Content Notice

The following articles are taken from the MC aktiv publication and curated by Buidling Chemical Supplies Ltd. Content contained is therefore the property of MC-Bauchemie Müller GmbH & Co. KG.

MC -KKS/B stops corrosion

Reinforced steel structures such as bridges, tunnels and multi-storey car parks are exposed to corrosive decaying processes caused by the presence of chlorides. If this deterioration is not identified and halted in good time, costly rehabilitation becomes unavoidable. However, now there is MC-KKS/B, a new and cost-efficient method for the repair and cathodic corrosion protection (CCP) of chloride exposed structures.

Multi-storey car parks are susceptible to chloride attack caused by the freeze/thaw cycle and de-icing sa lt penetr

Chloride Protection in Car park buildings

MC-KKS/8 is a globally unique and patented CCP (German abbreviation KKS) system based on the many years of experience acquired by MC-8auchemie and Grillo-Werke AG of Duisburg, Germany. MC-KKS/8 enables chloride- exposed reinforced concrete to be repaired more quickly and more cost-efficiently than can be achieved with other methods, leaving the structure effectively protected and extending its service lifetime. While the classic approach to repairs is to remove the chloride- exposed concrete and provide a concrete replacement system - invariably involving significant intervention in the structure and long periods of building work MC -KKS/8 represents a relatively non-intrusive repair method.

Chloride Protection in Car park buildings

Danger of chloride penetration and pitting corrosion

In "healthy" reinforced concrete, the reinforcing steel is protected against corrosion by the passivation effect present in the concrete. As a result of the high pH value in the cement stone of over 13, a thin passive fi lm forms on the steel surface which protects the underlying metal cross section from corrosion. This protective function may, however, be neutralised by carbonation. The concrete then loses its alkalinity, the pH value of the cement stone drops to the neutral range, and the reinforcing steel begins to rust. During carbonation, carbon dioxide (C02) from the ambient air diffuses into the concrete and reacts with the calcium hydroxide (Ca(OH)2) present to create calcium carbonate (CaCO3). This reaction process dissolves the passive film, removing the natural corrosion protection afforded to the steel reinforcement. Consequently, measures to specifically prevent the depassivation of the steel -such as choosing a higher-quality concrete formulation, provision of a deeper concrete cover and, in particul ar, application of a high performance ar tificial resin coating system- make eminent sense. Aside from carbonation, there is also the danger that the reinforcing steel will be attacked by the chloride ions contained in de-icing salts. These are transported into, say, a car park structure by moving and parking vehicles and are able to penetrate through to the reinforcing steel via the capillary system present in the reinforced concrete. Once a certain chloride content is exceeded, the passive film becomes dissolved and steel corrosion sets in. This type of corrosion is generally known as pitting. However, unlike carbonation-induced corrosion, this form of corrosion is particularly insidious as it is not apparent from the surface of the concrete. Should de-icing salt exposure be discovered in the course of a structural survey, it is essential that the right measures are instituted quickly in order to prevent further destabilisation of the reinforced concrete and thus the building as a whole.

Chloride Protection in Car park buildings

The corrosion process

The chloride-induced corrosion of steel in concrete is caused by anodic partial reaction accompanied by the oxidation of the iron to create iron ions (Fe2+); these are then dissolved in the concrete acting as an electrolyte. In the cathodic partial reactor water and oxygen are chemic reduced by the electrons released by the anodic partial reaction create hydroxide ions (OH-), maintaining the overall charge in balance in the electrolyte. The electrical circuit is closed by the electrical conductivity of the concrete solution. Consequently, the corrosion of steel in concrete takes place as an electrochemical process caused by the creation of a galvanic element.

The quantity of chloride ions required to initiate corrosion of steel in the concrete is referred to as the "critical chloride content”. It is an accepted truth that no fixed limit value can be specified for this variable, as it changes with each type of concrete and from one structure to the next. What is known is that the critical chloride content is particularly dependent on the porosity and composition of the concrete. Today, therefore, it is standard building practice to determine the critical chloride content individually for each structure requiring repair in an initial structural analysis.

Long-term protection with CCP

Like the corrosion phenomenon itself, CCP is based on electrochemical processes. Methods that intervene directly in the chemical or electrochemical reactions that occur fall under the heading of "active corrosion protection: The essential aim of CCP is to reduce the rate of corrosion and polarize the reinforcing steel in the cathodic direction.

The MC-KKS/B corrosion protection system from MC-Bauchemie and Grillo-Werke AG involves using zinc- a metal less noble than iron- as a sacrificial anode, with a zinc layer of around 250 microns thick being deposited on the concrete. The zinc layer is connected by contact plates to the reinforcing steel, with the electric circuit closed by the concrete pore solution acting as the electrolyte. The anodic partial reaction of iron oxidation is prevented by the protective current supplied by the zinc anode, which flows to the reinforcing steel via the contact plates installed.

Chloride Protection in Car park buildings


To prepare the substrate for cathodic corrosion protection with MC-KKS/B, low-strength and loose concrete first needs to be removed. The voids and cavities then have to be re-profiled with a special repair mortar. This means that the chloride-contaminated concrete largely remains in place. As the re-profiling work proceeds, the contact plates are also installed to electrically connect the subsequent zinc layer and the reinforcing steel. Following completion of the substrate preparation phase employing the usual processes, the zinc layer is deposited on the concrete by electric arc thermal spraying, which involves converting the electrically conductive zinc from solid to liquid state with the aid of an electrical discharge current. This technology can be used for floor, wall and ceiling surfaces. Application on floor areas can be performed with an automated coating unit, increasing the coverage performance of the process compared to manual application.

A special primer is then applied to the zinc layer. This consolidates and protects the zinc as well as serving as a bond coat. An artificiall resin coating system is then applied for enhanced mechanical resistance and as protection for the concrete against further penetration of chlorides and moisture.

Time and cost-efficient repairs

The client benefits of the MC-KKS/B system include considerable cost savings due to the elimination of extensive concrete replacement. The amount of noise and vibration produced during the repair phase is greatly reduced and major time savings accrue due to the avoidance of the lengthy setting periods associated with the use of a concrete replacement system. MC-KKS/B can be quickly applied, enabling the structure to be rapidly returned to service. Clients therefore benefit from shorter downtimes and an earlier reinstatement of normal operations.


Danube Bridge

Spanning the Danube

Bridge Building Brilliance in Bratislava

The city of Bratislava is shaped by the river Danube, which cuts the rising capital of Slovakia into two. Connection between the two parts has until recently been over four bridges: the motorway bridge, Lafranconi, in the west, the harbour bridge in the east and two town bridges, Old Bridge and New Bridge. However, 180,000 vehicles are crossing daily and all four routes have reached their traffic limit. Estimates anticipate a further 100,000 vehicles over the next 15 years, a traffic volume that the present bridges simply cannot cope with.

A new, fifth bridge called 'Kosicka' is meant to alleviate the traffic problems. 'Kosicka' already has some history as consideration to build a bridge at this particular point of the Danube was given as early as 1976. With traffic becoming denser, these initial plans became ever more pressing. Eventually, in 1998, the architectural plans were drawn up and were finally approved three years later. The client for the project was the METRO authority, which is responsible for matters of infrastructure in Slovakia and Bratislava. After international tendering, the project was awarded to the consortium from Doprastav Bratislava, a Slovakian company, and the Austrian company, MCE AG, Linz.

Work started on the 3rd February 2003 on what is considered to be a unique technological and architectural feat. The core feature of the 517m long steel structure, weighing 8,000 tons, is the three centred arched bridge with a span of 213 metres and a height of 36 metres. The main bridge component was put together in its entirety on the left bank of the Danube. The bridge was resting there on a concrete pier with a rotary bearing, so that it could be swivelled over to the other side on completion. Besides the main bridge the two concrete bridge connections on both sides of the bank of the Danube and a further 19 concrete piers had to be erected.

Due to the good personal relations between decision makers at the Doprastav organisation and Michal Lehky of the MC subsidiary in Slovakia, MC was able to secure the contracts for the supply of mould release oil for the timber formwork and for the making good of surfaces, using MC's concrete surface treatment systems. MC also provided materials to fill voids in the concrete.

Technically the most difficult construction phase took place in September 2004. The finished steel bridge had to be swivelled from the left bank over to the right bank. The bridge was placed onto pontoons and aided by ships, turned by 90° and then pulled across to the other side of the Danube - then placed in painstaking precision work, millimetre by millimetre, onto the right bank column.

After 28 months of construction, 'Kosicka' is due to be officially inaugurated and opened for traffic in May of this year. She connects seamlessly with the road and rail network of the city and will be a decisive factor in reducing the strain on the European traffic junction that is Bratislava.

Danube Bridge

No More Tiles

Ultrament Wins Two Awards for Pioneering Product

For over 30 years the MC subsidiary Ultrament has been amongst the leading manufacturers in the DIY sector. Tailored to the demands of this particular market, innovative and technically advanced brands are being distributed through retail outlets. The latest development, 'No More Tiles', is a system suitable for wall and floor finishing that is particularly suited to bathroom renovations.

Ultrament recently received special recognition for this innovation: it scooped not one but two of the accolades of the DIY trade!

The first award was the 'Award for Services to Customers' from the BHB, the Association for German DIY and Specialist Garden Supplies, awarded in conjunction with the renowned trade magazine 'bau + heimwerker markt' and the Faupel Communications Agency. This recognition is awarded annually to manufacturers, suppliers or service industries within the DIY sector who have given outstanding services to their customers.

A five-strong panel of experts from industry, trade and scientific research had the arduous task to choose the winners from 7 finalists for the following categories: 'Overall Performance', ‘Communication' and 'Innovation'. Ultrament fought off several well-known competitors in the final round and secured the Award for 'Innovation' for its ground- breaking product system 'No More Tiles'.

The second award, called 'Pro markt - product of the year', is a new prize awarded for the very first time this year by the specialist trade magazine, 'bau + heimwerker markt'. The magazine invited the leaders of the trade to participate in a vote-by-fax selection, choosing the winners for three categories, 'Living Space', 'Technology' and 'Building'. Yet again Ultrament beat stiff competition and won the category 'Building' with its novel product 'No More Tiles'.

Dr. Claus-Michael Muller accepted the two awards for Ultrament at the 6th international BHB-building congress on the 8th March in Cologne. The 550 participants at this event came from all over Europe and the USA.

Emcephob-Systems for Effective Surface Protection

The effects of light and weather, as well as general air pollution, take their toll on the surfaces of buildings and constructions over the years. On top of that there is the unsightly damage caused by graffiti.

MC is now able to offer a new generation of surface protection, the 'Emcephob-Protection-Systems', which provide a comprehensive defence for concrete and have prophylactic properties against graffiti. Effective protection can now be achieved at the point of construction.

The programme consists of three products: 'Emcephob NanoPerm P' is a coloured surface protection system which offers particularly effective protection in renovation projects of buildings.

Orinoco Bridge

'Emcephob NanoPerm T' is a transparent system developed for preventative protection of the concrete. Both systems guarantee a lasting effect and can be applied onto numerous different substrates - even against graffiti. Especially for prevention of graffiti on non-porous surfaces, such as metal or plastic for instance, a further system, called 'Emcephob NanoWax', has been developed.

Thanks to their quality ingredients these new products impress with their ease of application and prove highly advantageous with regard to the negative effects of light, weather and wear and tear. All this ensures the durability of the construction surface.

Hungarian Bridge

Drinking Water Reservoirs

IFAT Gives Fresh Incentives

It's been a long wait, but after a three-year interval, IFAT, the international world trade fair for environment and waste disposal, opened its doors again in Munich from 25 to 29 April this year. During its 40-year existence IFAT has evolved into the leading fair for water, sewage, waste disposal and recycling sectors. IFAT 2005 broke all records, with 108,000 trade visitors from 166 different countries visiting the 2,223 exhibitors.

IFAT is the foremost event for the industry, and as MC is a leading technology provider in the field of coatings for water and waste water structures it was natural that we had to be present as an exhibitor. The MC-team was led by Michael Goldschmidt and Martin Stegmaier from the department for Water and Waste Water, supported by staff from several service centres in Germany, various European subsidiaries and overseas. This eclectic mix of a team enjoyed the opportunity to give detailed presentations to visitors from all over the world about the latest MC innovations, the focus here being on the protection and repair of drinking and waste water structures. A CD and brochure illustrating this particular area proved to be highly popular with visitors. Their feedback showed that there is growing worldwide acceptance that it is of primary importance - and an economic imperative -to protect concrete wastewater structures from the negative effects of aggressive agents.

