Different Types of Road Construction and Surfaces

Ever since the invention of the wheel, it has been human race’s ultimate quest to develop the best and finest of road constructions methods, processes and materials. And while on it, we have developed and modified several different types of road construction materials and have found their various uses in civil engineering. Even today, there remains a constant need to improve the already present road construction materials and to come up with much better, improved and stronger materials and methods than ever before.

Let’s take a look at some of the most employed road construction materials and methods:

Asphalt

Undoubtedly the most popular of all materials and construction methods is asphalt paving. It was first used in the 1920s and ever since the engineers have worked harder to make it better and stronger than before. In this method, a layer of gravel is laid in the base and an equally thick layer of asphalt is laid over the top. Some of the outstanding advantages of asphalt paving are its relatively low cost, the resultant pavement that produces lesser noise and the ease of its maintenance and repair. However, the material is not as durable and strong and is not recommended safe for the environment.

Concrete

Another hugely popular choice other than asphalt paving is concrete construction. It is often used for local roads construction only and not any other types. Concrete road construction is mainly divided into three categories JPCP, JRCP, and CRCP and what distinguishes these from each other is the joint system employed in each that basically prevents cracks from appearing in the concrete pavement. The biggest advantage of concrete paving over asphalt is its durability and strength and the downside is that it’s expensive to lay and maintain.

Composite

What makes composite construction materials different from the rest is these are not used in the foundation of a road. These are the types of construction materials that are more related to maintenance, recycling, and rehabilitation of roads and pavements. Composite materials are nothing different though but a mixture of both asphalt and concrete and are employed in road maintenance in one of two ways. These are either placed directly over a damaged road or alternatively the damaged road is completely cracked and resealed using composite materials forming a completely new surface.

Bituminous Solutions

Unlike asphalt and concrete paving which are used to construct the actual road, bituminous and other temporary solutions are mainly used as sealing coats or finishes over the main construction material. Not recommended to be used for roads that have to bear heavy traffic, these are only suitable for use on very low-traffic thoroughfares. Bituminous solutions have three different types of road sealing options, i.e., thin membrane surfacing, chip sealing and otta sealing.

Although these are very popular and have been employed in road construction all over the globe for decades, these are far from perfect. Civil engineers and scientists, that is why, are constantly working to come up with better, stronger, effective and longer lasting construction materials and methods that are not only cost effective as well but would hopefully require lesser maintenance.

Motor Graders for Efficient Construction and Road Maintenance

Motor grader also known as road grader is one of the most frequently used heavy-duty machinery in road construction and mining industries. Although graders come in different sizes and shapes, they all perform the same function and share the same specifications and configuration. Usually a motor grader comes with a long blade made out of stainless steel that is positioned between the front and back wheels and is called what gives the machine its name, ‘the grader’. It can be controlled either mechanically or hydraulically.

Modifications have been made in motor graders ever since their first use and now modern graders come with a blade that can be extended from side to side besides the usual movements. The blade can usually be raised or lowered depending upon the type of work being done. Another modification allows graders to be used with different attachments transforming a single grader into an extremely versatile machine to perform a variety of different kinds of construction and mining tasks.

Motor graders are most commonly employed in road construction projects and mining sites for creating a flat smooth surface to work further on. In Civil engineering works, the purpose of a road grader is to perform the fine grading procedures. The long blade on them is used to create a smooth surface during construction of paved roads where the asphalt can be placed later. Other than that, motor graders are also used in gravel and unpaved roads maintenance. Unpaved roads are prone to withering away because of harsh weather conditions. That is why they need to be maintained on a regular basis with a motor grader. Other than maintenance, graders are also used to remove rocks from roads and other construction sites. Besides their vast usage in road construction and maintenance, motor graders find their uses in mining industry as well and are also seen on every major mining site all over the world.

Fine grading is what’s done in a road construction project that is where the graders create a smooth and fine surface to lay asphalt on but motor graders can also be used for rough grading and for digging shallow holes. Rough grading is usually done by heavy construction vehicles like bulldozers and scrapers but can also be done with motor graders.

