Five international projects show how construction products play a supporting role in industries where new technology rollouts, tight timelines, and sustainable design are the new normal.

Construction personnel and products must be responsive to the needs of a wide range of industries. Constant implementation of new technologies means less standardization across industries and greater uniqueness on the jobsite. Unfamiliar workflows and logistics, unusual jobsite conditions, and untried building systems are day-to-day realities for today’s construction professional.

Swiss factory setting

A project in Switzerland demonstrates how progress in food chemistry brought changes to factory processes that, in turn, placed demands upon construction personnel in charge of repairing the facility’s floor. Food ingredient manufacturer Naturex AG required renovations at its production site in Burgdorf, Switzerland. The area needing repair was the cold spray tower, a 260-foot-high, refrigerated tower in which temperature-controlled food particles are sprayed onto surfaces at high velocity. A complete renovation of the tower was scheduled to take only three weeks. Included in the scope of work was the full-depth concrete repair of the 2,150-square-foot floor. Site logistics were so demanding that contractor SIB France performed two flooring application simulations before embarking upon the actual project to minimize the risk of unforeseen challenges.

A specialty food-resistant and food-compatible polyurethane coating was specified for the finished floor, so Rapid Set Concrete Mix was used because its fast set time allowed for polyurethane application after only 16 hours. The additive Concrete Pharmacy SET Control, which slows the set time of cement, was used in the concrete mix because temperatures both inside and outside of the building were high on the day of the pour. Concrete was mixed onsite in a system that is commonly used in agricultural settings; concrete buggies transported the mix to the repair area. The entire floor repair took five days, keeping the overall project on track for resuming factory production within three weeks. The Naturex facility was the first big construction job in Switzerland to use Rapid Set cement.

Israeli power plant

The recently completed Dorad power plant in Ashkelon, Israel, represents two major milestones. First, once operational, it will be the largest private power station in the country. Second, it will use purified water supplied from the nearby Ashkelon desalinization plant, which is one of the largest desalinization plants in the world. The size of the power plant and its cutting-edge power generating system made for a unique construction project.

The Dorad power plant will use natural gas as its primary fuel source. It is designed as a combined cycle system, which means that waste heat from its gas turbine will be captured and used to power its steam turbine, improving the system’s overall efficiency and reducing pollution. As part of the process, water is injected into the turbine. Water used for this purpose is conducted from the desalinization plant via precast concrete pipe. To avoid having any weak points in the piping, careful attention was paid to the pipe connections Instead of using portland cement grouting, contractor W.F. GTS used Rapid Set Cement All, a high-performance blend of Rapid Set cement and specialty sand. Cement All provided workability, rapid strength gain, and low shrinkage, along with high durability in wet environments.