Safeguarding Drinking Water

Drinking water is our most elemental source of life, a most precious resource that is in short supply. To protect and secure it for present and future use is a central task of human activity.

It is difficult to believe that there could ever be a shortage of water in our often rain-soaked environment of Northern Europe, and for someone who has ever experienced the monsoons of India and Southeast Asia, it's hard to understand why it is in short supply there, too. The fact is that water is a limited resource. The same amount of water covers our planet Earth now as at the time of its formation, an estimated 1.4 billion cubic kilometres. Almost 97% of the world's water is salty or for other reasons undrinkable. Another 2% is locked in ice caps and glaciers. That leaves just 1% for all of humanity's needs, such as agricultural, manufacturing, community and personal household consumption.

The need to protect and conserve this precious resource is of paramount and increase g importance. There is, of course, also a geo-political aspect to water resources, which many observers see as a potential for conflict.

As drinking water is mostly extracted from the ground, or aquifers, the protection of groundwater from contamination, such as sewage is essential. The primary construction material for water storage tanks and plants for treatment, distribution and purification of drinking water, is concrete. All phases of water management require the use of quality materials in order to protect the water from contamination and to protect the structure itself from the aggressive effects of sewage. Both drinking water and wastewater installations need to meet the most stringent requirements with regard to functionality and durability.

Decades of experience have proven the need for additional surface protection for both drinking water and wastewater containment or treatment vessels as an unavoidable necessity In the case of drinking water vessels the degrading factor is hydrolysis, while in waste water installations it is biogenic sulphuric acid that attacks the concrete and causes reinforcement corrosion. The average expected lifespan of such' installations is 50 years, which cannot be achieved without additional protective measures. Nowadays, engineers increasingly recognise the economic necessity of preventative surface protection and implement it when constructing new water treatment plants or storage vessels. The extra cost of such measures only amounts to 0.5 to .5% of the total construction costs when applied during the construction phase. On the other hand, retro fitting protective materials is much more expensive, time-consuming and will, almost by default, necessitate extensive concrete repair, with access difficulties and inevitable plant shutdowns.

Intensive research at MC-Bauchemie has led to the development of mineral-based surface protection systems that are safe, economic, easy to apply and above all effective and without any detrimental effects on the water or the surrounding environment. MC technology leads the world in this highly sensitive and demanding field. The mineral coatings of the MC-RIM family show maximum resistance to hydrolysis and are equally suitable for application in drinking water and wastewater structures. These systems comply with national and international standards and statutes for use in this field.

In comparison with reactive resin systems used in the past- on occasion still applied today - the extremely robust mineral systems from MC offer distinct advantages. They are safer to apply, eco-friendly and extremely durable. The patented Konusit KK 10 system offers unique protection from acid attack and is the preferred solution for these areas.

2006 World Cup Stadium

Top Stadiums Ready for the World Cup

Hardly any other topic gets as much coverage in the media, or preoccupies peoples' thoughts, more than the forthcoming World Cup. The teams, their fans and the organisers all work feverishly to be a worthy host for the Football World Cup 2006. But most importantly, the stadiums selected needed to get well-prepared for the sporting and social event of the decade.

The World Cup 2006 matches will be played in twelve stadiums that have either been newly-built or have been totally modernised; they are: Berlin, Dortmund, Frankfurt, Geisenkirchen, Hamburg, Hanover, Kaiserslautern, Cologne, Leipzig, Munich, Nurnberg and Stuttgart. These days they are no longer named after famous football stars, but after the sponsors that have spent millions buying into the event. A total of 1.5 Billion Euro has been invested at the twelve sites. This has created 'sports temples' whose most prominent features are their size and extraordinary architecture.

MC-Bauchemie was also able to benefit from the enormous number of contracts as concrete is used as the main building material. The production, repair and protection of concrete are MC's core business areas. MC's contribution was in the shape of admixtures incorporated in ready-mixed and pre-cast concrete for columns, stands and stair units. For the Allianz-Arena in Munich alone, one of the most beautiful stadiums in the group, 200,000 m3 of concrete were used for a stadium that sports the largest multi-storey car park in Europe.

Stadium for World Cup

MC's competitive edge resulted in their products being highly sought after in these construction projects; in demand were both the standard products, high-grade concrete admixtures, concrete repair and protection systems, and special systems, particularly floor coatings. Floor levelling materials, first-class surface protection systems and industrial flooring were extremely popular for internal areas. The perfect finish of the pre-cast concrete elements was achieved through the comprehensive concrete finishing programme.

Quite often un-characteristic weather conditions posed demands on the concrete and its production and placing. For this reason the concrete mix proportions and admixtures had to be fine-tuned to achieve the ideal design. MC's field consultants were at hand to assist in questions regarding concrete technology and to support site management and concrete suppliers. Their efforts were backed up by MC experts from the department for Application Technologies.

In addition to these twelve World Cup stadiums MC can also name the stadiums of Wolfsburg, Dusseldorf and Monchengladbach on their reference list. But that's not the half of it: the product range has been used in stadiums beyond Germany, for instance in five well-known football arenas in Portugal and in the Dutch stadiums of Eindhoven and Sittard, too.

Even the football nation, Brazil, has made enquiries regarding MC's services with regard to stadium construction, during this World Cup year. Engineer Luiz Eduardo B. Cardoso of J.L.C. Engenharia de Projetos e Consultoria from Rio de Janeiro was a guest at the Portuguese-speaking MC Forum in Bottrop in September 2005. He is currently instrumental in the planning and implementation of the repair measures carried out at the world's largest football stadium, the Estadio Mario Filho in Rio de Janeiro, better known as the "Maracana". This gigantic construction with extraordinary architectural features was built in 1950, when Brazil hosted the World Cup. It is now brought up-to-date for the South-American Athletics Championships, "Panamericana", scheduled for 2007.

Queen Drummer Picks Bold Colour

Queen is regarded as one of the most successful bands of all times. For 20 years, from 1970 to 1990, the four musicians Freddie Mercury, Roger Taylor, Brian May and John Deacon stood in the limelight of the music scene. After the death of Freddie Mercury in 1990 the group broke up and the remaining musicians went their separate ways, including Roger Taylor, the drummer and songwriter.

Roger Taylor owns the stately country estate Puttenham Priory near London, an old building which had deteriorated over the years and needed urgent repair. The facade in particular had visibly weathered over time, with the original coating flaking off in many areas. High time for a new coat to restore the building to its former glory.

Hungarian Bridge

The two companies, Blunt Construction Ltd. and MJT Decorating and Maintenance Contractors from Twyford, Winchester, were given the restoration contract. Both companies had already successfully worked with MC Building Chemicals Great Britain on a range of other projects. Emcecolorflex, a coating system from MC, was selected as it enables individual colour designs and provides lasting surface protection. Emcecolorflex also possesses crack-bridging properties. Owner Roger Taylor opted for a rather unconventional colour and design for his home, which had to be specially formulated by MC. These colours have now been designated "Queen Red" and "Queen Green".

Restoration works began last October and since the end of March 2006 Puttenham Priory is sporting a fresh, new-look facade that gives it a novel, unconventional appearance. Roger Taylor is said to be enthralled with the result.

Giant Bridge with MC-Protection

After a construction period lasting almost three years, the longest viaduct in Europe was finally completed in August in the Hungarian Koroshegy.

On the southern bank of Lake Balaton, between Zamardi and Balatonszarszo, a gigantic road bridge was constructed forming a section of the extended M 7 motorway that leads all the way to the Croatian border. The 1,872 m long and 23.8 m wide bearing structure of the pre-stressed bridge made from reinforced concrete consists of 16 pylons that reach a height of up to 88m.

The construction started mid 2004 from either side of the bridge. The construction company Hidepito Zrt, based in Budapest, was in charge of this imposing project.

Gusts of wind, so prevalent in these lowlands, posed the main problems during concreting, so that a special gust-proof and rapid formwork system was required. 120,000 m3 concrete and 15,602 tonnes of steel were used to build this massive viaduct. The concrete works and structural skeleton were completed at the beginning of May 2007. For durable surface protection the modern and tried-and-tested coating system Zentrifix F 92 was applied. In the area of the bridge edge beams and walkways MC-DUR 1200 VK and MC-DUR 2295 as well as EmceColor-flex E/S and Zentrifix F92 were used.

Large Scale Bridge Construction

During the construction of this bridge special measures to protect the environment were taken: a separate wastewater treatment is intended technological development of the company. Alexander Mondrus, Manager MC Russia, showed the delegation around the location Kirowsk and gave an insight to ensure that in case of an accident involving hazardous freight no toxic substances pollute the water of the nearby Lake Balaton.

Through their involvement in this important bridge project MC was yet again able to demonstrate its performance capability

MC-RIM – Global Success

The supply of clean drinking water has priority all over the world. Treatment and storage of water requires detailed planning and technical competence.

Potable water protection in Hong Kong

Drinking water demands much of the concrete surface. Decades of experience have shown that permanent contact of water with the concrete can cause so-called hydrolytic corrosion. It leads to the decomposition of the hardened cement paste, and as a consequence the surface loses its smooth and level texture. In order to permanently meet the hygienic and technical requirements an effective surface protection is vital. Worldwide MC is leading the field in mineral coatings and offers with MC-RIM a high-quality product that has been successfully used in the international water/wastewater industry – a long reference list pays testimony to this

Potable water protection in Hong Kong

The Sheung Shui water treatment plant in Hong Kong showed serious damage on the concrete surface of the filtration basin - caused by the constant chemical stress. As a result the aggregate was already exposed.

The client, the Hong Kong Water Authority and the contractor were convinced by the performance capability of the MC-RIM system after close consultation with and product demonstrations by staff from MC Singapore. One of the crucial factors was also the economic advantage of the system compared with other standard systems. The simple spray application and the product's rapid strength development meant operational downtimes were kept to a minimum.

The procedure consisted of thorough substrate preparation with high pressure water blasting, the repair of defected areas on internal concrete walls and the application of the MC-RIM system. Before the repair works commenced the contractor's staff received comprehensive induction into the handling of the materials by our technical specialists from MC Singapore.

The repair was performed successfully without any complications and within a very tight time frame. The client praised in particular the exceptional workability of the material and now intends to use MC-RIM in other water structures.

Safe Drinking Water with MC-RIM

Potable Water Protection in Austria

Elevated tanks are containers that store drinking water, life's most essential provision. They are positioned on the highest point of a supply area and maintain constant pressure in the pipeline network and above all, ensure the supply of clean, flawless drinking water. Because these containers serve such a highly critical purpose, efficient protection of the inside surfaces is of paramount importance, so that water quality can be secured permanently.

St. Martin, a small rural community in Austria's Burgenland, also had a couple of circular containers, each being 4-m in diameter and 3. 7 m high, that required restoration.

Potable Water Protection in Austria

The remit from the water board was to seal off the water containers, built in 1969, to avoid leakage of drinking water on one hand and to prevent ingress of 'unwanted' water from outside on the other hand. Considerable cracks had appeared over the years, which had to be repaired first, followed by the renewal of the internal surface coating in both elevated tanks.

As the object involved sensitive physiological areas in contact with drinking water, the materials needed to meet certain requirements in terms of hygiene. The directorate of the water board was therefore determined to use only products that were approved for this type of application and which had a proven track record. Especially in the area of protection and repair technology MC's innovation competence is highly impressive and the product systems MC-Injekt 2300 NV and MC-RIM secured the contract for MC.

As a first step joints and cracks were injected with the extremely flexible elastomer resin, followed by the application of the mineral thickness coating MC-RIM. This product offers the great advantage of preventing the ingress of damaging substances from outside while at the same time allowing diffusion.

Potable Water Protection in Austria

Franz Rammel from MC Austria advised the contacts at the water board about possible solutions prior to being awarded the contract and then overlooked the operators' induction to the product systems and also supervised the execution of the works, which lasted from October 2004 until August 2005.

