Doing the Impossible

August 20, 2005

Recently completed this summer were the rock silos of Continental Cement Company in Hannibal Missouri. This was a unique and challenging project. The concrete shelf which carries the bottom funnel of the rock silo was in complete failure. This shelf supports the entire weight of the contents of the 100 foot tall silo.

First, the silo was emptied to relieve the stress factors. The next step was the demolition of all failed concrete portions, followed by placement of all new steel reinforcement and lastly the pumping of high performance grout into the concrete forms. The grout was pumped up 60 feet in the air and tight under the compression ring of the ‘in place’ steel funnel. Did I mention this was in a work space no larger than three feet wide for men and machines. This was all accomplished without the need to remove the steel funnel. Removing this funnel would have been huge for the cement company in both costs and down time.

I would like to thank the Goedecke Company, Sika Corporation and the management of Continental Cement Co. Special thanks to the project foreman, Mr. David Schmitt, who made this a success with his patience and ingenuity.

As published in the Superior internal newsletter, August 2005