21 January 2005
21 January 2005
Zoltek Companies has signed a multiyear supply agreement with TechFab to galvanise widespread use of carbon fibre for reinforcing concrete components and structures.
Using Zoltek carbon fibre, TechFab, LLC of South Carolina, USA, has developed a patented corrosion resistant carbon reinforcing grid (known as C-GRID) that they claim can deliver up to seven times the tensile strength of steel reinforcement by weight. This allows designers and engineers to build streamlined structures from precast concrete that are just as strong as conventional steel reinforced sections, but weigh less than half as much with improved corrosion resistance, durability and insulation properties. In addition, the reduced weight contributes to lower shipping and erection costs, and possible substructure savings. Zoltek add that new architectural, industrial and residential precast products incorporating C-GRID are now possible.
""This is a commercial application for carbon fibres with significant growth potential,"" noted Zsolt Rumy, Zoltek's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. ""Zoltek has been our primary fibre supplier and advocate from day one,"" said John Carson, Director of Commercial Development and Program Leader for C-GRID technology at TechFab. ""We are pleased to have them as our partner going forward in providing a better way to build with precast.""
AltusGroup, a partnership of five of the nation's leading precast concrete producers (with combined revenues of more than $1 billion), has begun a nationwide marketing and sales campaign for CarbonCast concrete structures made using C-GRID reinforcement. CarbonCast components, which usually replace secondary steel reinforcement with C-GRID, are ""lighter, stronger and more durable than conventional precast."" The AltusGroup promises coast-to-coast availability, consistent quality and uniform design standards regardless of project location.