New concrete testing system strengthens Tanajib Gas Plant project
Wireless sensors measure temperature differentials from the surface and interior of the setting concrete, and then are sent to an app to monitor structural integrity.
An inventive, high-tech concrete testing system designed to improve reliability and cut construction time and cost is being used for the first time at the Tanajib Gas Plant, 200 kilometers north of Dammam.
Wireless mobile app-based concrete maturity sensors have been embedded in foundations set to support sales gas compressor equipment, said Hosam I. Al Jalal, manager of the Tanajib Gas Plant Projects Department (TGPPD).
“This is not only a remarkable major milestone for the work on the construction site, but it also includes introducing the latest concrete technology,” Al Jalal said.
The smart sensors are attached to rebar (the reinforced steel rods, or bars, around which concrete is poured) and measure the material’s temperature, humidity, and strength as it dries and hardens. The temperature differentials from the surface and interior of the setting concrete are sent to an app to monitor structural integrity.
Previously, a series of concrete specimen cylinders were set at a site and, over a period, taken to a laboratory to be tested. The cylinders in the lab were compressed until they were crushed to measure how strong the concrete was at that point of maturity. The new wireless sensor technology does away with the need for concrete cylinder break tests, saving transport and lab testing time and costs.
Sensors provide critical data
The sensors also speed up the collection, analysis and sharing of data — the latter improving safety at a job site with workers being able to share information while physically distancing amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Readily available data also reduces delays in receiving test results and taking down wooden construction form work.
“The system, which is monitored on a mobile phone application, improves data accuracy, promotes safety and quality, and reduces concrete testing delays,” said Abdullah M. Al Guwaifli, project quality manager of the Inspection Department (ID).
The ID and TGPPD collaborated to deploy the sensors to achieve high quality concrete structures for multiple mass concrete foundations at Tanajib projects, Al Guwaifli added.
One of the most important steps in construction … is monitoring the temperature of your concrete after placement to ensure proper curing. “This is especially true during extreme weather conditions.
— Muhammad M. Abbas, managing director of Osaimi Engineering Office, provider of sensors and technical advice
“Closely monitoring temperature variances in your concrete slab during curing is vital to ensuring the strength, quality, and durability of your structure. The temperature readings are very precise,” said Abbas.