Ready Mix Concrete - Helping the Construction Industry Achieve Sustainable Development

India’s ready-mix concrete (RMC) market is projected to witness a 7-9% CAGR in the next five years. This growth is predominantly driven by the increased investments in the development of infrastructure throughout the country and the rapidly urbanising towns and cities.

Tier 2 & 3 cities are increasingly changing the traditional dynamics with growing RMC penetration. In the last 20 years, RMC has seen extensive use in national and state highways and expressways, housing, railways, mass rapid transport, and irrigation projects, aided by the entry of major cement companies and some organised RMC players.

The use of RMC has several advantages, making it a more viable and efficient alternative to site-mix concrete. It circumvents the messy and long-drawn task of producing the concrete onsite. The consumption of cement reduces by nearly 10% to 12% with better handling practices and proper mixing.

RMC helps save on capital investments by not having to invest in plants and machinery for cement. The need to create storage facilities at the site of construction also reduces with ready mix concrete. Thus, RMC provides an alternative that reduces wastage of resources during the construction process.

Furthermore, the responsibility of producing fresh concrete, its transportation, pumping and laying of concrete on the site lies with the supplier. The supplier plays an essential part since one of the primary goals of ready-mix concrete is to provide materials of the best quality with timely delivery, regardless of the size of the order.

The quality of concrete used has a direct impact on the strength and durability of the structure and it is in this context that ready-mix concrete plays an important role. The production of RMC provides the opportunity to produce concrete in line with the requirement of the project. Elements such as compressive strength, proportioning of ingredients, workability, water-cement ratio, and slump can be configured according to the project. An added advantage is the reduced air and noise pollution since RMC is produced in organised manufacturing units.

RMC has begun to increase its share in the market in India, despite challenges. The availability of potential substitutes can potentially affect the growth of RMC. An easement of transport regulations in cities allowing the mixer to move across the city freely is also needed to increase the viability of RMC. The industry is keen for the government’s intervention in making use of RMC mandatory in infra projects across all states.

This article carries the views of RMC producers on the growing market and challenges for ready-mix concrete in India, and of the manufacturers of concrete batching plants and mixers, who share the technical features and superior performance of their equipment.
Anil Banchhor, MD & CEO, RDC Concrete (India) Pvt. Ltd.

Anil Banchhor, MD & CEO, RDC Concrete (India) Pvt. Ltd.

Setting up commercial plants in metro cities is a challenge due to space constraints and traffic regulations. The civic bodies need to allocate specific locations within the city limits to allow RMC operators to meet the growing demand of urbanisation.

The RMC Market in India

The RMC industry, which made its entry in India in the 90s, picked up pace only in the last decade or so, due to rapid strides in infrastructure development, and is now present in both metros and in Tier 2 and 3 cities. Today, the Concrete Industry has gone through tremendous transformation - from being hand mixed at site to becoming fully automatic, we are now seeing modern state-of-the-art batching plants and dispatch fleet.

RDC Concrete

Though the RMC industry in India is growing rapidly at a pace of 15-20% annually, it is still in its infancy and the gap between the organised and unorganised segments is wide. In developed countries, however, ready mix concrete comprises around 80% of the market share. With the main raw material for producing ready mix concrete being cement, the periodic fluctuations in cement prices and higher transportation costs due to fuel price rises, impact the price realisation of RMC.

Despite the hurdles, we can expect over 25% growth in the RMC industry in the coming years, when the Industry is likely to consume more than 20% of the cement produced, from the current consumption level of around 15%. Also, the weak market environment is expected to gradually improve with the revival in construction activities.

RDC Concrete

Why RMC
Sustainable development in the construction industry is aimed at improving the quality of life for everyone, now and for the next generations. The challenge for the construction industry in India is to meet the growing need for infrastructure development and housing while limiting the impact of its CO2 emissions. This requires drastic improvements in the use of alternative materials in construction and supplementary cementing materials as partial replacements to OPC.

By knowing the numerous advantages of industrial by-products, RMC industries have partially replaced their cement with flyash and GGBS, which are the by-products of other industries. These products enhance the workability, durability, and sustainability of construction, and because of the enriched properties of these supplementary materials, like quality, availability, and low cost, they are being widely used for construction works.

