CEMEX in the UK develops innovative concrete solution for Heathrow Airport in London | CEMEX News
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CEMEX in the UK develops innovative concrete solution for Heathrow Airport in London

Date published: July 6, 2010

When Heathrow Airport, the airport that handles the most daily international passengers in the world, needed a ready-mix concrete with a low carbon footprint and with low heat generation to avoid cracking in the terminal’s foundations for its new terminal 2A, CEMEX came through with the solution.


The innovative concrete mix was developed at CEMEX in the UK’s research and development laboratory in Southam, Warwickshire over a two month period in collaboration with the Central CEMEX R&D Center in Switzerland. This was as part of the US$ 10 million contract secured by CEMEX for supplying over 100,000 cubic meters of ready-mix concrete towards the construction of Terminal 2.

The hardened concrete is able to remain cool even in extreme conditions, which helps it avoid cracking from heat expansion. The specialty mix includes cement from CEMEX’s new Tilbury plant in Essex, and aggregates from its nearby quarries.

“A concrete mix made from traditional cement would typically generate heat of around 70 degrees Celsius during its curing time and set very quickly,” says CEMEX in the UK technical director Steve Crompton. “Given the substantial pours this contract involves, it was a key challenge to minimize the heat generation in the concrete to slow down the curing and avoid cracking. Following numerous tests, we arrived at this new mix design, which we are proud to have developed for Terminal 2A, which is the largest construction job ever awarded by the British Airports Authority.”

CEMEX has the best portfolio of responsibly sourced products in the industry, and our mix design optimization highlights our commitment to responsible sourcing. Using pulverized fly ash, a by-product from coal-fired power stations, in our concrete mixes helps reduce the carbon footprint of the Heathrow Terminal 2A building.

This latest project in the UK highlights CEMEX’s global commitment to providing our customers with the best building solutions.

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