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About Concrete Erosion Control Mats

Learn about what a concrete mat is and how it works.

What is a concrete mat and how does it work?

Australian Concrete Mat is a permanent erosion control mat utilized for stabilizing slopes, channels, low water crossing, inlet/outlet protection, and shorelines. It consists of concrete blocks (160x146mm with a 46mm profile) locked together and embedded into a high strength geogrid. There is 40mm spacing between the blocks that gives the mat flexibility and allows for optional vegetation growth The mat is packaged in rolls, making transporting and installing Australian Concrete Mat efficient.

Australian Concrete Mat consists of concrete shapes, locked together with a high strength, polypropylene geogrid. There are openings around each concrete block that give Australian Concrete Mat the flexibility and enable it to be packaged in rolls. The openings also allow vegetation to grow through the mat. Eventually, vegetation will completely cover Australian Concrete Mat. It can be manufactured with various backings such as non-woven fabric to stop vegetation growth or backing material to promote vegetation growth, depending on the soil conditions and other factors required.

There’s a wide range of applications where Australian Concrete Mat is utilized, but it is most commonly used for erosion control. Australian Concrete Mat is used to control erosion in channels, outlet protection, on slopes, for shoreline protection and many other applications.

Australian Concrete Mat offers permanent, hard armour protection, with a natural vegetated appearance. Australian Concrete Mat may be mowed over with commercial mowing equipment or left to grow wild. Besides grass, there are many other types of native plant species that can be planted to grow within the mat. For example, Eucalyptus were planted through Australian Concrete Mat for a creek bank re-vegetation project.

A Highly Effective Alternative

Australian Concrete Mat Replaces Rock Rip Rap

Advantages Include:

  • Quick to install – reduced labour
  • Maintainable – can be driven over with a mowers.
  • Safe for pedestrians and wildlife to walk across.
  • Blocks cannot be dislodged or thrown like stone.
  • Easier litter clean-up.
  • Can safely drive across.
  • Does not require constant weed spraying to be effective

RIP RAP is often not a permanent solution.  Many times, rock moves downslope after rain events.  The construction of rip rap channels is time consuming. Compared to Australian Concrete Mat preparation, more excavation is needed for a rock channel. Steep slopes are common on landfill sites and transporting rock one excavator bucket at a time is inefficient. Using concrete mat equates to a much more efficient installation process.

Australian Concrete Mat Replaces Gabion Mattress

GABION MATTRESSES are very labour intensive to install making them more costly than Australian Concrete Mat.  None of the benefits of vegetation are possible.  Often, erosion will take place around and underneath the gabion mattress and they fail.  These channels cannot be driven across.  Mowing maintenance is difficult with these systems.  Great care needs to be taken not to catch the wire in the mowing equipment.

Australian Concrete Mat Replaces Poured Concrete Lined Channels

Advantages Include:

  • Will not crack with changing weather conditions resulting in a longer life span.
  • Pollutants entering concrete channel go directly into natural waterways, where vegetated channels will naturally cleanse pollutants.
  • Less expensive – reduced time, labour, and equipment.
  • No ponding water that promotes mosquitoes or algae formation causing a slick surface.
  • Eliminates a potential surface for graffiti.
  • Eliminates water surge from rain downfall enabling water absorption into the soil.

POURED CONCRETE CHANNELS
Poured concrete lined channels are also more expensive than Australian Concrete Mat.  These rigid concrete slabs will crack with the landfill settling and moving with the weather cycles. There is also difficulty to access the channels during construction for concrete trucks.  Additionally, storm water increases it’s velocity while moving through concrete lined flumes.