Challenges
Despite the optimistic growth of the RMC sector, there is a need to address existing fault zones. One of the major challenges today is that the real estate sector in metro cities, which consumes nearly 70% of RMC, has been witnessing a slowdown and a severe liquidity constraint, which is impacting the RMC industry. The real estate companies will need to include the semi-urban areas in their marketing strategies as these regions are still witnessing a steady growth.

Apart from the various government clearances that are required to start projects, the RMC companies have to deal with traffic restrictions and congestions on roads that delay the supply of the cement, which has a short shelf life of 3-4 hours from the time of loading at the batching plant.

The RMC companies also need an uninterrupted supply of raw materials like aggregates of consistently good quality to manufacture RMC. There are more small size unorganised players instead of major branded players. Setting up commercial plants in metro cities is a challenge due to space constraints and traffic regulations. The civic bodies need to allocate specific locations within the city limits to allow RMC operators to meet the growing demand of urbanisation.

RMC is preferred globally as an environment-friendly business. I am sure that in the coming days we will overcome the challenges.

Quality Control
Concrete is one of the most important components in the construction industry. Hence quality of concrete plays a vital role in structures. The quality of concrete has direct effect on the strength and durability of a structure. In RMC, Quality of incoming raw materials required to manufacture concrete is most important as behaviour of final product depends on it. We at RDC have Quality Management System with defined Inspection and Testing Procedure for each incoming raw material. Our Quality Control and Assurance team ensures it. We are using advance software for analysis of concrete test results and taking corrective actions to contain the variability in the quality of concrete. Similarly, we have well defined standard procedures to check fresh and Harden concrete Properties.

Support from OEMs
RMC companies expect efficient and reliable machines that are easy to maintain and have a long life. The OEMs should offer annual maintenance contracts to ensure that their batching plants and other equipment are in good condition to ensure reliable performance. They should also organise training programs for all RMC players on how to keep their equipment in good condition and how to predict and prevent any faults that could lead to machine downtime. The OEMs should also impart information on newer technologies in the field of Ready Mix Concrete.

RDC Concrete

Government policies to encourage use of RMC
Faster urbanisation of major cities will need RMC plants to be set up within city limits as the product is highly perishable product. In fact, this should be part of urban town planning. RMC usage should be encouraged by making it mandatory to use as sustainable and durable concrete for increased lifespan of the construction. Site mixes should be stopped as such cement is responsible for poor quality construction. Use of RMC will also reduce pollution and wastage of raw materials and help in early execution of projects.

The government must ensure growth of the construction industry by making RMC a mandatory item in the specifications for CPWD and PWD jobs. It should also pass regulations to restrict piling of construction materials like aggregates and sand at construction sites, close to the road. Currently, in major metro cities, movement of trucks is restricted due to no-entry for certain times of the day. We feel that the Government should provide some relief for RMC carrying trucks in cities to enable faster construction activities.
Dr. L.R. Manjunatha, Associate Vice President, JSW Cement, and Honorary Chairman, Indian Concrete Institute, Bengaluru

Dr. L.R. Manjunatha, Associate Vice President, JSW Cement, and Honorary Chairman, Indian Concrete Institute, Bengaluru

Standardization bodies like QCI, RMCMA, and BIS are increasingly mandating the use of concrete from only certified plants and companies for the overall development of safe and sustainable construction.
Why RMC
In my 27 years of experience and 11 years of research in the field of RMC, I strongly recommend the use of concrete and other sustainable green building materials, solutions, and advanced technologies to create sustainable, durable structures. Ready Mix Concrete has been a boon to the construction industry in India as it is superior in terms of quality, plus it enables higher concrete production and deliveries for faster construction, with lesser manpower, along with sustainability and reduced lifecycle cost of the constructions.

The concrete quality produced in a RMC plant is highly consistent; hardened concrete provides a high degree of overall strength and enhances the performance of the structure after maturity. Since RMC operations are highly mechanized and electronically controlled, the chances of errors during the various operations are almost negligible. The concrete is also eco-friendly as its production brings down the pollution at construction sites (there is no stacking of raw materials in public pathways and roads as in the case of concrete that is mixed at site). RMC can be delivered directly into the contractor’s formwork and the truck mixer, thus causing less inconvenience to the public.

