|Basics of Concrete Roofing Elements (SKAT)|
Low cost, good quality
MCR and FCR are building materials which have been developed for the covering of roofs, in advanced and low cost building construction.
Concrete and fibre
MCR/FCR Elements are made of concrete which is a mixture of sand, cement, water and eventually with natural or artificial fibres.
Small scale production
These Elements can be produced either as tiles, sheets or semi-sheets, in small decentralized plants.
Since the roofing elements are produced manually, many jobs for men and women - can be created in rural and urban areas.
Foreign exchange savings
Both MCR and FCR require little initial investment and little energy input in production. Generally the raw materials are available locally; this means foreign exchange savings instead of importing asbestos, cement tiles and corrugated iron sheets.
Failures and improvements
Between 1977 and 1984 FCR sheet technology failed in many cases, mainly because of insufficient training of the producers and bad roof substructures. The solution to these problems has been the development of tile and recently semi-sheet production as well as improved know-how transfer. While the tile production and application has grown and spread all over the world, sheet production continued successfully only at selected places and further dissemination remained limited.
Though the technology has reached a satisfactory state already, further research and development is still needed. The members of the Roofing Advisory Service of SKAT, the main suppliers of equipment and many MCR and FCR practitioners in the field are continuously improving the equipment and the production methods. The main efforts of the Roofing Advisory Service are heading towards research in raw materials, the role of the fibre and optimizing the size and the shape of the elements, as well as the development of tools for better management, of quality control and marketing. Last but not least the development of new elements which require less timber for the supporting structure will be a need for the future.