28 March 2008
28 March 2008
High-tech composite materials buoyant enough to bridge short spans of open water and support traffic over muskeg provide a critical environmental advantage to a new remote access mat system introduced by the TerraPro Group.
For temporary access to remote regions, heavy wooden pallets are typically used to create roadways for equipment and crews to travel on. When no longer required, the pallets are often left to rot and decompose. In an effort to reduce the industrial footprint on the environment, TerraPro has introduced a lightweight, composite mat that is easy for crews to install and remove, and even easier on the environment.
""Our composite mats are significantly lighter than conventional systems, which means less environmental damage to natural surfaces and vegetation,"" Richard Kulhawe, TerraPro President and CEO said. ""The TerraPro system allows road builders to use lighter-duty equipment, which also reduces collateral damage to the surrounding area.""
” We enhance this feature with non-porous coating options so no contamination can be absorbed An engineered patent pending edge design allows each mat to share the dynamic load with its neighboring mat, acting like a spring to absorb impact and energy as heavy equipment moves over the temporary road, “Kulhawe said. ""Another new feature is a proprietary curved interlocking design which provides simple and quick assembly in the field,"" added Jan Souman, Terrapro's Managing Director. ""This significantly reduces total time and construction costs.""
Additional cost advantages include the increased probability of recovering all rig mats used. ""In the past, these projects were literally a sunk cost because temporary road products were frequently left to sink and rot in muskeg and other soft terrain,"" Souman said. TerraPro users can expect minimal reclamation costs, he noted.
The strength of the TerraPro composite system also reduces the need for expensive multiple mat layers.
Current environmental requirements demand impact reduction by properly cleaning matting products. ""The TerraPro mat is easy to decontaminate,"" Kulhawe said. ""This ensures that terrain and vegetative matter don't cross-contaminate from site to site as mat systems are used on project after project. Furthermore, the capability exists to collect contaminated liquids and hydrovac them from working platforms constructed of the TerraPro matting system.""
The TerraPro road mat has an inherent advantage over other systems due to the naturally low porosity of composite materials, he said. ""We enhance this feature with non-porous coating options so no contamination can be absorbed,"" Kulhawe added. ""Properly cleaned, there is virtually no possibility of contamination between sites.""
""Our new composite line is an exciting development in the field,"" summed up Colin Schmidt, V.P., Investor Relations. ""It provides increased access to remote locations, lower transportation costs, reduced time and completion costs, and lower reclamation costs. Combined with its environmental sensitivity and protectiveness, it's a product we're proud to introduce to the industry.""
Toho Tenax is introducing a high-tensile, highly shock-resistant prepreg that incorporates carbon fibre developed for aerospace applications and carbon nanotubes (CNTs).
NTPT is collaborating with the Ecole polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne - Swiss Centre of Technology (EPFL) and other partners to research discontinuous fibre composite tubes for high performance applications.
The £50 million McLaren Composites Technology Centre (MCTC) nearing completion near Sheffield, UK, was inaugurated on 16 January.