The Basics of Concrete

Concrete is a Latin word. Concrete is a very hard material and that’s why it Is used in the manufacture of big structures. Concrete is the mixture of many different things with chemical mixtures and hydration. The concrete is a material that is used in the making of buildings, foundations, blocks, roads and so much more. concrete becomes very hard when it dries out and it takes time to gain its real and wanted hardness.

The main ingredients used in concrete are cement, fly ash, slag cement, gravel, limestone, granite, sand, chemicals, and water. These are the things that are combined together and mixed with chemicals and water to create concrete that become very hard when it dries out. The quantity of these ingredients differs to create different types of concrete according to the requirement. Cement is the most important and main ingredient to create concrete. After cement, water is the important ingredient. Different amount of water added can produce many different kinds of results that helps in many different parts and plays different roles. Adding less water in the mixture can produce more strong and more reliable concrete with less flow.

There are many different chemicals used in the mixture to give it different qualities and different features. These chemical are mostly available in the form of liquids. Adding different chemicals according to the need may cause different characteristic like delaying hydration or increasing hydration (drying process). Sometimes it is needed that the drying process becomes slow due to large pouring and desired dryness is required after pouring complete mixture for that purpose, some kind of chemicals are used to reduce the drying process. Sometimes it is needed to increase the efficiency of the hydration process. All these characteristics can be controlled with the help of different chemicals.

In making concrete, at first, the addition of cement and water create gel and interlock the component of the mixture together. This process Is continued until all components combine together and form a hard structure.

In creating concrete mixing is very important procedure to give it the smooth form and produce high-quality concrete. The mixture is mixed by machine at high speed. While Working with cement, it is very important to keep the real measurement to attain the required hardness. The concrete, after putting at the place takes time to become hard and dry completely. The concrete gains its strength and hardness day by day.

Structures created with concrete should be tested very regularly. There are some problems that occur in concrete that should be taken into consideration. Concrete is the most strength full and powerful material and can take a heavy load on it. Concrete’s power totally depends upon the ratios of ingredients and the amount o water added.

Concrete Countertops

When one wants to have a spectacular and good looking countertops, concrete countertops is the choice. Concrete is now widely used in construction to compete with many other building materials such wood, stones, and marbles. Natural stone and marble always look marvelous but no doubt how expensive it is. Now interior designers are using Concrete to create special and distinctive countertops for kitchen, tops for bathroom vanities and tables. When it is properly and expertly colored and finished, a concrete countertop looks like natural stone or maybe solid-surface attractive and expensive material.

Kitchen countertop is the most important part of a kitchen. Refrigerator, when placed aside countertop, gives so many exceptional features and can be used for so many things. People have so many choices when it comes to choosing countertop style, design or material. There are many different building materials which can be used for this matter. Wood is the most commonly used material for making countertops but with an exception, it is not the best choice. if do you want to make your kitchen best in every way. It should be designed well and must increase the look of the kitchen. Not only will the look of your countertops be of concern, but you will also need to figure out how you will be using the counter, what level of maintenance you will want, and what the cost will be. The good news is that there is a countertop material out there for everyone. Concrete is the most inexpensive and spectacular looking material, it is highly durable and powerful with great strength.

Kitchen countertops usually have two main functions. The first function includes providing a work surface for preparing food and handling other kitchen activities. The countertops second function is to provide an attractive appearance which will enhance the look of your kitchen. It’s important to know how to select a kitchen countertop that satisfies your criteria for both. It is one of those things which you notice first of all when entering into a kitchen.

You may be wondering about the properties and look of concrete countertop. Unless you have seen a concrete countertop, you might think it is an ugly slab of material that is porous and gray. But concrete countertops are as versatile and as colorful as their stone counterparts and more affordable and nothing like concrete blocks. In fact, concrete countertops can look so similar to their stone counterparts that some will not be able to tell the difference.

If you are making your dream home and wants it to look beautiful in every aspect, you should use concrete countertop in your kitchen, bathroom and other places. It will give color and great design to your home.

How Pre-Stressed Concrete is Made and Its Benefits

Concrete has a natural weakness when tension is applied to it; pre-stressed concrete is a way of overcoming this weakness. The process of pre-stressing strengthens the concrete slab for architectural and structural use. This concrete undergoes predetermined engineering stresses and is, therefore, able to meet all the service-specific loads that are applied to it during construction.

How are such concrete beams made?

All the action takes place at the concrete plant. Pre-stressed tendons typically made from tensile steel cables or rods are embedded into the concrete. The addition of these tendons helps create compressive stress. This in effect acts as a balance to the tensile stress that the concrete otherwise experiences due to the bending load.

Usually, the tendon that is embedded into the concrete is first stretched across the casting bed and a mammoth 30,000 pounds or more of tension is applied to it before it is covered by concrete. The whole idea is to make this strand more resistant to downward pressure.

Difference between the normal concrete beam and a pre-stressed concrete beam

Pre-stressed concrete is pre-tensioned content with a high tensile tendon running right through it and therefore you can see that it has a slight arch, something that is not visible in ordinary concrete slabs.In this case all the energy of the concrete slab comes from the highly tensile steel that is placed inside the concrete; on the other hand, a concrete beam has to carry its own weight. The result is that it cannot resist the pressure of added loads, but a pre-stressed concrete beam has lots of strength left to resist added loads, courtesy the unit by the action of highly tensioned steel.

Benefits of Pre-stressed concrete

The fact that such concrete slabs are able to face a high degree of load means they are used in the floors of high rise buildings. One of its high-value benefits is that it’s the major material used to build containment vessels of nuclear reactors.

Construction companies prefer the use of this type of concrete not only because it can withstand a lot of stress, but also because it is not susceptible to cracks. Pre-stressing leads to thinner slabs, which are usually used in high rise building, where lowering the thickness of the floors will decrease the number of joints, and lead to more floors; what is even more important is, lower construction costs. The last is a huge benefit and is on the biggest reasons for the popularity of these concrete beams.

Conclusion

The construction industry is continuously on the lookout for new ways and means to improve the structural strength of buildings, but at the same time, it also wants to cut down on their construction costs. The use of new technology enables them to create concrete beams like pre-stressed concrete, which allows them to do both. There was a time in the not too distant past that newer ways of making concrete were looked at with suspicion. But today, with more and more contractors choosing to use concrete slabs manufactured with the best of technology, all doubts, and fears that anybody might have regarding them, have been allayed.