The Future of HydroDemolition: Innovations and Advancements

February 28, 2024

In 2022, the market size of the U.S. construction sector was valued at around 1.8 trillion U.S. dollars. There’s a lot of movement happening within the construction and demolition industry, and that includes advancements for HydroDemolition as well, which is constantly evolving and advancing at a steady pace. The future of demolition is HydroDemolition, with consistent innovation and advancements, shaping a future of efficient, and improved demolition practices everywhere. 

Fast Growing Technology 

HydroDemolition has been used consistently in the field for around twenty years now. When this technology first began, it was more elementary and less powerful than it is now. Over the years, new robotic systems have replaced earlier rudimentary systems. This made it easier for contractors to work quickly while also staying at a safe distance from dangerous aspects of the job site, like flying debris. 

HydroDemolition saw its conception in the 1980s, working as the byproduct of a joint venture led by the Swedish National Road Administration, who at the time, were looking to develop safer and more efficient alternatives to conventional concrete removal methods.  Within just a few years, the Swedish Government was celebrating the technology, and in 2008 when the European EN 1504 Standards were announced, HydroDemolition manufacturers celebrated their own victory, as the technology they were producing met these standards nearly perfectly.  The technology continues to advance, with AquaJet and similar manufacturers of HydroDemolition equipment consistently testing new methods and features to make HydroDemolition an even safer, more efficient process than it already is. 


A Smart Solution 

Concrete structures are deteriorating rapidly, but HydroDemolition offers an efficient solution. But that’s not the only infrastructure set in trouble.  Roger Simonsson, AquaJet’s Managing Director had this to say

  “In addition to roads and bridges, water management systems, such as dams and reservoirs are in desperate need of repair. HydroDemolition has proven a cost-effective and environmentally friendly solution for these challenging applications.”

And he’s not wrong, especially not in the U.S. where plenty of our infrastructure is crumbling at an alarming rate. ASCE reports that 43% of America’s public roadways are in poor or mediocre condition, furthermore, more than 230,000 U.S. bridges require repair and preservation work. To make it worse, there is a water main break every two minutes, which causes an estimated 6 billion gallons of treated water to be lost each day. 

These numbers are so high, that the United States’ broken infrastructure is being considered a national security threat. But what would happen if we focused more on fixing our infrastructure? It’s estimated that increasing public spending on infrastructure to levels similar to the mid-twentieth century would create more than 3 million jobs by 2029. The U.S. economy would also have the potential to grow by $2.70 for every dollar spent. 

The solution? HydroDemolition. 

If HydroDemolition was utilized more often, we’d not only see a boost to the economy, job creation, and productivity, but we’d also cut the time it would take to rebuild our nation down by nearly half. HydroDemolition is the perfect solution to the complex problem of failing infrastructure and for good reason. 

HydroDemolition boost the economy, job creation and productivity

HydroDemolition carries multiple benefits, such as:

  • Low impact means virtually no silica dust is released because it is captured by the water
  • HydroDemolition equipment can be compact and able to fit into hard-to-reach spaces
  • HydroDemolition is up to twenty-five times faster than a jackhammer
  • Up to half the water used can be recycled, saving water for our planet and future jobs
  • HydroDemolition repairs can last up to three times longer than standard methods
  • HydroDemolition is more advanced and produces more efficient, more precise results
  • Requires a smaller crew to complete the job
  • Is much safer than traditional methods and machinery 
  • Allows selective and non-selective removal 
  • Keeps rebars intact and clean 
  • Causes NO microfractures for greater longevity 
  • Reduces noise pollution significantly
  • Requires less crew and less materials

All of the benefits of HydroDemolition add up to one smart solution suitable for even more complicated, hazardous, or unusual projects. Aggregate Technologies has experience in handling projects of all types, even those deemed dangerous, quite successfully. 

HydroDemolition equipment reduces labor costs

HydroDemolition Equipment 

As mentioned above, HydroDemolition’s equipment is constantly evolving and improving. Aggregate Technologies uses some of the most advanced robotic demolition machinery on the market, offering a slew of features that are meant to complete your job correctly and quickly. Our HydroDemolition equipment offers an automated solution that is much faster and can even reduce labor. Our equipment works up to 25 times faster than standard jackhammers and other common handheld demolition equipment. This greatly increases productivity for large-scale concrete removal projects and allows our team to very quickly complete smaller projects. 

Our HydroDemolition equipment uses high-pressure water jets as powerful as 40,000 psi, which blast through concrete and other materials, descaling and cleaning the rebar in the process. Our equipment, like other HydroDemolition equipment, doesn’t damage your rebar and leaves it intact. Further, our equipment offers exceptional horizontal, vertical, and overhead reach — as high as 23 feet, which is about as high as half of the Hollywood sign in California! 

Our outstanding cutting head and multi-axis 3D positioning systems allow for efficient removal on even the most challenging areas including corners and spaces that would traditionally be very difficult to access with common demolition hand tools. With additions, we can utilize a multi-modular system that features a single feed beam. This beam stands to ensure adaptability to different applications. It adjusts from 3 feet to 19 feet and is most commonly suited for hard-to-reach corners and curved surface areas. This modular system can be safely anchored to the concrete surface and can be held in position with hydraulic platforms for increased versatility.                

But what about water treatment? Aggregate Technologies has a solution for that as well.    

High-pressure pump and closed-loop system

Our compact and fully automated system treats the wastewater on-site and on-demand. Our treatment system can move as much as 88 gpm or about 5,283 gallons of water per hour. How much water is that? That’s about as much water that’s found in one semi-tank, or about half of what’s in your family’s swimming pool, which is quite a bit of water! 

This process is done through a series of treatment chambers that reduce the pH to between 7.5 and 8.5 and suspended solids to between 20 and 40 mg/l. This allows for safe recycling and reuse during the process as well as a safe release into the community, as set by OSHA standards. Our water treatment system can be set up in less than 4 hours and requires minimal oversight during operation, this allows for optimal crew utilization. Our water treatment system also allows for the reuse of blast water in the high-pressure pump, which is part of a closed-loop system. This system is advanced and allows us to recycle at least half of the water used, which can result in significant time and resource savings, especially for remote sites or for sites with a sensitive ecosystem. 

Our equipment is efficient, cutting-edge, it’s safe, and it’s precise, allowing the best results in a fraction of the time. This is a huge change from the equipment that was first introduced over 30 years ago and is likely to improve as HydroDemolition is realized as the safer, smarter, more efficient solution. 

HydroDemolition is the perfect solution for nearly any concrete removal or repair job. With its ability to fit into small spaces, and ability to scale to fit larger jobs, there’s little that HydroDemolition and Aggregate Technologies can’t handle. As the HydroDemolition continues to advance and evolve, Aggregate Technologies remains at the forefront of the technology and the solution to crumbling infrastructure across the nation. To learn more about HydroDemolition, and how it can help revolutionize your project, contact us today. 

Contact us when you need a contractor with a record of safety and success for your concrete cutting and hydrodemolition needs.

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