Just over two years ago we reported in BFT International about a kick-off project by Precontech in the Philippines. At that time, the project involved 38,000 click connectors for a large-scale housing project with 3,000 row houses. Upon completion of the construction project, the total had amounted to around 50,000.
In the meantime, four additional construction projects were successfully completed with this system. Near the Philippine capital of Manila, for example, following the San Jose del Monte Residential project with 3,000 units, referred to above, additional projects with a total of 15,000 row houses of the same construction type followed. For this, Precontech delivered around 250,000 click connectors. For the end of 2022, an additional 12,000 dwelling units with around 300,000 required click connectors are being planned in that region. Nationwide in the Philippines around 6.9 million dwelling units are planned over the same period, what can only be realized with precast construction, as Markus Hennig, Vice President of Megawide Precast, recently explicitly confirmed on the occasion of a visit to Precontech in Trebur. Megawide Precast, the leading Philippine precast manufacturer, moreover praised the enormous saving potential achieved with the erection of solid walls with 100 mm thickness. The actual production of the wall panels took place in a casting yard directly at the construction site.
With the click connector, based on the PTA anchor channels, short erection times are achieved, and have already attracted the interest of four additional precast plants. In September 2019, Dieter Rausch, owner and managing director of Precontech, has already visited these plants personally and further large orders can be expected.
Enormous market potential worldwide
The BFT editorial office recently visited the company in Trebur, Germany. Asked about the secret of his success, Dieter Rausch reported, not without pride, “When we started with our anchor channel production about ten years ago, the market was relatively manageable with only three suppliers. By now, the number of suppliers has considerably increased, which has an increasing impact on the price structure. With click connectors for the low-cost housing market, we have now found a unique selling point in the lightweight-concrete sector. This applies above all to two- or three-shell lightweight concrete walls, ceilings and roof elements as sandwich of different systems suppliers, e.g. company Multicon with its special colloidal mixing technology. We are also in contact with perlite manufacturers and/or processors such as Europearl and United Perlite, to enable flexibility and openness throughout the range of other construction materials. And not least, we are in contact with Eirich and Kniele, the manufacturers of mixing systems that have developed lightweight-concrete mixers specifically for these applications.
Another important milestone was the granting of the European approval for the LB anchor channel and our “rocket.” We see an enormous market potential for us in the future, since there is an urgent need for building faster and providing cheaper housing for the younger generation and fast growing populations in many regions around the globe.
More projects in India and China
Thanks not least to the above described project successes, two further talks with precasters and an earthquake technology consultant for autoclaved-aerated concrete and lightweight-concrete panels have taken place. A great deal of interest has arisen especially from new developments in seismic connections using modular blocks of lightweight concrete, circumferential joint modules as predetermined breaking points of low density as well as sandwich panels with a thin concrete cover as non-loadbearing walls in skeleton frame construction.
In China, Dieter Rausch, Managing Director of PreConTech with 40-year experience in anchoring technique of double walls, gave a demonstration at a construction group with which a joint venture is planned, which has a workforce of 70,000 and several circulation systems for production of double walls, double walls with interior insulation and floor slab elements. Demonstrations included a number of special applications for double walls, e.g., remote activation and rotating mechanisms for turning very long double walls from the horizontal into the vertical position.
Another large-scale project of a similar kind is planned in the near future in Bangalore.
Visionary of precast construction
When we finally, asked him about his other visions, Dieter Rausch answered: “Indeed, I see myself as a visionary concerning the further development not only of our products, but of the entire precast construction method. Look at the enormous potential, considering, for example, that, depending on capacity, 1,000 m² of wall elements can easily produced on a single day. Or, compared to in-situ construction, enables two walls to be connected by click connectors, with full loadbearing within only half a minute, enabling a very rapid erection process.”
“With Precontech for actual production and BVT Rausch as sales organization, we are also well-prepared for the future. We see further potential with regard to the sustainability concept: i.e., disassembly and removal and reutilization of anchoring devices in the sense of a future-viable closed-cycle economy. Because until now reutilization of galvanized products was especially difficult, we are at the moment working on developing a special coating – but not at the expense of fire protection.
By the way: at the BIBM Congress in Copenhagen in November, I will be giving a lecture on the topic ‘Connecting systems for light weight concrete walls’.”