As the global population grows and advances, the demand for construction and civil engineering work continues to increase with sealing materials being used to keep water out of building and in reservoirs and landfill. The next AMI international waterproofing conference looks at markets, technical innovation, performance and manufacturing and will take place in December in Duesseldorf. This year’s conference program examines waterproofing from production technology and materials through to performance and applications. The event kicks off with a review of the waterproof membrane market dynamics in Europe by Jon Nash, leading consultant at Applied Market Information, and a global review of reinforcements by Milliken.
Water is in short supply in many geographic regions and reservoirs with waterproof linings are being built. At the other end of the scale the waste products are being put into landfill and geo membrane liners are in use to protect the environment from harmful leachate. Naue has studied the barrier properties of landfill cap membranes while the National Radiation Protection Institute has looked at the radon and soil-bacteria resistance of geomembrane materials. The Intertape Polymer Group of Canada is seeing an increased role for reinforced membranes in geotechnical applications. H&R Chempharm has reactive geo-materials. As the demand for housing escalates, waterproof roofing membranes are protecting the commercial and high rise domestic buildings in major cities. In exposed roofing the wind load is a big factor and Constructech Sweden has software to calculate this. SFS Intec has a next generation induction welding method of membrane fixing, while Paramelt Veendam has more traditional adhesive technology. BASF produces anti-UV additives and reflective pigments to protect exposed materials. Davis-Standard provides membrane manufacturing equipment including coating application. The role of the waterproof membrane is expanding to provide several functions to improve energy efficiency, for example, roofing and landfill caps can incorporate photovoltaic cells in the structure of the membrane generating energy and income with very little additional weight. In Valencia, Professor Miguel Redon was involved in developing floating photovoltaic membranes for reservoir covers. The addition of light pigments and minerals can reduce the heating under a roofing membrane by reflecting sunlight, for example this can cool a building and cut the air conditioning costs: Carlisle Construction has membranes and expertise in this field. The potential for condensation under membranes has been studied by Wiss Janney Elstner Associates. Where green space in a city is at a premium, waterproofing can be selected to allow for roof and wall gardens, which also add an insulating layer to the building. The membrane has to be carefully selected for root resistance. Bonar Xeroflor is involved in this market. Sustainability is a big factor in construction and Lanxess now has the world’s first bio-based EPDM elastomers for waterproofing production. There is now extensive experience of the durability of polymer and bitumen materials in waterproofing from bitumen in the Hanging Gardens of Babylon to the current day.
According to Research and Markets, liquid applied membranes market in India is a new generation technology in the waterproofing segment. The market holds about 45% of the overall waterproofing system, but low user awareness level coupled with lower acceptance held the market from capitalizing upon its full potential. The major market is accounted by acrylic modified cementitious membranes, which require less sophisticated technologies as compared to other polymer modified LAMs. This has given way to various small and mid-size domestic companies to operate in this specific business segment. Currently domestic players hold about 60% of the total market share. With growing need of durability in structure coupled with green buildings requirement, the market is expected to require high end LAM waterproofing systems.