Ready Mix Concrete incorporates industrial by-products like fly ash and slag for higher durability, and for achieving a significant reduction in pure cement consumption. RMC is also instrumental in reducing the depletion of river sand and other natural resources. By purchasing concrete instead of sand and aggregates directly, sites can be kept relatively pollution-free. Products like structural lightweight concrete and fire-safe concrete available through Ready Mix Concrete help buildings reduce their energy costs as well increase the fire resistance.

Benefits
  • Uniform and assured quality of concrete
  • Durability of concrete
  • Faster construction
  • Storage at construction sites is eliminated
  • Addition and uniform mixing of admixtures is easier
  • Documentation of the mix design is possible
  • Reduction in wastage of raw materials
  • Eco-friendly
RMC Industry in India & Growth Challenges
The RMC industry has grown by leaps and bounds in India and is spread across metros, Tier I & 2 cities. Today, RMC plants are being widely used in the construction sites of mass housing projects, national highways and expressways, railways, metros, and irrigation projects, to deliver large volumes of concrete in a very short time.

Currently, about 20% of the cement produced in India is consumed by the RMC industry, while in USA, Europe, and the Middle East it is 70 to 80%. However, it is on a continual growth path ever since the first commercial plant was set up in Pune in 1991. The year 1993 saw the entry of two corporate companies: ACC Cements and Unitech Construction, which started production of RMC in Mumbai to commercially exploit the potential of this industry. Today, RMC plants are present in 120 to 130 cities across the country. However, the industry has to deal with some challenges: it is a fragmented business with few entry barriers, and many corporate and major cement companies have entered the industry.

Site mixed concrete (SMC) is still being used among IHB customers in metros and in Tier 1 & 2 cities, causing a lot of dust and air and water pollution. This should be regulated, and the Government should ban/limit use of SMC in metros. Site mixed concrete should get converted to RMC at a fast phase as this will help reduce dust pollution, manpower, and the carbon footprint of companies, since they will begin to use materials like mineral admixtures and M-Sand. Public awareness also needs to be created on the advantages of RMC over SMC.

JSW mixer

Quality Control Measures
The quality of Ready-Mixed Concrete depends on the selection and approval of materials, quality of admixtures, sampling, testing methods, production, delivery system, the equipment and plant. Use Ready-Mixed Concrete from a certified manufacturer for good quality and durability to ensure all these parameters. It is also mentioned in the IS code that, “For effective implementation of the provisions of the standard, it may be desirable that the Ready-Mixed Concrete plants operate their system under a third-party certification scheme to ensure operation of a well-structured system and to build confidence in the users of such concrete.”

To ensure quality RMC production, Ready-Mixed Concrete Manufacturers Association (RMCMA) has taken enormous efforts in evolving a quality scheme for RMC that include following the best practices of advanced countries. It was also decided to strictly follow the relevant provisions from the prevailing Bureau of Indian Standard specifications such as IS 4926 (RMC), IS 456 (plain and reinforced concrete), IS 383:2016 (fine and coarse aggregates), IS 9103 (chemical admixtures), and so on. The Guideline document recommends a broad framework of QA and QC and is strongly recommended for RMC producers to follow as it would help them establish an assured system of their capabilities in producing quality concrete on a consistent basis.

Users of Ready-Mix Concrete should insist on using concrete from environmentally conscious QCI-certified plants that have superior management systems. This would strengthen the organized sector within the RMC industry in serving the construction sector. Standardization bodies like QCI, RMCMA, and BIS, and government institutions are increasingly mandating the use of concrete from only certified plants and companies. We should strongly support this move for the overall development of safe and sustainable construction.

Government Policies to Support RMC Industry
There is urgent need for the Central and State Governments, Municipalities and City Corporations to enact laws and policies to encourage use of RMC for all constructions. Very often, certain municipal authorities place highly stringent pollution norms on RMC plants - in many cases more than construction sites itself! It would be beneficial for the city environment to provide SOPs and easier permissions to environmentally certified Ready Mix Concrete plants within planned zones of the city.

