Now showing 1 - 3 of 3
  • Publication
    Assessment of ultrasonic signals to determine the early age properties of concretes incorporating secondary cementitious materials
    Secondary cementitious materials (SCMs) such as ground granulated blast-furnace slag (GGBS) are used in increasing quantities in concrete practice internationally. While these materials offer benefits such as reduced CO2 and a more dense microstructure, they also have drawbacks in terms of slower initial gain of strength. There are significant financial implications associated with this, as it can lead to delays in the construction process. Key to overcoming this challenge is the development of a methodology to assess the early-age stiffness development in concretes manufactured using GGBS. This paper presents the results of a study into the application of ultrasonic sensors to assess the early age concrete stiffness. A novel wavelet-based approach is used to overcome the difficulties associated with wave reflections and classical wave theory is used to determine the concrete small-strain stiffness based on P and S wave velocities. It was found that the results are largely in agreement with those obtained using standard strength testing, suggesting potential practical applications of this method.
  • Publication
    Biochemical attack on concrete in wastewater applications : a state of the art review
    The costs associated with the provision and maintenance of drinking water and wastewater infrastructure represents a significant financial demand worldwide. Maintenance costs are disproportionately high, indicating a lack of adequate durability. There remains a lack of consensus on degradation mechanisms, the performance of various cement types, the role of bacteria in the corrosion process associated with wastewater applications and testing methodologies. This paper presents a review of the literature, outlining the various research approaches undertaken in an effort to address this problem. The findings of these varying approaches are compared, and the different strategies employed are compiled and discussed. It is proposed that a key step in advancing the understanding of the associated deterioration mechanism is a combined approach that considers the interaction between biological and chemical processes. If this can be achieved then steps can be taken to establishing a performance-based approach for specifying concrete in these harsh service conditions.
  • Publication
    Performance of concrete incorporating GGBS in aggressive wastewater environments
    Concrete is traditionally used as the main component of wastewater facilities. The sulfate and acidic environment presents significant challenges. Supplementary cementitious materials (SCM) such as GGBS are being used in increasing quantities in concrete and have been shown to provide concrete with increased durability in this particular environment. They have traditionally been used with CEM I, but in recent years a shift in concrete practice has led to the introduction of CEM II cements with reduced CO2 footprint and obvious environmental and economic benefits. However, the change in cement chemistry associated with using CEM II and GGBS must also be accounted for in concrete specifications for aggressive environments. This has particular importance when concrete is exposed to elevated sulfate and sulfuric acid environments, such as that associated with water and wastewater treatment. The performance of CEM II/A-L cements with varying amounts of GGBS was evaluated through a series of tests conducted to determine their durability characteristics in respect of sulfate attack and sulfuric acid attack. As a benchmark, samples were also tested using CEM I cement, CEM I with GGBS, and a sulfate resistant Portland cement. Results have shown that for all cases, the addition of GGBS resulted in considerable reductions in sulfate induced expansion relative to samples using CEM I or CEM II binders alone. A slight improvement in performance relative to sulfate resisting Portland cement (SRPC) binders was also observed. However in respect of the sulfuric acid environment the regime proved too harsh and ultimately resulted in the early failure of all samples. Some difference in performance was noted, but this was not considered noteworthy. The influence of pH and acid type was studied. The conclusions were that the concretes tested cannot adequately address the durability threat to all parts of wastewater infrastructure over a significant life span due to the extraordinarily harsh nature of this form of attack.
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