Concrete is the most common and primary material used for construction in the world. Underwater concrete is employed for the construction of complex structures which are partly or fully immersed in water such as dams, bridges, swimming pools, or any other structure where a part or the whole structure lies underwater. The utilization of underwater concrete is not new or recent, it has been used for construction purposes since a long time. In recent years, through improved methods of manufacturing and employment of developed equipment tremendous technological progress has been made. Further improvements have been aimed for with regards to the mix proportions design, the methods of implementation, and the quality of concrete admixtures itself. Different methods of implementation include tremie method, pump method, and hydrovalve method.
The demand of high strength raw materials such as admixtures, cement, sealants, and adhesives in the construction industry coupled with a large presence of concrete contractors and manufacturers in developing nations such as India and China are anticipated to drive the expansion of the market during the forecast period.
In terms of raw materials, the global underwater concrete market can be segmented into admixtures, cement, aggregates, and others. The aggregates raw materials segment held a prominent share of the underwater concrete market in 2016, which can be attributed to the superior binding properties of the aggregates. Furthermore, the increasing usage of recycled aggregates in addition to natural aggregates is estimated to boost the expansion of the market for the segment during the forecast period. The cement raw material segment also held a considerable share of the underwater concrete market in 2016. The development of Portland cement is a key driver for this segment. The advanced cement has improved properties which have aided in a hassle-free placement of cement with the help of anti-washout technology. Admixtures and others raw materials segments are projected to expand consistently during the forecast period.
In terms of applications, the global underwater concrete market can be segmented into hydro projects, marine, underwater repairs, tunnels, swimming pools, and others. Demand for concrete in hydro projects such as the construction of hydropower generations plants has been significant in the last few years. Demand is projected to rise on account of increasing efforts by national governments toward the development and adoption of renewable and clean hydro energy. Demand for concrete in the construction, repair, and maintenance of marine structures such as dams and foundations of bridges has also been considerable in 2016. The repair and maintenance of existing structures is a primary driver for expansion of the application segment. The increase in disposable income to experience lavish lifestyles has been a key factor fuelling the increase in demand for concrete in the construction of swimming pools around the world.
In terms of regions, the global underwater concrete market can be segmented into North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and Middle East & Africa. North America held the dominant share of the global market in 2016 followed by Europe. This can be attributed to the usage of underwater concrete in the construction of hydropower plants in developed countries such as the U.S., Germany, Denmark, and sub-regions such as the U.K. The market in Asia Pacific is anticipated to expand rapidly during the forecast period due to the rapid industrialization and development in emerging economies such as China and India. The markets in Latin America and Middle East & Africa are likely to expand considerable during the forecast period due to the booming construction industry.
Key players operating in the global underwater concrete market include Sika AG, HeidelbergCement AG, Conmix Ltd., Five Star Products Inc., and Cemex S.A.B. de C.V.. The companies are focusing on mergers, acquisitions, and other strategies to increase their market share.