The executors of the local water board department praised the efficiency of the system and its ease of handling. The board was so pleased with the works that they vowed to use MC's services and products in future projects.

Safe Solutions for Drinking Water

Drinking water structures require particular care and attention in terms of technology and hygiene - after all, drinking water is a vital life source that cannot be substituted. In the final analysis it is the quality of drinking water supply plants that decides the quality of our drinking water. Hence, both in new builds and in the repair of concrete drinking water tanks only surface coatings that can meet the mechanical stresses and fulfil health and hygiene requirements must be used.

Guaranteeing supply

Municipal drinking water plants secure the supply of clean drinking water in a region. For this reason, operators of such plants have the responsibility of protecting such drinking water supply facilities from damaging effects by taking measures that maintain the structure.

Rapid and Clean repairs

The Nuremberg State Trade Agency commissioned a report on a potable water tank at Zobelberg in Upper Franconia. The report highlighted clearly visible defects. An immediate repair was therefore essential. "Fast and free of dust" read the specifications for the repair works to be undertaken during ongoing operations – a real challenge for engineers and contractors. The water tank consists of two chambers with a capacity of 3,000 m3 each. So as to ensure the supply of drinking water for the adjacent communities, only one of the chambers was taken out of operation at a time. The repair concept therefore had to be designed in such a way that an absolutely dust-free atmosphere could be guaranteed for the remaining chamber staying in operation.

The operator of this plant, the Fernwasserversorgung Oberfanken (FWO) [District Water Supply], awarded the tender to the team that had already in 2005 restored the elevated drinking water tank at Kummelberg. A detailed inspection showed that the damage pattern of Zobelberg was identical to that of the Kummelberg, so that was extensive experiences gained previously would come in handy in this project.

During the visual and measurement data survey determining the initial state of the surfaces it was found that the concrete cover of the tanks' internal surfaces was not thick enough. The state of the joints was also less than satisfactory. Especially the ceiling areas showed heavy damage such as countless cracks, concrete spalling and corrosion of the reinforcement.

The planning agency EBS from Schwarzenbach upon Saale, which had already carried out the repairs on the elevated Kummelberg tank, designed a two phase repair concept document based on the status report.

Initially the damaged rough plaster, which was hollow in some places, was removed to expose the partially corroded reinforcing steel. All steel and the entire concrete surface were blasted. The prepared reinforcing was then coated with a cement based, mineral corrosion protection. Voids were reprofiled with a repair mortar approved for use in drinking water areas. The same product could also be used to increase the concrete cover in the soffit areas. A further challenge for the applicator, R+A Bau and Bautenschutz GmbH from Saalfel/Saale proved to be the repair of the round concrete columns. They were reprofiled using the wet spray method and their surface was given an after-treatment that retained the original geometry. The cracks that had been found and the damaged joints were grouted.

In conjunction with the contractor, the engineering office and the client continuous tests were run throughout the construction phase to check the works. In order to control and document the works Bundesgutegemeinschaft Instandsetzung von Betonbauweken e. V., Berling, were charged with the external quality control. This was in addition to keeping daily construction records and weekly construction meetings - which were also always accompanied by random checks of the works.

After all the defects of the structure had been made good the all-important surface coating for the lasting protection of the concrete surfaces could begin.

Accredited surface protection system

The surfaces of drinking water tanks are subject to more stringent physical and hygiene requirements than other structures. A combination of suitably tested materials and certified personnel makes it possible to increase the quality and service life of the surfaces by up to at least 50 years.

In case of the repair of the Zobelberg water tank a tested and accredited system, MC-RIM, was used with great success. After just seven months of construction, the repair project was completed in May 2007. The repair of the Kummelberg and Zobelberg tanks, costing around 1.3 million euros, represents one of the largest repair projects of the FWO in the past years.

Water Exchange Conference - WAT

Latest Me-Technologies in the area of surface protection for drinking water structures introduced

From 22nd to 23rd January 2008 high-calibre experts in water management met at the professional water exchange conference "wat 2008" in Augsburg. With a comprehensive congress programme and the accompanying specialist exhibition the annual conference of the DVGW and BGW was again the most important industry event, providing an all-important platform for information and dialogue. Approximately 900 specialists and managers from the German water industry, from public authorities and institutions, used the conference to exchange ideas. The focus of the 62nd wat was on current questions and topics regarding new developments and water policies.

Perfect surface protection: MC-RIM PW

As one of the leading companies in the area of surface technology for drinking water structures MC introduced MC-RIM PW - a technically innovative system that will set new benchmarks based on its integrated DySC technology. This technology leads to leak proof construction materials of high durability by way of using various latent hydraulic and pozzolanic components. The matrix becomes structurally more refined, pore radius distribution is optimised and overall porosity decreases. The system offers high protection against hydrolysis and outstanding long-term protection.

Wat 2008

The complete system MC-RIM PW, tested and accredited for use in the drinking water area, covers the broad spectrum of repair tasks, thereby fulfilling all requirements for a safe surface protection. For a partial or complete reprofiling of concrete areas by way of hand or spray application MC-RIM PW 20 is used in the wall and ceiling areas, while MC-RIM PW 30 is used for the floors. The finishing smooth and pore-free surface coating is performed with MC-RIM PW 10. All products are purely mineral, only need to be mixed with water, are easy to apply and are characterised by quickly developing stability. A further advantage - especially in this area of application - is the near white colour of the products.

Already in the run-up to the trade fair the MC-RIM PW system had been successfully introduced to customers at numerous MC forum events all over Europe.

Protection of Multi-Storey Car Parks

Multi-storey car parks (MSCP) are a peculiarity in structural engineering since their use is more akin to that of a road than a structure. Traffic frequently results in damage that leads to a 'dingy image' even though they are side by side with glamorous shopping centres. Only recently have multi-storey car parks been recognised as an area that could be put to professional economic use and which make a profound contribution to the economic success of their commercial surroundings.

From a technical viewpoint, particularly under winter conditions, the protection of the structure from de-icing agents is important, as they can cause massive damage to the concrete and reinforcing steel. Apart from the purely visual aspect, functionality and stability of the MSCP are in such a case no longer guaranteed, not is the expected service life.

Effective protection of traffic surfaces can be provided by coating systems based on polymer resins. The systems developed by MC-Bauchemie for underground car parks and MSCPs have stood the test of time and meet the highest requirements in terms of weather-resistance, trafficability and substrate sealing. MC offers innovative complete systems utilising injection technology, concrete repair and floor coatings. The repair of two MSCPs in Bamberg is testimony to MC’s technology.

Car Park Flooring Protection in Germany

The 30 year-old “Schutzenstrabe” multi-storey car park lose to the centre of town has five levels above the two below ground level. The structure exhibited extreme damage not only in floor areas but also in the columns, beams and joints. Bamberg Municipal Services, as the operators of the multi-storey car park, demanded in the specification a comprehensive, durable solution supported by relevant job references.

The contracted engineering office Brauning and Partner visited the Zurich/Klothen MSCP that had been required with MC systems a few years ago in order to check the performance and success.

Repair works in Bamberg were subsequently carried out in two phases without interruption to operations. The contractor was Schmuck GmbH & Co. from Bad Kissingen, a specialist in concrete repairs.

Frank Schneider provided assistance during the project for MC.

First chloride contaminated concrete had to be totally removed and then repaired using a PCC concrete with structural properties. Sealing leaks in joints was carried out with hydro-structural resins. Finally, walls and ceilings were coated with a co-ordinated colour scheme.

All floors were initially primed and coated with MC-DUR 1252. After a scattering of silica sand a top coat with MC-DUR 1252 was applied. This system has not only been tried-and-tested for many years, it also offers several other, particularly interesting benefits, such as successfully completing a trafficability test of 100,000 cycles with rolling tyres. In addition the system is fire-retardant, assessed in accordance with REACH and approved in accordance with OS 8 (RiLi-SiB). The coating system was applied p to a height of 30 cm high on columns and walls. This system was also applied in the basement, where the danger of upward moisture migration was eliminated by using an ECC leveller compound.

The success of the repair methodology was ultimately based on the combination of reliable, competent engineers, experienced applicators, professional advice and the comprehensive service delivered by MC, and last but not least the proven MC-DUR 1252 system.

As a result of the success of this project the conversion and repair of the Georgendamm MSCP, also in Bamberg, on the Rhine-Main-Danube Canal, was then carried out.

After the positive experiences with the Schutzenstrabe project Bamberg Municipal Services awarded this contract to the Schmuch Company, who again worked with Frank Schneider and the successful MC-DUR 1252 traffic coating system.

Prominent in the Conversion and Preservation of Power

Imposing and highly visible they dominate the landscape as monuments of the energy industry - the cooling towers of power plants. Hard to imagine that despite their gigantic dimensions they still are quite delicate concrete structures whose wall thickness only measures between 80 and 20 centimetres. The design and protection of these concrete structures requires the highest level of know-how and is only achieved by a few specialists.

In the 1960s surface protection of concrete was almost frowned upon, since concrete was regarded as the maintenance- free "building material of the century".

However, the energy industry of North Rhine Westphalia and one internationally renowned construction company from Wanne-Eickel recognised the problems presented by cooling tower structures. Their surfaces were subjected to continuous elution which has a damaging effect on an already thin concrete shell. Hence, experts were on the lookout for organic materials that could achieve a long term protection effect on both the interior and exterior walls of the cooling towers. In cooperation with MC-Bauchemie and renowned research institutions a solution for this problem could be found. What was needed was a coating that could tolerate moisture, would be open to water-vapour diffusion but at the same time would also be resistant to pollutants. On the inside of the cooling towers a moisture-resistant two-component primer was applied first, followed by a sealer coat. The exterior was protected using a single component polymer-mix solution, followed also by a sealer top coat.

Surface protection of concrete becomes accepted norm

In the 1970s the success of the application first became apparent. Cooling towers that had been given the special surface protection immediately after removal of the formwork were, even after ten years of operation, still free of defects. By contrast, towers without the treatment had to undergo costly restoration. Surface protection of concrete surfaces of cooling towers and similar building structures had thus become standard technology in Germany. In the 80s this technology became enshrined in one of the guidelines of the German Association for Reinforced Concrete (DAfStb), i.e. "Protection and repair of concrete structures".

Cooler with flue gas lead-in

Traditionally, Germany banked on fossil fuels such as the native brown coal and black coal, which burn releasing a lot of sulphur dioxide. With the advent of stricter environmental standards, however, the demands on power plants have risen enormously. In 1988 the planning for the model Volklingen power plant started, which integrated a combustion gas de-sulphurisaton plant in the process. The consequence was that the sulphur dioxide condensed on the surfaces. To protect the concrete shell a special thick-layered surface protection was again developed by the construction company from Wanne-Eickel and the power plant operator. Based on the positive experiences in Volklingen this coating technology ended up being stipulated by other energy suppliers as well. Today flue gas de-sulphurisation (FGD) is standard technology practice in Germany.

Maintenance and extending service life

A 2005 report compiled by the field expert Dr.-lng. Robert Engelfried from Dortmund University, testifies that interior cooling tower coatings still have half of their original layer thickness after 20 years of service life. This literally translates into a maintenance free service life for the first 20 years of use.

The repair system for existing cooling towers consists of substrate preparation using high pressure water blasting, followed by a protection coat on the exposed reinforcing steel, and re-profiling with a special PCC system. The system has been specifically designed and approved for this purpose. To complete the treatment a protective coating that provides the same degree of protection as achieved when coating a new structure. In this instance the necessary properties of good water-vapour diffusion and high impermeability against corrosive gases is ensured. It is achieved by a particular molecular structure within the coating.

This restoration procedure of cooling towers has also been tried and tested internationally. For example, in Poland the cooling towers in Belchatow, Opole and Lagisza have been repaired using systems from MC. Expert for cooling tower construction at MC Poland is Daroslkaw Demski. The Technology from MC has also become established in the Czech Republic, where it has been used on the coolers of the power plants at Temelin, Demrovice 4 and Chvaletice. The local specialist there is Radomir Sotola.