Today, we have good quality batching plants, transit mixers, silos, pumps, pipes, and related equipment from both domestic and global players of repute and are therefore not facing any issues in terms of machinery for RMC plants. We also have equipment hiring companies, finance companies, and MSME finance schemes of Banks to support the growth of the RMC Industry.

Premraj Keshyep, MD, KYB Conmat

Premraj Keshyep, MD, KYB Conmat
KYB Conmat is well positioned to meet demand from the construction industry with its wide range of 20-240 cum/hr batch mix plants that number over 3000 units already sold. The company is positioning its 30-45-60-75-90 cum/hr plants for the RMC sector. “Our batch mix plants with our in-house manufactured twin shaft mixers are designed to ensure higher productivity and homogenous concrete throughput. We will continue to make improvements in their design, based on inputs from our customers, as our aim is to enable faster setting up of the plants,” says Premraj Keshyep.

Since KYB Conmat’s batch mix plants are pre-assembled, they can be set up and commissioned fast. The user-friendly plants are aided by a remote monitoring and control software, which enables the operator to set the plant as per the required mix of the concrete. This also ensures easier rectification in case of any operational issue in the plants.

Stationary Concrete Batching Plant

The company is also offering transit mixers ranging between 6-7-8 cum/hr. Customers can choose transit mixers with power take off or slave engines. “Our unique spiral design, drums - mounted on the mixers, are also designed and manufactured in-house; they ensure a higher level of agitation to retain the character of the batched concrete from the RMC plants during delivery, even if the lead distance is long.”

Keshyep adds that the company has recently launched 4 & 4.5 cum per batch self-loading concrete mixers which are getting encouraging response from the customers. It is also in the process of appointing dealers to promote the new solutions.
Jayesh Krishnan, General Manager, IJM CPPL

Jayesh Krishnan, General Manager, IJM CPPL

The rapid growth in infrastructure development can be achieved by using the latest technologies, solutions, methodologies, and materials like Ready Mix Concrete.
RMC Market in India
Indian construction industry is robust with concrete technological backing. RMC industry is developing at a rapid rate driven by the demand from metro cities with upcoming infrastructure projects such as the Metro rails, flyovers, high-rise buildings, etc.

The assured quality, reliability, and speed of supply make RMC the preferred material in construction. It also falls under the Green Category as an eco-friendly product. With focus of development shifting to Tier-2 and 3 cities, demand for RMC from these cities will boost the industry. Sustainability of the RMC business is about ensuring long-term economic success and also caring for the environment.

The rapid growth in infrastructure development can be achieved by using the latest technologies, solutions, methodologies, and materials. Ready Mix Concrete and the value-added concrete products will continue to grow in the coming years and the users will be benefited with quality assured product for their specific requirements. This will help improve the quality and speed of construction in India.

Challenges
Economic slowdown, liquidity crunch, and changing policies are hurdles that are hampering the smooth running of the RMC industry. Traffic restrictions in cities results in slowdown in production. Traffic congestions in major cities lead to delay in timely supply. Consistency in aggregate supply is also a challenge.

Sustainable concrete construction should be one of the main agendas of the construction sector. Increasing the use of industrial by-products such as Fly Ash, GGBS, etc will help in enhancing the sustainability of concrete.

IJM

Quality Checks
At IJM CCPL, assuring quality is our prime concern. We have state-of-the-art batching plants with good controls for accurate weighing, batching, moisture correction, inventory control, etc and the twin shaft mixer provides better compaction.

At our well-equipped technical laboratory, we conduct quality tests on the raw materials. Testing is done in-house as well as at a third-party laboratory. Our technicians are well trained for on-site testing of concrete and other materials. As a member of the Ready Mixed Concrete Manufacturers Association, all our plant facilities are certified for production capability by a third-party organisation, and we adhere to RMCMA norms to ensure a high-quality product.

Vendor Support
IJM is one of Malaysia’s largest and most diversified construction group with a world-wide presence, specialising in construction, property development, manufacturing, quarrying, and plantation, and undertaking international ventures. IJM Concrete products Pvt Ltd (IJMCPPL) is an IJM group company in India with its RMC batching plants in Hyderabad, Mumbai, and Bangalore.

