The newsLINK Group - The Evolution of Concrete and Cement

Editorial Library Category: Mining Topics: Concrete, Cement Title: The Evolution of Concrete and Cement Author: newsLINK Staff Synopsis: For the average person, it’s easy to underestimate the use and importance of concrete in our modern world, not realizing the vital role concrete plays in our daily lives and functioning societies. Editorial: The Evolution of Concrete and Cement 4064 South Highland Drive, Millcreek, Utah 84124 │ │ (v) 801.676.9722 │ (tf) 855.747.4003 │ (f) 801.742.5803 Editorial Library | © The newsLINK Group LLC 2 volcanic ash and other naturally occurring minerals) led to his discovery and patent of Portland cement. Aspdin’s name for his invention served two purposes. It distinguished the material from Roman cement, which existed for centuries. It also was a marketing ploy. Concrete made from his new cement spoke to the highly prized building Portland stone quarried in England. Modern Portland cement is the product of high temperature conversion of finely ground materials—often as basic as blends of limestone, clay, and shale—containing four key ingredients: calcium oxide, silica, alumina, and iron. Producers rely on native materials. Cement plants sit near quarries with rocks bearing some or all of these elements. When processed in a long horizontal furnace known as a rotary kiln, blends of raw materials reformulate into glass-like nodules called clinker. Suppliers then grind clinker and gypsum to extreme fineness to produce cement. The finished product is shipped to concrete producers in bags or in bulk. Cement’s natural chemistry comes to life in the presence of water, sand, and gravel or crushed stone—known as fine and coarse aggregate. Upon mixing with water, cement’s calcium compounds hydrate to form new agents that bind the aggregates into concrete. Very little cement and concrete is traded and transported internationally. The relative expense of land transport usually limits cement and concrete sales. As a result, the manufacturing of concrete supports local economies around the world. According to the Portland Cement Association, here in Utah, the cement, concrete and related industries to the manufacturing of cement and concrete is responsible for providing jobs to over 5,519 employees with an annual payroll of $223.4 million. The state revenue from this industry is over $62.3 million each year. As we move into the second decade of the 21st century it is clear that building and rebuilding infrastructure will be an overriding theme and an area of significant investment for the United States, and concrete – which begins at the mine, where the raw materials like limestone, silica, aluminates, feric minerals and others are obtained – will continue to have a significant role. Sources: Word Count: 1,014 Copyscape Clear Date: 07.21.2015