Cement and CO2: Less is more for the environment

In the construction process, many resources are spent – and the single biggest emitter is the cement from the concrete. Though cutting the usage of cement in the concrete will be a very efficient way of minimizing CO2 emissions.

With its energy-consuming production, it is responsible for around 8% of the global CO2 emissions – reasons enough to reduce the share.

It is a common practice to add cement to the concrete mix to ensure the required strength is reached on time. When the cement ration in the concrete is high, the concrete gains greater strength and often also reaches the strength faster. Thus, to ensure that the requirements, the concrete is often over-designed with a higher cement ratio.
As a result of the over design, more cement is used than needed leading to higher CO2 emissions. 

Overall, we use too much cement to be on the safe side in order to achieve faster curing and higher temperatures as a result. But this leads to very fast curing times – that can not even be utilized by the contractors.


How to reduce cement while fulfilling the demands?

On the one hand, a high cement ratio enables great concrete strength in the optimal time. On the other hand, cement is a key driver for CO2 emissions.
A balance needs to be found to use the optimal ratio of cement to ensure the strength while keeping the CO2 emissions as low as possible. In an industry, where overdesigning is common to ensure a safe construction, defining the optimum amount of cement is key.

concrete curing


To be able to optimize the cement ratio in the concrete mix and to ensure a good project schedule, the concrete performance of the concrete mix needs to be monitored.
Using smart wireless sensors enables accurate measurements over the whole curing process. The device transfers the measurements in real-time to the cloud. The data is then accessible from anywhere using a smartphone or computer. Reports are automatically for documentation purposes.
Based on the data, the concrete mix can be adjusted with a lower cement ratio and the mix with a reduced cement ratio can be used safely, as the real-time monitoring ensure that the required strength has been met before action is taken.
Further, compression test samples can be reduced, as the sensor monitoring makes them redundant. In that way, waste and additional cement can be reduced.


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