Concrete Curing Technology
HPC-09 is the only complete toolset to Plan, Control, Monitor and Document the production of Concrete Slabs: Prestressed, Hollow Core, Solid or any combination. HPC-09 integrates seamlessly with the plant production line! Using unique Plant specific Calibration Data and Production input Parameters, HPC-09 calculates Predicted Temperature and Compressive Strength Graphs (blue & red). But HPC-09 also monitors the Actual Temperature, Relative Humidity and Compressive Strength Graphs (green) and produces detailed Excel Reports. HPC-09 helps savingenergy, reducing carbon footprint and detect production anomalies at an early stage. In short, it is a key tool to help achieve a Sustainable Production line.
HPC-09 raises Production Control to a new level and offers considerable Quality Control advantages to the Precast Concrete Industry: Read how HPC-09 may help reducing the carbon footprint of concrete slab production in our article in the October 2010 issue of Concrete International.
Although designed for prestressed hollow core slab production, the system may equally well be adapted to other types of concrete production. The system consists of the HPC-09 Software Module, wireless HPC-09 Measurement Stations and the HPC-09 wireless Control Panel. The Software Module has a Math Engine that performs calculations, a Scheduler for Planning and Surveillance and various Tools to mange the system. The Wireless Measurement Stations collects Temperature and Relative Humidity (moisture) data that is sent back to the Software Module. Since the Measurement Stations and Control Panel are wireless, installing the system is very simple. Where bed heating is used, HPC-09 may also manage the Bed Heating to Save Energy and reduce induced Carbon Footprint.
The HPC-09 Math Engine bases its calculations on Calibrations done at the plant where the system is installed. Using this approach, HPC-09 will automatically base its calculations on the Concrete Mix Designs (Mix Proportions) used by the plant and also adjust for properties of the beds used.
HPC-09 calculates the Pouring Temperature necessary to achieve a given Compressive Strength (typical 37 MPa) in a given time. If bed heating is applied, this parameter will also be accounted for.
When the placing of a bed has finished, HPC-09 reports the Actual Pouring Temperature of the last batch and computes new Predicted Temperature, Compressive Strength Graphs, and Estimated Finish Time based on this data. At the same time HPC-09 starts Recording the Actual Temperature, Humidity and Compressive Strength Graphs. HPC-09 produces extensive reports based on this data for each bed.
Reports produced can be used for Internal Quality Control and Customer Documentation and may provide an edge over the competition. HPC-09 reports has sections that reflects the sections in the user interface (HMI). The reports contains:
- Plant specific data
- Operator input data
- Initial and Corrected Temperature and Strength Prediction Graphs
- Actual Curing Temperature and Strength Graphs
- Additional Measured and Computed data
HPC-09 Production Monitoring
During production the operator can use HPC-09 to detect anomalies with the current placement. Being able to detect problems at an early production stage improves quality and saves money! These problems may be faulty dosing units, worn out bed covers, unusual draft / air temperature / relative humidity to name a few. The production manager can then take necessary steps to rectify the situation at an early stage.
The graphs in the figure below shows Actual Relative Humidity (light blue graph), Initial Predicted Temperature (blue graph), Corrected Predicted Temperature (red graph) using bed temperature from last batch and Actual Curing Temperature (green graph). We can see a considerable drop in the Relative Humidity after approximately 4 hours. The effect of this can be seen in the figure below, since the actual temperature (green graph) starts to deviate from the calculated temperature (red graph). If this had happened at an earlier stage, the effect would be more dramatic. Real Time data from HPC-09 helps the operator to plan and make decisions based on what is going on.
The corresponding Compressive Strength Graphs are shown below:
HPC-09 supports 3 Modes of Bed Heating:
- Fixed Bed Heat Power, Fixed Heat Time
- Fixed Bed Heat Power, Auto Heat Time
- Auto Bed Heat Power, Fixed Heat Time
In the two Auto Modes, HPC-09 minimizes the Bed Heat Energy needed to Cure the Concrete within the target curing time. This saves Energy and reduces production Carbon Footprint. Read more about HPC-09 Advanced Bed Heating.
Further Carbon Footprint Reduction
Many plants use rapid cement to provide a good strength margin when the prestressed concrete tendons are released. Production environment variations make it difficult to predict the exact curing time. HPC-09 takes the guesswork out of curing concrete and the associated Curing Time and Concrete Strength (Compressive Strength) Predictions. This may make it feasible to use Fly Ash Cement instead of Rapid Cement. The Carbon Footprint of Fly Ash Cement is considerably smaller then that of Rapid Cement: Better process control enables large Carbon Footprint savings! Read more about how HPC-09 can help reducing Carbon Footprint in our article in the October 2010 issue of Concrete International.
HPC-09 has proved to be an important instrument to reveal what is going on inside the "Black Box" (hidden) Process of Concrete Curing. When something does not go as planned, Prior Reports and Current Recorded data helps tracking down the source of the production discrepancy. HPC-09 data gives insight into the process thereby helping operators to make better decisions at an early stage in a fast and efficient way: Without input data, how can one make smart decisions?
In the field HPC-09 has repeatedly revealed anomalies or the importance of parameters the production manager did not believe to be of great importance.
What sets HPC-09 Apart
The few other systems we have seen, base their calculations on absolute values given in particular Concrete Mix Designs (Mix Proportions) that the system supports. A particular plant will most certainly use their own variant of any concrete Mix Design. It is then the operators responsibility to make adjustments to the calculations for the parameters that are changed. This is very difficult to say the least, and most operators do not know how to do this. With the approach used by HPC-09, we avoid this problem altogether.
HPC-09's design philosophy is also quite unique. You can read about it here.
HPC-09 is developed in LabView and runs on all platforms that LabView supports.
The system presented here was initially developed for the Norwegian market, and the labels on some of the pictures are in Norwegian. We will of course support any language on customer request.