The great demands on the repair of cooling towers apply equally to nuclear reactor domes and to chimneys made from reinforced concrete. MC’s experience in such structures is equally established. (More about this in a later issue)

Innovative solutions for large cooling towers

In the 90s MC was facing a new challenge. In Rhineland’s brown coal district a new generation of cooling towers of hitherto unknown dimensions was to be established wit the Niederaubem power plant. The height of the cooling tower is over 200 metres, its base diameter measures 145m. The operator desired a coating-free solution as coatings have to be inspected at regular intervals requiring specials scaffolding to be erected in the cooling towers. This normally takes 30 to 40 days. In a structure of this size the expenditure for inspection and maintenance would have to be several times higher. In the meantime concrete and mortar admixtures had been developed with which the chemical resistance of concrete surfaces could be significantly improved. Again the concrete laboratory of the construction company from Wanne-Eickel was involved and in no time a suitable concrete technology solution had been worked out hat consisted of Muraplast FK 61, a plasticizer and the silica fume based slurry from the combination of micro and nano silica, a special production plant had to be designed and erected at MC for this purpose.

After five years of operation the Niederaubem cooling tower is without defects and is therefore the most important reference project for high-performance concrete that can withstand acid attack without a surface protection system. The positive experiences made in this project prompted the operator to use the same technology again when new cooling towers were built in Neurath in 2005 to 2007 and in a plant in Hamm.


Since REACH has come into force manufacturers of chemical substances are obliged to carry out substance safety assessments for all application and application conditions of a product with regard to its toxicological and Eco toxicological properties by way of “exposure scenarios”. The evaluation takes place in accordance with the threshold values as stipulated under REACH.

The water that runs down cooling tower walls leaches substances that may use an environmental hazard. For the surface coating system from Mc no environmentally damaging results were found in the test of the extractions in which established eco-toxicological test methods were used. This means that safe application in accordance with REACH is guaranteed.

Concrete continues to be indispensable as the mass building substance of the future. By way of targeted research & development work it will be continuall adjusted to the needs of the construction industry. Innovative high-performance concrete, based on silica technology, offers a diverse range of application possibilities meeting even higher standards thanks to their particular properties. Centrilit NC is new additive that has been developed using a nano crystalliser, which allows the production of a chemically resistant concrete with low stiffness. This is the precondition for extremely difficult concrete structures. A further advantage lies in the concrete now being available in ta light grey colour which also means it now meets the highest demands of owners and operators. “The technology of alumina-silicate is a new step in concrete technology, away from industrial auxiliary products towards semi-synthetic natural substances”, explains Dipl. Min. Eugen Kleen, Head of Development of mineral building structures and concrete admixtures at MC.

Penang - Malaysia,  Puerto Ordaz - Venezuela, Bratislava - Slovakia

Technology to Build New Bridges and for Repairing Existing Ones

An efficient and functioning infrastructure is a requirement for modern industrial societies. Expansion and maintenance of road and rail networks mobility and the transport of commodities. It is therefore of particular importance to secure growth and development. Bridges form an important element of the transport network as they shorten transport routes, saving time and energy.

Today a highly developed and complex construction technology makes it possible to create true masterpieces of engineering, such as the Koroshegy viaduct in Hungary. This gigantic bridge at 1,872 m long and 23.8 m wide is the longest bridge in central Europe. Structures like this can only be achieved with modern concrete. Using advanced concrete admixture such as those supplied by MC-Bauchemie Hungary – the potential for bridge construction is almost infinite.

Concrete technology in new structures

Bridges, in particular, pose special demands on the available technology. Large quantities of concrete that have to be mixed, transported, placed, compacted and finished in short time spans place certain demands on the concrete mix design and the constituent materials. During the cement hydration process a large amount of hear is generated. This necessitates special consideration when selecting the aggregates, additives and admixtures. The complex nature of the structure and the high volumes of reinforcing steel dictate that the fresh concrete has high flow and sometimes self-compacting properties. These, in combination, can only be achieved with modern high-performance plasticizers based on polycarboxylate ethers (PCEs).

MC Taiwan provided the PCEs for the construction of major sections of the “Taiwan High Speed Railway Project” (THSRP). On this project 3.3 million m³ of concrete for in situ piles, columns and pre cast box girder sections were products. The particular properties required were extremely rapid strength development coupled, in some cases, with a workability retention of 8 hours at temperatures of up to 40°C.

MC’s admixtures such as Centrment, Murplast or the latest PCEs – MC-PowerFlow – have proven their worth in international bridge construction.

High performance concretes present the biggest challenges in concrete technology. When used in bridge construction – like the Luckenberg Bridge over the Havel, Berlin, or the bridge over the river Zwickauer Mulde near Gkauchau, Germany – high compressive strength is of primary importance. Constructions materials that fulfil these requirements can only be predicted with the aid of concrete additives such as Centrilit Fume SX or Centrilit NC.

During the trial phases and field tests MC’s technologists work in close cooperation with ready-mixed and pre-cast concrete plants. The aim is to achieve a perfect match of the various properties. Strength development, initial workability, workability retention etc are all critical and must be achieved under the prevailing climatic conditions. Compliance with national and international standards as well as resistance to freeze thaw cycling and de-icing salts are additional considerations in many countries.

Protection and repair

In addition to concrete technology for new bridges, very early on in its history, MC-Bauchemie tackled the problems associated with the restoration of existing bridges. As early as the 1980s it became common knowledge in the industry that reinforced concrete bridges could only be preserved if repair and maintenance was planned and executed according to stringent quality criteria. As no mandatory standards existed in those days, MC developed jointly with the Technical University of Braunschweig, Germany, a comprehensive quality assurance concept for concrete repair systems. This concept was incorporated in the standards for the repair of reinforced concrete bridges and subsequently found its way into Norm EN 1504 which applies throughout Europe. MC has thus made a significant contribution to the development of high quality standards in Europe.

Since then the repair systems have been consistently developed and improved. While they were initially composed of a variety of individual products that often contained several materials, today’s modern systems ensure optimal results with the minimum of system components. One example is the intelligent concrete repair systems in the Nafufill range that is used in areas which are structural and subject to dynamic loads. MC is still setting international benchmarks with these products and systems.

Waterproofing of bridge decks

Particularly important in maintaining bridges is the waterproofing of the bridge deck and bridge deck joints to prevent the penetration of water and de-icing salts. Especially in these areas corrosion must be prevented, as it presents a particularly high risk for the integrity of the structure. Reactive resins (epoxies, polyurethanes etc) offer reliable protection from wear-and-tear and the impact of the weather. Since the beginning of the 1980s resin based waterproofing systems have been developed. MC-DUR LF 480 coupled with subsequent application of bitumen or asphaltic systems has come to be seen as the classical way for waterproofing bridge decks. Another system is the protection of concrete in MC-DUR 2295.

Deck joints are areas particularly prone to leaks. However, since 1989, it has been possible to seal these critical areas using the Nafutekt Plus-System from MC. The special composition means the system creates a flexible and high stress-bearing connection with the adjacent asphalt layers and the bridge structure thereby balancing out temperature induced changes in length.

Surface protection

Even on bridge soffits, columns and abutments crack bridging or rigid surface protection requires thorough planning and execution. For decades MC's concrete repair systems have stood the test of time. In the early 90s the Zentrifix F92 system was a ground-breaking product as a crack-bridging material. To date it has been applied to over three million square metres of concrete to protect and extend its durability. And yet research and development at MC never stands still: the latest innovation in surface protection is the Emcephob Nanoperm system. Not only does it protect the surface, it also has dirt and water repellent properties. Its broad spectrum of activity ranges from concrete protection right down to permanent graffiti protection, which is of such great importance for the rather exposed concrete building parts such as bridge columns.

Natural stone bridges

Prior to the steel and reinforced concrete era bridges were traditionally constructed using natural stones or bricks. For centuries many of these structures have been subjected to the ravages of time, often necessitating costly repair measures to preserve the listed building structures. In this case injection technology using Centricrete holds the key to success. The specialist department Oxal also uses such holistic repair concepts. To give an example: the Erfurt-Vieselbach railway viaduct in Germany was given a complete stabilisation overhaul for the entire viaduct arch and the brickwork using the highly flow-capable injection lime Oxal VP I T flow. Joint repair was carried out using Oxal RF.

Individual repair

Each bridge structure is unique and must be treated with special care. Despite the existence of extensive regulations and standards repair systems must always be matched to suit the project specific requirements. MC specialists assist local engineers, architects and planners on site providing solutions tailored to the project at hand.

Besides the reliability of the products the many years of know-how and the highly qualified MC workforce Each bridge structure is unique and must be treated with special care. Despite the existence of extensive regulations and standards repair systems must always be matched to suit the project-specific requirements. MC specialists assist local engineers, architects and planners on site providing solutions tailored to the project at hand. Besides the reliability of the products the many years of know-how and the highly qualified MC workforce offer a competitive edge in international comparison for contractors and applicators. The extensive reference list of accomplished bridge projects all over the world with the help of MC is testament to this.

Mubai - India, London, Great Britian, Sao Paulo - Brazil

Cultural Capitals Built with MC

The Ruhr district with the metropolis Essen at its helm and the Hungarian university town Pecs have been nominated "Europe's Cultural Capitals 2010". Being representative for the Ruhr district, the city of Essen is symbolic for the transformation from Europe's legendary coal and steel mining region to polycentric cultural metropolis of a new order. Pecs, situated in the south of Hungary, also known as "the city without borders", can look back on a 2000-year-old heritage as the gateway to the Balkans. MC is linked to both cities as buildings and infrastructures are being built or have already been completed using products from the company's portfolio.

MC-Bauchemie's success was founded in Essen. Staying true to his personal belief that "business is done between people, not companies", Heinrich W. Muller, the company's founder, established his company's outstanding reputation in the steel industry and energy sector, and with leading construction firms. The good work was later continued by MC's Service Center West, evidenced in numerous projects that are renowned way beyond the Ruhr district. The colleagues at MC-Bauchemie Kft. Hungary have been similarly successful in building up the company there. In Pecs the company is involved in the planning and preparation of interesting key projects that form part of the activities surrounding the place as "Culture Capital 2010".

High Importance Repair

MC engagement

Since the 1990s MC's Hungarian success has been founded primarily on concrete admixtures, concrete repair systems and waterproofing systems. The systems from MC have proven particularly efficient in road construction and in the repair of old buildings. A number of construction and cultural projects in Pecs also fall into this area.

The porcelain manufacturer Zsolnay is one such example. The 150-year-old company is famous for its tableware and porcelain arts as well as for its valuable construction ceramics and facade cladding. Today part of the building is no longer used in the production of the company's goods. Instead it is earmarked to become a cultural quarter as part of the "2010" plans. To this end the 22 historic buildings have to be restored. The waterproofing works with Oxal horizontal barriers and the repair of the facades with Oxal Wertputz systems are already underway.

The construction of a concert and conference hall also forms part of Pecs key projects intended to create a new cultural capital. MC Hungary is providing technical concrete support in the early stages.

High Importance Repair

In Essen cultural highlights have always been staged in the Philharmonie Essen in its tradition-rich hall. It is the largest concert hall in the Ruhr district and is regarded as one of the best in Europe. The impressive building was reopened in 2004 following complex renovations. The repair of 11,000m2 of ceiling soffits turned out to be problematic as spray concrete that is normally used in such areas would have been too heavy. The optimal solution in structural terms was found in the coating system Zentrifix F92, which was applied in a thin layer of just 2mm. The waterproofing works in the areas in contact with the ground were done using Nafuflex.

Another famous Essen landmark is the Gruga tower that is situated in one of the largest inner-city parks in Europe. The Bauhaus-style tower, erected in 1929 by Paul Portten enjoys "listed building" status since 1986. Thanks to a sponsor initiative in which MC was involved as well, it was possible to repair the tower in 2000 and to open it up to visitors again.

MC products were also used in the repair of the Gruga- Bad stand, the largest open air swimming pool in Essen, and in the repair of the underground station: in this instance the surface protection system Betonflair made it possible to implement the special artistic colour design developed by Friedrich Ernst von Garnier. The design is famous for the harmonious blending of buildings into their natural surroundings through the use of colour.

At 162m the RWE tower overshadows the Gruga tower and is a characteristic feature of the Essen skyline. It is the highest office building in the Ruhr district. Built in 1996 as the world's first ecological high-rise building it is home to the corporate headquarters of RWE AG. Concrete admixtures and construction site products from MC were also used in the construction of this tower. Another contemporary flagship of the town is the "Folkwang Bridge" across the major road B224 that leads to the Folkwang Museum. EmceColor-flex was applied as a flexible surface protection system.

