A concrete plant is a critical piece of equipment for Ready Mix, Concrete Paving, and Precast companies. For companies using concrete daily, a concrete plant likely is a smart investment. Concrete is typically manufactured using two critical pieces of equipment; a concrete plant and a mixer. Both concrete plants and mixers come in many types, sizes and shapes. The concrete plant is the piece of equipment that measures then dispenses the ingredients for your concrete into a mixer. Some companies use truck mounted mixers and others use plant mixers. Some companies use large batches and other companies use small batches.
Concrete plants are generally categorized as Ready Mix (sometimes called transit mix), Central Mix (sometimes called paving plants), and Precast (sometimes called product). Each category is discussed more below.
Ready Mix Concrete Plant – A concrete plant without a plant mixer. Materials are weighed and dispensed into a mixer truck for mixing and delivery. Usually, produce 4 – 14 cu. yards per batch.
Central Mix Plant – A concrete plant with a plant mixer. These plants are commonly used for paving projects because the mixed concrete can be dispensed into a dump truck quickly for transport to a slip-form paver or concrete finishers. In many markets are used to premix materials before putting into a truck as a way to increase production.
Precast Plant – Precast plants also have a plant mixer and can vary dramatically in size and scope. The commonality in Precast concrete plants is the concrete produced is normally used at the plant location for manufacturing a product from concrete. Concrete mixed in a Precast plant is frequently dispensed into traveling buckets or other systems to move the material from the plant discharge to a mold or form. Precast concrete plants can be very small producing only a small amount of concrete each hour or they can be very large, complex and high production.
Accumulative Weighing Concrete Plants. This refers to a concrete plant where aggregate is stored in an overhead bin then dropped into a hopper on load cells (scale) until the desired amount of materials is reached.The material is then discharged onto a transfer conveyor.
Benefits – Accumulative plants usually have large bins (120+ tons) allowing for lots of material storage. These plants are frequently enclosed giving owners better control over aggregate moisture and temperature. Enclosed accumulative concrete plants frequently operate during all weather conditions including rain and cold.
Decumulative Weighing Concrete Plants. Sometimes called reverse weighing, these concrete plants do not have overhead aggregate storage. The material is placed in a hopper that sits on load cells (scale). During a batch the scale opens to discharge material onto the transfer conveyor until the desired amount of material has been discharged.
Benefits – Decumulative plants are usually more affordable because they are normally loaded directly by a front end loader eliminating the cost of the overhead bins and the feed system. Decumulative plants can be very high production or very low production depending on configuration. The lowest cost decumulative plants frequently operate at 40-60 cu. yards per hour max production while high production decumulative plants produce in excess of 150 cu. yards per hour.
You've got questions and we've got answers. Here are some of the basics of what concrete batching systems are and what you need to know before getting a quote for your job.