Commercial concrete services form an integral part of modern construction due to the incredible strength for private and commercial purposes. In addition to the power, concrete produces versatility and durability to building highways, bridges, water pipes, walkways, and kitchen tops.
Moreover, concrete work contractors in Australia have developed new formulas and techniques to build stronger concrete with more reliability for commercial projects. These Sydney contractors no longer rely on archaic building projects but now have better construction materials for concrete of much higher quality.
However, all these developments did not start overnight. As a matter of fact, commercial concreting dates as far back as 700 BC when some Bedouin traders developed concrete-like materials to serve an underground water cistern. This secret water channel gave them the much-needed water in the desert.
Meanwhile, commercial concrete has broken into many aspects of life, which is why we need building engineers and other professional builders and masons. This article will hare some of the most amazing facts about commercial concreting that you didn’t know before now. Let’s roll.
Top Facts about Commercial Concrete
1. The first Concrete highway was constructed in 1909
Before 1909, bricks and cobblestones are standard in road construction, particularly in the US. Another alternative material in use was the macadam, a mixture of stones and tar, which gives riders a rough time on the road. Without these materials, you are left with dirt roads.
But the first concrete road, which spans between 6 and 7 miles, was constructed in 1909 on Woodward Avenue, Greenfield Township. This area is now part of the northwestern part of Detroit. This road was built by Wayne County Road Commission that enlisted Henry Ford as a prominent member. It also cost up to $13,492.83 as of then.
2. Ancient Rome Constructors Used Concrete
In ancient roam, a popular material used in construction was the ‘Pozzolana,’ which is actually a concrete material. It contains a mixture of lime, water, and volcanic ash from Mount Vesuvius. Also, the prominent Roman Civil Engineer Vitruvius attested that ‘pozzolana’ can actually come in four varieties, including red, white, black, and grey.
Remarkably, the feature that attracted these ancient Roman builders to the man-made materials was the waterproof qualities, which qualifies it to be used as part of the Cosa port. However, this port reached its peak in 100 BC when many of its concrete piers were destroyed except just three. The three left piers still stand today as a monument and testimony of the skills possessed by ancient commercial concrete users.
3. The British Army used Concrete Technology during World War II
During WorldWarII, the British army used an erected parabolic acoustic mirror to call the ‘listening ears’ to detect any incoming aircraft. This innovation became very instrumental before the invention of radars. The army set these listening ears in a network to create a reverberation of sounds. Moreover, this reverberation works through the reflective parabola surfaces of these concrete mirrors.
These concrete sound reflectors were erected along the England coastal waters in the early days of World War II and are still there. I guess you probably didn’t know that till today. In other words, the fantastic quality of concrete for this purpose is its ability to reflect sound. That one, I’m sure you already know.
4. Reinforced concrete is the only material for underwater constructions
Perhaps, you may wonder how some underwater structures could stand that much test of time and not get destroyed. Well, the simple answer is that durable underwater systems are usually and majorly made of concrete. In this case, there is a unique mixture of concrete that we refer to as Reinforced concrete. That is the only kind of building material that you can use underwater.
A fantastic quality of concrete that makes it helpful for this purpose is the variability of the aggregate components that make it up. In other words, builders can vary the different mixes for specific uses. Pozzolanic cement is a mixture of grinding pozzolanic clinker with Portland Cement. And it is applicable for other underwater structures.
For instance, you can construct piers, damns, tunnels, and sewer works with this particular concrete composition. It is highly water-resistant and can outperform steel or wood in building underwater structures.
5. Concrete vs. Cement: Is there a difference?
If I ask you, what is the difference between concrete and cement, you would say they are the same? Wrong! Concrete contains a mixture of water, cement, and other essential materials, including sand and gravel. In fact, standard concrete only contains about 10 to 15% of cement. In addition, a typical mixture of concrete has 15 to 20% of water and an aggregate mix of 60 to 65% of sand, gravel, and crushed stone.
When all these materials are mixed together with water thoroughly, then you have concrete. Also, you can cast concrete into the structure that you desire before it hardens up. When it does, the water binds all the molecules together into a solid mass as a whole. Meanwhile, reinforced concrete contains a higher proportion of cement in the mixture for more strength and tenacity.
- Concrete is still the best material for road construction
I know you are aware of many materials that are not applicable for constructing roads, especially with oil and granite. But here is the shocker: in the midst of it all, the best roads are still made of concrete. For instance, 30% of interstate highways in the US are made of concrete. However, concrete in road construction may cost slightly more than using Asphalt. They last longer than the latter.
Therefore, when considering all the factors, concrete is a more cost-effective and environmentally-friendly material for construction. In addition, mixing concrete can be varied for specific uses and conditions. It is better for certain climates, such as Australia.
On a final note, these beautiful facts are indeed unique, aren’t they? You can explore more to find other exciting things to note about concrete constructions. For instance, reinforced concrete is the only building material with high resistance to both water and fire. More so, concrete has an incredibly high compressive strength and tenacity, and the largest concrete structure is located in China.