In
the modern world the concrete is one of the most demanded construction
materials, which was, is and will be used for thousands years. It is used in various
areas, starting with a small lintel over the window in your house and ending
with a multi-storey building somewhere in Dubai, Moscow or Kuala-Lumpur. So,
what is that fascinating material, which can be met all over the world?    

It
is complicated to tell where does exactly concrete came from, since its roots goes
deep in the past. The first reference to the material, which in a way reminds
of a modern concrete, is a concrete floor in a little hut in a valley of Danube
River around 5600 B.C. This floor was made of mixing gravel, water and reddish
limestone, which was mined around that place.

We Will Write a Custom Essay Specifically
For You For Only $13.90/page!


order now

The
next significant appearance of concrete material was found around 3000 B.C.
when Egyptian pyramids were built up. Egyptians used limestone, gypsum and mud
to create materials similar to nowadays bricks, which were used to build famous
Egyptian pyramids.

Later
on, in 200 B.C. a raw form of concrete, which was similar that used to cast a
floor in the hut near Danube River, was used to build a famous China’s Great
Wall.

In
200 A.D. concrete was relatively widely used by Romans. They developed a concrete
mix by adding volcanic ash and slaked lime to their mixtures. Roman Colosseum
and the Pantheon are two most incredible creatures of the Roman Empire, which
can be observed nowadays. The Roman Empire did get all the opportunities to
develop, but the fall and Dark Ages led to the stagnation process for many
centuries ahead.

As
we can see, a concrete made a long way of development through centuries. Although,
the history of concrete is tight together with the history of concrete.

The
next appearance of concrete in the world was approximately 200 years ago. The 19th
showed a rapid development through all over the world. In 1824 an English   bricklayer, Joseph Aspdin, created a concrete
which is still used in the industry – Portland cement.  An important discovery he made, showed that
burning clay with ground chalk produces a cement, which appears much stronger
than cement made from crushed limestone. Name was given because of Portland
quarries, where stone was mined from. The mass production of cement appeared in
Russia and France in 1840s, in Germany in 1850s and 1879s in the USA.

The
next significant step in the concrete technology is dated at the end of the Industrial
revolution, when in 1849 a French gardener Joseph Monier put a steel mesh in
concrete. In 1867 J. Monier received a patient for the reinforced concrete,
after the technology was presented at the Paris exposition. The reinforced concrete
technology, based on the Monier’s discovery, is still used, as the high tensile
strength of steel in combination with the great compressive strength of
concrete gives various number of opportunities to use it.

In
20th century the concrete technology has increased its positions all
around the world and many significant events took place that century, such as
the first high-rise building in the world, the Ingalls Building (1903),
delivery of ready mix concrete in 1913, building of the Hoover Dam in 1936, an investigation
and development of fiber reinforcement in 1970s, inventing the polished
concrete technology in 1999.

So,
what is concrete in the 21st century? According to JSCE Committee
(2010), concrete is a composite material, or its hardened form, consisting of
materials such as cement, water, fine aggregate, coarse aggregate, and mixtures
added if necessary, blended together by mixing or other methods. The most
common used cement these days is Portland Cement (OPC).

Now
we are just at the beginning of 21st century, but many innovative
technologies are approaching and developing every single day, for instance,
have you heard about the self-healing concrete, a graphic concrete, temperature-reactive
concrete tiles, carbon nanotubes (Brownell, 2008)? There are so many innovative
technologies, that the future hold for the construction technology, therefore
we do need to investigate it.