Quikrete Cos. and Energy Department partner on 3D-printed concrete project

ORNL Photo

Atlanta-based Quikrete Companies and the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Tennessee, have entered a cooperative research and development agreement to design next-generation concrete for production of large-scale structures or elements through a 3D printing process (see “Sweet Success,” page 50). Using an Oak Ridge-developed additive manufacturing system, the two-phase, two-year collaboration will target specially-formulated mixes spawning new construction capabilities.

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Programmer opens artificial intelligence-enabled inspection app to agencies


Shortly after governments around the globe effected isolation measures in response to the coronavirus pandemic, Dynamic Infrastructure announced the availability of its artificial intelligence technology, free of charge, to departments of transportation and public private partnerships (P3). The New York- and Tel Aviv-based technology developer equips agencies to remotely manage critical bridge and tunnel maintenance and generates files with full analyses of their transportation assets.

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Labor Department apprenticeship program rule respects construction trades’ turf

A Department of Labor rule effective next month establishes a system to advance development of Industry-Recognized Apprenticeship Programs (IRAP) and guidelines for third-party stakeholders to become Standards Recognition Entities (SRE). The rule reflects input from a July-August 2019 public comment period during which the Department’s Employment and Training Administration logged a record 326,798 responses.

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Steep restitution, sentence cap case of aggregate procurement contract fraud

A judge in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California, Fresno Division recently sentenced Chester L. Neal, Jr. of Bourbon Oak, Mo., to 57 months in jail and ordered him to pay $3.735 million in restitution following a guilty plea to one count of mail fraud. Admissions in connection with the plea indicate a July 2008–December 2017 scheme during which the defendant landed contracts to purchase and transport rock, gravel and other raw materials to federal agency sites.

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A Black Swan event for sure

By Pierre G. Villere

I hope you read my column last month; I worried about the events surrounding the unfolding coronavirus epidemic in Milan and northern Italy, and feared what might happen if it struck an American city. I described the epidemic as a Black Swan, a theory that refers to unexpected events of large magnitude and consequence and their dominant role in history. I had no idea we would witness what has occurred since I wrote that column.

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Better quarters ahead

Our remotely operating magazine staff has had few complications conducting business since the middle of March. We press onward to provide quality content, unable to fully ascertain the challenges readers confront with process changes, worker safety provisions, production scheduling, and material or product delivery amid pandemic response.

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