The agricultural industry uses a number of chemicals which by their nature are highly reactive, and by their components are hazardous for concrete service life.
Sulphates and phosphates?
Sulphates and phosphates, commonly found in fertilizers, attack the elements of cured concrete and can contribute to the corrosion of the reinforcing steel. If sufficient environmental moisture is present, these contaminants will be carried into the porosity of the concrete and reach the rebar zone.
These chemicals may perhaps not be stored in direct contact with concrete, but spillage and other distribution is highly probable, particularly in connection with the vehicles used to handle and transport the material.
Vehicular traffic may compound the problem by abrasion of the concrete surface, encouraging contamination deeper into the concrete’s porosity.
Can this situation be prevented or arrested?
As with most concrete contaminant situations, the key lies in closing the concrete’s porosity matrix: seal the concrete internally.
Markham Global offers a penetrating hydrogel treatment, which penetrates the concrete to a depth of up to 150mm, sealing the porosity, closing micro-cracks, and binding the free moisture into a permanent hydrogel. This hydrogel combines with moisture and calcium hydroxides in the concrete pores minimising the available hydroxides and removing the free moisture.
This hydrogel formed has proven to be robust against a range of chemical attack situations.
This offers excellent protection against further ingress of contaminants, and arrests the deterioration cycle.
Are you maintaining concrete in contact with agricultural chemicals (primary or wholesale)? Or are you involved in the design and construction of these structures?
Contact the Markham team about protection and preservation methods.
Farms are also environments for a number of environmental bio-challenges for concrete …
There are of course other factors contributing to the overall concrete aging process, but this quick summary relates specifically to the agricultural situation.