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Crystalline technology could extend the durability of concrete

Every year they are made around 4,000 million tons of cement, activity that generates approximately 8% of global CO2 emissions. Given this scenario, the leading company in concrete waterproofing solutions, Penetron, has published the report ‘Towards Zero Carbon Concrete 2022’, in which the keys to how crystal technology It can extend the useful life of structures up to 60 years and, consequently, reduce the carbon footprint by 65%.

Jozef Van Beeck, International Sales & Marketing Director of Penetron International, stresses the importance of implementing crystalline additive technology in one of the most polluting sectors on the planet. “There is an urgent need for the construction world to opt for the use of waterproofing solutions that significantly reduce the carbon footprint. For this reason, one of the main objectives of the report is to make companies in our industry aware of being innovative and sustainable in the use of concrete in their projects and works”.

The ‘hidden’ enemy of the impact of concrete on the environment: water

The Water It is the main cause of concrete corrosion, which represents 80% of the damage to existing structures. Repairing these damages leads to frequent and costly repairs or replacements, increasing the use of cement, energy and other materials. In this sense, Gabriela Korsakas, Country Manager of Penetron Spain, explains that “crystalline technology has managed to improve the durability of concrete by eradicating its greatest weakness: water. In this way, the concrete matrix is ​​protected from the passage of water and contaminating agents, making the structure completely waterproof”.

On the other hand, the report evaluates how the protection of concrete through waterproofing can reduce up to 90% of the carbon footprint that comes from the maintenance of structures. These results are consistent with the conclusions drawn from the International Concrete Repair Institute (ICRI) Committee 160, which states that the most effective sustainability strategy for concrete structures is to avoid the need for repairs.

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Smart designs to build more with fewer resources

60% of emissions from the cement industry are not due to use of fossil fuels, but to the chemical reactions of the processes. Under this premise, the report highlights how in the coming years the industry must incorporate, in each of the stages of a project, products with low carbon emissions and sustainable solutions. From Penetron, they conclude that for the change to be effective, companies must:

  • Enabling smart designs to build more with less
  • Build more durable structures to extend service life
  • Promote the circular economy and the recycling of construction materials
  • Specify low carbon footprint solutions
  • Incorporate supplemental cementitious materials (SCM) in concrete mixes

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