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History of concrete

It is hard to imagine a world without concrete. Without it, we would not have towering skyscrapers, roads, cement or any of the other building blocks of the modern world. The concrete that we all know and use today was created in 1824 by the Englishman Joseph Aspdin and is known as portland cement. Although many people think cement and concrete are the same things, cement is actually just a component of concrete which needs the addition of sand and water to create a paste used for building with.

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Concrete has its origins dating back to 3000 BC where the ancient Egyptians used an early form of it. They utilised mud and straw in manufacturing bricks and a mix of lime and gypsum to make the mortars, this was used in the construction of pyramids and dwellings of the time and enabled them to create long-lasting and iconic buildings we can see still standing today.

The Romans also made use of an early form of concrete which helped them construct some of the marvels of Italy, Spain and Greece. The colosseum and the Pantheon are just two of these structures which can be seen still standing strong. The Romans used the addition of animal products to make an admix to reach certain desired targets or goals of the cement, you can still get admixes today. In 1889 Alvord lord bridge was the first bridge to be constructed out of reinforced concrete and it is still standing strong today.

In 1903 the world's first high-rise building constructed from concrete was built. Standing at 16 floors tall, the Ingalls building can still be seen in Ohio and is considered on of the greatest engineering achievements of its time. Just 5 years later in 1908, Thomas Edison built the first residential homes made from concrete in Union, New Jersey. These homes are still standing today and paved the way for the modern home which withstands many adverse weather conditions and provides a safer, more stable home.

In 1992 the tallest building constructed out of concrete and standing at 65 floors tall was completed in Chicago, Illinois. The building is known as 311 south wacker can still be seen today and is the 21st tallest building in the United States. In 1999 the introduction of polished concrete entered the world and has become so fashionable that it is used in both retail and residential properties around the world.

 

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