LafargeHolcim is opening a construction development laboratory in Casablanca to help exploit the c ompany’s klnowledge in the region.
The Casablanca laboratory is LafargeHolcim’s eighth laboratory after those in Algeria, Argentina, China, France, India, Malaysia and Mexico.
The Casablanca laboratory will house 50 engineers, architects and technicians and marketers, all specialized in the construction market.
The laboratory aims to:
- Deliver innovative construction solutions that match the needs of the Moroccan and African markets, drawing on LafargeHolcim’s Research and Development expertise around the world
- Develop partnerships with startups, universities and other higher education institutions to promote R&D, test new ideas and reinforce relationships with building and infrastructure construction experts
- Organize specialized training for clients, influencers, product applicators and builders to enable them to use innovative solutions in their projects.
Research and Development driven by customers’ and end user’s needs is fundamental to LafargeHolcim’s innovation strategy, the company says. The hub of its activities is the R&D center based in Lyon, France, the first and largest research center in the global construction industry. With 200 engineers and technicians from more than 20 nationalities, the center offers expertise in technical disciplines ranging from materials science to buildings structure; semi-industrial scale testing capabilities; and advanced open innovation approaches.
The most recent product innovation developed from LafargeHolcim’s research centre in Lyon, France, is Airium, a mineral insulating foam that is fully recyclable and improves energy efficiency of buildings. The product was launched in France, Austria and Morocco in late 2016.
Examples of innovations adapted to local needs In India, to enable the inhabitants of Dharavi, a slum in the heart of Mumbai, to build solid and watertight houses, the laboratory developed concrete in bags delivered on motorized tricycles in alleyways that are too narrow for trucks.
In Algeria, the laboratory has developed a specific product for soil stabilization in road construction.
In China, the laboratory team leveraged the Group’s insulated concrete Thermedia to develop Thermedia Screed 0.3 which is four times more insulating than traditional floor screeds.