Our company’s slogan is ‘We Deliver on Time’ – and this is what we expect from our vendor partners. Whether it is a batching plant, a loader, or a DG set, we buy them only from reputed and reliable companies that assure timely delivery and efficient pre- and post-sales service, and assured performance. Periodical maintenance keeps the machinery intact, so our operation staff is trained to take care of the maintenance of our plants.

We also go for annual maintenance contract with our suppliers. Various programmes are organised throughout the year in coordination with our vendor partners to upgrade the core competencies of our workforce and we look for excellent coordination with our associates. All aspects of environmental monitoring are carefully planned; and each employee undergoes a special training programme for safety as well as care for the environment.

Government policies to encourage use of RMC
Government bodies and consultants should include RMC as mandatory in their specifications and tenders for infrastructure projects. RMC trucks should be made free from traffic restrictions as this affects the progress of a project’s completion schedule. On-time delivery is a must for RMC as delay will impact the quality of concrete. RMC should be treated as part of development work as RMC manufacturers play a vital role in the development of the country’s infrastructure.

V.G. Sakthikumar, MD, Schwing Stetter India

V.G. Sakthikumar, MD, Schwing Stetter India
“There is growing demand for special grade concrete, like high strength, free flow and workable concrete, for urban precast infrastructure projects. Use of micro silica, additives, fibers of steel and polymers are also witnessing increased usage,” observes V.G. Sakthikumar.

“RMC producers that are catering more to road, power, and irrigation projects, are preferring plants that can be easily shifted from one location to another. This will not only curtail the cost of shifting and re-erecting the plant but also setting up of new foundations. This means that demand is for plants that are compact in size and with minimum foundation costs,” he adds.

Schwing Stetter is offering M3/M2.5/M1 mobile plants which take minimum time to erect and are easy to relocate. Some of these plants come with built-in skid where only a flat compacted surface is required to erect the plant and without the need for any deep foundations. Thus, customers save resources and time.

Sakthikumar avers that their mobile plants of below 30 cum capacity have got an encouraging response from RMC producers as they require minimum time to erect and start operations. “We have supplied our M3 plant for higher productivity requirements which gives 3 cum of concrete in a single batch - the largest in mobile plant applications in the industry. Our biggest batching plant - the H6N of 240 cum capacity - has been shifted 7- 8 times and is still going strong even after 18 years of operation.”

RMC schwing

For urban infra projects, Schwing Stetter offers RMC plants that can cater to all different types of mixes, grades and applications. Sakthikumar informs that all their plants are equipped with a breathing system that holds the cement/aggregate during loading and releases it back into the mixer, thus reducing the exhaust fumes in the air. The plants can handle different mix designs (including M60/70 and above grades). Various combinations of cement/flyash/ggbs/micro silica/ ice/ chilled water can be used for any given mix design.

For city applications, the company is offering high-rise concrete pumps that can reach 100+ storied buildings with ease. “Our separate placing booms are a big hit in the market as their self-climbing technology and reach gives the advantage of pumping at any given height. These pumps are also suitable for self-climbing and shuttering applications.” The company is considered a pioneer and a market leader in separate placing booms that pour concrete at any given vertical level for a building. These building are now synonym to tower crane so every high rise building above 20-25 floors has this equipment mandatory.”

Schwing Stetter also offers noise-free concrete pumps that are built inside a container to reduce the noise level to the city’s acceptable limit.

The company has 23 offices with spares and support engineers and technicians, and 8 service centers offering drive-in service for refurbishing or servicing plants. The company offers end-to-end support to its customers’ plants - from finalization of equipment to operations and maintenance, and from dismantling to relocation. The company also offers buyback options for old and used equipment.

The company’s R&D and design team are continuously developing new or upgraded products and has installed IoT devices in most of its plants so that customers can remotely operate their plants and monitor the sites where the plants are operating. Plant owners can get the daily production status, report on plant usage and fuel consumption, and can track their machines and get alerts in case of any misuse of the plant.
Prashant Jha, Chief – Ready-Mix Concrete, Nuvoco Vistas Corporation

Prashant Jha, Chief – Ready-Mix Concrete, Nuvoco Vistas Corporation

Most government and private sector infrastructure development works now specify the use of RMC, and many project developers are asking for concrete manufactured at QCI certified plants; this is a welcome move for addressing the long-term durability of concrete.
RMC Market in India: Ensuring Sustainable Development
The RMC market in India is seeing steady growth. Valued at USD 2378.11 million in FY2020, it is expected to grow at 16.21% by FY2026 as the construction and infrastructure industry returns to normalcy. Value Added Products (VAP) would be the order of the day, going forward. Resources are getting limited so concrete products that use product mix with less carbon footprint would be the preferred choice of the industry.

