Purpose and Background
Improved concrete quality has far reaching benefits—in improved performance,
reduced time and costs, a lower environmental footprint of concrete and an
overall improvement in the quality of concrete construction. However it is
hard to find a course focused on the subject of improving concrete quality.
Based on quality surveys and award submissions, it has been observed that
the industry does not commonly track quantifiable quality indicators and, as
a result, the return on quality investments is not well understood.
Improving Concrete Quality, a book authored by one of the instructors
addresses these issues. That book, as well as other NRMCA resources provides
the basic content for the course.
This course will delve into quantifying tangible and intangible benefits due
to improved quality. It will discuss variability associated with concrete
ingredient materials, manufacturing and testing—means to measure and thereby
improve concrete quality. Basic statistical concepts will be presented to
measure and monitor quality and to recognize when action is needed. Other
key topics include recognizing abnormal material variation, tracking and
improving batching accuracy including mixing water, internal testing,
identifying non standard testing and initial curing, essential elements of a
quality management system, internal audits, and tests a concrete producer
Who Should Attend?
This course will be of significant value to concrete producers who will come
away with readily implementable steps to manage variability and attain a
more consistent product thereby seeing performance benefits and cost
savings. Concrete ingredient material suppliers will benefit by
understanding the needs of their customers and to develop information on
variability that can help their quality systems.
The course will be of interest to contractors and testing laboratories. The
course will help testing labs measure and improve testing quality.
Design professionals can benefit from this course by recognizing the
opportunity for improved quality in concrete construction and the evolution
to performance based specifications.
Quality Management System for Ready Mixed Concrete Companies (on CD)
Quality Award, Survey and Certification Information
that Influence Concrete Compressive Strength
Standards Requirements for Acceptance Testing – Presentation with notes
NRMCA/ASCC Pre-Construction Checklist
Related Technology in Practice topics
Specification in Practice topics and P2P Presentation
Kevin A. MacDonald, FACI, is
President and Principal, Beton Consulting Engineers LLC,
Mendota Heights, MN, with specific expertise in the production and
concrete. He is a licensed professional engineer in Minnesota and Ontario,
and is a Fellow of ACI. MacDonald Co-Chairs ACI Subcommittee 130-B,
Transport/Construction; ACI Committee 306, Cold Weather Concreting; Chairs
NACE Task Group; and the TAC Awards Task Group and is an active member of
several ACI Committees. He is the current President of the ACI Minnesota
and serves on the Steering Committee of the Aggregate and Ready Mix
of Minnesota. He is an active member of ASTM Committees C01, Cement; C09,
Concrete and Concrete Aggregates; and C15, Manufactured Masonry Units; the
American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE); and Professional Engineers
He has published a number of papers dealing with the durability of concrete
is a recipient of the ASCE Charles Pankow Award for Innovation for work on
concretes with 98% reclaimed materials. MacDonald received his
Master’s and PhD in engineering materials from the University of Windsor
has own many awards for academic achievement.
Karthik Obla, Ph.D., P.E.,
FACI, is Vice President, Technical Services at NRMCA. With nearly 25 years
of experience in concrete technology, he is responsible for NRMCA’s concrete
producer quality initiatives as well as various educational and technical
programs. He supports NRMCA’s P2P initiative and manages all the research
and testing projects at the NRMCA research laboratory. A Fellow of ACI and a
winner of ACI’s Young Professional Achievement Award and ASTM Award of
appreciation from the Sustainability Committee, Dr. Obla is an active member
of various ACI, ASTM, and TRB technical committees. He has served as chair
for ASTM 09.49—Pervious Concrete, and ACI 232—Fly Ash and Natural Pozzolans.
He has published a book on concrete quality and a chapter in a book on
concrete sustainability and has over 75 technical articles in journals. He
holds a B. Tech in civil engineering from IIT (BHU) Varanasi, India and a MS
and Ph.D from University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. He is a licensed
professional engineer in the state of Maryland and has served as
Vice-president and President for the ACI San Antonio Chapter.
7:30 am: Registration 8:00 am: Overview of Quality Organization 8:30 am: Quantifying Impact of Quality Systems 9:00 am: Statistical Concepts for Monitoring Quality 9:30 am: Monitoring and Controlling Water Content in Mixtures 10:00 am: Break 10:15 am: Quantifying Variability of Ingredient Materials 11:00 am: Quantifying Variability Associated with Manufacturing 11:45 pm: Group Discussion 12:15 pm: Lunch 1:00 pm: Quantifying Variability Associated with Testing – Monitoring
Test Data 1:45 pm: Producer Product Testing to Minimize Variability 2:05 pm: What to do with acceptance test data – Case study of 3
projects 2:35 pm: Impact of Specifications on Quality 2:55 pm: Break 3:10 pm: The Quality-Sustainability link 3:25 pm: Quality Management System (NRMCA Quality Certification
Program) 3:45 pm: Group Discussion
This course is part of NRMCA’s Seminars, Training and Education Programs (STEPS™)
and it provides 8 credits toward earning one's
CCPf designation in the
Concrete Technology career track. CCPf,
standing for Certified Concrete Professional, is the highest professional
designation in the industry.