Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala's first manufactured sand plant will be inaugurated in Thiruvananthapuram today. River sand is always in short supply and is known to have impurities also.
The city-based Poabs group, which owns quarries in several parts of Kerala, has collaborated with the Government Engineering College for the Rs 30-million plant. Manufactured sand, which is used for all World Bank-aided projects, is considered the best option for construction because it acquires a cubical shape and ensures proper gradation.
According to Poabs director Abey Mathew, it will be developed over a period of four years. "We have invested in the most sophisticated machinery to shape 'crusher sand' from the quarries. After shaping, sand is sieved using a high-pressure water jet and then separation is done. We have the technology for recycling the water that is used for cleaning manufactured sand."
A test on the manufactured product at the Engineering College found that that the compressive strength of sand has increased.
Abraham Jacob from Poabs says their product is superior to river sand because it is free from impurities like silt and harmful minerals. "We will shortly open our second plant at Angamaly near Kochi. The cost of a truck load of this will be Rs 4,500-5,000 as compared to the cost of river sand that is available for Rs 5,000 onwards."
Over-mining of river sand is causing severe ecological and environmental problems in Kerala.