Compressive Strength Monitoring

Concrete forms the very backbone of numerous construction projects, where its strength plays a pivotal role in determining structural integrity and longevity. This compressive strength stands not only as a key indicator of structural soundness but also profoundly impacts the overall performance and durability of concrete structures. Nevertheless, this critical process presents its unique set of challenges. Traditional testing methods have long been plagued by issues of time consumption, high costs, and limited access to real-time data. In the realm of concrete, the accurate determination of compressive strength holds paramount significance.

When to remove that formwork?

Relying on guesswork

At our companies, we take pride in having highly experienced site engineers and foremen who possess in-depth knowledge of construction and concrete. One critical aspect of their role is making crucial decisions on-site, such as determining the appropriate time to remove the formwork and proceed with subsequent work. They rely on a combination of factors to gauge the concrete's readiness before removal, such as their extensive experience, informed judgment, environmental conditions, and traditional curing periods. While this manual evaluation can be effective, it also introduces uncertainty. Occasionally, inaccurate assessments may lead to potential risks, such as premature removal jeopardizing structural integrity or delayed removal causing project timeline setbacks.

Costly rework and delays

Incorrectly assessing concrete strength and prematurely removing formwork can lead to costly rework and delays. If the concrete hasn't reached the desired strength level, premature formwork removal might cause deflections or structural collapse, necessitating reconstruction and renovation. Such delays disrupt project schedules and increase overall costs.

Compromised project efficiency

Traditional methods of concrete curing are based on waiting for specified periods, which act as snapshots, leading to poor utilisation of resources. Construction teams often find themselves waiting for extended periods without the ability to move forward with subsequent tasks, leading to reduced productivity and wasted labor hours.

What’s the duration of a casting activity: 1 day? 3 days? +7 days buffer?

Inaccurate construction planning
Construction professionals, especially planners often face challenges when they sequence structural works. Usually the planner lacks the reference data when concrete indeed cures to the required strength. Therefore it becomes difficult to estimate task duration, buffers & lags accurately and logically sequence activities after. As a result, construction planning may fall short of reality, leading to longer project schedules or unnecessary downtime.

Resource underutilisation
The planner and the project manager sits together and asks the question: How much formwork do we need for this project?Without having real-time insights about compressive strength, project managers struggle with resource allocation. Do we order 1000m² of floor slab or can we recycle a set of 500m²? This decision can lead to poor utilization of labor and equipment during extended curing periods or sudden rushes of resources when the concrete achieves the required strength unexpectedly. Not being able to uniformly distribute expensive resources like formwork hampers the productivity and damages the budget.

Increased project costs
Construction teams that lack compressive strength monitoring in real-time often experience prolonged construction duration. Delayed completion times result in additional labor costs, extended equipment rentals, and higher overhead expenses. These financial burdens can negatively impact project profitability.

When is it safe to apply loads or post-tensioning?

Tensioning at inadequate strength levels
Structural engineers experience the risk of tensioning tendons at inadequate concrete strength levels when relying on traditional methods. Without real-time monitoring, engineers may apply pre/post tensioning forces prematurely, leading to poor bonding between the concrete and tendons, resulting in a catastrophic event called wire slippage. On the contrary, if it is delayed, the concrete may have already experienced some level of cracking or deformation, reducing the effectiveness of the post-tensioning process.

Structural durability concerns
Inaccurate tensioning can result in structural weaknesses, deflections, and even potential collapses under heavy loads or variable conditions. Construction teams need a reliable solution to ensure their structures meet high safety and quality standards.

Limited structural performance
Without the ability to precisely apply tensioning, engineers may not fully utilise the building potential strength. This leads to poor load-bearing capacity, reducing the overall efficiency and performance of the structure.

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