The sophistication of the machine and the experience of the operator play a huge role in the final result of the job. When it comes to construction and maintenance of roads, most of the issues arise because to lack of understanding by the people performing the task. Road drainage has always been a major issue leading to potholes and the usual bad condition of roads. Motor graders unlike the traditional heavy construction machinery are some of the most sophisticated machinery that requires proper knowledge and training to handle them. Most of the times, how well a road construction job is executed depends on the grader’s operator as to how well he can manage the machine and use it to its fullest. A lot of times the operators lack in-depth understanding of how a motor grader is different from a loser and needs to be used by changing the blade’s angles depending on the job.

The present day motor graders are the more versatile and flexible versions of the older graders and are designed with more advanced control units to perform far more difficult and delicate tasks than ever with more efficient results.

Types of Heavy Equipment and Road Machinery

Construction industry and the equipment used to carry out seemingly impossible tasks have advanced beyond man’s imagination. The jobs that were once impossible or took days and months to complete can now be finished in record time. Several different types of equipment and heavy machinery are employed in construction of roads and highways irrespective of the project being large or small.

Roads and highways construction in Dubai usually involves 3 phases, 1) rough grading (earthmoving), 2) fine grading (sub-grade preparation) and 3) surfacing (with asphalt, concrete or gravel). All these steps require specialized heavy roads machinery in Dubai to ensure the job is executed perfectly. The development of roads and highways is crucial to the progress and maintenance of infrastructure.

Here are a few roads machinery vital to construction jobs and civil engineers:

Excavators

It is a construction vehicle used to excavate or move large objects during construction. These are used in small and large projects alike such as to do a cut and fill for a house project, road construction, and marine structures to place large rocks and other projects where excavation is required.

Graders

Mostly used in the construction and maintenance of dirt and gravel roads, a grader is a construction machine with a long blade used to create a flat surface also commonly known as road grader, a blade or motor grader. In roads construction these are used to lay a base on which the asphalt is placed.

Tippers

Trippers are loading trucks but unlike a conventional truck they can be raised at the front end allowing the load to be discharged. These are widely used in construction jobs to carry, transport and offload materials on the construction site.

Tankers

Depending on the nature of contents, tankers come in various sizes. These are designed usually to carry liquefied, dry or gaseous contents. In construction tankers are mostly employed to carry mixed concrete and gravel to the construction site.

Cranes

Generally composed of an elevator, chains and sheaves, cranes are one of the most essential equipment that provide a mechanical benefit essential in construction, thus you are bound to see one of these where there is heavy construction work going on. These are used both to lift, move or lower heavy materials horizontally.

Concrete Mixture

Depending on the level of construction work and the amount of concrete mixture needed to finish the job in the required time, concrete mixtures range in different sizes. One of the most essential equipment at any road or highway construction site, a concrete mixture is used to mix cement evenly to form homogenous aggregates.

Road Rollers

Once the concrete mixture is laid on the road, it needs to be compacted for long lasting results and perfect finish. Road rollers are the heavy construction equipment ideal to compact gravel, concrete, soil and asphalt making them a crucial part of road and highway construction projects.

The Most In-Demand Engineering Jobs

Science and technology is making progress by leaps and bounds every year and following the immense discoveries and huge breakthroughs in these fields, students graduating with a degree in engineering and computing have a really promising future. The engineering fields are evolving within the already established ones giving exciting and bigger opportunities to new graduates. Consequently, engineers are expected to remain in high demand over the next years and enjoy the risk-free jobs.

Here are some of the engineering fields that are not going out of jobs any sooner:

  1. Software Engineering

Software engineering is one of those few engineering fields where you are high in demand if you know to do something that’s latest and not many people are expert at. In the past few years cloud computing has really took off and with its rise brands realised the leverage and a lot of them opted for it. Now an increasing number of companies are hoping on the cloud computing and carrying out their operations digitally and developing new cloud-compatible systems and apps. Since it’s still in its early stages of development, the software sector is more likely to produce exciting new jobs with high salaries for talented individuals in future.

  1. Aerospace Engineering

Aerospace Engineering again is one of those fields where continuous research and development of new methods, systems and projects is highly crucial to its survival and growth. Between 2013 and 2031 experts have estimated a sky-high demand for 27000 new passenger planes and 40,000 commercial helicopters, coupled with continuous and rapid advancements in aerospace technology the sector will continue to grow and create new job roles for people with stronger grasp of the technology and problem-solving innovative minds. So whether you wish to be an aeronautical or an astronautical engineer there will definitely be a place for you in the industry.

