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“Ecological”, as much as possible…

George Karras, second generation in the field of industrial flooring, clarifies some details of critical importance…

Maybe it’s a fact that the business landscape in Greece is blurry but the industrial flooring constructed by Greek professionals shines…Aside from the sparkle though, which is ultimately a matter of taste rather than substance, these industrial applications hide in them so much science and technology that few can imagine. Beyond the obvious innovations that seasonally characterize the industrial design and manufacturing, there are certain aspects we should shed more light on, not for…shine purposes but because they depict the technology exploits and the response of the Greek business community. These aspects were the main subject of our discussion with George Carras of the homonymous construction and commercial company. The company’s main activity is the construction of industrial flooring with special requirements, covering modern constructions and reconstructions of food/beverages and pharmaceutical factories, having gained expertise in the area of antimicrobial hygienic constructions- one of the most complex constructions in the industrial flooring field. Its clients include leading pharmaceutical companies such as Astra Zeneca, the Vianex and Veterin, food companies such as “Dodoni”, “Nikas”, “Ifantis”, “Dias”, “Nereus”, “Selonda” and “XrisaAvga” while working with logistics centers like Ravintrans (Oinofyta), Capocci (Aspropyrgos), Kleemann (Aspropyrgos), TRransCombi Express (Aspropyrgos), Eurocargo (Rentis) etc.

Greece is a very hot country which unfortunately “gets hotter” as time progresses. Should ambient temperature be taken into consideration by the industrial flooring manufacturer?

Clearly the ambient temperature is an important factor to be taken into account by the industrial flooring manufacturer as well as the ambient humidity and the substrate to be coated. Another factor is the humidity percentage of the atmosphere and of the substrate and many other elements that he’s either familiar with or he conducts a research before the application of all industrial flooring systems or special coatings. During application, many of the industrial flooring systems have various additives which regulate the polymerization of the final system according to the particular ambient temperature of the area of application and a specific ratio, which regulates the polymerization time,is added accordingly.The possibilities given by these additives can make the systems achieve proper polymerization both at high and low temperatures of-35th C.

So much for the process before the application. What about during the application?

Temperature is one factor taken into consideration after the application as well. The system that we will eventually choose, should comply with the final use temperatures. For example, there are systems that are designed to be applied outdoors both in industrial and non-industrial areas which have excellent properties.Their advantage over older systems is that they are resistant to rapid temperature changes from-50 ° C to +180 ° C. Consequently, it is suitable for places where it usually snows and where ice lingersfor a long time but also in places with daily exposure to sunlight and high temperatures. Those systems are fullUV Resistant and they cannot be destroyed, detached or discolored by the UV. At the same time, they can have a decorative character which gives us the advantage of application in any modern and sophisticated construction.

In recent years, at least before the crisis, storage facilities were growing constantly while vehicles that were moving in and out the facilities often weighted several tons. What is the importance of the weight in the selection and construction of industrial flooring?

The weight that the industrial flooring receives should be calculated by the designer of the project; this can be done in conjunction with the advice of the manufacturer of the industrial flooring for a complete analysis of the details and particularities of each project. Many people believe -mainly in old storage facilities or generally in old industrial buildings- that the final coating of their old floor will increase its wear and durability. That’s a common mistake that I’ve heard many times from customers I visited. They say, in other words, that the final coating of a damaged, industrial floor -due to extensive use and loads-will increase its wear and durability. Evidently, this is not true. Under no circumstances such a small coating of an extended surface would increase the wear and durability; it would simply upgrade the surface aesthetically and improve the operation in those areas.

How could we solve the problem and avoid any risks?

Our company has floor systems with exceptional qualities, able to withstand all chemical and mechanical rigors on a daily basis. In order to achieve this, so that a permanent solution can be given, all projects should be preceded by a thorough research regarding the construction of the sub-base/substrate of the final coating. If we proceed without proper research, there is a high failure rate and high probability of severe floor damage; Repair is usually costly and unprofitable for the client.

You have probably noticed that nowadays all constructions pass through the sieve of the 'ecological footprint'.Materials, colors and even manufacturing processes should be subject to more environmentally friendly practices. How has this development influenced your work and what are the options today for someone who wants to maintain a 'clean' environmental profile?

Our company has been using ecological materials for several years. All the resins we use are Solvent Free (without solvents) Low Voc. Except for the fact that they don’t contain organic solvents, harmful both to technicians and to the environment, most of them are water based and therefore environmentally friendly. The empty packagings are recycled and those containing the residue of a hazardous or toxic material are disposed of in special containers by management companies. Finally, all manufacturing plants of the company Flowcrete, represented exclusively by G. Karras in Greece, have systems that give the possibility of exploitation of the planet’s natural assets in the best way possible. An example worth mentioning is that all manufacturing plants have a combustion system that converts all pallets of raw materials and waste gases into energy.So we try together at all stages -starting from production to the final stage of application- to follow as much as possible environmentally friendly procedures. Additionally, one of the company’s goals is to reduce annual carbon emissions and achieve high environmental standards.Our equipment is constantly updated, with new tools and machines, which once they wear off they can be recycled up to 100% but during their use they help save electric potential energy. All engines of our petrol machinery have been replaced with unleaded gasoline. Our company policy is the continuous improvement and compliance with an ecological and modern profile, as much as possible.


[AstraZeneca] Antimicrobial floors are essential to pharmaceutical companies, where even the minimal dust is considered to be an 'enemy' of production.

Polygiene technology inhibits the bacterial growth and ensures absolute purity in floors of pharmaceutical or food companies, etc.