite Tests. Here you can see different videos demonstrating the strength of the panels. In addition to the strength of the panels there is another benefit to them that no other non-corrosive panel is capable to offer. With patented technology Only Alpha’s composite panels are designed to go together in a way that gives pool owners a virtually seamless pool wall.
You may be wondering about the benefit of having a non-corrosive pool panel. As you may or may not know, there has been a steady increase in the demand for “salt water” pools. The problem with salt water pools is that the salt water is very corrosive to any metal parts of the swimming pool. For years in ground vinyl liner swimming pools have been made of steel panels bolted together to form the walls of the pool. What has been happening in recent years is that the saltwater from the pool eats away at the steel panel. Regardless of the salt water, a steel panel will inevitably rust. That is just the nature of steel when exposed to the elements. Salt water just speeds up the process. So with the ever growing demand for salt water pools came the need for a non-corrosive pool wall.
For more information on the composite line of pool panels offered by Only Alpha Pool Products check out the website at http://www.onlyalpha.com/ There you can find information on the composite lines of swimming pool panels as well as what others have used composite materials for. In addition to that you can also browse the other lines of swimming pool building materials including steel and the Alpha Evolution line which is the same composite panels but used in such a way that there is no need for the vinyl liner. You can also find more information on Only Alpha Pool Products as well as general swimming pool information on my blog.