RMC companies should also develop concrete that does not require curing in order to save water. The current manufacturing process for concrete also needs to change; we need to find ways to manufacture large quantities of dry mix concrete that can be converted into wet concrete on-site by adding water and then applied. This would help drive economies of scale, and free up spaces within cities that are occupied by many batching plants. For instance, Nuvoco’s InstaMix Xpress is a pre-mixed, ready-to-use, dry concrete, available in 50-kg sealed bags. It is produced in a controlled environment and is fast, easy-to-use, and ready-to-pour in just three steps – Open, Mix, and Pour. All one needs to do is open the bag; add 4-5 litres of potable water per bag, and mix the concrete uniformly; and then pour the preparation without making a mess.

Challenges
The biggest challenge faced by the industry is the difficulty in sourcing good and consistent quality materials. Moreover, the availability of trained and skilled manpower has not kept pace with industry developments, leading to a shortfall. In addition, concrete needs to be placed or used within a fixed timeframe. The perishable nature of concrete necessitates the need for the batching plant to be located near the construction site, which is not always possible or viable because of land issues and local norms. This, in turn, affects transportation costs.

Systems for Quality Check
To ensure the quality of concrete ingredients as per mix designs, we have an inspection and testing quality plan at each ready-mix plant. We identify suitable sources for cementitious materials as well as aggregates. The physical and chemical analysis is undertaken at NABL certified labs. Sources are finalised only after they are found to be in compliance with the relevant IS codes. These tests are repeated whenever our sources are changed.

Further testing is done as per frequency in ITP. Visual inspection and fineness tests of each lot of cementitious materials are undertaken to ensure quality as per ITP. Each cementitious material is stored in separate waterproof silos with proper identification. The stockpiles are visually inspected daily for changes in gradation, colour, and/or contamination. Each type of fine and coarse aggregates are kept in separate bins to avoid intermixing. These are allotted separate batches as per mix designs.

Moisture tests of aggregates are done every day and the same precaution is followed while batching concrete. The weighing machines are accurately calibrated for their accuracy of batching within the tolerance limits. The chemical admixture used is in compliance with IS 9103. The producer’s certification on the material’s physical and chemical properties for each consignment is mandatory to ensure conformity as per IS specifications and these are kept for records. In addition, NABL lab physical and chemical analysis is done every six months.

Concrete trials are also conducted to ensure the required plastic and hardened properties. During extreme cold, the admixture is agitated before starting the concrete. We ensure that the chemical admixture is used before its expiry. Water used for mixing of concrete is in compliance with IS 456 and free from deleterious materials for steel and concrete. The frequency of testing is also maintained as per IS 4926.

While setting up a batching plant or buying equipment, there are some basic criteria that we follow:
  • Size of the plant – the smaller the better
  • Availability of spare parts
  • Ease of maintenance
  • Availability of consumables
Government Policies
As a more sustainable construction material, RMC should be adopted as the standard material for upcoming Central and State infrastructure projects. The urbanisation of Indian cities will need RMC plants to be set up within city limits as it is a perishable product. Lowering GST can also help to lower the cost of RMC and encourage wider usage in commercial constructions. This in turn, will reduce pollution, wastage of raw materials, and help in the early execution of projects.

GST and RERA would bring discipline in the real estate sector, increasing tax compliance in the construction sector, which would help the RMC industry. Most government and private sector works now specify the use of RMC, and manual mixing is getting abolished. Hence, the RMC industry is penetrating various infrastructure sectors, resulting in better quality of concrete. Many projects are asking for concrete manufactured at QCI certified plants and it’s a welcome move for addressing the long-term durability of concrete.

