What does airport concrete need?

Concrete transport infrastructure deserves some special attention

What does airport concrete need?
05 October 2021 Posted in , ,

Despite the recent disruptions, air transport remains a crucial part of freight and resource logistics, and for public transport. And hey, there’s a lot of concrete involved.
To ensure that this concrete infrastructure will last its intended service life, at minimum maintenance cost, there are some important factors to consider.

Concrete Contamination

Transport infrastructure is subjected to some serious contamination from the very machines it supports. Traffic will bring water, oil and grime onto the concrete runways, aprons, and maintenance facilities. Water carries contamination deep into the concrete, setting up the factors for corrosion of the steel.
Surface sealer coatings are not sufficient to protect the concrete. They are topical only, readily subject to abrasion and wear. Surface sealers are in fact supposed to be re-applied periodically even when they aren’t under traffic. It’s doubtful how often that happens in accordance with the datasheet.
We’d like to introduce AQURON 2000 – multi-benefit concrete treatment.
AQURON 2000 penetrates deep into the concrete (around 150mm) and seals the porosity with anti-dust hardening.
No surface sealer to wear away! No need to re-apply – ever! The concrete is hardened and durable for the full intended service life of the structure.
Better still, if AQURON 2000 is applied at the curing stage, there’s no need for a separate curing compound or time-consuming water curing. AQURON 2000 enhances concrete curing, equal or superior to 14 days’ water curing.
And don’t forget the wear and tear of foot traffic on interior floors. Or moisture control under resilient floor coverings. AQURON 2000 can help with these details as well!

Airport terminal image by Michał Parzuchowski on Unsplash
Photo by Michał Parzuchowski on Unsplash



Any concrete structure exposed to the weather, should have waterproofing treatment incorporated into its design.
Did you know that moisture-borne contamination is the number one driver for premature concrete deterioration?
Long story short, exposed concrete such as bridges or roof decks absolutely must be protected against the weather.
Rainwater and wind combine to wear away exposed structures at the best of times. Add in that oil and grime we mentioned, and you’ve got a serious recipe for premature concrete decay.
Steel corrosion and internal concrete reactants cause cracking. Little cracks become big cracks, and big cracks kill concrete.

Here’s where the hydrogel waterproofing system comes into play.

This three-part system completely removes the need for a membrane and consists of

  • Hydrogel waterproofing admixture
  • Spray-applied penetrating hydrogel treatment
  • Delayed swell water stop for joints and penetrations

A complete waterproofing system, ideal for other exposed concrete structural elements. This is particularly ideal for multi-level car park structures.

Markham UK Project - Luton Airport Carpark
Luton Airport car park – treated with hydrogel waterproofing


One last thing

There’s a product in the MARKHAM arsenel which was specifically developed for airports – very specifically, for airports with paved taxiways.
This is AQURON 631 Pave-Set.
AQURON Pave-Set was developed on the request of Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport to Aquron Corporation International in the late 1980’s to make a “Paver Sealer and Joint Stabilization” two-in-one product that was totally environmentally friendly to protect pavers from jet fuels and also stop sand loss from jet blast. The product was produced and applied in 1990, and has demonstrated remarkable durability.

  • Seals and protects
  • Water and oil repellent
  • Environmentally friendly
  • … and it works on other pavers and flagstone as well, not just airports!


Frequently asked questions

▸ Is concrete hydrogel treatment compatible with paint or coatings? YES.
Concrete hydrogels do not introduce any element not already present in the concrete. Any coating designed for bare concrete will work as normal on hydrogel-treated concrete.
▸ Can hydrogel treatments benefit both new and existing structures? YES.
For maximum benefit, we recommend hydrogel treatments be included from day one. BUT you can also arrest an existing deterioration cycle by applying hydrogel treatments. The earlier the better, of course.

So – if you’re involved in the design, construction or maintenance of rail infrastructure, why not get in touch? Let’s see how we can help make your concrete stronger, and last longer. And probably save you some time and money along the way.

Markham - Concrete Solutions - Exposed Surface Treatments

Header photo by Bao Menglong on Unsplash


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about it

We understand that choosing the correct solution and type of product is essential for the success of any project. Markham has a technical support team with many years of concrete industry experience and successful project applications and we are ready to help you find the right solution for your application.

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