Subterrainian transport also forms part of Essen's infrastructure. The tried-and-tested injection and surface protection systems MC-Injekt 2300 and EmceColor-flex were put to use in its repair. As early as 30 years ago, when the Essen underground was first constructed, MC was able to convince with its then highly innovative impervious concrete that made effective protection from water ingress possible.

Specialist solutions from MC are also in great demand for the Hungarian underground in Budapest: concrete admixtures for diaphragm walls for foundations, MC-PowerFlow, a new generation plasticizer to produce walls and ceilings of fair-faced concrete quality, Oxal systems to protect from penetrating moisture, MC-Injekt GL 95 to waterproof tunnel and ventilation shafts and a specially developed back filler mortar for the precast sections that were produced in Slovakia using MC-PowerFlow.

With the completion of the M6 motorway in March 2010 Pecs will be connected with Budapest in time for the culture year. As concreting must continue throughout the winter months as well, special demands are made on the concrete mix design. For this reason MC-PowerFlow as a high performance plasticizer is being used in the production of the site-mixed concrete in concrete plants along the motorway. It is also used to produce the pre-cast concrete elements for around 90 bridges and for the tunnel.

Not only in road infrastructure, but also in other areas of the infrastructure MC systems provide innovative solutions – so for instance in the energy sector. Since the 1960s the company's technologies have been trend-setting in construction and repair of power plants and cooling towers: MC admixtures for high performance concretes and surface protection systems are internationally regarded to be top-class products. Examples are the cooling towers of RWE Power AG in Niederaussem, Neurath and Hamm, all of which are made from acid-resistant high performance concrete.

In the current power plant construction for E.ON Ruhrgas AG in Datteln and in the Dutch Maasvlakte/Rotterdam MC-PowerFlow as high performance plasticizer, surface protection systems and floor coverings from MC are being used. And in the building of the new administrative headquarters on the premises of the former Gruga stadium Centrilit Fume SX for highstability concrete as well as other building products from MC are being used.

The close relationship with Evonik Goldschmidt AG has a traditional background. The roots of what is now MC were on the site where Evonik Goldschmidt AG is based today. MC could successfully prove its professional competence to this company, as well - especially in the areas of industrial floor coatings and injection of district heating trenches.

High Importance Repair

The Stadtwerke Essen [municipal utilities] has been using the powerful and effective Ombran systems from MC to reprofile and coat their entire sewage and manhole systems for many years in order to ensure leak-tightness. Basements and foundation walls of residential buildings also ought to be water-tight against rising damp. Here Oxal and Nafuflex systems perform these functions with great success.


When in 2010 all eyes in Europe turn to the cultural capitals, both Essen and Pecs will be showcasing their cultural highlights that are envisaged to render them as distinctive landmarks on Europe's city maps. Extensive construction activities are being carried out also in preparation for their roles as culture hubs. For example, in the north of Essen's city centre - by the Limbecker Platz -Germany's largest inner city shopping centre with over 70,000 m2 of shop floors is being constructed that has artistic ambitions. In projects of such dimensions a reliable and constant concrete quality has priority. In this example MC was able to convince with innovative plasticizers.

This shopping centre is being realised, amongst others, by ECE Projektmanagement GmbH based in Hamburg, who also play a role in the construction of several shopping centres in Hungarian cities that use admixtures from MC. Included are for instance the Arkad shopping centre in Pecs and the "Corso", which is currently under construction, which are built with the help of MC-PowerFlow.

As a result of "2010" numerous construction projects in Pecs are now entering the critical phase and the sales managers of MC Hungary, Csaba Petho and Zoltan Bacso, assist decision-makers and applicators with words and deeds.


The intensive dialogue with customers and scientists means MC can add to its experience and competence. MC has for years been enjoying regular contact with the University Essen/Duisburg - here especially with the Institute for Material Science, nowadays chaired by Prof. Dr.-lng. Rainer Auberg- and with the Technical institutes in Pecs and Budapest. Together with the former director of the Faculty for Concrete Structures at the University Essen/Duisburg, Prof. Dr.lng. Gyorgy lvany originally from Hungary, MC has been organising seminars covering injection technology. MC Hungary is in close contact with the Faculty for Structural Theory at the University Budapest. Dipl.-lng. Sandor Horvath, who is the University Assistant there, is regarded as an expert on building preservation and the preservation of historic monuments. He attended the MC-Forum 2008 in Pecs together with Dipl.lng. Laszlo Perenyi from the Technical institute in Pecs as guest speakers. MC Hungary's Csaba Petho is a guest lecturer at both Hungarian technical institutes.

As a European company that is at home in both the Ruhr district and in Hungary and being involved in many of the important projects, MC is experiencing first-hand how the Culture Capitals Essen and Pecs, are getting ready to meet everyone's expectations in 2010.

High Importance Repair

Protection for Wastewater Treatment Plant

With the assistance of the European Union Hungary is pressing ahead with expanding and modernising its wastewater disposal and treatment infrastructure. Medium term the construction of more than 20 treatment plants is planned. Of highest priority here is the large wastewater treatment project Csepel south of Budapest, which is currently being realised on a 50,000 m2 large site costing around 250 million Euros. Emcephob NanoPerm P is used as surface protection for the plant's ceiling construction, comprising 36 tanks.

High Importance Repair

The new central wastewater treatment plant Budapest (ZKB) is being built in Csepel, a district in the Hungarian capital. When the wastewater treatment plant is completed in 2010 it will be processing a capacity of up to 350,000 m3 of sewage daily, making it one of the strongest performers in Europe. Planning and construction were awarded to a French-Hungarian consortium, consisting of the specialist French consultants Degremont SA, the manufacturer of water supply structures, OTV France, and the Hungarian contractors, Hldeplto:Zrt and Alterra Epitaipari Kft.

Since the ZKB is an enclosed aerobic wastewater treatment plant, the supports for the over six-metre high roof construction made from precast concrete elements must be protected from moisture. As early as the planning stages the principal contractors sought the assistance of MC Hungary. The deciding factors for this were MC's many years' experience in the area of surface protection and the high safety standard of MC products.

At first stress analyses were carried out in order to determine the impact of extremely high humidity and wastewater gases on the structural elements. The evaluation did not however identify any remarkable biochemical stresses. Following this, preliminary tests were undertaken and sample areas were produced using different systems from different suppliers with the objective to determine the perfect coating system to protect from moisture. In this instance the task was to meet the client's requirements for a durable surface protection system that could be applied with ease. It was established that MC's Emcephob NanoPerm P produced the best all round result.

The polyurethane based coating features a very dense surface, and is extremely water resistant, thus preventing moisture from penetrating the precast concrete elements. Despite a low layer thickness the system's protective effect achieves a very good computed concrete cover with respect to carbonation. Emcephob NanoPerm P thus fulfilled all the requirements specified and exceeded the performance of all other systems.

High Importance Repair

In order to achieve a particularly high surface density of the surface to be coated, MC fine filler Nafufill KM 103 was applied first. This way existing pores, blow holes and surface roughness could be closed. Then two coatings of Emcephob Nano-Perm P were applied.

During the entire construction phase Zoltan Bacso of MC Hungary assisted the applicator companies, for example in such tasks as optimising the application technologies and in the production of the columns. The construction progress was documented in regular and extensive quality control records that followed a specially drafted quality assurance plan.

High-performance Suface Protection

Standard surface protection systems quickly reach their limits as they cannot provide comprehensive and lasting protection of the building structure surfaces. Against this backdrop MC's Research & Development has developed an innovative surface protection system that truly offers durable protection and whose broad performance spectrum surpasses all existing solutions. The main purpose of surface protection systems is to protect structures from aggressive environmental influences. The performance requirements that are made on such systems are stipulated in international regulations. They contain exact specifications with regard to UV-resistance, capillary water absorption, adherence to the substrate, colour variability as well as resistance to water vapour and carbon dioxide. The values resulting thereof are considered as the standard for all surface protection systems.

Disadvantages of commonplace systems

Practical experience has shown however, that these requirements are highly insufficient, as current technologies still have many deficits. First and foremost this concerns their tendency of dirtying easily. This, for example, is due to the fact that conventional surface protection systems on a polymer dispersion basis cross-link through physical drying. The consequence is an open pore structure where particles transported by rain water can easily settle providing the ideal conditions for the growth of algae or moss. Another important disadvantage is chalking behaviour, i.e. layer thickness loss as a result of weathering. Dispersion coatings loose between 3 and 5 µm per year, which steadily reduces their protective effect.

Graffiti damage

Yet another enemy strikes at night: graffiti sprayers come out to "decorate" in the dark and the newer and cleaner the building surface the greater is the "urge to adorn" them. Standard surface protection systems seldom allow the complete removal of such "artistic expression" without leaving some sort of trace behind. This sadly means that a newly built or freshly decorated building instantly loses some of its aesthetic appeal.

High Performance Protection

Innovative surface protection system

The development of a completely new surface protection system aims at eliminating such deficits. The objective of MC's research was to offer developers, planners and applicators real added value by providing a new system that enables all-round protection that guarantees a building structure's lasting functionality and aesthetics.

The solution is Emcephob NanoPerm P, an innovative surface protection in the high-performance category. It is a pigmented, watery, organo-silicon modified polyurethane acrylate based on nano technology. Its broad technical characteristics profile is unique, making it a product that offers more protection than any other surface protection system on the market. Not only does it provide reliable concrete and contamination protection, it also is excellent in protecting buildings from graffiti defacement.

Requirements not just met but surpassed

All standard requirements of commonplace regulations in terms of UV and weathering resistance are not just being met but are to some extent even surpassed. For example, diffusion resistance of Emcephob NanoPerm P against carbon-dioxide is greater than 3,600m while only a value greater than 50m is required. With this the system very effectively slows the rate of carbonation.

High Performance Protection

The diffusion resistance against water vapour, which ought to be smaller than 4m, is also significantly lower, lying at just 1.2m. Hence, the diffusion capability that is required for structures remains intact after application of Emcephob NanoPerm P.

But Emcephob NanoPerm P offers much more: in contrast to standard systems crosslinking is not achieved through physical drying but through a chemical reaction at nano scale. Thus by incorporating organo-silicon compounds a highly cross-linked and resistant polyurethane polymer is created that stands out featuring a totally impervious and scratch-resistant surface with low surface tension. This novel surface structure protects from soiling, moss and algae contamination with lasting effect. Furthermore, due to the robust surface chalking behaviour no longer poses a problem. Plus, graffiti sprayers are left without a canvas as the surface is solvent-resistant and graffiti and other defacements can be removed without problem or trace, when using the specially matched Emcephob Basic Cleaner.

Emcephob NanoPerm P is hydrophobic and therefore highly water-repellent and resistant, which renders it fit for use in splash zones and other areas subjected to heavy water exposure. In addition it is also resistant to frost and freeze-thaw salts and has been certified as flame resistant in building category B1, so that it is suitable for use in projects demanding higher fire protection as well. With this the new surface protection from MC has a much wider application scope in the building protection sector than standard systems.

Long list of references

Already Emcephob NanoPerm P has proven successful in numerous construction projects. The system has for instance been used in the transformer station of Wienstrom in Austria, on the internal walls of Dusseldorf's trade fair halls, in bridges of the Wiggertal in Switzerland, at the bus terminal in Passau, and in the prison buildings of GroBschweidnitz. One of the latest reference projects is the 1,080m long Leutenbach tunnel at the major road B14 near Stuttgart, where around 14,000m2 of wall area were coated with Emcephob NanoPerm P.

Protection against Algae Growth

Algae belong in the sea, a flooded gravel-pit or an aquarium - and, for some contemporaries even on the dinner plate - but under no circumstances should they colonise walls or building facades! Because here they pose a serious problem as they are not just a mere eyesore, but cause medium to long-term damage to infested surfaces. Especially in our climes deposits of dirt on building surfaces coupled with moisture offer an ideal breeding ground for algae.

Now MC has declared war on algae by developing the new Emcephob NanoPerm P. Used as a preventative measure in new builds it protects the structure's surfaces permanently from algae and lichen growth and protects from other aggressive environmental influences, too. When used as part of a repair measure it restores the original look and offers lasting protection.

