Condat Partners for Sustainable Tunnels


Condat Partners for Sustainable Tunnels
Tunnel boring machine at a construction site in Turin, Italy. © MikeDotta /

French lubricant marketer Condat has entered a technology partnership with construction chemicals supplier Chryso to develop sustainable ground treatments and lubricants for tunnel-boring machines.

The companies said they have already begun introducing products that decrease impacts on the immediate environment while also reducing carbon footprints.

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Condat, which is based in Chasse-sur-Rhone, produces metalworking fluids and a wide range of other industrial lubricants as well as sealing materials and ground treatment products used in construction of tunnels. Chryso is headquartered in the Paris suburb Issy-les-Moulineaux and supplies cement additives, concrete admixtures and materials that improve the performance of screed.

In an Aug. 31 news release, the companies said they have introduced two products developed by their partnership that are being marketed under the Chryso brand. Chryso TBM Smart Grout System uses a combination of Chryso TBM SGS 150 retarder and Chryso TBM SGS 400 to make a low-viscosity grout that can be pumped long distances but that hardens to seal tunnels in several days.

The products do not contain bentonite – an absorbent clay made mostly of montmorillonite – that is commonly used in such products. Because montmorillonite is a mineral, the companies describe it as non-renewable and stated that they have replaced it with renewable raw materials. “No more bentonite storing neither transport will also contribute to a better environmental management of the site,” the news release stated.

The companies said the raw materials for the new products also generate less greenhouse gas than conventional alternatives. They are working to reduce the carbon footprints of other materials used in tunnel construction, such as slag.

“This first collaboration on the Smart Grout System has given significant results and we are looking forward to further successful development of innovative solutions,” Thierry Sanna, sales director for Condat’s Tunneling Division, said in the news release.

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