EPA determination spares admixtures, coloring agents from SPCC regulation

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After more than three years of the Environmental Protection Agency soliciting expert advice and public comment on issuing a proposed rulemaking potentially expanding the petroleum product spill prevention, control and countermeasure (SPCC) terms typical of concrete plant environmental permits, Administrator Andrew Wheeler has signed a final action establishing no new regulatory requirements under the Clean Water Act (CWA).

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Researchers track graphene admixtures’ decade-long emergence

Sources: IDTechEX Research, Boston; CP staff

A new article, “Graphene: The evolving application landscape,” projects early prototype and semi-commercial prototype phases over the next 8-10 years for concrete, cement and asphalt additives bearing graphene or carbon nanotubes. That observation is consistent with lab or field demonstrations by a handful of admixture developers eyeing performance properties attainable in finished concrete through dosages of nano-scale cylinders with wall thicknesses the diameter of a single carbon atom.

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Contractors affirm stand on air measurement in non-AE mixes

Source: American Society of Concrete Contractors, St. Louis

The latest ASCC position statement, “Measuring Air Content in Non-Air-Entrained Concrete,” conveys contractors’ point of view for architects, engineers, owners and others. The document explains that while air content is reported in the mix design submitted for air-entrained concrete and measured in the field for compliance, air content measurements are rarely specified or measured for non-air-entrained concrete.

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Cemex USA opens premier admixture facility

Sources: Cemex USA, Houston; CP staff

Cemex officials assembled just after Labor Day in Brooksville, Fla., to mark the producer’s first U.S. admixture blending and packaging facility. The automated, 21,000-sq.-ft. plant will ultimately service nearly 160 ready mixed plants throughout the Florida and Mid-South Regions, shipping up to 16 normal or high range water reducers, set accelerators or retarders, air-entraining agents and specialty agents by tote.

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Plant disruptions, strong demand tax supply of Vinsol, key AE admixture component

Sources: Pinova Inc., Brunswick, Ga.; CP staff

A convergence of routine market and rare natural forces could compel concrete producers using Vinsol resin-based admixtures to convert their mix designs to ones bearing alternative products meeting ASTM C260, Standard Specification for Air-Entraining Admixtures for Concrete requirements. Between this fall and much of 2018, producers will likely confront tight supplies of Vinsol-type air-entraining admixtures as the resin’s sole supplier addresses capacity and inventory challenges.

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Construction market prospects pique investor’s interest in Chryso Group

Sources: Cinven Partners LLP, London; Chryso Group, Issy-les-Moulineaux, France; CP staff

An international private equity firm with a Europe-centric portfolio, Cinven has entered negotiations to acquire concrete, cement and construction chemical specialist Chryso Group based outside Paris. The business encompasses 29 manufacturing facilities, four research & development centers and 1,100-plus employees across Chryso Inc. in Rockwall, Texas, and sister operations world wide.

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RPM consolidates building, construction materials under Euclid umbrella

Sources: Euclid Group, Cleveland; CP staff

With an eye to global construction, structural and civil engineering markets, Euclid Chemical parent RPM International has formed Euclid Group, encompassing the namesake concrete admixture and materials business, plus sister subsidiaries, operating companies or brands Eucomex, Toxement, Cave, Viapol, Flowcrete, RPM Belgium and Vandex.

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FRC Industries deal bring Sika greater depth in concrete fibers

Sources: Sika Corp., Lyndhurst, N.J.; CP staff

Sika has acquired Tuscaloosa, Ala.-based FRC Industries, citing it as the fastest growing concrete reinforcing fiber producer in the U.S. Founded in 2001, the company has a full synthetic polypropylene product line and serves markets east of the Mississippi River.

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MICROSTRUCTURE-BASED KINETICS MODEL

MICROSTRUCTURE-BASED KINETICS MODEL

A November 2013 CSHub research profile letter, “Early hydration: A local business,” charts calorimetry (heat measurement) curves from tricalcium silicate paste experiments—with specimens of three particle size distributions (PSD)—to support a proposed model of microstructure-based kinetics. It suggests a “reaction zone” extending a few micrometers in from the cement particle surface, and can reconcile longtime observations on PSD and water/cement ratio.

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