Leca® is the registered trade name of an expanded clay lightweight aggregate. It was developed in the 1930’s and since the 1950’s has been used extensively in structural and geotechnical engineering applications throughout Europe to reduce weight of structural backfill, to protect underground pipes and structures and to insulate soil layers from frost penetration. During the Leca® manufacturing process, natural clay is kiln-fired at high temperature to create an incombustible ceramic material. The individual clay particles begin to fuse at 950°C, and the clay material begins to melt at temperatures exceeding 1150°C.
Leca® Lightweight Expanded Clay Aggregate can be utilized in a variety of structural and geotechnical projects. A combination of low unit weight, favorable strength properties and ease of handling has proven Leca® Lightweight Expanded Clay Aggregate to be a strong competitor and alternative to conventional, natural aggregates. Additionally, use of Leca® Lightweight Expanded Clay Aggregate allows construction time to be significantly reduced in comparison with construction methods of other ground improvement and foundation solutions.
Leca® Lightweight Expanded Clay Aggregate is also a sustainable material. For thousands of years fired clay has been used in a variety of applications, and is highly durable under changing weather conditions and exposure to natural and synthetic chemical compounds.