  1. Civil Engineering

Civil engineers are probably the only kind of engineers who will never run out of a job even when recession is eating up the jobs of other engineers. As our population expands our needs to build new and better infrastructures and maintain the existing ones with better management increases. In the years to come civil engineers will be responsible for mending our present infrastructures and building more efficient ones. Critical areas in this sector will include the maintenance and construction of new roadways, the management of water supply, waste filtration and residential real estate development in urban spaces.

These are the top 3 most in-demand engineering jobs all over the world. No matter where you live there will be opportunities and jobs available to you in these fields in the coming years. However, environmental engineering, biomedical engineering and Nano engineering although worth mentioning have not seen persistent growth and development all over the world. While the first world countries have realised their importance and made immense progress, the rest of the world is still catching up and it will take time for them to create jobs for students graduating with these degrees.

Tallest Skyscrapers in Dubai

If there is one thing that attracts tourists from all over the world towards this destination it’s because of its skyscrapers and unique modern architecture. Whenever we talk about contemporary and state of the art architecture and display of engineering skills, the one city that without any doubt makes it to the list is Dubai. Hugely popular for its skyscrapers among tourists, businessmen, elite and an average person alike, Dubai houses 911 completed skyscrapers with 18 of which stand taller than 300 meters (984 ft) and 73 of them are taller than 200 meters (656 ft) which is more than any city in the world.

Before we delve into the details about the tallest skyscrapers that adorn Dubai’s skyline, here are a few fun facts about skyscrapers in Dubai:

  • Dubai’s first skyscraper Dubai World Trade Center was built in 1979 making it the tallest building in all of the Middle-East at that time.
  • Burj Khalifa in Dubai stands tallest in the world at 828 meters.
  • Dubai began building taller buildings after 1999 which gained pace after 2005 and until 212 Dubai had 363 skyscrapers under construction and twice more than that were in the pipeline.
  • Princess Tower with 101 storeys is the world’s tallest residential building.
  • The JW Marriott Marquis Dubai Hotel is the world’s tallest hotel at 355m.

Here are the top 5 tallest skyscrapers in Dubai.

Burj Khalifa

The tallest skyscraper in Dubai and in the whole world, Burj Khalifa stands mighty at 828 meters and houses 163 floors. Its construction began in September 2004 and after 5 years of nonstop hard work and 1.5 billion USD spent, the Burj Khalifa was completed in October 2009 and was opened to the general public in 2010 following a grand ceremony for the whole world to watch.

Princess Tower

Given the title of world’s largest residential building, The Princess Tower has 101 storeys and stands grand at an altitude of 414 meters. Its construction began in 2006 and was completed in 6 years in September 2012. Princess Tower houses 763 residential units and 957 underground parking bays which are spread over 6 floors!

23 Marina

The second tallest residential building in the world and also the second tallest skyscraper in Dubai, 23 Marina actually held the record of being the tallest residential building in the world until 2012 before Princess Tower was completed. Its height is 392.8 meters and has 90 floors, 289 residential units, 57 swimming pools and 62 elevators.

Elite Residence

At a height of 380 meters, Elite Residence was completed in 2012 and officially became the third largest residential skyscraper after Princess Tower and 23 Marina. The building has 87 floors, 695 residential units which comprise of enmities like swimming pools, clubs, business centre, gym, parking area, spas etc.

Almas Tower

Before Burj Khalifa was completed, the title of the tallest building in Dubai was officially held by Almas Tower. At a height of 360 meters, it is now the tallest corporate building in Dubai with 68 floors. Almas Tower is built in the center of Jumeirah Lakes Towers Free Zone, the construction began in 2005 and was completed in 2009.

Dubai is progressing so fast in engineering and architecture departments that soon all these tallest skyscrapers will have new replacements.

 

5 Types of Acid Resistant Bricks

Acid resistant bricks have long been in use in various industries due to their ability to resist acid, corrosion from any other harsh chemical, mechanical abuse and elevated temperatures which are basically the conditions any and every chemical plant might face on a daily basis. Acid resistant bricks and mortars are mostly used in dye plants, acid chemical plants, fertilizer plants, thermal power plants for chimney construction, petrochemical, refineries, pharmaceuticals and galvanizing plants to line the entire plant floors that could be subjected to corrosion and wear of chemical spills.

