The “Job Dive” series provides a peek into the jobs of people and teams across Katerra as they develop strategies and new methods of working on the journey to transform the way we build.
Hans-Erik Blomgren, PE, SE
Director of Testing and Certification, Structural Products
Hans-Erik Blomgren, PE, SE, has been with Katerra since the early days, joining in 2016 as technical director of mass timber. Since then he has led a team in developing and testing Katerra’s cross-laminated timber (CLT) product and building assemblies, spearheading efforts to provide technical justification for code-compliant structural, fire, seismic, and acoustic use in the US. Seeing if a product will hold up under rigorous testing imposes a certain amount of pressure on the team, but Hans-Erik enjoys the process of seeing months – sometimes years – of planning set into motion. “The days and the weeks when you finally get into the product testing space – that is just fun.”
“The days and the weeks when you finally get into the product testing space – that is just fun.”
His team’s efforts are pushing CLT into the mainstream on the US market, providing solutions that are tested and certified for use in multiple building types. In 2019, a culmination of his team’s work saw Katerra’s CLT product line receive its Building Code Compliance certification and begin production at our new 270,000 sq. ft factory in Spokane Valley, WA. Says Hans-Erik of the opportunity to undertake such meticulous development and testing, “As a product supplier and manufacturer, we’re the ones that are motivated and have the investment capital to do the testing and do the work necessary to build out these new product lines so they can be used in the marketplace.”
We most recently caught up with Hans-Erik onsite at the Postmark, a 5-story market-rate, multi-family development under construction in Shoreline, WA. The project features Katerra’s CLT product in 3-D modeled floor and ceiling assemblies and is one of the first featuring the product Hans-Erik helped develop. The experience of championing a product from it’s conception to reality is something he finds uniquely rewarding. “Later in my career, I’ve realized the value of designing something, designing the test for something, and then watching it work or not work in the testing environment. Today I got to walk into a unit with the lights on – as if you were ready to move in and live there. It was a really satisfying moment to see that unit finished out. It’s not a rendering anymore – it’s reality.”
“Today I got to walk into a unit with the lights on – as if you were ready to move in and live there. It was a really satisfying moment to see that unit finished out. It’s not a rendering anymore – it’s reality.”