Loughborough University
Leicestershire, UK
LE11 3TU
+44 (0)1509 222222
Loughborough University

Centre for Innovative and Collaborative Construction Engineering


Dr Richard Willets


Investigating the multiple influences affecting sustainability in a multidisciplinary engineering consultancy

Project Title

Improving Engineers responsibility and attitude to sustainable development




Professor Jacqui Glass
Dr Matthew Frost

Mr Jim Burdon
Mr D J kirkwood

Director of Research:
Professor Stephen Ison

Research Period

2007 - 2011

Improving Engineers responsibility and attitude to sustainable development


The UK construction industry currently has a large dependence on the extremely versatile material that is concrete. Within the industry, there is currently a wide range of concrete products available, for a wide range of applications. Due to the demand for concrete, it is a lucrative market. As with all industries, there is always a drive to improve performance and quality, of not only products but also processes. Within all industries there is currently a need and a desire to be more environmentally aware, and due to the scale of the construction industry it is a key factor to address. In order to meet theses demands in today’s concrete industry the development of innovative concrete products is highly important.

SCC was initially developed in the 1980’s, originating from Japan and spreading throughout the world. SCC products are currently available within the UK, but the scale of use is traditionally linked to problem solving and specific architectural applications.

The current level of research into the application of SCC is at a very low level, with publications only highlighting areas of potential gain, with no firm evidence. At present the physical properties and structural performance have been studied, there has however been little research into the drivers and constraints for the use of the material.

Therefore, because of these driving factors and the existing research there is an extensive gap within the knowledge of SCC. This gap encompasses the practical on site in-situ use of SCC, which will become the key focus of this project. The project will look to quantify the impact that SCC can have on construction processes, quality, the environment and project performance.


The key aim for the project is to establish if SCC has operational benefits over traditional concrete products. The operational benefits are associated with the direct application of SCC products within a construction project, these benefits relate to the changes that occur as a result of the introduction of SCC’s. It will also be required to establish SCC’s position with the concrete industry, either as a direct replacement for traditional concretes or as a specific tool. The project will also need to establish the way forward for SCC within the concrete industry.

Objectives to meet key aim:

• Establish SCC’s position within the construction industry and its influencing factors.
• Quantify the impact of using SCC as a direct replacement for traditional concrete’s in in-situ on site circumstances.
• Ascertain the changes that need to occur within the industry to enable SCC to be efficiently utilised. Design selection and site practices.
• Determine the environmental and sustainable impact of concrete products and their related processes.
• Establish the environmental and sustainable differences between traditional concretes and self-compacting concrete.
• Determine the future for SCC within the construction industry. The direction that future work should take to further the possibilities of SCC.

Major Construction Project

•Collation of quantified data from live project of SCC vs. traditional concrete
• Impact of SCC on production programme and processes
• Changes in construction practices through the use of SCC


In order to achieve the aim and objectives of the project it will be necessary to use a range of methods and techniques. An accurate and comprehensive process of measurement will be required, in order to draw out key quantitative data from the afore mentioned construction project. A range of case studies will be required to completed, case study of the major construction project, projects that have utilised SCC in the past and also of any innovative products/projects utilising SCC.

Industry wide surveys will be required in order to establish and comply with the key aims of the project and the objects, which are fundamental in achieving this aim. The information from within the industry will need to be assimilated from a variety of levels and positions.

Prior to these applications of the majority of these methods, it will be necessary to carry out an extensive literature review. The literature review will be required to address the areas highlighted within the aims and objectives of the project outline.

Benefits/Expected Outcomes

Through the process of this project it will be possible to a holistic view of the effect that SCC can have on the concrete construction sector. The project will also enable a view to be taken on the way in which this product can help improve and aid the performance of the concrete construction sector.

It is expected that the use of SCC will have a positive impact on the concrete construction sector and that this impact will be established through this project. Through the course of the project there will be ongoing dissemination of results from within the project that will be available to the construction industry as a whole.

The results that will become available to the industry as the project progresses will look at three major and wide ranging aspects. These aspects will encompass the quantifying of key data on the direct impact of utilising SCC in a major construction project, changes to the current structure and methods employed within all areas of the industry, to enable the successful uptake of SCC’s. The final aspect will look at the sustainable and environmental effect that SCC has, as a single product and then on the construction process as a whole.

The final issue that will be addressed will occur near the completion of the project and it through the activities carried out during the project that this will be able to be established. This issue will be to ascertain the credentials of SCC’s as a viable product for widespread use within the construction industry and also determine the future development, direction and potential for SCC within the changing industry.



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+44 (0)1509 222623

The Centre Administrator
Loughborough University
LE11 3TU

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