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Products | Innovating with concrete on a roll

4. installation of cc on second section of flume 2017 crop

Concrete Canvas (CC) is an innovative construction product that can be described as “concrete on a roll”.

Essentially, it is a flexible concrete impregnated fabric that hardens on hydration, to form a thin, durable, waterproof and fibre reinforced concrete layer. Manufactured in Pontypridd, South Wales, volume production of CC began in 2009 with the material now exported to over 80 countries worldwide.

Within the UK, the material is used extensively by the likes of Network Rail, Highways England and various environmental organisations for erosion control applications such as channel lining, slope protection and culvert lining. With tightening budgets and a greater focus on increasing efficiencies with current assets rather than new build schemes, CC also offers a unique solution for the remediation of existing concrete infrastructure.

2. first section of cc lined channel 4 years after installation 2017 crop

2. first section of cc lined channel 4 years after installation 2017 crop

The remediated channel, four years after the Concrete Canvas was installed

An example of this, is the remediation of a dilapidated hydro-electric flume network for ScottishPower. Work began in 2013, where 7,500m² of CC was used to line over 1.5km of concrete flume in Dumfries and Galloway. The flume was suffering from significant water loss as some sections were cracked, there was spalling and there were areas with substantial vegetation growth. Annual remedial works using conventional solutions, including crack injection resins, sprayed concrete, insitu pouring and slab replacement were costing ScottishPower tens of thousands of pounds each year.

In a remote location with restricted access, the CC alternative was installed over a six week period in inclement weather. The flume was then assessed over a four year period, and in that time, the first phase of CC lined section demonstrated its durability against freeze-thaw action, abrasion resistance and environmental weathering. It also provided ScottishPower with a low maintenance solution that greatly increased the operational life of the structure as well as making significant cost savings.

Following the successful assessment, ScottishPower specified CC for an additional 2,000m² section, works for which were completed in August this year.  

1. first section of dilapidated concrete flume prior to cc lining 2011 crop

1. first section of dilapidated concrete flume prior to cc lining 2011 crop

Right: The dilapidated channel before it was lined with Concrete Canvas

Supplied in bulk rolls of 200m², a single pallet of CC provides the same coverage area as that provided by the contents of two 17t ready mix trucks. Installed by Cubby Construction, at rates of up to 800m² per day, the material could be installed in wet weather, which greatly reduced programme disruption and allowed for the quick return to operation of the critical asset.

Flexible prior to hydration, the material is simply unrolled from a spreader beam across the channel, cut to length, fixed into place with shot-fired nails and hydrated. With a low alkaline reserve and minimal washout, the material can safely be installed into live water courses without adversely affecting the local ecology; an important consideration for the materials specification by ScottishPower. At only 5mm thick and with a low Manning’s value, the material had minimal impact on the hydraulic capacity or flow characteristics of the flume.

Despite challenging weather conditions the total installation took less than three weeks, using a five man team.

Concrete Canvas Ltd was recently awarded the Technical Innovation Award at the 2017 Ground Engineering Awards for its latest product, CC Hydro – the world’s first all-in-one armoured impermeable liner.

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