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Putzmeister truck speeds Pune-Mumbai journey

Once completed, the Mumbai (formerly Bombay) Pune expressway project is expected to cut travel times between the two cities from four-and-a-half hours to two. Construction on the Rupee15bn ($322M) project began towards the end of 1988 and is being built to international standards.

The Mumbai Panval bypass forms part of the 230m long expressway, and this section involves a six-lane bridge over the River Ghati. Supplying and placing concrete is Associated Cement Cos - the country's largest producer of cement - which has been building a network of ready mix plants across the subcontinent.

The company is using its newest Putzmeister truck-mounted concrete pump, together with a stationary Putzmeister unit to place concrete. After just 800 hours' operation the truck-mounted BSF 32.09 has delived 3,2000m 3.Hourly rate is 40m 3. ACC currently operates 10 Putzmeister booms - three truckmounted and 10 stationary - in addition to a fleet of truckmixers and modern ready mix plants.

The local aggregate around Mumbai are unusually abrasive, which places extremely high demands on the pumps. Even so, it is not as aggressive as that found in southern India around Hyderabad and Bangalore, which is 'hard as diamonds', according to one expert.

However, the problems with concreting in and around Mumbai are not distances, or the high ambient temperatures, but the enormous concentration of traffic which can make delivery to site both difficult and slow.

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