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The Concrete Times March 2015

The CONCRETE Times • MAR 2015 THE UK CONCRETE SHOW 2015 - SHOW REVIEW ANATOMY OF AWARD WINNERS EDITOR STEVEN CALLAGHAN EXPLAINS HOW AND THE JUDGES REACH THEIR VERDICT AS TO WHO WINS IN WHAT HAVE NOW BECOME KNOWN AS THE CONCRETE OSCARS 22 It sounds corny, but it’s true that the entrants into our annual show awards, sponsored by Hope Construction Materials, are of such a consistently high standard that usually one of at least 3 products could have won the sought after certificate and bottle of Cognac. So, how do we set about making the choice? SEE THE INDUSTRY AS A WHOLE Firstly, we try to see the industry as a whole rather than just looking at the specific sector that the products on the short list operate within, i.e. the candidate for the most innovative new product may be a game changer within it’s sector but that may represent only a tiny part of the industry as a whole, thus it’s impact on the industry at large may be relativeky small. An totally fictitious example of this may be a new design of diamond blade with a new type of segment that improves cutting speeds by 25% whilst extending the working life of the blade by 10% - a brilliant product that will totally shake up the world of diamond cutting and whilst it’s impact will be felt within the concrete industry, it may not be as significant as another new launch. THIS YEARS WINNER Let’s take this years winner of The Best Product in Show as an example - The ENERGYA 9 manufactured by CIFA of Italy and represented in the UK by Spanners Mixer Hire. Truck Mixers have been around a long time and whilst there have been many changes improvements over the years - more efficent engines, lighter drums and chassis as a result of modern lightweight materials, the basic principle of the vehicle we see on UK roads has remained unchanged - a diesel engine mounted on a wheeled chassis powering the drive wheels and rotating the drum. EQUIPPED WITH A FORMULA 1 STYLE KERS The ENERGYA 9 is equipped with a Formula 1 style KERS (Kinetic Energy Recovery System) that stores energy generated during braking of the vehicle and uses it to power the drum which means that the trucks diesel engine can be turned off during unloading. As well as reducing emissions and improving the air breathed by all in and around the discharge point, this innovation will also reduce the noise levels in the vicinity of the truck mixer, a clear double health benefit. Consumption of diesel will also be reduced as will engine hours, with obvious cost benefits. It is arguable that there is no single thing that is more representative of concrete (other than concrete itself!) to the layman and industry professional alike than a truck mixer - it is an enduring symbol of the concrete industry and it is for this reason, combined with environmental, technical and commercial benefits to the industry, that we judged it to be a worth winner of this years award. The award of the prize for The Most Innovative Product at the Show to Mapei for their UltraTop Loft took a number of people by surprise. For some reason, it seems widely assumed that excellence in engineering should be confined to a product that is machined, something made from steel or a combination of space age alloys. The UKCS judges see engineering excellence as also applying to products such as concrete mixes, admixtures, repair products and, in the case of our worthy winner for (continued on page 35) The CIFA award presented to Spanners Mixer Hire


The Concrete Times March 2015
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