Some marine structures and shore protections used for new port developments or port rehabilitation works have a lifesaving function. They protect the hinterland against wave attack and from flooding. This makes the choice of the protective layers of shore protection works or breakwaters a very important one. Single layer armour units are generally applied when environmental conditions are such that the weight of rock armour is not sufficient or when sufficient quantities of large rock are not (locally) available.
Due to its efficient and symmetrical form varieties of the Xbloc are simply created with the same mould like the Xbase and the Eco Xbloc. Both varieties are developed for a particular use but also provide possibilities to aesthetically improve a design. The Xbase is a cost effective and stable toe solution. Besides this it can also be deployed as the top layer creating a smooth transition towards the crown wall. The Eco Xbloc is developed to increase marine growth. However above the waterline the concrete structure of the Eco Xbloc can be changed to harmonize with for instance the design of adjacent buildings.
Due to the high porosity of an Xbloc armour layer, the armour layer forms a habitat for marine life. Use of the Eco Xbloc can further enhance marine life. The presence of fish near the breakwater is also of importance to people who like to fish from breakwaters. Facilities can be provided on an Xbloc breakwater to make fishing from Xbloc breakwaters safe and attractive. These facilities can consist of the use of Xbase units on the breakwater crest, to make access easier.
Xbloc is a green solution compared to other single layer armour units the amount of concrete is reduced up to 15 % which proportionally results in a reduction of C02 emission. This together with the zero-maintenance philosophy makes the Xbloc a sustainable solution.