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Two special a.b.e. Construction Chemicals coatings have been applied as protective lining of the floor and walls of a new large-scaled predator tank at the Two Oceans Aquarium at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town. The new attraction also features a 10m long full walk-through tunnel.

Boksburg-based a.b.e. is part of the Chryso Southern Africa Group.

Noel Abendroth, a.b.e. Polyurea Performance Coatings Manager, says VIP Polyurea Quick Spray Industrial Pure Polyurea coating was applied as lining of the 680 square metres concrete floor and walls of the new predator tank, as well as the 1m high concrete walls of its tunnel. A new VIP flooring product, Quick Floor 500, was then applied as topcoat. “This new colourfast flooring protector, is a smooth aliphatic poly-aspartic coating which was specified not only as additional protection but also to inhibit algae growth on what is now an exceptionally smooth and glossy tank lining. Both VIP coatings were applied by BKV Proline, of Springs, an approved a.b.e Polyurea applicator. The Quickspray Industrial Pure Polyurea was applied by high pressure Plural Component Spray equipment, and the Quickfloor 500 by roller.

“VIP QuickSpray Polyurea can with proper preparation be applied to concrete, metal, foam or other surfaces. Within seconds, it builds a rubber-like elastic skin that will not only resist punctures but also has excellent resistance to heat distortion and sagging as it maintains its flexibility and shape. The coating, once cured, is also not affected by moisture and fluctuations of temperature and has high elongation and superior tensile strength. As VIP polyurea coatings contain no VOCs and are solvent-free, they are ideal for application in an environment where living creatures, such as sharks, will be housed.

“The VIP High Performance coating systems are generally designed to perform for around 25 years, depending on the nature of the project, which substantially cuts the costs of repairs and maintenance,” Abendroth explains.

Some of the advantages of the VIP Polyurea Quick Spray coating include:

  • Extremely fast reaction and curing times – different systems offer between 6 to 90 seconds geltimes;
  • Exceptional adhesion to correctly prepared concrete, steel, aluminium, plastics, fibreglass, wood and foam;
  • Seamless and jointless flexible coating;
  • Can transgress multiple substrates in one application;
  • Can be applied to any thickness in a single application;
  • Maintains flexibility and crack-bridging properties at temperatures of between minus 20 degrees Celsius to plus 120 degrees Celsius;
  • Good sound insulation
  • Resistance to ultra-violet radiation, saltwater, and aggressive atmospheric conditions; and
  • Coverage of large areas at a rapid rate.

Abendroth says BKV Proline’s main challenge in applying the VIP coatings at the Two Oceans Aquarium was the proximity of the ocean which, during windy conditions, brought a formidable amount of salt spray on to the tank’s floor.

The main contractor for the Two Oceans Aquarium Trust development was MBA Projects. Consulting engineers, Aurecon, specified a.b.e.’s VIP polyurea coatings for the prestige contract. Aurecon also sub-contracted DPA Specialist Consulting Engineers, from KZN, for Quality Control procedures.

a.b.e. Construction Chemicals holds an exclusive agreement with VIP (Voelkel Industrie Produkte) in Germany for the local sale and distribution of the German company’s respected range of protective coatings and joint fillers. Produced in Munich, VIP Polyurea coatings have been internationally hailed as a “new revolution in coating technology” and have set new benchmarks in terms of durability, protection, ease of application, and turnaround times.

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