With over time and evolution of science and technology, engineers and chemists have come up with a lot more options for you to choose from. Here are some of the most popular and useful acid resistant mortars/bricks:

  1. Furane

Generally used as Bedding & Jointing or as Jointing/Pointing Mortar in Acid Proof bricks, Furane has the ability to resist most of the acids, alkalis, solvents, salts, greases at various concentrations and temperatures as high as 170 degrees Celsius! Furane is perfect to be used in refineries, petro-chemical plants, and fertilizer plants and yarn processing.

  1. Epoxy

Epoxy finds its uses as coating, screeding, grouting and jointing materials and provides them highest protection against corrosion and abrasion caused by acids, alkalis and other harsh chemicals. With the ability to resist temperatures up to 90 degrees Celsius, they are ideal to be used in industries such as dairies, breweries, foods, alcohol and textile that involve mild acid usage.

  1. Phenolic

This one is a jointing and pointing mortar for acid resistant bricks specifically used in industries such as Phosphates and Fertilizer based Industries where the use of Sulphuric acid is a norm. It works by resisting oxidizing and organic chemicals up to 170 degrees Celsius and sulphuric acid as dilute as 5% and as concentrated as 93%!

  1. K – Silicate

K-Silicate is generally used as a bedding mortar in acid resistant bricks that are supposed to resist very high temperatures, up to 900 degrees Celsius. A pure buff white powder & crystal clear Solution of K-Silicate mortar has a unique ability to resist acids and alkalis and is specifically used in industries where concentrated Sulphuric & Nitric Acids are used.

  1. Mastic Compound

Cast in a slab, mastic compound is corrosion resistant cement that resists dilute acids, alkalies and salts and is best to be used in heavy duty industrial flooring, floors of chemical storage tank-pads in refinery, Gases & Oil base projects.

Blog entry by ecooo.com

3 Innovative Oil Extraction Technologies

UAE accounts for 3.3% of the total crude oil production in the world, being at number 8. It was with the discovery of these huge oil reserves that changed the fate and economic position of this piece of land in the world for ever. For the last 30 years, oil and global finance has been the driving factors of UAE’s economy with its per capita GDP on par with leading West European countries.

However with each passing day, oil reserves are being exploited faster than any more are being reproduced by Nature. Overproduction of oil has led to the depletion of reserves and have driven the prices down; renewable and green energies are the new domains that environmentalists and engineers are exploring, which ultimately pushes petroleum engineers, extractors and oil company owners to innovate drilling, extraction and production techniques with the goal of improving efficiency and minimizing costs.

The following three techniques are the latest methods producers and engineers are adopting especially in the UAE to ensure optimum well productivity.

Directional Drilling

Directional drilling has been in use since the 1920s. Most of the oil extraction processes involve drilling in wells at a straight angle downwards i.e. the wells are vertical. However, this method does not always prove to be the most efficient and drilling the wells at an angle rather than straight down often results in greater oil productivity.

Enhanced Oil Recovery

Usually employed in fields with low permeability or heavy oil, Enhanced Oil Recovery is an improved technique based on a number of various other techniques employed to extract crude oil from an oil field. This is an expensive technology and is suitable and approved only for oil fields post heavy evaluation. EOR executed perfectly increases the oil extraction by 75%!

Hydraulic Fracturing and Acidizing

While it is relatively easy to drill conventional rock formations and extract oil from them, there are impermeable rock formations as well loaded with oil reserves. Tight oil is the name given to such oil reservoirs located in extremely impermeable rocks. Drilling through such places requires extensive process such as hydraulic fracturing and acidizing to access the oil. This is one of the many efficient ways to not let oil reservoirs in impermeable rocks to go to waste as well.

These are basically the techniques that have been around for ages but now have been improvised and revised to fit in the scene. As an increasing number of petroleum engineers look for ways to minimize costs and maximize profit, innovating existing methods has taken a central role in technology improvement.

