The time-tested system

Cintec has been at the forefront of blast mitigation since the 1980s. Motivated by the collapse of Ronan Point in London in 1968, where a gas explosion on the 18th floor triggered a progressive collapse, Cintec developed a strengthening system to reinforce masonry walls in order to resist accidental gas explosions and earthquakes. In the mid 1980s, approximately 48km (30 miles) of Cintec reinforcement anchoring was installed in large panel system buildings in both North America and Europe to resist against progressive collapse. The process continues today in many areas.

Strength from within

The Blastec System involves the detailed modelling of a masonry structure using advanced 3-dimenstional discrete element analysis to evaluate its strength. The process provides an accurate prediction of the performance of the structure against blast loads. If required, the masonry can then be retro-reinforced using a unique treatment of custom designed high-grade reinforcement anchors specially developed for each application. The anchors consist of steel bars sleeved in a woven fabric sock and fed into cored holes within the masonry. The sleeves are then filled with cementitious grout, creating an internal bond to the steel core and an external bond to the masonry substrate.

How it works

blastec_system_01The high stresses within the steel core of the anchor are distributed through the grout to the masonry surface. The diameter of the hole and the corresponding sock are carefully selected so that the stresses at the surface of the sock are matched to the shear stress of the parent masonry.

In this way, weak or friable masonry substrates can be successfully reinforced to resist the high loads and pressures associated with an explosive event. Remarkably, the Blastec System leaves no evidence of structural invasion. The anchors can be installed without the need to remove internal or external finishes preserving architectural, historical, and commercial details.

Cutting edge engineering

Technical excellence in modelling buildings is assured by Cintec’s team of highly qualified and experienced engineers. By combining experience of blast events with engineering talent, this team has developed a wide range of engineering solutions and products to counter the damaging effects of blast and other dynamic loads including vehicular impact and seismic events.

Cintec works to local guidelines relating to the restoration and strengthening of historic and prestigious buildings and structures including English Heritage, UNESCO, Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Historic Rehabilitation, Venice Charters (1964) and Burra Charters (1979). Cintec is currently part of the Blast Mitigation Action Groups’ commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) program and is a registered contractor with the US Defence Logistics Agency. The Blastec System is also known by the USACE Protective Design Center as the Masonry Reinforcement Technique (MRT).

Recipient of numerous international awards for engineering, Cintec and the team behind it are universally recognised and respected. Today, the Cintec system invisibly strengthens and protects historically important structures and architectural marvels throughout the world.


Prototype Waterwall™ blast mitigation test at Portendown (notice the undamaged test boards after the test)