Concrete solution to corroded steel

A team from Keele University has developed a technique to identify corroded steel within concrete by non-destructive means.


A team from the Institute for the Environment, Physical Sciences and Applied Mathematics at KeeleUniversity has developed a technique to identify corroded steel within concrete by non-destructive means.



Reinforced concrete can suffer dangerous and potentially catastrophic deterioration when the reinforcing steel becomes corroded, making regular assessment critical. Commercial techniques currently available involve invasive procedures including damaging the concrete or provide indirect evidence of corrosion.



The new hybrid technology developed by the Keele team has the potential to replace these invasive and less conclusive methods. The concrete survey and repair industries are already said to be showing considerable interest.



The amount of civil infrastructure in Europe using reinforced concrete, such as motorways, car parks and large buildings, creates a potential market of approximately £100 million. An even larger market is available if heritage buildings are included as often only non-destructive testing methods are permitted.



The Keele team, led by Professor Peter Haycock, is working in collaboration with Dr Steve Hoon from ManchesterMetropolitanUniversity.


According to a statement, the project has already attracted commercial interest and a new company, SciSite Limited, has been formed as a spin out from the university to exploit this innovative technology and provide a much-needed solution for the industry. This has attracted funding from a range of West Midlands sources and is currently undertaking its first commercial work around the UK.