Bader Leather in South Africa Adds Durability with Penetron

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The April 2021 opening of a new Bader Leather tannery in Rosslyn (Gauteng), South Africa marks the company’s 2nd manufacturing plant in South Africa. PENETRON ADMIX was specified to waterproof the effluent tank of the Bader tannery’s water treatment facility.

Lot of leather: The overview of the Bader Leather site in Rosslyn, South Africa shows the dimensions of the new tannery and the PENETRON ADMIX-treated water treatment system (upper right corner).

By specifying PENETRON ADMIX, the need for conventional waterproofing or protection systems was eliminated. In fact, the PENETRON ADMIX-treated concrete will also substantially reduce all concrete related maintenance requirements in the future.

The April 2021 opening of a new Bader Leather tannery in Rosslyn (Gauteng), South Africa marks the company’s 2nd manufacturing plant in South Africa. PENETRON ADMIX was specified to waterproof the effluent tank of the Bader tannery’s water treatment facility.

The Otto Bader Horse Leather Factory was first established in 1872 in Göppingen, Germany as a shoe leather tannery. Today, Bader Leather is a leading global supplier of quality leather to the automotive industry. Currently, the German tanner has 12,100 employees in 11 plants around the world – with a daily output of 16,750 bovine hides.

Bader Leather completed construction of their 2nd tannery, which covers an area of 67,000 m2, in South Africa in Rosslyn (Gauteng). Rosslyn has been a hub of motor vehicle manufacturing since the 1920s. Today, all of the world’s largest auto companies maintain facilities in South Africa.

“Once the new plant goes online, plans are to relocate the original Bader plant in Ga-Rankuwa, with about 950 employees, to the Rosslyn site,” explains Jonathan Whitehead, Technical Representative at Penetron South Africa. “The new plant’s close proximity to the BMW Group Plant Rosslyn, the heart of BMW’s operations in South Africa, was a key factor in the decision.”

Enabling On-site Wastewater Treatment
Leather tanning is a complicated process. In the pre-tanning phase, hides are soaked to extract the salts, which act as a preservative. The next step, liming, uses calcium hydroxide and sodium sulfide to soften and enhance the hides. The actual tanning phase then further applies alkaline chrome-3 salts to finish the hides.

“All of these steps generate a significant amount of wastewater,” adds Jonathan Whitehead. “The resulting effluent needs to be treated on-site at the tannery.”

PENETRON ADMIX was specified for the effluent tank of the Bader tannery’s water treatment system to protect the reinforced concrete structure from the aggressive environment, which can lead to rapid deterioration of the concrete tank. PENEBAR SW-55 swellable waterstop strips were installed along the construction joints of the effluent tank by Maxlife Solutions, a Penetron-approved applicator, to ensure completely waterproof joints.

Achieving Self-Healing Concrete
Once added to the mix, PENETRON ADMIX-treated concrete becomes impermeable to water and chemical penetration, even for structures exposed to the aggressive environment of the effluent resulting from the tanning process at the Bader Leather plant in Rosslyn. In addition, any hairline cracks that may develop during the lifetime of the concrete automatically self-heal, resulting in waterproof and durable concrete for the lifespan of the structure.

“By specifying PENETRON ADMIX, the need for conventional waterproofing or protection systems was eliminated,” concludes Jonathan Whitehead. “In fact, the PENETRON ADMIX-treated concrete will also substantially reduce all concrete related maintenance requirements in the future.”

The Penetron Group is a leading manufacturer of specialty construction products for concrete waterproofing, concrete repairs and floor preparation systems. The Group operates through a global network, offering support to the design and construction community through its regional offices, representatives and distribution channels.

For more information on Penetron crystalline technology solutions, please visit http://www.penetron.com, email: CRDept@penetron.com or contact our Corporate Relations Department at 631-941-9700.

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