Wood-based lignosulfonate versus synthetic polycarboxylate in concrete admixture systems by ProQuest

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A primary data survey was conducted to evaluate the market potential of lignosulfonate as a raw material for plasticizers in the concrete industries of Austria and southern Germany (Bavaria). The results showed significant differences between the countries. Since 2002 lignosulfonate-based products have been massively displaced from Austrian markets. This development was found to be a consequence of new mandatory standards for the construction industry, technical advantages of new polycarboxylate-based products, and the market power of their producers. It was determined that especially smaller concrete companies, which use only one plasticizer or superplasticizer product, have been much harder hit by these changes than bigger companies. Larger companies in Austria and southern Germany (with an annual plasticizer consumption of more than 250 t) tend to use both product types (lignosulfonate-based and polycarboxylate-based) to improve their cost efficiency. In total, the consumption of lignosulfonate-based products within a stagnating or declining market shows a downward trend. Because of the polycarboxylate-based products' higher efficiency, a price ratio in relation to the lignosulfonate-based products of 2.5 to 1 is required to ensure the competitiveness of the latter products. Plasticizer price changes of about 14 percent have been found to be a sensible range to enable the concrete industry to take a possible product change into account. [PUBLICATION ABSTRACT]

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