foundation system of burj al arab

Why Concrete is Superior to Other Construction Materials? (Part-1)

We know concrete is the widely used construction material all over the world. Now there have no material that can be compared to concrete. The question is why? About 11 billion tones of concrete are consumed in the world in every year.

Is concrete stronger than steel? Or is concrete tougher than steel?

The answers are no? Steel is mentioned here, as it is the most comparable material with concrete in the world depending on availability and structural properties.

Concrete waste treatment plant

The reasons behind this are of three fold; namely

a. Its excellent performance against water

b. Flow characteristics of concrete

c. It is cheapest and most available materials for the job.

Regarding water resistance, we can include, concrete can withstand without having serious deterioration against water. This property makes it superior to wood and normal steel. So water tight structure can be constructed with concrete. The application is to
  • Control Water
  • Store Water
  • Transport Water

Cryogenic concrete tank for petroleum refinery
The Romans used concrete as waterfront retaining structure (wall) and aquaducts which were the earliest application of this material. Now this material leaves its footprint, on

  • Dams
  • Canal Lining
  • Pavements

So structural elements that are subjected to exposure of moisture or erosion of water, reinforced concrete and sometimes prestressed concrete perform successfully with expected degree of durability. Some examples of these are:

  • Piles
  • Foundations
  • Footings
  • Floor
  • Beams
  • Column
  • Roof
  • Exterior Walls
  • Pipes Etc.

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