Unified Vision of Indian Nation for the Concrete Protection, Strengthening and Repair Industry - Vision 2020

Dr. S. K. Manjrekar, Chairman & Managing Director, Sunanda Speciality Coatings Pvt. Ltd., Mumbai

Introduction

Repair industry in India and for that matter throughout the world is like the story of an elephant that is described by seven blind people. Whichever part of the elephant comes in the hands of a blind man, that will be described accordingly. Repair industry also is so huge several having facets and hence it is literally difficult to assess in totality the causes of damage, mapping the extent of damage, proper corrective prescription, prediction of residual life with and without the repair measures, instrumentation and maintaining the health subsequently and most importantly to strike cost benefit ratio of the repair. However, there is substantial amount of "State of the Art" knowledge available today which is based on critical study derived out of past failures and matching R and D work done in the laboratories and successful practical implementation of the same at sites. The consistent results have encouraged the industry, however the daunting task remains to be to corroborate the entire information in a methodic way and thus to provide this ever growing and overgrowing industry an orderly pathway. It is also important to keep the pace with ever dynamic nature of various advances and duly incorporate the same in the set procedures.

Size of Repair Industry in India

Essentially deterioration of concrete takes place due to environmental parameters, damage caused to structures due to external agencies, basic defects in the concrete structures and change in use which can take place subsequently. Almost all the concretes are made as per the structural requirement of each structure and has to be custom made. These concretes have to use local material from plural sources having different quality which can be marginal. Sometimes the designs also are not standard and to top it all, we have to work at neck breaking speed for producing the output which results in accelerated construction processes which may sacrifice quality at some times. Above factors lead to malfunctioning and early distress signs in a structure and have led to an industry which is likely to assume a form of a parallel industry to new construction industry. In India, this market/industry though of a large size and spread over all the nooks and corners of the subcontinent, is not organized. Thus the exact figure of annual cost to owners for repair, protection and strengthening is not available. However, looking at sheer size of this industry as well as the size of country one can safely estimate the cost to be beyond any other country's expenses including the ones in the advance western world where industry is treated as scientific, organized, the way it deserves. As an indicator, the average annual cost to owners for repairs etc. in U.S. alone is estimated to be $20 billion dollars which equates to approximately `90,000 cores. This is a big industry in India and merits judicious attention to control the loss to national wealth by avoiding frequent failures.

NBM&CW June 2011

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