Role Of Civil Engineers In Infrastructural Development

Like many other sciences, the traces of Civil engineering can be traced back to ancient times. The Greeks with their extensive and top-notch infrastructure were considered the pioneers in laying the foundation of modern engineering branches. They were the epitome of sophisticated civil engineering and their works prove to be the best case studies for students even today. The first act of civil engineering can be traced back to ancient times when the first house was built or a tree trunk was laid across a river to construct a bridge. Ancient feats such as the building of the Egyptian pyramids and Roman road systems are based on civil engineering principles.

The importance of Civil engineering has only increased ever since with it becoming one of the most sought after professions in the world! Infrastructure Development involves fundamental structures that are required for the functioning of a community & society and in order for any community to sustain and manoeuvre; you need the development of an efficient infrastructure. Who else is better than designing and putting together an infrastructure that is not only efficient but functional too? Yes you are right, Civil engineers.

Civil engineers have one of the most important and pivotal role in the development of society’s infrastructure which is mostly of course is referred to structures like roads, bridges, buildings, water supply system, sewerage system, electric grids, energy and water source identification and their exploitation with maximum efficiency, development of proficient water purification and waste management systems as well. All of this is imperative to building and sustaining a society not only useful to its residents but the environment as well. And governments cannot manage to pull this off without the help from skilled professionals, can they?

This is where Civil engineers jump into the scene. They are responsible for building good quality transportation systems such as highways, bridges, roads, airports, underground tubes and tunnels, railway lines and sea ports. A civil engineer is concerned with determining the right design for these structures and looking after the construction process so that the longevity of these structures is guaranteed after completion. The core purpose here is to utilize the given space with maximum efficiency without wasting any and designing such transportation systems that are comfortable to public and easy on the environment at the same time is extremely challenging.

That is where Civil engineering merges into the Environmental Engineering. Governments and organizations these days are concerned about restoration and sustainability of the environment like never before and it’s the need of the hour to design projects and structures keeping their environmental effect in mind. Civil engineers in this case are required to design structures and systems that could be employed in applications of various methods to purify the contaminated air, water and soil.

UAE is one of the fastest growing economies in the world and has already spent billions of dollars on infrastructure development be it highways, airports, ports and power plants. That is why the scope of Civil engineering in the region is very promising with a big job opportunity that awaits Civil engineers from all over the world. So if you are a Civil engineer looking for a better opportunity, this might be it for you.

Top 4 Most In Demand Engineering Sectors In Dubai

One of the many industries flourishing tremendously in the UAE is the engineering sector. Growth in this sector is resulting into higher budgets for the projects which ultimately require more proficient, talented and skilled labour and experts in their respected fields. There has been an increased positive trend among companies to hire the best of the best, this fact paired with their heavy budgets and investments in the industry has led to higher salary packages and perks for engineers working in that region. And it does not come to us as a surprise that nowadays anyone graduating as an engineer has their eyes set on one of the many prestigious engineering and development companies in the UAE.

However, as high the rewards of engineering jobs as it could be in UAE from high salaries to respectable positions, it must be kept in mind that achieving that position is not at all easy. The truth is finding a job in engineering sector even in UAE can be extremely difficult and exhausting unless your skills, talent and education is above average, proves you a competent person and appears promising to the company’s future.

UAE is probably the fastest growing region in the Middle East and has automatically attracted a people from all walks of life to come and contribute to their growing economy and infrastructure including engineers. Although every engineering field has something to offer to specialists, the below mentioned ones are specifically thriving at a faster rate in UAE than others and generating more engineering jobs as well.

1.     Petroleum Engineering

What made the Arab countries rise and shine in the world and become filthy rich is their oil reserves. The world is running out of fuel day by day and what we are left with is treated more preciously than food, extracting petroleum has never been so highly paying.

Petroleum engineering sector demands highly experienced and with each passing day, the need for improving the petroleum extracting process and techniques is increasing. UAE offers some amazing job opportunities and fat salary packages to skilled petrochemical engineers from all over the world. The field is full of challenges and gets more interesting as with time and experience. Engineers are mainly involved in designing, improving oil extracting techniques and procedures and their implementation in field.

2.     Chemical Engineering

While petroleum engineers are more concerned with developing and improving oil extraction methods and procedures, it is the chemical engineers who are involved in its further treatment, purification, decomposition, separation and conversion into useable products. No two engineering fields really work exclusively, they all depend on each other to bring the final product to life so is the case with petroleum and chemical engineers. One may choose to graduate in either of these fields and bag a highly paying job in petroleum industry in UAE.