Ajay Aneja, Chief Marketing Officer, Ajax Engineering

Ajay Aneja, Chief Marketing Officer, Ajax Engineering
AJAX Engineering is offering truck-mounted, boom pump of 30 meters, mounted on a 4x2 chassis. Their shorter turning radius makes them most suitable for RMC plants working in constricted city sites or in tight locations. “Concrete Boom Pumps have been revolutionizing the construction of large commercial & residential buildings and structures. The placement of concrete in inaccessible areas has necessitated the use of AJAX boom pumps in the current construction processes. We are promoting our boom pumps to commercial RMC plant owners and to cement companies that are setting up RMC plants at urban locations,” informs Ajay Aneja, Chief Marketing Officer at AJAX.

Over the last three decades, the need for energy efficiency, higher productivity, easy mobility and flexibility has been the focus to meet growing customer needs. The growing urbanization, high rise residential and commercial buildings, modern industrial infrastructure and the nationwide rural development programs have resulted in a range of concrete solutions.

Keeping pace with the changing requirements of customers, “We will be soon coming out with a 25m self-propelled boom pump SPBP 25ZX, mounted on a 4x4 chassis, and with a 360-degree rotating boom. It is designed for use in housing and infra projects in restricted spaces; plus, the pump has the smallest footprint in its class that helps in efficient maneuvering and will be able to work in hilly areas and in muddy terrains owing to its excellent manoeuvrability. The product is currently undergoing tests, and, as a unique product, it will be patented by AJAX.”

ACC RMX PLANT

AJAX offers concrete batching plants in CRB, IRB & IBP series ranging between 20-30-45-60-75-90-120 that goes up to 240 cum/hr. For the RMC industry, it is targeting its 30-45-60-90 cum/hr range of batching plants that churn out varied concrete design mix and are easy to set up owing to its modular design. They come with an option of planetary and twin shaft mixers. The planetary mixers give lower operating cost, better product consistency, and the right homogenous mix while the twin-shaft mixers are robust and heavy built with unmatchable speed to deliver high-strength concrete.

Says Aneja, “AJAX offers a wide range Transit Mixers, suitable for 3 & 4 axles, BS6 chassis with a range of RMC capacity. The PTO drive based transit mixers with optimized power utilization offer increased payload with lower fuel consumption. Designed with built-in strength and durability, the AJAX Transit Mixers are the perfect choice for all types of construction in rural and urban applications. Customers can choose transit mixers driven by either power take-off (PTO) or slave engines. Since, we are seeing more demand for higher capacity transit mixers, we are offering even an 8 or 10 cum capacity transit mixer mounted on a high-capacity truck chassis with a larger axle configuration.”

The company supports the functioning and maintenance of its plants through its 36 dealers, located pan India, and operating from 100+ locations. A new toll-free call center has been set up for customers’ requirements for parts. The company also provides operator training programmes accredited by NSDC that provide in-depth operation & maintenance training to our Customers operators which in turn benefits our customers in productivity and reliability of AJAX products.

Informs Aneja, “AJAX has earmarked INR 100 crores to build a new manufacturing facility and a design center across 20 acres of land in Bangalore, Karnataka. This investment is being done to expand our robust business operations to meet the demands of the construction industry in the future. The new factory will be equipped with the state-of-the-art facilities to design and manufacture the recently introduced products, such as concrete slip-form pavers, boom pumps and the self-propelled boom pumps. The annual production capacity from the upcoming plant for boom pumps and concrete slip-form pavers would be 100+ units and 50+ units, respectively. A further investment of INR 40 crores is being done at Gowribidanur plant to expand our existing facility that produces batching plants and transit mixers.”

AJAX has a very strong focus on the capabilities needed to succeed in the new market dynamics and meet the challenges and demands. Strengthening its foothold in the concreting equipment market, AJAX would be introducing new products in the forthcoming customer interface platforms to help customers to steer their business with increased speed, greater flexibility and enhanced quality.

