Polyfabrics’ mastaTEX® Concrete is an alternative to placing wet shotcrete using an impregnated geotextile and on-site wetting of the fabric to create a concrete fabric that hardens as it dries. Shotcrete involves pumping ready-mixed concrete from a hopper through a hose and into a nozzle. Compressed air is injected through the nozzle as the worker sprays the prepared surface. This provides an easy way to spray concrete mix over large surfaces.
Shotcrete is widely used because it does not require complex formwork or vibration/compaction after placing, but it can take a long time to apply, and getting the perfect consistency can be difficult. Aggregate can easily become lodged in the hose, and a concrete mix that is too wet with too much slump will not adhere well to vertical surfaces. mastaTEX Concrete on the other hand is a needle-punched composite consisting of a concrete-sand mix embedded and fixed between two layers of geotextile. The addition of water makes the composite harden into very strong concrete.
This then provides a substrate for direct applications of a thin protective layer of regular concrete, which may be used in various weather conditions. The fabric is fastened to an outer area with nails, which provides a solid water-resistant surface stabilization, further braced by internal reinforcing fibers.
Shotcrete is a messy method of applying concrete, in which a wet slurry is aimed at the desired surface. The installation of shotcrete is therefore difficult as it is hard to place the concrete accurately. This method also creates more waste. mastaTEX® Concrete creates no waste, as it is a “blanket” soaked with concrete mix, and when you put water on it, it hardens to form a very strong concrete. It is used by civil contractors to build drains and waterways and to channel water in specific directions. The use of mastaTEX® Concrete is accurate and creates little mess or waste: sections can be cut to size and overlapped meaning less wasted product.
Large cross-section structures and complex shapes can have a long installation time when gunning concrete onto the surface. Likewise, steel fixing takes a considerable amount of time when reinforcement needs to be used. In comparison, mastaTEX® Concrete is much faster and cheaper to install than conventional materials and methods. It can simply be rolled out on-site, hydrated and left to dry and harden into a 40MPA concrete.
In one recent project, mastaTEX® concrete was used to fix the newly opened Jindabyne ski ramp, a year-round training ground for Australia’s elite winter athletes. The damaged and eroding ramp was quickly repaired and completed in a fast cost-effective manner. mastaTEX® enabled the project to be carried out with minimal labor and machinery in a regional location. The traditional shotcrete solution would likely have been more expensive and taken considerably more time to complete.
mastaTEX® Concrete is a superior alternative to shotcrete in certain applications because it is faster to install, easier and cleaner to use, can be installed more accurately, and with less wastage. mastaTEX® Concrete undergoes a strict quality control of its raw materials which makes the finished product guaranteed to perform in challenging applications. For further technical assistance or specifications on mastaTEX® Concrete, contact Polyfabrics or view the specifications for concrete on a roll here.