Concrete use has been around for thousands of years, literally. There are records of concrete floors, housing structures, and underground cisterns that were produced in 6500 BC in the United Arab Emirates. From 3000 BC – 1500 AD, mortars of gypsum and lime were used in the pyramids and the Great Wall of China whilst, by 200 BC, the Romans were using concrete in the majority of their construction by 200 BC.
Unlike the purported 400,000 labourers and hundreds of years needed for the Great Wall, modern technology delivers this material via cement plants and batch mixing plants in controlled, measured, and swift projects.
The Skys The Limit For Concrete
Concrete is one of the dominant materials used around the globe today. Thanks to chemists and engineers in the 1700’s and 1800’s, the product grew in popularity, and in the 21st century, the sky is now the limit, again – literally. The Burj Khalifa, Dubai, had special concrete slurry pumped up over 580 metres in the air for its construction. Concrete also is having innovative aggregate added for a variety of reasons. Polystyrene was added for earthquake-proofing in buildings such as the Bank Of Singapore, Hong Kong branch and Aron Losonczi, an architect from Hungary, came up with a brilliant solution of adding light transmitting fibres to concrete, thereby making it translucent!
The Refinement Of Concrete Uses
- Integration Of Sensors
A decade ago IoT started revolutionising the concrete industry via the integration of sensors into concrete or integrated devices, which are providing very useful information to developers or end-users. Specialised wires and sensors are integrated at specific phases in the construction process. A developer, homeowner or sports stadium management company could use this technology to monitor, for example, the foundations of a building and detect an issue before it becomes a more complex problem.
The technology is being used by government roadworks departments, bridge engineers and other built environment role players. Being able to measure the stability, temperature, ongoing strength, and salinity ingress is a game-changer for those who monitor critical buildings such as nuclear power stations.
- 3D Printing
And then along came 3D printing and the world’s first 3D printed building was established in 2016 – The Office Of The Future, Dubai. It was printed in additive concrete using a printer that was 6.1m high, 36.5m long, and 12.2m wide – how far we have come from timber shuttered concrete blocks that the Romans used 2,700 years ago.
- Batch Mixing Plants
The precision being used in manufacturing raw materials, the measuring of ingredients in mixes, and the meticulous installation of these precise mixes continue to open up opportunities for concrete. Cement plants and batch mixing plants are playing an increasingly important role in this drive for precision, and future projects can only get more exciting.
When you are ready with your latest innovative project, contact our highly experienced team of professionals who can guide you on the best solution, including cement mixing plants, batching plants, or modular panel silos. We look forward to the latest cement and concrete innovations with great anticipation and continually break new ground alongside our clients. Next shipment – Mars?