Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (E)
"Reinforced concrete, as we know it today, was invented in the year 1849 by Joseph Monier. Since then, it has been the building material of choice. However, it has many drawbacks, the most important being its adverse impact on the environment. Scientists today are developing alternative construction materials that address these problems. Taking a lead in this are the scientists at CSIR – Structural Engineering Research Centre. Not only are they developing materials that help the environment, they also help address different needs of the people like those of affordable housing, toilets and even uninterrupted power supply. This film looks at the new construction materials developed by them that are rapidly becoming game changers in the construction industry. CSIR – SERC has been doing an impressive body of work in the interventions in Reinforced Textile Concrete. TRC is an upcoming non-conventional construction material consisting of fine grained cementitious binder and non-metallic textile reinforcement. In most cases concrete is reinforced with steel, which unfortunately also has the drawback of being susceptible to corrosion and fatigue. However, TRChas corrosion resistant reinforcement, is lightweight, more flexible and has higher efficiency due to low material consumption. CSIR – SERC has developed a crash barrier system using Glass Textile Reinforcement Concrete. This crash barrier is set to meet all accreditation requirements as laid down by the Indian Road Congress (IRC). It is safe for road users, has light-weight prefabricated units that bring down construction time, is non-corrosive and durable, easy to install and replace, is capable of resisting impact forces in the event of vehicle collision, is flexible and induces less damage to vehicle and passengers. This premier research institute is also developing low – cost, easy to fabricate, lightweight, durable toilets using not just TRC but also thin precast concrete segmental panels. These toilets are going a long way in partnering with the Government of India’s Swachha Bharat Mission and the goal of having an Open – Defecation Free India. These toilets are built using precast TRC Panels. They are light-weight, non-corrosive, durable and can withstand rough weather conditions. It is also more economical than a conventional toilet. TRC toilets hold great potential to solve the problems related to lack of toilets in the interior regions of India. Apart from the TRC toilets, CSIR – SERC has also developed a novel technology to construct cost-effective, durable and ecologically safe toilets using thin precast concrete segmental panels. The panels can be joined one above the other with perfect bonding and through connecting rods. The septic tank can also be built using thin precast panels. Assembling of panels and erection of toilet can be completed in just three hours’ time and can be fabricated at a low cost of just ₹ 12000/-. CSIR – SERC has developed pre-engineered precast lightweight large wall and roof panels for mass housing that will contribute immensely towards urban infrastructure development in India. The light weight panels have a sandwich construction with expanded polystyrene as core and self-compacting concrete skins. The performance of these light weight panels have been evaluated for flexural, axial and seismic actions. These panels weigh about two thirds less than the conventional panels. They have low thermal conductivity, moderate compressive strength and excellent shock absorption ability. These panels are also environmentally friendly. Another game changer developed by CSIR – SERC is the Emergency Restoration System for Power Lines (ERS). Traditionally, in the event of Transmission Line (TL) tower failures, permanent restoration may take several weeks. But the Emergency Restoration System (ERS) is a light weight modular system used as temporary support structure to restore power lines immediately with minimal losses. "