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Basalt Reinforcement

Article on pertaining to the use of basalt reinforcement in the concrete

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Basalt rebar sizes

The construction industry is becoming aware of the existence of reinforcing bars made from fiber-reinforced plastic. Fiberglass rebar has been on the market for some time, making inroads where steel rebar doesn’t work well. The first common applications have been used in corrosive environments and places where the induced fields resulting from steel reinforced concrete structures exposed to high levels of radio frequency radiations are a problem. There is now a new entry into this field, rebar made from basalt continuous filaments.

Basalt Fiber Rebar

Image 12 — Corrosion resistant basalt rebar is tied with plastic zip ties as opposed to wire.

The construction industry is becoming aware of the existence of reinforcing bars made from fiber-reinforced plastic. Fiberglass rebar has been on the market for some time, making inroads where steel rebar doesn’t work well. There is now a new entry into this field, rebar made from basalt continuous filaments.

Video: Flower Beds and fences made using basalt rebar

Because of a request by a lady who wanted permanent flower beds that people confined in wheelchairs could garden, Monolithic developed a new way of making attractive, practical flower beds, using thin concrete and a material we’ve recently discovered and have been working with: basalt rebar. That led to a new way of making tough, long-lasting but good-looking fences. That process also uses spray-on concrete and basalt rebar. Learn all about both items in this delightful video, narrated by President David South.

Video: Using Basalt Rope in Building a Monolithic EcoShell

David South, president of Monolithic Constructors, Inc., narrates this easy-to-understand, enjoyable, and informative video. In it, David describes the qualities of basalt rope and demonstrates the step-by-step process of using it when building a Monolithic EcoShell.

How does Monolithic control/negate cracking as the concrete dries?

There is an old saying: “If you do not want concrete to crack leave it in the sack.” We subscribe 100% to that saying. So, what we do is control the effects of cracking by using reinforcing steel and/or other reinforcing such as basalt. Basalt rebar is relatively new, but as a replacement for steel rebar because it has the advantage of not rusting.

Salt Water Concrete—A Reality

Basalt reinforced domes would be an attractive, low-cost solution for coastal communities. Small homes (similar to this steel reinforced EcoShell) could be built by hand.

Can you imagine being able to build a concrete dome on the seashore using only the available sea water and beach sand? David B. South addresses the building of Ecoshells using salt water and salty sand in his latest “President’s Sphere.” The use of basalt rebar makes this not only possible, but completely simple and feasible.

A letter from Cascade Domes

Two 15’ ecoshells built by Cascade Domes as part of a stage for a local music festival.

We love to hear from dome builders around the world! It can be hard to build a new business, but the dome building business is definitely worth the time and effort. Recently, we heard from a relatively new dome building company in western Canada—Cascade Domes. Read advice from owner, Steve White.

Meeting Today’s Needs

We are delighted to share our experience and expertise and teach our cutting-edge construction technology. Our position: No one outfit, no matter how big, can build all the buildings. We need you to help. The need for buildings is astronomical and you can help.

Can I use steel fibers as the primary reinforcement?

Concrete is a fantastic construction material. However, the real strength of concrete is in compression. In tension, concrete has little reliable strength. We make up for lack of tension strength by using reinforcement. We have learned that steel reinforcement bar (rebar) adds the best tension strength for the lowest cost of any reinforcement material. Many other reinforcements are available.

Shipment to Haiti to Rebuild Orphanage

Goods and Employment — Andrew South and Derek South will travel to Haiti to train and supervise native workers in the construction of the EcoShells.

April 2011 promises to be an exciting, hope-filled month for donors to Domes For The World (DFTW). Andrew South, president of DFTW, said that that’s when a significant shipment will be leaving for Haiti.

Monolithic Dome Builders List

This list is made for those professionals that have paid a small fee to get their names put on our website. This is not an endorsement. PLEASE do your due diligence while dealing with any of these builders; check references.

Goals and the Big Picture

Goals are like road maps. If you reach for a goal and get side tracked, it is no more serious than driving for a destination and missing a turn. On the other hand, very few people ever get anywhere by wandering aimlessly.

Rentals and Ecoshells: a good first step for your dome building business

Shown here is an Ecoshell with a 20’ diameter. It’s one of the first ones we built as a commercial building. Notice that it is spherical in shape. Made as an Ecoshell I, it was built during a Monolithic Workshop, here at our plant in Italy, Texas. It is about 20 years old and has worked very well for us. The structure was painted with a white exterior coating.

People go through one of our Workshops to learn about and actually experience the construction of a Monolithic Dome. Some actually want to start a dome-building business of their own. But what should they start with? What’s their first product – a Monolithic Dome home? That sounds far too complicated for most beginners.

More About Monolithic’s EcoShell 1

Over the years, we have developed and done a lot of experimenting with our EcoShell 1 and our EcoShell 2. Today I want to continue the dialogue about the EcoShell 1.

The Pantheon – Rome – 126 AD

The Eye — Sunlight beams through the Pantheon’s oculus, down upon a throng of tourists.

Michelangelo (1475-1564) looked at everything with an artist’s critical eye, and he was not easily impressed. But when Michelangelo first saw the Pantheon in the early 1500s, he proclaimed it of “angelic and not human design.” Surprisingly, at that point, this classic Roman temple, converted into a Christian church, was already more than 1350 years old. What’s even more surprising is that the Pantheon, in the splendor Michelangelo admired, still stands today – another 500 years after he saw it. Monolithic’s President David South says that in building Monolithic Domes we have three major advantages the Pantheon’s builders simply did not have.

Rebuilding with Monolithic Technology

At Monolithic, we have developed a simple structure to provide for the basic needs of a family. It’s a Monolithic EcoShell dome, designed specifically to answer the needs of shelterless people worldwide.

Hempcrete and the Monolithic Dome

Hemp fibers embedded in lime (usually cement) binders forms hempcrete.

We regularly receive emails asking about using hempcrete in the Monolithic Dome or EcoShell. Hempcrete uses natural hemp fibers embedded in a lime binder — usually cement. It can provide some insulation and a little strength, but if used in a Monolithic Dome it actually weakens the dome and reduces its energy efficiency.

An Invitation To Study the Architecture of the Future

We now have the technology! It’s here. We have it! We now know how to construct domes affordably. Monolithic suggests that architects, engineers and anyone else involved in structural design or construction learn the advantages of modern domes, and study the technology it takes to build them. Let us teach you.

Steel Rebar Placement in a Monolithic Dome

Workers attaching hoop rebar to rebar hangers

It’s important to understand why we use rebar (reinforcing steel bar) in concrete. It’s used to absorb tension forces in concrete, since concrete has very poor strength as a tension material. So correct placement of rebar is essential.