Examples in practice in various areas and regions confirm its effectiveness against the red and green invaders:

Multi-storey Car Park Wuppertal

In a multi-storey car park of the University of Wuppertal the concrete walls were to be given a permanent coating during a repair measure. Specified were high protection against chloride entry and other soiling - especially green algae growth - lasting graffiti protection and the requirement of being easy to clean.

Extensive consultations and tests took place prior to the contract being awarded, in which Henrik Schonitz, Specialist MC Advisor Protection Technologies took the lead. To this end sample areas were coated with standard surface protection systems and with Emcephob NanoPerm P. Just one year later a clear difference could be seen between the two systems - in favour of the MC system. Based on this excellent result the products from MC were chosen to be used in the repair and coating of the multi-storey car park walls. Used were Nafufill KM 250 and Nafufill GTS, then Emcephob NanoPerm P was applied as the surface protection.

Algae Protection

Institute of Technology in Ireland

Another example for the successful use of Emcephob NanoPerm P is the Institute of Technology in Sligo, Western Ireland. Due to the harsh climate on the west coast of Ireland the facades of buildings with mineral substrates such as concrete and renders frequently suffer red algae attack after just a few years of life. This almost unavoidable fate also befell the building complex of the Institute of Technology in Sligo. Another problem was unsightly marks that the rain had left where it had run down the facades. In addition to structural-physical risks, the soiling also spoilt the appearance of the building considerably.

Rhatigan Architects in Sligo, put in charge by the institute's administration, searched for an effective solution that would protect the relatively young main building against soiling and damaging attack and which would prevent further attack from red algae. The deciding factor for the client was a coating that would have breathable characteristics and it was important that the colour could be matched to the adjoining building.

For the necessary preliminary tests sample areas were produced using different systems, including Emcephob NanoPerm P. In this early project phase Hein Ehbrecht from MC-Building Chemicals Ireland assisted the architect's firm in an advisory role. First the entire facade had to be cleaned and prepared for the coating. In order to determine whether the existing textured render was suitable for a coating in the first place, Hein Ehbrecht carried out several different tensile bond strength tests. These showed that a special priming to strengthen the substrate was required first of all. Following his recommendation the universal primer Betonflair Uniprimer was chosen.

The sample area prepared with Emcephob NanoPerm P served to calculate the quantity required and to select a colour design. Furthermore it functioned as the basis for the consultancy and preparation by the applicator. Because of the extensive preliminary works that were necessary in this project a bespoke list of specifications and an individual characteristics' profile was compiled for the application of Emcephob NanoPerm P, which is now at hand for future repair projects of a similar type. After successful completion of the coating works the MC surface protection system not only convinced in terms of the mandatory requirements but with its complete performance spectrum. This prompted the architect to contract MC as supplier for other projects. In the meantime the National Building Agency in Dublin has also voiced an interest in using the MC system.

Water from Cologne is Good

As early as in the 1980s a popular band from Cologne that used to sing in the local dialect, the Black Fooss (Black Feet), celebrated Cologne's drinking water in their song "Dat Wasser vun Kolle es jot" (The water from Cologne is good), creating an ironic musical monument to the water of Cologne. Naturally, the drinking water quality in Cologne is of the highest standard. To ensure it stays that way in future, too, the water tanks in the water plant Koln-Severin were repaired using the surface protection system MC-RIM PW.

The Severin II waterworks were built in 1901 on the left-hand side of the Rhine in the southern part of Cologne. Operator is the Rheinenergie AG, which provides drinking water and supplies power to the whole of Cologne. The waterworks get water from the Brunnengalerie WeiBer Bogen. The water is prepared using the activated carbon filter method. This removes dissolved organic substances from the raw water, so that afterwards it has drinking water quality.

Originally, the water was stored in an underground pure water tank - also built around 1900 - with a capacity of over 20,000 m3. Because of its age it was no longer economical to restore this tank and it was therefore disconnected from the network. Instead the drinking water is now fed directly to the network via a high-pressure pump. Additionally, an activated carbon filter had to be installed. This new procedure creates extremely high flow speeds in the water chambers that create particular loading on the surfaces in contact with the water. The whole of Block II consists of seven concrete water chambers and retention basins for rinsing water with a useable volume of 14,000 m3.

High demands on the coating system

Before commencing with new operations the blocks had to be extensively repaired. They were planned to receive a new coating system, which according to the specifications given by Bertil Winterstein, project manager at the department Water Sector/Central Task Force of the Rheinenergie AG, had to meet high demands based on the high flow speeds alone and because of up to 30 water changes per day. In addition to it the surface must fulfil the highest demands in terms of hygiene in accordance with the drinking water directive, must be resistant to hydrolysis, have a blanced pore radii distribution and achieve permanent bonding with the substrate.

In this regard MC-Bauchemie was able to offer a reliable technical solution with its purely mineral surface protection system MC-RIM PW - a system that has set new benchmarks in the repair of drinking water structures. All components of the MC-RIM PW system have been tested and approved in accordance with the DVGW (German Technical and Scientific Association for Gas and Water). Another advantage is the light colour of the curd surface.

Cologne Water Protection

New technology for optimal long-term protection

Standard mineral coating systems frequently cause problems in drinking water areas, since they tend to leach under water load (hydrolysis). In this scenario the pore percentage in the cement matrix increases which leads to a rise in overall porosity. At the same time the density of the mortar layer decreases which may ultimately lead to complete dissolution.

Such problems can be permanently cured with MC-RIM PW, as neither density nor resistance of this coating system decrease after application, but on the contrary, increase. This is made possible by the novel DySC®-Technology (Dynamic SynCrystallisation) which has been developed by MC. By using specially selected components for the binder a relatively dense matrix is created. The binder matrix is further consolidated and strengthened through a highly complex process, the Dynamic SynCrystallisation, which occurs concurrently. Special alumo-layered silica acts here as an additional crystallisation seed that leads to new phase formation and thereby to a complete mineralisation of the cavity structure. The overall porosity in the coating is reduced and pore radii distribution is optimised. This way optimal long term protection and hydrolysis resistance develop hand in hand.

In the repair of the water tanks for the Severin II waterworks the operator decided to use this innovative surface protection system. 80 tons of MC-RIM PW came to be used in this project. Works were completed in January this year and the water storage tanks now have permanent protection, securing water quality long term.

Better Protection for Potable Water

Despite the most stringent regulations being in place for potable water supply, hydrolysis under permanent immersion is still a regular occurrence due to the frequent use of thin layer mortars in drinking water tanks. For this reason MC-Bauchemie has developed a product that results in extremely thick coatings and avoids these problems. The new product is now in great demand on the market.

The specifications for the surfaces of drinking water containers are extremely high due to the repercussions of contamination: the water quality must not be negatively affected chemically, physically or biologically. Hence, only construction materials proven to pose no health risks to humans must be used on surfaces that come into contact with drinking water. However, scientific tests have been carried out on water quality by the Faculty for Science at the Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich in cooperation with the research institute of the cement industry. It was found that thin layer mortars start to soften after just a few months in contact with drinking water. According to the findings of the test, initiated by the DVGW [German Association for the Gas and Water Industries] the low hydrolysis resistance could be traced back to the use of organic substances in the formulation of the mortar. They were incorporated to prevent sagging during their application. Their use led to a significant increase in the water/cement ratio which in turn led to an increase in capillary pores in the cement matrix. As a result there is dramatic increase in overall porosity within the mortar structure. The density progressively decreased and a typical brownish discoloration appeared; finally the mortar broke down completely. Based on these occurrences the DVGW regulated technical requirements for the use and application of cement-based mortars in drinking water areas. The regulations are detailed in Datasheet W 300, and must be followed when constructing or repairing drinking water tanks.

Potable Water Protection

Surface Protection through DySC®-Technology

With the surface protection system MC-RIM PW a mineral coating is now available whose density and resistance after application don't decrease but increase, thereby gradually building up outstanding long term protection. This special material property is based on a totally unique binder combination developed by MC-Bauchemie. It is being recognised as innovative in the area of potable water structure coatings and is marketed under the patented name DySC® Technology (Dynamic SynCristallisation). The binder matrix is refined through recrystallization and new mineral formation. Nano particles act as crystallisation seeds that promulgate new phase formation and therefore lead to a mineralisation of the mortar structure. The pore solution is the base from where gels form within the alkaline range, which further stabilise and seal the mortar matrix. This way overall porosity of the coating does not increase – as is the case in standard mortar coatings - but decreases. This has been demonstrated by long-term testing over a period of 24 months by an independent test institute.

Cryptocrystalline gels form a dynamic balance with the crystalline phases, constantly inducing new mineral formation which in the end ensures long-term protection and exceptional resistance to hydrolysis. MC-Bauchemie has been spreading the word about the technical and structural advantages of this new coating system. An international drinking water symposium, workshops for applicators, trade fairs and lectures, all contributed to making engineers, contractors and drinking water plant operators aware of the new technology. A long list of references in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and as far as Africa, is testimony to the quality of the lasting and extremely safe coating, which is on course to establish itself worldwide in the drinking water storage area as the most advanced system there is.

Exotic Blaze of Colour for Kerala's Bridges

Brilliant blue beaches with crystal- clear waters and coconut palms: This is one side of the South - Indian state of Kerala. While tourists enjoy cruises on rice boats through the picturesque backwaters, a network of canals, lakes and lagoons directly downstream of the Malabar Coast, the local authorities must deal with the maintenance of the many bridges that straddle these waterways.

With 33 million inhabitants, Kerala is among the most densely populated regions in India. In contrast to other states, the villages here are connected by means of a 140,000km road and bridge network, which is tightly spaced due to the high population density. Because the moist, hot climate, coupled with heavy vehicular pollution viciously attacks the concrete of these structures, surface protection is particularly important.

For more than twelve years now, Chandni Enterprises, a company founded in 1988, has worked extensively in this field, as a local distributor for MC–Bauchemie India, and as an applicator of the products. The Managing Director C. B. Shaji suggested to engineers and officials to protect the constructions against carbonation. His presentation with the product system EmceColour-flex was convincing. He started with projects in the Cochin region, the first one being the Link Road Bridge under the supervision of the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), with a coating area of 63,000m2.

EmceColour-flex has been part of the product spectrum at MC-Bauchemie for many decades and has proven itself in numerous large projects. Made from locally available raw materials, the system with its elastic, crack bridging, weathering, UV rays, temperature resistant and water vapour permeable characteristics is also produced in India. There, the base coating EmceColour-flex E and the top coating EmceColour-flex S are applied to the primer Primex 250 instead of onto Betonflair Uniprimer.

Due to the positive results, Chandni Enterprises were then awarded contracts for the Varapuzha Bridge and the Goshree Bridges with areas of 27,000 and 50,000m2 respectively. The success of these projects led to a higher demand for these products from clients and applicators. Since then the EmceColour-flex fever is catching on in India with the execution of major projects such as the P.V. Narasimha Rao Expressway flyover in Hyderabad (11.6km bridge, coated by Vasant Agencies, Mr. Vinod Kumar Mitta), Chennai-Kathipara Airport and Padi bridges (120,000m2 by Chandni Enterprises) and MMRDA bridges in Mumbai (coated by Trifix Infrastructures Pvt. Ltd., Mr. Kunjan Popat), bridges in Bangalore, Orissa, Goa, Pune and many more structures.

Bridge in India Bridge in India

Colours as the "Rivers of Life"

In addition pigmentation is of considerable importance in the Indian subcontinent. In contrast to the norm in Europe, Indian bridges are not normally coated in grey exposed concrete colours. Instead, if possible, they use a colour scheme typical to the country. This cosmos of colours is also known as the "Rivers of Life" and plays an important role in daily life. Colours are everywhere – simply because of their beauty. Blue - as is the case with the gods Krishna and Shiva - represents the heavenly, the creative world principle. Yellow signifies happiness and red is both a lucky charm and the source of all beauty - it also promises fertility. The fact that MC surface protection coating systems can create brilliant colours is aptly demonstrated by the bright red and yellow Kuttipuram Bridge, the pink and red Varapuzha Bridge, the red and white Kumbalanghy Bridge and the blue and white Bolghatty Bridge, among others.

