EcoArmour vs Shotcrete vs Concrete Canvas

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Erosion control blankets are synthetic products that have been designed to protect the soil surface from various degrees of erosion.

Ranging from open meshes to dense mats and even hydraulical applications, erosion controls blankets protect vulnerable soil from wind and water erosion.

However, choosing the right erosion control blanket for your soil is vital.

There are a wide variety of erosion control blankets on the market, and each solution offers a range of benefits. It’s important you consider the implications of each solution carefully.

To help you out, we’ve put together this erosion control blanket guide. Looking at the three most effective erosion control solutions, this guide will help you choose the correct solution for your soil surface.

EcoArmour

EcoArmour is an Australian designed and manufactured synthetic erosion control blanket that has been designed for spraying through high-pressure hydroseeder equipment.

Once sprayed on soil, it dries and sets in a matter of hours, providing extended high-shear resistant erosion control.

One of the critical features of this custom designed erosion control blanket is the speed and ease at which it can be applied. Sprayed from a hydroseeder at ten times the speed of traditional alternatives, this method of application means the solution is both cost-effective and able to withstand the punishing Australian environment.

How does EcoArmour work?

A blend of minerals, interlocking fibres and speciality binders form EcoArmour’s durable, non-flammable crust.

The speciality binders adhere to and incorporate themselves into the substrate below, forming a tough, resilient cover that is also flexible enough to bind and move with the ground below it, eliminating cracking of the coating.

The Benefits of EcoArmour

Flexible

EcoArmour features a flexible membrane, meaning that it can support the growth of vegetation without removing the crust.

Water Repellent

The flexible membrane can also be made water repellent to prevent vegetation through the addition of a hydrophobic polymer.

Immediate protection

Unlike traditional erosion control blankets, EcoArmour dries in under three hours, offering you immediate protection.

Longevity

EcoArmour lasts a lot longer than traditional erosion control blankets. Our solution will provide 20 + years of protection. Plus, with a variety of oxides in the formula, we can alter the colour of the application to your taste.

Performs in the toughest conditions

Its advanced technology makes it the ideal erosion control and stabilisation product for:

Including all substrates:

  • Compacted clay
  • Rock
  • Sand
  • Sandy loam
  • Dispersive soils

and any soils that are extremely difficult to manage and access.

Shotcrete

With similar application to EcoArmour, Shotcrete is the process of pneumatically projecting mortar or concrete onto a surface or substrate at high velocity.

The solution can come prepared in either a wet mix or a dry mix, with the latter needing the addition of water just before its intended use.

Like EcoArmour, it can be applied rapidly, however, it takes considerably longer to set and cannot reach full strength until it does. You can add chemicals to the solution to help speed up the drying process, but the chemicals can decrease the strength of the shotcrete and are often caustic and pose health risks, particularly to the eyes.

How does Shotcrete work?

Shotcrete can be used to cover a range of surfaces. However, intensive preparation of the soil is required for it to be effective as an erosion control method.

Further to this, the installation of shotcrete requires the addition of steel mesh to help support and strengthen itself, whereas EcoArmour already contains everything it needs to form a robust surface – with more eco-friendly ingredients.

You should also be aware that Shotcrete cannot be applied when rainfall is imminent. Water exposure to unset shotcrete can cause it to run or slip, reducing the strength and durability of the product once it dries.

Benefits of Shotcrete

Rapid installation

Spraying concrete onto a surface at high velocity is, in theory, the perfect erosion control method. It’s fast and easy to apply. However, you should also take into account the soil preparation time and the amount of time it takes for Shotcrete to dry. These can drastically impact the effectiveness of the solution.

Flexible

One of Shotcrete’s best features is its ability to work on almost all surfaces. However, it should be noted that you may need to install a steel mesh to support the initial installation.

Decorative solution

The shotcrete process is popular in industries where concrete needs to be applied decoratively. Typical applications include theme park design, leisure centre swimming pools and skate park construction. While it may serve as an ideal decorative solution, it may not be an appropriate method for erosion control.

Concrete Canvas

Concrete Canvas is a flexible, concrete impregnated fabric that hardens when hydrated to form a thin, durable, waterproof and fire resistant concrete layer however, can be expensive.

Concrete Canvas allows for concrete construction without the need for plant or mixing equipment by simply positioning and rolling out the material on the desired area, adding water and allowing it to set.

Available in three thicknesses, it is utilised in various infrastructure projects as a form of slope protection, erosion control and ditch lining.

How does Concrete Canvas work?

Concrete canvas is a flexible fabric that contains a type of dry concrete mix in its fibres. When water is added to the fabric, the dry concrete hardens and reinforces the concrete.

To apply Concrete Canvas, you need to roll out the fabric with several people, add water and let it dry.

Benefits of Concrete Canvas

Cheap

Although a cheaper, more environmentally friendly alternative to Shotcrete, Concrete Canvas still fails to triumph over EcoArmour in cost, time and labour effectiveness.

Simple

Roll it out. Add water. Leave it to set. Sounds easy right? However, it should be noted that you will need to cut the canvas to the required length, roll it out and then secure it (by pegging, wiring, welding etc.) before it can be hydrated. In hot conditions, which are common in Australia, Concrete Canvas must be re-hydrated numerous times during its first 8 hours, increasing labour costs and reducing its effectiveness.

Which is the best erosion control solution?

Although all three methods will assist with batter stabilisation and erosion control, EcoArmour is the only solution that can support these functions in the most environmentally friendly, safe and cost-effective manner.

Further to this, the technology allows for vegetation to penetrate through the crust if needed, providing complete protection and control.

Its one-step process, combined with its ease of application and almost immediate effectiveness, EcoArmour is easily identified as the ideal solution.

 

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