RCPA’s vertically cast concrete pipe manufacturing process begins with a cage placed in the steel mould. This is in turn is placed on a turntable and rotated into position beneath the bi-directional compaction head. Concrete is batched on site and fed directly into the moulding machine. The pipe is compacted from the socket end, through the barrel to the spigot. Compaction is achieved using counter-rotating rollers and steel finishing trowels which produce an accurate and straight bore with a high quality finish. Compaction is continuously monitored, and graphically recorded for traceability.
Pneumatic cage positioners mounted on the moulds ensure correct alignment of the reinforcing cage. The spigot former remains on the pipe machine, and each spigot is made using the same machined former. This ensures that all spigots are identical. The spigot former is “one piece”, eliminating the traditional problems with rough grout “feathering” at joints. Once completed the filled mould is taken for curing and immediately stripped. After curing, the pipes are inspected, branded, and delivered to the stock yard.
RCPA produces concrete in fully automated batch plants that incorporates the latest moisture sensing and correction technology. This method ensures consistent concrete of the highest standard and a product which is extremely durable. The concrete mix is specially designed for the process and uses a very low water to cement ratio, also known as zero slump concrete, which permits instant de-moulding. Typical concrete test results indicate compressive strengths in excess of 50mPa. In general GP cement is used, however specialty cements can be used for specific applications if required.
RCPA steel reinforced concrete pipes exceed market standards. Australian thin walled concrete pipes leave little room for error in cover requirement, therefore RCPA wall thickness is deliberately designed to give more than adequate cover. RCPA pipe wall thickness are deliberately designed to provide cover to steel in access of the 10mm code requirement. This provides enhanced steel protection, therefore increasing pipe durability. A continuously welded reinforcement cage (including socket and spigot) is fabricated to fine tolerances. The cover is precisely maintained by form-mounted pneumatic cage positioners that minimise the need for plastic/steel spacers. To confirm the cover, pipes are routinely tested physically and with a cover meter.
Key Features and Benefits
- *Roller compaction successfully used for over 50 years.
- *Pipe performance exceeds requirements of AS4058.
- *Continuous reinforcement cage through spigot and socket.
- *Rebar spacers minimized to reduce ingress paths.
- *Dry-cast concrete with low water-cement ratio.
- *Durable and highly compacted with low sorptivity and carbonation rates.
- *Bi-directional trowels and rollers provide hard, high quality internal surface.
- *Precision manufacture ensures accurate cover, dimensional accuracy and improved jointing.
- *Non-slip exterior surface for safe handling.
- *Process suited to rapid and mass production providing reduced lead times.
- *Efficient use of materials and little wastage.
- *No slurry waste.
- *Produced using locally sourced materials with low energy inputs.