This past year, contractors and precast companies throughout North America got a chance to increase their productivity when it came to concrete monitoring. With the 2020 North American launch of Maturix® Smart Concrete® Sensors, they could now monitor concrete with fully wireless sensors that can be accessed remotely. All of which made monitoring concrete quicker and much more cost-effective.
The sensors caught a lot of industry interest because of this. Of course, that interest didn’t just come from the North American launch. The sensors were initially launched in Denmark and generated a lot of interest before coming to this continent. Since then, 555 Maturix suitcases have been distributed. With their help, builders were able to create 4,248 precast reports and 6,443 in-situ reports. That went on to improve 861 projects in just one year. (To see just how successful these projects have been, take a look at this interview with one of our clients.)
We’re excited to bring Maturix® Sensors to the North American market and have been fielding a lot of calls from clients interested in the technology. If you happen to be interested yourself and want to know more, we have created an easy-to-read online guide here for you on the most frequently asked questions about Maturix.
First Off, What Is Maturix?
We’ve shared that Maturix is a type of sensor that wirelessly monitors concrete as it develops. But there’s much more to it than that!
To start, the setup is simple. All the Maturix Sensor needs is a connection with a type K thermocouple wire, which is attached to the rebar within concrete. Once connected, the sensor will immediately start monitoring the concrete’s developing temperature and strength. The data it gains from this monitoring is then transferred wirelessly to a cloud-based platform. That platform will go on to send the data to any connected device a user chooses.
In short, Maturix makes fully remote monitoring possible and offers users a way to determine what exact temperature and strength their concrete has at any time. So contractors don’t have to send someone out to physically retrieve the data. And precast companies can remove the guesswork involved in determining when they should remove formwork. That allows them to save time, cut costs, reduce risks, maintain quality control, improve workflow, and more.
How Does It Work?
So, now, we know what it is and what it does.
But how exactly does Maturix work? How is it able to provide such accurate measurements on concrete temperature and strength?
Well, once it’s plugged into a thermocouple wire that’s embedded into a concrete slab, the Maturix Sensor is able to take the actual core temperature of that slab. Then, it can use that information to calculate the compressive strength of the concrete. To do that, it uses a calibrated maturity curve that’s based on ASTM C1074 — Standard Practice for Estimating Concrete Strength by the Maturity Method.
Many in the industry view this method to be one of the more highly accurate and reliable ones out there as the sensor’s thermocouple wire is embedded into the concrete. That gives the sensor a look at the concrete’s actual conditions. In return, construction workers can get a true reading on the status of their concrete on-site. So they can make better building decisions to reduce project risks.
What Makes It Different from Other Concrete Monitoring Devices Out There?
There are a number of differences that set Maturix apart from other sensors. But the most evident is its reusability. Unlike with most other wireless sensors, you can take the Maturix Sensors you used in a previous project and continue using them in future projects. Even if your future project needs to be done in multiple phases, you can still reuse your sensors after each phase, making Maturix highly efficient.
That’s mainly thanks to how these sensors are designed. The sensors themselves remain outside of the concrete in tough, durable cases. That way, they can stay safe while monitoring concrete at the worksite. At the same time, they’re still able to accurately monitor because they’re connected to thermocouple wires that are embedded in the concrete.
Because of that, the type K thermocouple wires themselves become unusable after one project. However, they are pretty easy to find around the world and can be bought for a reasonable price.
In short, you get to save a lot of money on buying sensors for each project while spending just a little bit to replace their thermocouple wires.
If you were to use other sensors, however, you’d likely have to worry about buying a whole new set of them for each project. There are also other disadvantages to consider too. For instance, sensors that use Bluetooth technology often expire after a single use. They also cannot transmit data from too far a distance, meaning users will still need to go to the worksite to access the data.
Temperature data loggers are not much better. They can be reusable. But their data needs to be manually collected and then manually exported and analyzed. There’s no system to do all that work for you. So it falls on your team to spend more time on that.
What about Data Collection? How Does That Work Differently?
When you use Maturix, you’ll find that once activated, it will transmit concrete monitoring data every 10 minutes. During this process, the data will go from the sensor to a cloud-based platform.
How Can I Access the Data through the Maturix Software?
Once your data is stored in the cloud-based platform, you can access it at any time through a browser on any connected device. You can go with any browser, but we recommend using Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox.
After your user account is set up then, you’ll be able to easily log in to the platform through your preferred browser and access your data. Once there, you’ll be all set to view all the concrete monitoring data you like!
Is There a Limit to the Number of Users Who Can Do the Same?
Not at all! You can invite as many users as you’d like to join your concrete monitoring. That way, you and your team can all see how your concrete develops as it happens in real time.
Is There a Way to Alert Myself and Others to Key Concrete Monitoring Moments?
Yes! Maturix offers an alert system so that the right people are alerted to critical monitoring activities at all times. That ensures everyone gets the right data at the right time, expediting approvals in the process. It also allows you and your team to better prepare for any sudden changes to your concrete’s condition.
Some of the critical activities you can notify yourself and others about include the following:
- Concrete temperature going above or below a certain value
- Temperature difference, concrete strength, or concrete maturity going above a certain value
- A Maturix Sensor not receiving data or being disconnected after a certain time
There’s no limit to how many of these notifications you can create either. So you can add as many or as few as you need to best serve your project.
Is All This Under Warranty?
Yes, these sensors are warrantied for life! All you need to do is maintain your monitoring service subscription, and we’ll continue to provide the best service possible for them.
What If I Have More Questions about Maturix?
This article should give you all the basic information you need to know in order to work with Maturix. But if you still have questions, don’t worry! There are plenty of resources at your disposal. For instance, we have a section on our website that deals with these and other frequently asked questions. You can also contact a representative of ours for a more hands-on approach to learning how to use Maturix.
In short, with Maturix, you not only get the benefits of concrete monitoring data wherever you are, you also get extensive technical support from Kryton.