To ensure the feasibility of supply of slags, it is necessary to maintain their status of extra-class cargo

Today, on 9 July, leaders of Ukrmetallurgprom, the National Association of Road Builders of Ukraine and M. P. Shulgin State Road Research Institute (DerzhdorNDI) signed a memorandum in Kyiv on promoting scientific and technological progress in road construction.

A journalist of GMK Center said that the document enshrines mutual intentions of the parties on developing progressive methods of construction, repair and maintenance of highways, expanding the base of road construction materials through research and use of alternative materials, in particular metallurgical slags.

According to Artem Bezuhlyi, DerzhdorNDI Director, the document is designed to intensify the use of slags in road construction. As a matter of fact, this process lacks serious implementation practice. At the same time, there is a necessary regulatory framework: DBN (State Building Norms), DSTU (State Standards of Ukraine), documents of the Cabinet of Ministers and positive experience of the use of slags at experimental sites.

Every week DerzhdorNDI prepares a report for Ukravtodor on the use of secondary materials in road construction. According to road project documents that have passed examination, it is currently planned to use 482 thousand cubic meters of slags. This figure is however far from final. According to reports, the use of slags has doubled in recent weeks.

Oleksandr Kalenkov, Ukrmetallurgprom President, noted that the use of metallurgical slags in road construction will help solve a number of environmental problems. Indeed, slag deposits in Ukraine amount to 160 million tons.

Yet, the economic feasibility of slag recycling still poses a problem. Specifically, this concerns logistic costs. In this regard, Ukrmetallurgprom is going to discuss with Ukrzaliznytsia (Ukrainian Railway) management the possibility of maintaining the out-of-class cargo status for slags. This should ensure the economic feasibility of supplies of slags to highway construction sites.

As GMK Center reported earlier, the State Agency of Automobile Roads of Ukraine, Ukravtodor, made a statement in late June that it had used the first 30 thousand cubic meters of metallurgical slags in the construction of highways under the Big Construction project.

In 2020, the company plans to use more than 482 thousand cubic meters of metallurgical slags for road construction in Kharkiv, Donetsk, Dnipropetrovsk and Zaporizhzhia oblasts.

According to estimations of GMK Center, Ukraine has the potential to increase at least fivefold the use of slags in road construction. There are around 430 thousand km of roads in the country. If at least 3 thousand km are annually repaired (around 0.6% of their length), consumption of slag will increase to at least 5 million tons, a five-fold increase from now.