Ash Resources has completed the commissioning of its new fly ash out-loading plant, at State-owned power utility Eskom’s Matimba power station. The plant will produce PozzFill, a product that enhances the performance of cement formulations and concrete mixers.
Ash Resources MD Graeme Smith says that the PozzFill’s yearly production capacity will now be about three-million tons. The first load of PozzFill from the plant is expected before the end of May.
This plant is an addition to the company’s other two similiar PozzFill facilities at Eskom’s Lethabo and Kendal power stations.
PozzFill can be used to improve the flowability and workability of a concrete mixture, while reducing water content and the water-to-cement ratio. This increases the strength of the finished concrete without increasing the cement content. It can also be used to reduce bleed and segregation in con- crete, facilitating easier placing and for structural fill in civil engineering applications.
Fully conforming to the requirements of the SANS 50197 standard as a constituent in the manufacture of factory blended cement, PozzFill is also widely used in the cement industry.
The company continues to have a robust project pipeline with State-owned power utility Eskom. “We are very active across the water, power and transport sectors and are proud to be associated with two major projects for Eskom’s new build power stations, Kusile and Medupi, as well as the Braamhoek dam project that forms part of the Ingula pump-storage scheme,” Smith says.
He adds that a wide range of government’s infrastructure spend projects has also con- tributed to the company’s project list.
Ash Resources is involved in the construction of the R25-billion Gautrain rapid rail link, the Coega Industrial Development Zone at the Port of Ngqura, the Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project and the De Hoop dam project, besides others.
Meanwhile, Smith says that it appears that consensus from most players in the concrete and cementitious industry is that the construction industry is still taking strain as a result of economic difficulties experienced in 2009, and he believes that the recovery will only start after the FIFA World Cup ends in July.
“The World Cup and the infrastructure developments leading up to this sporting event have provided great opportu- nities for South Africa’s construction industry, but now that these projects are completed or nearing completion, the construction industry will need the positive effects of an improving residential building sector and increased confidence in the economy in general to increase current activity levels,” he says.