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NEC host Concrete Show 2024

NEC 3As both concrete repair and liquid coating specialist it is always useful to keep abreast of the latest developments with the world of concrete. As the industry continues to drive its sustainability and carbon neutral agenda it is key to understand some of the new innovations and product substitutions in both water and binders in order to reduce their dependency and increase sustainability.

Whilst the show has the continued improvements and show cases new machinery and batching plants the INNOVATION HUB gives the opportunity for exhibiting companies to showcase their latest product, process or technology that services the industry.

NEC 5Recently we have witnessed issues within some New Build multi-storey car parks having a number of failures of top deck membranes as a result of reactions to products contained within the concrete matrix. These reactions have been slow to manifest taking up to 24 months from initial installation and after extensive testing can see that a chemical reaction has taken place prematurely halting the polymerisation process, producing a series of micro blisters beneath the membrane surface.

One such situation was the 10,000m2 top deck at Ikea Reading where additives and accelerants were added to the concrete design mix to promote quicker curing and reduce moisture levels as the construction was running behind program. The entire system failed within 2 years and was replaced 4 years later.

Blisters on top deck of car parkDespite being fully prepared by mechanical blasting and being tested after installation; isolated blisters began to occur after two years although it is suspected by specialist testing houses that this reaction occurred immediately but with a really hot spell saw a proliferation and within a further 6 months the deck looked like it had a severe case of the measles.

NEC 1Comprehensive laboratory testing revealed that a gas had been formed from uncured product where the polymerisation process had been halted with the base chemistry reaction with available chemicals within the slab build up. The coating was totally removed in 2023 and replaced with a specifically designed primer solution and became the LRWA Liquid Roofing and Waterproofing Association Wining project of the year in 2023.

The industry has seen a drive to use substitute products from waste recycling to reduce carbon footprint and landfill finding new applications to place within the built environment. Whilst this may act as a filler and reduce the reliance on natural aggregates the traditional recipe of natural organic products is changing with the introduction of reconstituted plastics, chemical enhancers and liquid additives but in part has only been considered for its own application.

NEC 2As the industry becomes more diverse with the substitute products it will mean that with the new build concrete sector, we will have to become more aware of the trends of the industry and manufacturers and the Concrete Show provides that opportunity through its Theatre presentations to inform these important developments.


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