Building materials supplier CEMEX has successfully completed a project to supply over 25,000 tonnes of asphalt to RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire, while ensuring the site remained operational at all times.
RAF Coningsby is one of the UK’s Quick Reaction Alert Stations which protect UK airspace. It is the home of two frontline, combat-ready squadrons and the main base for the RAF’s Typhoon fighter aircraft. CEMEX’s Lincoln coating plant provided the asphalt over five months as a key part of the prestigious runway resurfacing project.
A specific challenge of this project was the requirement for the site to always remain fully operational, so the Typhoons could be scrambled in case of an emergency. As a result, contractor Colas resurfaced a short section of the runway each night. CEMEX provided a Porous Friction Course to meet the Ministry of Defence’s complex asphalt specifications, supplying up to 450 tonnes per shift.
James Playford, Area Manager for Asphalt, commented: “Meeting the requirements of this project required exceptional teamwork, and I am very proud of my colleagues and what we have achieved. Initially, we were only expecting to supply the surface course material, however once the job had started the binder course layers also had to be replaced, which greatly increased the amount of product needed.
“Therefore, coordination between several different areas of the business was vital. Our aggregates team at Roan Edge Quarry was the only site that could supply us with the required premium quality hardstone and so had to work under considerable pressure; the technical team ensured we met the product specification; the sales team engaged with Colas; while the operational team fulfilled every single order to time, keeping the plant running day and night throughout the project.
“We wanted Colas to be reassured from the start of this high-profile scheme that we were the right supplier for this project, with the resources to create the perfect product. We carried out extensive mix testing and laying trials, as well providing a full operational capability tour of the asphalt plant. This comprehensive and dedicated approach paid off and we are pleased the project has been such a success.”
CEMEX R&D, Innovation and Business Development projects are part of the global R&D collaboration network, headed by CEMEX Research Centers, based in Switzerland.
CEMEX worked for UK infrastructure contractor Colas on the project. Procurement Manager Steve Bryant commented: “We were very impressed by CEMEX’s collaborative approach, which ensured they could meet the intricate specificities of the project in the constrained timeframe. The finished runaway is a quality surface that will play a key part in this site’s defence work. All of the CEMEX employees involved should be very proud.”