Concrete Products

APR 2018

Concrete Products covers the issues that attract producers of ready mixed and manufactured concrete focusing on equipment and material technology, market development and management topics.

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58 • April 2018 INNOVATIONS PRECAST/PRESTRESSED Wells Concrete enlists UltraSpan in hollow core production upgrade Wells Concrete has been a leading developer, producer and erector of architectural and structural precast con- crete across the Upper Midwest for 60-plus years. When weighing the market outlook, management questioned the capabilities of its Minnesota hollow core production line to competitively pace plank demand in the region. To maintain its position among the market's top pre- cast/prestressed producers, Wells Concrete decided to invest in new hollow core technology to streamline production processes and reduce operating costs. Through a series of planning sessions, market analysis and financial modeling exercises, management set performance goals for a new hollow core production line around three criteria: Highest uptime to ensure timely delivery of the highest quality product; a production system that reduced cost to a mini- mum; and, an equipment supplier with proven experience in new plant launches. Wells Concrete decided to partner with UltraSpan Technologies, which has furnished 30-plus North American plants with hollow core extrusion equipment and was able to meet the critical success factors management had outlined. UltraSpan underscores new Si series machines' potential to optimize concrete requirements, owing to their ability to limit cement paste consumption by blending larger aggre- gates. Combined with robust compaction technology, the blending element enables producers to lower the cement factor in finished hollow core plank by up to 23 percent. The equipment delivers uptime and low maintenance opera- tion as it has fewer moving parts than conventional hollow core extruders, UltraSpan engineers contend. Less com- plexity and fewer components, they add, mean producers have less downtime and higher profitability. — UltraSpan Techologies, Inc., Winnipeg, Manitoba; 855/485-8727 (U.S.), 204/992-3200 (Canada);

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