Concrete Pump Gets in on the Action
Concrete Pump Gets in on the ActionA crowd gathered to watch the Putzmeister 36-Meter concrete boom pump handle the highly fluid Agilia concrete mix that is claiming to revolutionize the construction industry.
Concrete Pump Gets in on the Action
A 36-Meter Putzmeister concrete pump was selected from Pumpco’s fleet in Atlanta to demonstrate a new LAFARGE product called Agilia® – a highly fluid concrete claimed to revolutionize the construction industry.
Polished and ready for action, the Putzmeister unit pumped the “self-consolidating” concrete effortlessly for the cameras during the production of a video about the new product. To the crowd that had gathered to watch the pour in action at a testing site, it also displayed the advantages claimed by LAFARGE, the producer of Agilia.
Agilia is a trademark product with propriety ingredients that require a near perfect blend of materials. It has been in use within Europe for about 10 years and is now being marketed in the United States through LAFARGE.
Agilia is being touted as a new standard for cast-in-place concrete, as it is said to have no segregation, reduce labor costs, flow easily through highly congested and heavily reinforced areas, and eliminate the need for vibration.
On slabs, no hoseman is needed to place the Agilia concrete because it conveniently flows like liquid from the end of the hose and fills to the top of the forms.
No primer is needed
From the pumping side, no primer – not even water – is needed. Agilia also reduces the chance of plugging or clogging, is designed to result in less pipeline wear and needs a lower hydraulic pressure to pump.
Mike Wilfer, branch manager at Pumpco, Inc. in Forest Park, Ga., said, “Our Putzmeister boom pump had no problem handling the Agilia. Because the concrete is so flowable, the pump acts like there’s nothing in it and hardly has to push.”
Wilfer added, “Agilia is also compatible with 2-1/2-inch and 3-inch pipelines. Therefore, if concrete like Agilia becomes the standard in years to come, even larger boom pumps beyond 60 meters can be engineered because of the smaller pipeline size.”
“Even though the concrete spreads like water, it has a 10,000-psi rating that is almost unheard of. Yet, it sets like conventional concrete,” said Kirk Deadrick, director of quality assurance for the Southeast region of LAFARGE.
Slump is not measured
Slump is not measured with the new material. Instead when the cone is pulled up, how far the substance spreads is gauged.
Deadrick said, “For flatwork, the ideal is between 22 and 28 inches. For architecture work, the more fluid the better, and, therefore, 28 to 32 inches is preferred for getting into tight crevices. Overall, it’s perfect for dense rebar applications.”
Slump is not measured with Agilia. Instead, when the cone is pulled up, how far the substance spreads is gauged.
On slabs, there is no need for a hoseman to place the concrete, as Agilia conveniently flows from the end hose to distances over 30 feet, filling the top of the forms. This means concrete pumps can now get into difficult to reach areas and let the concrete just flow to fill every nook and cranny within tight corners and awkward areas. In addition, instead of a typical finishing crew of 20, only five to six are needed, saving substantial labor costs.
For walls, a ConForm’s ram horn can be used to help break the fall of the highly fluid mix into the forms. On a job in Columbus, the contractor was amazed that there was no need for vibration and that once the forms were removed, there was no need to rub, sand or patch areas. The wall looked like a sheet of glass without bubbles or honeycombs. He also claimed his forms should last longer as a result.
To be used in water tank repair
Pumpco already has plans to use Agilia in a few other specialty jobs. One in particular will require the repair of a 10-million-gallon water tank. It will be necessary to drain the tank, cut a trench, place new plumbing and do a pour back with a Putzmeister boom pump. Although priced about $20 more per yard than conventional mixes, Agilia will be used because the customer needs every little void filled to make a perfect seal before refilling the 10 million gallons of water.
Deadrick noted that “We’re about two to three years ahead of the competition. And although Agilia may not be for every application because of today’s pricing, it is sometimes the only logical way to handle certain specialty jobs.”
Wilfer added, “It’s just amazing stuff that I see great potential for in the concrete pumping industry
Owner: LAFARGE – Atlanta
Pumping contractor: Pumpco, Inc. – Forest Park, Ga.
Equipment: Putzmeister 36-Meter boom pump