The runway and its auxiliary air traffic areas at Istanbul-Sabiha Gökçen Airport (SAW) are set for renewal. The present poor condition of the paved areas is a result of the success of the airport and its steadily increasing traffic over recent decades. Istanbul's second major airport after Atatürk Airport handles over 900 aircraft movements a day and 31.4 million passengers a year (2017), on a single runway. A construction intervention on this intensively used air traffic structure is therefore only possible at night.
The Zurich SME Concretum offers exactly the right solution for this demanding challenge with its rapid cement. A Concretum rapid concrete can be produced, transported and processed like a normal concrete, but then it hardens to a fully loadable surface within only one hour, whereas regular concrete takes days.
This innovative rapid concrete technology developed by the former ETH spin-off is unique worldwide. Successfully launched in 2010 for major infrastructure projects on the Swiss market, it has been used at Zurich Airport and in many SBB repair projects. Since 2016, Concretum has focused internationally, and now, following many successful smaller projects, has won for the first time, an order worth millions at an international airport. This lighthouse project is being closely monitored by airport operators world-wide, as the current situation in Istanbul (the poor condition of paved air traffic areas combined with the very strong and growing capacity utilisation) is comparable to that of many large airports in Europe.
About the project
From March to August 2018, a total of 535 concrete slabs measuring 5.0 x 3.75 metres and 40-55 centimetres thick will be replaced on the runway at Istanbul-Sabiha Gökçen Airport. This corresponds to a total area of approximately 10,000 square metres. The construction company YBT has 5 nights per week from 01:00 to 06:00 o'clock at its disposal. In these extremely tight 5-hour time slots, up to 100 square metres of runway must each be excavated and new concrete poured.
The fast concrete Concretum Q-FLASH 2/20 is workable for about 90 minutes and reaches the strength required for a fully loaded passenger aircraft to land on it one hour later. Compared to conventional concrete, this special concrete is also characterised by very high impermeability and resistance. Due to the high quality of the new concrete surfaces, a service life of approx. 40 years can be expected.