Friday, April 20, 2012

Magnesium Oxide Cement

I recently learned of a fast setting cement.  Magnesium Oxide cement is water proof, fire proof, almost twice as strong as Portland cement concrete ,  more environmentally friendly than Portland cement, will not change the PH of water, sets within minutes of mixing, but it can be retarded, lends itself to free form structure, can be used with many aggregates such as sand, or wood chips, and it does not shrink or expand. 

Our Northern California Distributor just took on the Ceratech product line, and should have the product available by mid May 2012.

UPDATE 1/4/2013:
I never did make my way down to Stockton to pick up some of this product, but I did find Cement All - Rapid Set Concrete.  This is a quick experiment I did with that commonly available product which contains  Magnesium Oxide.  

To wet your appetite I'll leave this link to a site where you can see examples of what can be done with magnesium oxide cement.  Imagine the tanks, green houses or just about anything else you will be able to quickly build with this!  How about a storage shed built before lunch. This is an oven in the photo below.

Green Home Building

The method used in the photo is to soak burlap in the cement and drape it over a form.
The wall in back was created by draping over a rope.
An entire house can be erected in one day and occupied the next by spraying it on Styrofoam.  Basically creating a SIP (Structural Insulated Panels) in place.

Further info.

Article by George Swanson

Ceratech Inc

    Terry Maynard
    Ceramicrete Account Manager
    Technology Development and Commercialization
    Argonne National Laboratory
    voice: 630-252-9771
    fax: 630-252-5230


            Grancrete is made from an environmentally friendly mix of locally available chemicals.
            “Grancrete is 50 percent sand or sandy soil, 25 percent ash and 25 percent binding material,”
            Dr. Wagh says. Binding material is composed of magnesium oxide and potassium phosphate



The Sacramento distributor will be Spec-West
Alan's Number is 916 346-8472

I'm also wondering why I did not see Airkrete (also made of MgO) sprayed on a form and made less friable by covering with MgO cement.  This would create a complete MgO structure with insulation.


  1. This is very interesting to me. How affordable will it be?

  2. I have not experimented with it yet. But I understand the cost is just slightly more than Portland cement based concrete.