MC believes in the aesthetic protection of structures.

In the Kerala and Chennai regions alone, between 2008 and 2010, demand for EmceColour-flex has more than doubled with over 20 million m2 of structures already coated. Presently, there are plans in the pipeline for many millions of square metres to be completed in the near future.

Bridge in India

Debut in Spain

The mineral coating system MC-RIM PW sets international standards when it is about protecting potable water reservoirs. Recently it had its debut in Spain. The potable water storage facility in Cabezo Beaza was repaired with MC-RIM PW.

Cabezo Beaza is an industrial estate to the north east of Cartagena in the Murcia region. It extends over 40,000 square metres and is home to 1,100 companies employing about 14,000 people. The local underground potable water storage system is operated by Mancomunidad de los Canales del Taibilla. The regional utility is responsible for the supply of potable water in Murcia and parts of Albacete and Alicante.

In 2010 it was decided to carry out extensive maintenance work on the 63,000m3 storage structure, as the concrete was showing considerable damage. The plan was to lay bear the damaged surfaces of the inside walls, columns, cross-beams and ceiling. Subsequently the reinforcement was to be protected against corrosion, the treated areas were to be reprofiled and coated with a mineral based surface protection system. The company put emphasis to the fact that alterations should also improve the potable water hygiene.

Jose Antonio Garcia, Pedro Galvez and Pedro Hernandez of MC's Spanish company lsocron-MC were involved in the project at an early stage. They proposed the use of MC-RIM PW and drew up detailed information for tender documents. They were supported by Rafael Sass of Bottrop, who organised a workshop on the product's advantages and its application techniques, for the operator and the processors of the application company. The purely mineral surface protection system allowed to offer a sound technical solution which has set new standards in the maintenance of potable water reservoirs globally.

Traditional mineral coating systems often cause problems for potable water, as they tend to hydrolysis. This increases the pore content in the cement matrix, which in turn increases the total porosity. At the same time the density of the mortar layer is reduced, which can ultimately lead to its complete dissolution.

Optimum density and durability

Thanks to MC-RIM PW a sustainable solution to these problems is possible, as neither the density nor durability of this system decline after its application, but actually increase. This is made possible by the new DySC® technology (Dynamic SynCristallisation) developed by MC. This involves the use of selected components for the binding agent giving rise to a very dense structure. The resultant matrix is further compressed and reinforced by Dynamic SynCristallisation process. Special alumo phyllo silicates operate as additional "seed" crystals which lead to the formation of new phases and hence to a complete mineralisation of the pore volume. The total porosity of the coating is reduced, and the pore radius distribution is optimised, thus providing long-term protection while at the same time enhancing resistance to hydrolysis.

100,000kg of MC-RIM PW processed

These advantages convinced the clients to opt for MC-RIM PW. The company Excimur S.L.U. of Cartagena was assigned to carry out the work. First the reinforcing steel was exposed in the damaged areas and coated with the mineral based anti-corrosive coating MC-RIM PW-CP. The wall, column and ceiling surfaces were re-profiled with MC-RIM PW 20, using MC-RIM W-BC as a bonding layer. Finally MC-RIM PW 10 was applied using a wet-spraying technique and finished with the prescribed smoothing technique. A smooth and pore-free surface coating was achieved. Around 100,000kg of MC-RIM PW was applied. Since the completion of the work the inside of the potable water tank is now permanently protected and the quality of the potable water for the supply area secured on a long term basis. This successful repair convinced the water supplier fully of the advantages of MC-RIM PW. Yet another potable water reservoir, "Deposito del Lirio'; is currently being equipped with this system.

In order to promote a growing recognition of MC-RIM PW in Spain, lsocron-MC is planning to hold an MC-Forum on the subject of potable water in the near future. The decision-makers from water utilities all over Spain are to be invited.

At Vistakon Ireland in Limerick over 650 employees have been manufacturing disposable contact lenses for the European and international markets since 1995. Originally this subsidiary of the US company Johnson & Johnson Vision Care, Inc. had five production lines in operation. Today, as a result of constant modernisation and expansion, there are 30 production lines turning out a wide range of different contact lenses. The production process is fully automated and by necessity takes place in a clean room, as the finished product has direct contact with the human eye.

Progressive maintenance of floors

After 15 years of operation the flooring in the production, storage and transport areas was showing signs of damage, some of it considerable. A large scale to maintenance was inevitable. Section by section a total of about 23,000m2 of flooring was to be renewed. This included three production halls with surface areas of between 4,765 and 8,585m2, as well as various storage, engineering and adjoining rooms with surface areas ranging from 65 to 625 m2.

The planning and project management was entrusted to John Sisk & Son Ltd., one of Ireland's largest construction companies. Steve McCormack of the Irish company MC-Building Chemicals was also involved at an early stage to develop, in association with the general contractor, a solution that would best fit the project. At the same time account had to be taken of the range of specifications required by the client with regard to hygiene, good cleanability, and an attractive appearance. Furthermore, the new floor- despite a change of system- was to have the same colour scheme as the old one.

pplication in one stage

Finally decision was taken in favour of MC-DUR SL, a decorative flooring system resistant to moderate mechanical loads and chemical contamination. It is very easy to clean, impervious to fluids and UV-resistant. In addition, an individual colour design is possible with a variety of ascent colours. "However at the end of the day the decisive factor was that MC-DUR SL can be installed very quickly, as the client wanted the minimum interference with the production processes'; says Steve McCormack.

Traditional flake systems have to be installed in three time-consuming stages: first the scatter layer is applied, then the decor flakes are added, and finally there is the transparent sealing. This gives MC-DUR SL a clear edge in terms of time, as it can be applied immediately after mixing in a single operation, saving a lot of time and money. The preparation effort is reduced dramatically, since in most cases priming is sufficient, while a scratch-coat can be skipped. The de-aeration process can be carried out as little as ten minutes after application of MC-DUR SL, while the surface sealing with MC-DUR 2095 M follows the next day. In summary the number of individual operations is minimised.

Before starting work Steve McCormack had trial surfaces applied, on which scratch and wear tests were carried out with encouraging results. The execution of the work was finally entrusted to M.V. O’Halloran Ltd, a nationwide company specialised in coating application.

Meanwhile more than 3,000m² of floor have been covered with MC-DUR SL – mainly of a long central corridor from which all production areas can be accessed

Making a Virtue out of Necessity - Revolution in Surface Coating Techniques

Dampness and low temperatures are problems frequently encountered when applying synthetic resins, particularly to floors. Used to date in the protection of the inside walls of cooling towers, the innovative high-performance sealing coat, MC-DUR 2496 CTP, can now be used under these conditions.

Industrial floor protection

The problem is well documented. Synthetic resins, whether polyurethane or epoxy based, can exhibit unwanted secondary chemical react ions if applied under certain conditions. Quite often the moisture from fog, humid air, substrate dampness or condensation water results in impaired adhesion, reduced durability or poor surface appearance. Craters and pores form in the surface that has just set or loss of adhesion to the substrate develops. The effect of moisture on the application and curing stage is one of the main reasons why clients complain about the standard of the work performed. Technical defects of this type all too frequently mean that the coating system has to be completely reapplied. Temperature affects the chemical reaction of the curing process. If the application temperatures are too low the final result will not be acceptable. Resin based surface coating systems should only be applied at temperatures between 8 and 30° C unless special precautions are taken. This all creates significant limitations on the application timeframe; when the weather gets cold or damp, the contractor is forced to down tools and turn away new contracts, while existing jobs go unfinished.

Path from problem to solution

MC-DUR 2496 CTP now contains properties that allow for a much more reliable and wide-ranging application. Not only can it compensate for the negative effects of moisture; it also delivers a significant improvement in the quality of the surface finish. Now the effects of dampness are transformed into an additional, accelerated setting process; the combined reaction achieves tremendous adhesion on all standard substrates with peak values achieved for abrasion and scratch resistance. As a high-performance sealing coat, at a thickness of 0.25 mm, the surface is even resistant to the attentions of a box cutter! By way of comparison: During testing of abrasion resistance, MC-DUR 2496 CTP achieves scores twice as good as conventional synthetic res in systems and at only one tenth of the permitted threshold value. When tested for adhesion t o a concrete substrate the failure consistently occurred in the concrete. In addition the adhesion properties are such that it cannot be peeled off.

Power stattion floor protection

Whatever the circumstances

The greatest benefit lies in its ease of application, which practically isolates the chemical reaction from the ambient conditions. While the material remains workable for hours when in the container, enabling it to be applied without time pressure, once it is applied it cures within two hours if the temperature is between 2 and 40 'C and irrespective of the humidity level. This property is valid even when cold and damp conditions occur concurrently. Under average weather conditions, the possible application window is extended by two whole months across large parts of Europe!

Time and money saved

The setting speed of MC-DUR 2496 CTP allows' it to be used quickly and the waiting time for the next stage is reduced significantly. Within two hours the surface is thoroughly cured, it can be walked over and is ready for the next phase. After just 12 hours, it can be exposed to fuII capacity use. What is more, it quickly becomes waterproof and will become rain-resistant in just 30 minutes, while after 12 hours it can also be exposed to water through use and cleaning. That means fewer interruptions, shorter downtimes, outages and standby times as well as fewer trips to the construction site. The sealing coat has a high capacity to diffuse water vapour meaning it provides protection against osmotic processes and rising damp.

Moreover, it looks good too

One other outstanding feature of MC-DUR 2496 CTP is the longevity of its durable and flawless surface finish. Due to its extraordinarily high UV stability, it is resistant to yellowing even after a sustained period of use and exposure to direct sunlight. It achieved 4.5 of out 5 in the DIN 53387 weathering test (500 hrs at 35 'C plus rain). MC-DUR 2496 CTP is safe to use from an environmental and health perspective, a fact that is certified by its REACh evaluation.

MC-DUR Protection on Libson Bridge

From innovation to revolution

As a surface coating system, MCDUR 2496 CTP is the material of choice especially when it comes to adverse weather conditions. Even when faced with narrow timeframes or the risk of exposure to moisture and/or cold temperatures, it is still possible to carry out works where these would have been unimaginable in the past or could only have been performed under the most difficult of conditions. A genuinely new development in surface coating technology- little wonder that 1' Power station technology for the floor. New material properties reduce waiting times and downtimes- thus saving time and money too. we ll over thirty projects have been carried out with the aid of this innovation.

It works! The 25th of April Bridge over the River Tag us in Lisbon: At low tide the surface was cleared of algae and shellfish before it was air-blasted dry. Three hours after the application of two layers of MC-DUR 2496 CTP, applied 60 minutes apart, the surface was already submerged beneath the water again.

Light in the Tunnel: Costs down, Safety up

Road tunnels are the Achilles' heel of the transport world. For that reason tunnels are subject to onerous rules and regulations concerning safety equipment and systems. And now rigorous standards are being imposed on the interior of tunnels with regard to their brightness and light distribution. Anyone seeking to meet these demands while reducing their operating costs need look no further than Emcephob HPC. This pioneering tunnel coating from MC-Bauchemie combines all these advantages.

Emcephob HPC is much more than a standard surface coating designed for the inside of tunnels. It’s extremely impermeable surface is the result of densely cross-linked cutting-edge binder technology. Among its properties is an extraordinarily low susceptibility to soiling together with an extremely high wet-scrub resistance. With optimised glaze, it enhances the level of safety in tunnels. It is the combination of these properties that helps to cut operating costs significantly. The airless spray application method also enables even the largest of areas to be coated quickly and economically.

After Emcephob Before Emcephob

No chance for dirt

The smooth surface allows little opportunity for materials such as de-icing salt, soot or oil residues to accumulate. Anything that does happen to stick can be quickly and easily removed. This means that tunnel operators can reduce the time and frequency of cleaning operations as well as the actual quantities of cleaning agents - something that it not only kind to the environment but to the bank balance as well. Even paint residues can usually be removed effortlessly. A pleasing knock-on benefit for motorists is the reduction in lane blockage times and less traffic congestion.

Foresight rather than Tunnel Vision

We talked to Rafael Sass, Product Manager for Protection Technologies.

Mr. Sass, how would you describe Emcephob HPC?

