Road reclaimer is an engineering vehicle that pulverizes the asphalt layer and mixes it with the underlying base to stabilize deteriorated roads or create a new, recycled road surface. The road reclaimer can also add blending cement, foamed asphalt, or binding agents at the time of pulverization or during separate mix pass.
Intense urbanization and growth in road-building activities are major factors influencing the development of road reclaimer market. Roadways are always given a bad press and it is necessary to replace the surface material once the roads get damage and make movement hazardous. Growing government initiatives to repair the damage roadways is directly translating into demand for road reclaimer.
Rising scope of application, particularly across mining, oil, agriculture, and construction industries are expected to favor the growth of road reclaimer market. Road reclaimer is also undertaken for new pavement construction when the soil base needs improvement or strengthening.
Continued focus of manufacturers on product innovation and incorporation of new technologies that improve the process, cost effectiveness, and sustainability of road construction is likely to enhance the growth prospects of road reclaimer market. Growing need for development of potholes, landslides, and giant cracks caused by heavy rainfall will possibly boost the road reclaimer market growth.
Promising Future Global Infrastructure Outlook to Fuel Growth of Road Recaimer Market
Road reclaimer is becoming an imperative and essential equipment in road-building applications, with road recycling being an upward trend in the construction industry. Although road reclaimers were deemed a niche equipment, they have gained paramount importance as a construction tool, with a broad spectrum of models being offered by key road reclaimer market stakeholders such as Bomag, Caterpillar, Roadtec, Wirtgen, Terex Roadbuilding, Sakai, and Panien.
According to Global Road Map, an alliance of geographers, planners, environmental scientists, and agricultural specialists who seek better planning for roads, an unprecedented growth of roads is being perceived in the 21st century. Construction of nearly 25 Mn kilometers of new roads globally is foreseen by 2050-end, with majority of the construction occurring in developing countries. The Global Infrastructure Hub has estimated over 45% growth of rural to urban migration that would trigger enormous demand for infrastructure support, with the global population envisaged to close in on 2 billion by 2040 end.
Surging requirement to manage key assets of cities including water, energy, traffic, and roads has given birth to the smart city concept, which involves use of Internet of Things (IoT), and Information & Communication Technology (ICT). On the coattails of smart city developments, expenditure on smart infrastructures that include smart highways and smart grids, has surged, in a bid to ensure sustainable development. With increasing road construction activities, demand for relevant essential machinery such as road reclaimers will witness a hike.
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Manufacturers of Road Reclaimers now Focusing on Operator Comfort
Once viewed as luxury add-ons, road reclaimer cabs, are now perceived as essential feature by construction contractors. The environment for road reclaimer operators in either recycling or stabilization job sites is hazardous, with concerns regarding minute, respirable, silica particles, that cause silicosis – a prevalent lung disease. Prolonged exposure to such environment results into several health issues for workers.
With new regulations apropos of worker safety being implemented, such as CDM 2015, and OSHA Safety and Health Regulations for Construction, elimination of health hazards linked with road construction is gaining widespread emphasis. These regulations have also rubbed off on the development of road reclaimers, resulting into incorporation of new features such as enclosed cab design as that in Wirtgen’s new road reclaimers, which shield operators from sweltering temperatures UV radiations from the sun.
Roadtec is another leading road reclaimer manufacturer, which is addressing health concerns by integrating a cooling system, which pulls air from the machine’s top prior to its exhaust via the radiator package. Roadtec’s provision enables a dust-free and clean environment to the operator.
Other prominent manufacturers of road reclaimers, such as Bomag and Caterpillar, are also focusing on addressing the product quality, operator comfort, and safety in their road reclaimers. Growing emphasis on operator safety will create high demand for such user-friendly machinery, thereby influencing expansion of the global road reclaimer market.
Disastrous Implications of Road-Building Projects to Constrain Growth of Road Reclaimer Market
Researchers from the James Cook University has stated that robust expansion of massive road projects worldwide is likely to be potentially hazardous for the environment as well as the economy. These researchers have scrutinized huge ongoing road projects across the globe, and have prioritized key areas requiring limitations to prevent serious hidden risks and costs. The most urgent priority among these is limiting the length-wise scope of new road projects being planned in high-rainfall regions, particularly in countries of Asia-Pacific, Latin America, and Africa.
Rainfall-drenched roads lead to rapid development of potholes, landslides, and giant cracks. According to the researchers, several roads planned for mountainous, swampy, or wet regions must not be constructed, solely on the basis of economic criteria. The common public often suffers major debts from failed road developments, and few politicians and road developers get rich, squandering vital development opportunities. With increasing awareness about environmental risks associated with road construction activities in wet tropical environments, sales of road reclaimers will be affected to a certain extent in the upcoming years.
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Key Developments by Leading Road Reclaimer Manufacturers
- Roadtec has recently launched SX-8e, company’s largest soil stabilizer-reclaimer, whose operating weight is 82,000 pounds. This machine is specifically designed for road rehabilitation, soil stabilization, and cold recycling. Designed with relatively higher ground clearance for operating in all types of terrains, SX-8e facilitates reducing the quantity of dust travelling via the cooling system.
- XCMG, a construction machinery manufacturer, has introduced its new range of cold in-place recyclers – Xlz210 Reclaimers, for working on soil surfaces. This semi-automatic road reclaimer is ISO 9001:2000 certified and has the operating weight of 21,000 kilograms. This machine series is specifically developed for operations on terrains with delicate soil conditions.
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