As reinforcement to the structure and rigidity of concrete, post tension cables, allow construction teams the ability to do more with their resources. Steel wires surrounded by plastic are pulled tightly after the concrete has been poured. One cable by itself has a breaking tension of about 41,000 pounds. They are usually applied to single strands or braided through the slab. Using this technique increases the strength of buildings, bridges, and other places that require concrete slabs. Here is a breakdown of the benefits that crews are seeking when they use post tension cables.
Increased Load Capacity
As post tension cables make concrete more stable and rigid, that also translates to an increased load capacity. Instead of using more concrete, builders can reduce the weight of the project but build strength. Therefore, a bridge or building will be safer, more structurally sound, and able to bear heavier loads. Even if the concrete becomes somehow compromised and cracks begin to form in certain areas, those cracks will be held more tightly together, allowing the needed repairs to be less extensive. This also makes the project more cost efficient as fewer materials are necessary to achieve the desired results.
Post tension cables create the ability to use thinner and more continuous slabs of concrete. This further reduces the amount of concrete needed for building projects which also reduces the weight. Using fewer beams that run from one end to the other creates a clearer construction that increases strength and is also more cost-efficient. This is a particularly important feature for tall office or apartment buildings that need to withstand the forces of high winds and, in some areas, the trembles from earthquakes. It also makes it possible to complete construction in soft soil and also allows for the construction of bridges over larger bodies of water.
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