Emcephob HPC is a high performance coating for the inner surfaces of tunnels. It is very durable and therefore delivers long-term protection for concrete. The extremely hard, scratch-proof surface of the coating is resistant to abrasion, saponification, frost and de-icing salts as well as being open to water vapour diffusion. Added to that is its low susceptibility to soiling and optimum light reflection properties. This enhances safety and makes it more cost-effective.

What other benefits does Emcephob HPC have?

With Emcephob HPC we are able to achieve optimum brightness levels. This means that tunnel operators can reduce the installation of expensive lighting systems as well as save on service, maintenance and energy costs. The UV resistance of the coating system provides a consistent glaze level, particularly at the entrance to the tunnel. This improves drivers' field of vision, increases their sense of safety and, overall, it can contribute to a reduction in the risk of accidents occurring.

Fire prevention is another significant factor in relation to tunnel safety, How does Emcephob HPC perform in this respect?

Emcephob HPC is non-flammable. In the event of a fi re the coating will not drip, it does not generate smoke and so offers a high level of safety.

Effective protection for a historical building

With the closure of the prison in Mainz (Germany) in 2002, the building, constructed between 1904 and 1910, began its extensive conversion into the "lsenburg-Karree". The listed building then became home to about 35,000 m2 of modern office and administration space. Upon its completion it became a jewel in the urban landscape of Mainz. MC made its own contribution to the restoration and preservation of the building by supplying effective rendering systems.

The challenge: Preserving the listed aspects of the structure

The restoration of listed buildings demands that the substance of the structure be treated with care- a fact well known to MC's Oxal specialists from their many years of experience in this field. Doing something good for the structure, in the opinion of Gerd Bott, long-serving expert adviser in Oxal at MC, is the primary objective when seeking to play a part in sustainably preserving historically valuable buildings. This is impressively demonstrated by the now finished lsenburg-Karree Project.

Tensile Strength Testing

The initial situation: Damp walls

As is frequently the case in historical buildings, moisture in the sub-surface and the ingress of strata water the Rhine flows past not far away meant that there was damp too on the basement walls of the former prison. So at the outset it was necessary to implement some measures to prevent the further penetration of dampness. One priority in this respect was to achieve the complete exsiccation of the masonry to ensure that the rendering system would function and form a permanent bond.

The restoration of the lsenburg-Karree in Mainz required a great deal of sensitivity. Damp basement walls had to be completely dried out. The Oxal repair render system now prevents any possibility of the dampness recurring.

The extensive stocktaking included a core sample analysis, performed by the dreika planners office, which identified a high level of dampness and saline content in the masonry. The project managers therefore decided to use a special WTA-tested repair render system.*

The core objective: High-grade utilisation of the basement area

First of all, around 2,650 m2 of wall space had to be freed of sometimes very hard old plaster and other elements non-conducive to bonding, in order to ensure that the new rendering system would bond effortlessly. "This required a great deal of chiselling work, and the cleaning was performed using the low-emissions IBIX special blasting process," explains Gerd Bott.

Various methods were necessary, including use of an interior sealer, in order to ensure that the basement area could be put to a sustainably high-grade use. The complexity of the works meant that the systems and measures had to be very carefully inter-coordinated. Another challenge came in the form of the tight schedule, which allowed for no leeway. The simple application of the Oxal repair render system and the considerable thickness of the coating with a single layer measuring up to 3 cm created the basis for ensuring the specified date of completion was duly met.

During the entire restoration phase, MC's experts provided support to the staff of the Reton company, which carried out the actual rendering work. As the points of contact, expert adviser Gerd Bott and MC technical adviser Uwe Strauch were ever-present on site, supporting the specialist workers with advice and practical assistance. Another crucial factor in this success was the close cooperation with zarinfar Baumanagement, dreika planning consultants, the main contractor Max Bogl GmbH and the client LBB Koblenz (real estate and construction contractor for the German state of Rhineland-Palatinate). The transformation of the prison in Mainz into the fine building that is the lsenburg-Karree demonstrates that it pays to revitalise listed buildings in a preservative and sustainable manner, to enable a high-grade 'use over the long term.

*Its individual components are precisely coordinated with one another and certified by the International Association for Science and Technology of Building Maintenance and the Preservation of Monuments.

Tensile strength vs. Peel resistance

To date the testing of the adhesion of flexible surface protection systems to the substrate has only measured the tensile strength. But is tensile strength the correct quality criterion? No, not exclusively. With coatings and linings made from organic materials and designed for the protection of industrial plant against corrosion caused by aggressive media there is yet another variable, the peeling resistance, which is much more relevant. For that reason, MC has developed a new testing method which enables accurate and highly reliable measurements to be made.

MC developed the new testing method and the accompanying technical apparatus especially for its proprietary highly flexible coating system MC-Flex 2097, and in doing so it borrowed from the peel resistance test for rubber linings. The latter is measured with spring scales, however, and is consequently very imprecise. In contrast MC's testing technique allows resistances to be measured very accurately and delivers more precise indications as to the quality of the surface protection system. For years now MC-Flex 2097 has been applied successfully in the chemical industry and the power generation industry for protecting concrete against corrosion. The chemically resistant polyurethane resin is most commonly applied using the hot-spray application method with two-component systems. The complete system arrangement consists of an undercoat and scratch and shrink hole filling made from solvent free epoxy resin MC-DUR 1200 VK, a fully bonded spread of quartz sand with a grain size of 0.2- 0.6 millimetres and a surface layer from the MC-Flex product family (see illustration). Apart from MC-Flex 2097, this also includes the manual application products MC-Flex 2098 and MC-Flex 2099. The thickness of the surface layer is usually two to three millimetres. Due to their excellent chemical resistance, for around 20 years now these surface protection systems have been most frequently used to line concrete containers and as a crack-bridging surface protection in the construction of cooling towers. Their long-term functionality is critically dependent on their adhesive bond to the substrate.

Testing the adhesion of surface protection systems

EN 1504 prescribes that the general criterion for assessing the adhesion of a surface protection system is the tensile strength of the substrate, i.e. the bond of the concrete to the surface- borrowing from 1542- but the testing of the peel resistance is not specified. For a surface protection system from the MC -Flex product family, EN 1504 in practice demands minimum tensile strengths of 1.5 N/mm2. To obtain a better quality and differentiation criterion for the adhesion to the substrate, MC has introduced an additional, more meaningful variable in the form of the peel resistance. This describes the actual adhesion achieved between the coating and substrate, or to state it more accurately, the mean strength (N) based on the width of the stripped section (mm) as it is removed.

The measurement of the peel resistance is described in DIN EN 14879-4, but refers here to organic coatings and linings for construction elements made from metallic materials, which are commonly known as "Gummierungen" (literally: rubber linings). The standard demands a minimum peel resistance for soft rubber linings of 3 N/ mm. This parameter is determined according to DIN EN 24624. For testing the peel resistance, it prescribes a manual measurement with spring scales on test strips 30 mm wide and about 200 mm long. The peeling speed should, if possible, be a constant 3 mm/s. This is difficult to implement using the test methods described and is highly inaccurate and error-prone to boot.

Tensile Strength Testing Tensile Strength Testing

New testing and measurement technique

It was for this reason that Dipl.-lng. Ulrich Lange, Head of Special Systems in the Protection Technologies division at MC and Dr. Michael Schutz, Regional Manager of KST-Kunststofftechnik GmbH & Co. KG. in Bottrop, developed a testing and measurement technique specially adapted for testing the peel resistance of surface protection systems. This self-developed technique involves an electronically controlled, dual-axis testing device with a measurement range of 0.9 to 10 N/ mm. The horizontal peeling speed can be varied with the aid of an electric motor between 333 and 4500 µm/s. The power used for the peeling procedure is measured and recorded in parallel and correlated with the cross-section of the sample.

Numerous laboratory tests have demonstrated that this self-developed technique enables the peel resistance of flexible coating materials to be precisely determined provided the following conditions are fulfilled:

  • The thickness of the surface layer the laboratory tests, the testing for testing must be at least 2.5 method was then performed on millimetres.
  • The surface layer should have an elongation-at-tear of at least 200 percent.

The empirical laboratory results have shown - in contrast to rubber linings on steel, which achieve 3 N/mm according to DIN 28055-2 that an adequate adhesion of the flexible surface protection systems is present if there is a minimum peel resistance of 1.0 N/mm. Following the successful performance on the object in practice.

Tensile Strength Testing

For construction site testing, the percent. MC test device was attached with deep-throat clamps to cooling tower supports that were coated with the surface protection system MC-Flex 2097. The coating system on this structure was intact, exhibited no voids or blisters and was approximately two years old at the time of the peel tests.

This attachment meant that the entire breadth of the plane support structure surface was available as a test area. The strips to be removed were detached from the substrate parallel to one another using a steel ruler and box cutter down to the scratch coat level, at a spacing of 25 mm and over a length of around 8 cm. In these tests the peel resistance was determined as a function of peel speed.

Peel Testing Diagram

Values between 1.4 and 2.0 N/mm were determined in this way. These practical results showed that the values correspond very closely with the values found in the laboratory. Through this it could be proven that the method presented for determining the peel resistance can be reproduced both in the laboratory and on the construction site. This represents a clear improvement in the evaluation of the adhesion of a coating to a substrate.


Having taken the peel resistance of flexible polyurethane coatings as its example, MC was able to show that it makes sense to have additional proofs of quality, and the method can be applied not just in the laboratory but in practice too. To enable the peel resistance to be measured, MC developed a test device which successfully passed the practical test and delivered precise measurement results. Through the empirical comparison between laboratory results and the minimum peel resistance of 1.0 N/mm identified on the object in practice, it was possible to derive an additional parameter for the evaluation of the adhesion of a coating system.

New standard in the protection of walls and ceilings

Need to protect walls and ceilings against dirt, wear and tear? Not a problem with Emcephob LE! The new high-performance coating from MC sets high standards in resistance, resilience, cleanability and health compatibility. So it will come as no surprise that Emcephob LE is already being used in many countries across Europe. Thanks to its innovative binder technology, Emcephob LE produces a hydrophobic, dirt-repelling surface with exceptional technical properties. Contaminants are unable to penetrate through the extremely smooth, closed-pore coating. Instead, they stay at the surface, enabling them to be effortlessly removed. This makes Emcephob LE highly suitable for, in particular, public buildings and heavily used interiors in which signs of wear, graffiti and other dirt and stains usually make expensive cleaning or over painting unavoidable.

emcephob treated comparison

Application versatility with impressive results

To date, the coating has been widely applied in many areas and countries for schools, canteens, hospitals and laboratories, not to mention prisons, sobering up cells and police stations all to convincing effect. "The great benefits of Emcephob LE lie in its proven resistance and cleanability properties. It has also been emission-tested to AgBB*, enabling it to be applied without restrictions and with no health reservations in all kinds of sensitive interiors," explains Rafael Sass, Product Manager at the PT unit of MC. The Hygiene Institute of the Ruhr Region has even certified Emcephob LE as suitable for indirect contact with food products, while German technical inspectorate TIJv SUD confirms that the product offers the best possible resistance to disinfectants. The coating is thus also suitable for use in doctors' surgeries and in manufacturing interiors of the pharmaceutical and food industries, a fact that has led to it being chosen for a major project in Ireland.

Finished Coating

Guinness opts for Emcephob LE

Under the project name "Phoenix': Diageo Ireland is building a new Guinness brewery in the heart of Dublin. It recently issued a tender specification for a coating to cover the walls and ceilings of the facility. "With Emcephob LE, we were able to win the day against all the other competitors, having been able to convince Diageo Ireland of some outstanding, certified technical properties that make it ideal for use in a brewery environment," explains Steve McCormack, General Manager of MC Ireland. As a result of the order award, this summer saw Emcephob LE applied to an area measuring 8,000 m2


The high-performance coating is exceptionally tough; it is scratch, abrasion- and UV-resistant, hydrophobic yet open to water vapour diffusion. Moreover, Emcephob LE is suitable for application on a wide range of substrates. It comes with a long service life and provides a lasting, aesthetic finish. Walls and ceilings coated with Emcephob LE can be readily disinfected without causing damage. And with outstanding results also having been achieved in decontaminability tests according to ISO 8690, the coating system has even been applied in the interiors of a nuclear research institute in the Czech Republic.