AJAX is always geared-to meet the challenges the infrastructure development sectors with competitive advantage and differentiation strategy, to establish itself as a high-efficiency, quality player in the concrete pump category.
Anil Kumar Pillai, GM - Technical Services, RAMCO Cement

Anil Kumar Pillai, GM - Technical Services, RAMCO Cement

RMC usage should be encouraged by Government bodies and consultants, making it mandatory in their specifications and tenders for infrastructure projects across all states.
Why RMC
RMC is primarily used for major projects and in major concrete works of individual buildings and structures. A change in the method of working of construction professionals is required as Ready-Mix Concrete is different from Site Mixed Concrete. In RMC, one needs to have a proper shuttering/prop arrangement as concrete is going to be delivered at a time on the roof and the impact load is substantial as compared to that of Site Mixed Concrete, where concreting is going to happen in phases. It all depends on the users who would like to either get concrete made from a batching plant or mix it at site and then use it.

RMC offers readymade concrete to users with the caveat that there is a distance to be traversed from the batching plant to the site and therefore the challenge is to keep the RMC in workable condition without setting till it reaches the site. This transportation distance can take as long as 3-4 hours.

RAMCO Cement

Benefits
There is a lack of awareness on the benefits of RMC, which are in plenty:
  • One need not store individual constituent materials like sand and aggregates at site.
  • The concrete can be customized as per the requirements of the customer, provided that the customer is clear on the quality parameters required.
  • Use of RMC saves time and reduces wastage of raw materials.
  • Utilization of flyash in concrete mixing without affecting the qualities of concrete could reduce the cost. Even blast furnace slag can be used as an ingredient for making concrete. Flyash and slag are cheaper by-products of thermal power stations and steel industries, respectively, and are used to enhance the durability and pump-ability of concrete, following scientific mix designs.
Quality control
One needs to have control on the quality of the constituent materials and equipment and also have professionals and certified staff in the company. Specifications on concrete for works need to be streamlined, especially in the unorganized sector of construction.

In a RMC unit, the guiding philosophy and the company’s approach towards quality, plays a vital role in ensuring good quality concrete. Certifications on quality of concrete is an enabler and can build trust in the minds of the users.

We, at RAMCO Cement, are manufacturing cement as per the various applications based on our guiding principle: Right Product for Right Application. We have 12 brands of cement catering to applications like precast works, concrete for RMC where customers require high slump retention, plastering work, etc.

Government policies favoring RMC
Government policy towards the usage of RMC would give a fillip to the industry. For sustainable construction, RMC usage should be encouraged by Government bodies and consultants, making it mandatory in their specifications and tenders for infrastructure projects.

Sajin Noorjahan, Director Sales, Simem India

Sajin Noorjahan, Director Sales, Simem India
Simem India, a fully owned subsidiary of concrete batch mix plant manufacturer Simem SPA of Italy, is well positioned to cater to the requirements of India’s RMC industry. Informs Sajin Noorjahan, “Simem has an extensive range of 20-180 cumtr/hr batch mix plants which are manufactured at our Vadodara facility. Simem’s key strength is its ability to offer customized solutions to RMC producers, since every project has specific requirements. For instance, our 360 cum/hr higher capacity plant that has the design support from our parent company, can meet the demand from Indian jobsites very efficiently.”

He informs that the company has been studying the emerging demand trends, based on applications, site conditions, and project requirements. “Urban infrastructure projects are usually in crammed sites, so they require compact machines, while larger urban projects require plants that give higher productivity and assured availability. To meet these requirements, Simem is offering a Tower Beton batch mix plant with 8x8 meter footprint, and a vertical design. It houses the aggregate storage bins, mixers, and even the service units such as the controlling systems.”

Bison

For ease of mobility and quicker installation, Simem is offering its Bison concrete mix plant that has a capacity of 100-200 cumtr/hr. The completely mobile plant is mounted on a trailer wheeled chassis for easy movement between sites. The Bison plant also houses the complete aggregates storage bins, mixers, and the service units on its wheeled chassis.”

According to Noorjahan, the plant is highly suitable for concrete road projects and big infrastructure projects (that have very tight completion schedules) as the higher productivity Bison plant has a continuous concrete discharge flow mechanism as compared to batch type mechanism with closing and opening systems. “Both the Tower Beton and Bison plants can be made available by Simem from its parent facility in Italy. Simem manufactures both planetary and twin shaft mixers for its batch mix plants,” he adds.

Eagle 7000 Capacity 180 cbm per hr

Simem provides plant installation, supervision and maintenance support through its team of skilled service engineers, and timely parts supply through its warehouses in Vadodara, Bangalore and New Delhi.
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