Concrete testing technologies provider Giatec (Ottawa, Ontario, Canada) believes its iCOR corrosion detection device can help save lives by preventing building collapses resulting from rebar and concrete structural damage.
The South Florida condominium building that recently collapsed had reportedly experienced “major structural damage” and cracking to the concrete slab below the pool deck and the underground garage. As a result, the City of Miami has asked all owners of buildings over six stories to retain the services of a licensed structural engineer and to undertake a structural inspection for visible signs of distress by mid-August.
The Florida case is one of many instances in which structures have collapsed as a result of a lack of sufficient insight into the health of concrete structures, according to Giatec’s press release. In June 2012, Algo Center Mall in Elliot Lake, Ontario, collapsed, killing two people, due to corrosion. Giatec was selected by the Ontario Provincial Police to assist with the materials analysis and structural inspection using its iCOR corrosion detection device to accurately identify the existing deterioration.
“These tragedies could have been prevented if more in-depth and advanced testing of the state of concrete were done to detect early signs of corrosion, helping avoid loss of life, serious injury, and catastrophic structural damages,” says Andrew Fahim, head of research and development at Giatech and committee lead for ASTM WK76846 and ASTM G01.11.5: “New Test Method for Measuring Corrosion Rate of Uncoated Reinforcing Steel in Concrete.”
“The more accurate information provided by iCOR can help building owners accelerate their rehabilitation and maintenance operations” Fahim adds.
Factors such as rate of steel corrosion can contribute to concrete structure deterioration, resulting in structural collapse, Giatec explains. As such, testing for these properties could fast-track any needed maintenance before catastrophe occurs.
The iCOR uses Giatec's Connection-Less Electrical Pulse Response Analysis (CEPRA) technology to detect the health of concrete structures in a matter of seconds. While many other detection systems must physically attach to rebar by drilling into concrete, or through other invasive means, the iCOR can measure the condition without damaging them or compromising integrity. The technology was recognized as a winner in the 2019 MP Corrosion Innovation of the Year Awards program.
Source: Giatec Scientific Inc, www.giatec.ca.