3.     Civil Engineering

What is it that attracts people and tourists to UAE especially Dubai from all around the globe? The region is full of beautiful and mesmerising architecture and ends up being the top most visited tourist destination every year! There is not one piece of architecture in Dubai that is not the epitome of excellence and fine engineering. And with so many more construction projects and expansion of resorts and tourists destinations in Dubai and other parts of UAE, there has been a high demand of civil engineers. The pay scale and perks associated to civil engineering jobs makes up for the work they have to do in extreme climate.

4.     Environmental Engineering

Environmental engineering goes hand in hand with practically every other engineering sector especially petroleum and civil. The rapid industry growth actually poses huge danger to the environment and as crucial as it is to push through the boundaries of expansion in industrial development it is equally important to take the threats it poses to the environment. That is where environmental engineers come into action. They work alongside civil and petroleum engineers, combining their knowledge of the environment with engineering and come up with better management systems. A huge contribution of environmental engineers in UAE is their work on preserving and managing water resources and dealing with water treatment.

Engineering branches besides these are also in popular demand in the UAE but these are the ones which stand out due to their sheer demand of skilled professionals and exceptionally high salaries.

Waste Water Treatment – Nano Technology Is The Future

Water besides other natural resources has been exploited at the hands of human race for centuries now and it will not be long when countries will go into wars only because of water shortage. Around the world today, more than 2.6 billion people do not have access to clean, potable water forcing them to use contaminated wastewater which often leads to diseases and illness that are potentially life threatening. Despite having huge oceans filled with endless water resources, it is practically impossible to utilize it for drinking, cleaning and other purposes. The limited availability of natural resources has forced us to put our water usage under control and at the same time develop advanced and improved methods to manage water and waste water more sustainably.

One really lucid shortcoming of advanced technologies is to control their prices and cost without losing the efficiency of methods. Using high-tech water management processes by industries is not only crucial by costly as well which presents an exceptional challenge for companies to come up with extremely efficient and cost-effective services and procedures to deal with the dire situation at hand.

Wastewater treatment is basically a process that involves cleaning of domestic water through various processes and makes it reusable. With water resources so limited, we cannot afford wasting so much of water every day, can we?

Water cleaning methods are mainly divided into three categories, Biological Treatment, Physical Treatment and Chemical Treatment. In Biological Treatment methods, microorganisms especially bacteria play an important role; they are basically the catalyst running this method. They either decompose the wastewater biochemically or break down the organic material and improve water’s quality. The most common type of Chemical treatment method is Chlorination of waste water; other processes also involve neutralization and use of ozone as disinfectant. Physical treatments include filtration, sedimentation and aeration, out of these three methods filtration is something that doesn’t require an extensive setup, expensive materials and is rather fast, making it both cost-effective and efficient.

Filtration of polluted water has come a long way. While most of the solid waste can be removed in initial processes, filtration has been in use for years to remove finer waste materials. The floe that passes the initial cleaning processes are passed on to beds of porous media such as sand or coal or a mixed media such as fine granet, silica and coal in layers that filter the water and further remove any micro contaminants.

Although filtration of many levels and efficiencies is already in practiced in industries, it is actually the Nano technology that shows us a promising future with better efficiencies, less costly material and better, faster results. It has emerged as one of the leading new methods with great potential to treat wastewater in a more helpful and proficient manner than methods that have been previously used and mentioned above.

Unlike conventional water purification techniques involve several technical challenges that increase the cost and reduce the effectiveness of removing certain contaminants from water, nano technology ensures a highly efficient procedure through the use of nanomaterials. Nanomaterials work owing to their high reactivity, high degree of functionalization and a large specific surface area which makes them excellent candidates for future applications in wastewater treatment and water purification.

Researchers have used various nanomaterials such as metal nanoparticles, metal oxides, carbon compounds, zeolite, and filtration membranes and have successfully developed and presented modern ways to treat wastewater. They have developed techniques such as Purification by ZnO particles, Nano filtration by Reverse Osmosis and Polyrhodanine-encapsulated Magnetic Nanoparticles which have the ability to effectively remove contaminants even at low concentrations.

Perhaps the future isn’t that dark anyway as long as we have the advantage of science and technology at our hands.

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