Using wireless concrete sensors as part daily production of precast elements gives a unique set of opportunities:
Embedding wireless sensors in concrete gives you the opportunity to monitor concrete temperature, concrete maturity, and concrete strength. Knowing the concrete strength in real-time (some systems also enable a prediction) enables you to know exactly when your concrete element is ready for being moved and new concrete can be poured in the form. This enables you to speed up your production and increase production capacity.
We know that inside a precast production it might be hard to handle a phone or a laptop without it getting full of dust or concrete. That is why the information from the Maturix system can be displayed on a screen inside your production facility. This way, every team member knows the status of the elements in real-time without each needing to check individually. The dashboard shows exactly how far the curing is and how much curing time is left (prediction of the remaining curing). The risk of too early concrete stripping/formwork removal resulting in waste is reduced while the product quality is enhanced.
Concrete break tests are good indicators to see if you’re able to obtain the final strength after the traditional 28-days, but they are not really good indicators of the continuous strength development of the concrete in the form. Wireless sensors can fill the information gaps and provide you with an overview of the whole strength development process. You may still need to use break-test to fulfil some specifications but you can use the Maturix system to follow your castings along the way.
All data is automatically stored and formatted in reports in the Maturix Precast platform. These reports are ready to be exported, in PDF or another format, and printed anytime. The reports are updated every 10 minutes when new data is received and contains both data from the concrete, temperature, and the ambient humidity and KPI’s like maximum temperature, production time etc. Everything done automatically without any use of labor.
Heating the elements’ bed, either from underneath with hot water/steam or from on top with air / infrared heaters, is often used to ensure a faster curing time. Normally, these mechanisms use a standard daily “template” for when they need to be turned on and off. With these standard templates, the heating may keep using electricity even if the element has already reached the desired strength. Maturix allows you to see exactly when you have reached the desired strength in real-time so you can take actions to optimize the heating usage. You may also discover that the elements reach the strength much faster than you thought and heating can be minimized or even turned off.
By using concrete sensors on a daily basis, you might be able to see if there are sudden changes in the data. These could indicate a problem with some equipment or issues with the concrete mix. Normally, it can take weeks or months to identify these types of problems (like a leaking heating pipe, abnormal water temperatures in tanks or similar) but with the continuous data these issues can be detected faster.