Special Issue "Ultrahigh-Performance Concrete"

A special issue of Materials (ISSN 1996-1944). This special issue belongs to the section "Construction and Building Materials".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 April 2021.

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Moncef L. Nehdi
Website
Guest Editor
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Western University, London, ON N6B 5L9, Canada
Interests: construction materials; sustainability; machine learning; deep learning
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The annual cost of corrosion related damage in reinforced concrete structures worldwide exceeds five trillion dollars. Meanwhile, the cement and concrete industry has become a major consumer of natural resources and generator of greenhouse gas emissions. Hence, the sustainability and durability of concrete have gained strategic importance. Ultrahigh-performance concrete (UHPC) has recently emerged as a very promising solution for these challenges, considering its exceptional compressive strength, tensile ductility, and durability properties. Indeed, it is now possible to design and build UHPC structures that will never corrode, can sustain exposure in the harshest environments, and resist some of the most severe loading scenarios during their service life, while having a positive environmental footprint.

However, UHPC has not gained broad acceptance and integration into today’s construction market. To help overcome the hurdles facing the implementation of the UHPC technology, this Special Issue will highlight recent value-added contributions to the state-of-the-art and state of practice on UHPC. We seek high-quality research manuscripts addressing key UHPC aspects, including the following topics:

  • measurement and control of the rheology and early-age behavior of UHPC;
  • specialty materials and novel mixture proportioning;
  • nanostructure and advanced characterization of UHPC;
  • sustainability and novel binders with low-CO2 footprint;
  • mechanical performance under extreme loading, impact, blast, and fire;
  • durability in severe exposure environments;
  • life cycle assessment;
  • design principles and design guidance; applications of UHPC in bridges and buildings, precast concrete, repair and rehabilitation, seismic retrofit, field-cast connections, nuclear fuel and spent fuel storage and containment, etc.;
  • new predictive models for the behavior of UHPC, and other novel research that pushes the envelope of innovation and application of UHPC.
Prof. Dr. Moncef L. Nehdi
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Materials is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • ultrahigh-performance concrete
  • rheology
  • early-age behavior
  • microstructure
  • mixture proportioning
  • mechanical load
  • durability
  • severe exposure
  • sustainability
  • life cycle analysis
  • design
  • application

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Predicting Ultra-High-Performance Concrete Compressive Strength Using Tabular Generative Adversarial Networks
Materials 2020, 13(21), 4757; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13214757 - 24 Oct 2020
Abstract
There have been abundant experimental studies exploring ultra-high-performance concrete (UHPC) in recent years. However, the relationships between the engineering properties of UHPC and its mixture composition are highly nonlinear and difficult to delineate using traditional statistical methods. There is a need for robust [...] Read more.
There have been abundant experimental studies exploring ultra-high-performance concrete (UHPC) in recent years. However, the relationships between the engineering properties of UHPC and its mixture composition are highly nonlinear and difficult to delineate using traditional statistical methods. There is a need for robust and advanced methods that can streamline the diverse pertinent experimental data available to create predictive tools with superior accuracy and provide insight into its nonlinear materials science aspects. Machine learning is a powerful tool that can unravel underlying patterns in complex data. Accordingly, this study endeavors to employ state-of-the-art machine learning techniques to predict the compressive strength of UHPC using a comprehensive experimental database retrieved from the open literature consisting of 810 test observations and 15 input features. A novel approach based on tabular generative adversarial networks was used to generate 6513 plausible synthetic data for training robust machine learning models, including random forest, extra trees, and gradient boosting regression. While the models were trained using the synthetic data, their ability to generalize their predictions was tested on the 810 experimental data thus far unknown and never presented to the models. The results indicate that the developed models achieved outstanding predictive performance. Parametric studies using the models were able to provide insight into the strength development mechanisms of UHPC and the significance of the various influential parameters. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ultrahigh-Performance Concrete)
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Open AccessArticle
Mechanical Properties of Ultra-High Performance Concrete before and after Exposure to High Temperatures
Materials 2020, 13(3), 770; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13030770 - 07 Feb 2020
Cited by 6
Abstract
Compared with ordinary concrete, ultra-high performance concrete (UHPC) has excellent toughness and better impact resistance. Under high temperatures, the microstructure and mechanical properties of UHPC may seriously deteriorate. As such, we first explored the properties of UHPC with a designed 28-day compressive strength [...] Read more.
Compared with ordinary concrete, ultra-high performance concrete (UHPC) has excellent toughness and better impact resistance. Under high temperatures, the microstructure and mechanical properties of UHPC may seriously deteriorate. As such, we first explored the properties of UHPC with a designed 28-day compressive strength of 120 MPa or higher in the fresh mix phase, and measured its hardened mechanical properties at seven days. The test variables included: the type of cementing material and the mixing ratio (silica ash, ultra-fine silicon powder), the type of fiber (steel fiber, polypropylene fiber), and the fiber content (volume percentage). In addition to the UHPC of the experimental group, pure concrete was used as the control group in the experiment; no fiber or supplementary cementitious materials (silica ash, ultra-fine silicon powder) were added to enable comparison and discussion and analysis. Then, the UHPC-1 specimens of the experimental group were selected for further compressive, flexural, and splitting strength tests and SEM observations after exposure to different target temperatures in an electric furnace. The test results show that at room temperature, the 56-day compressive strength of the UHPC-1 mix was 155.8 MPa, which is higher than the >150 MPa general compressive strength requirement for ultra-high-performance concrete. The residual compressive strength, flexural strength, and splitting strength of the UHPC-1 specimen after exposure to 300, 400, and 500 °C did not decrease significantly, and even increased due to the drying effect of heating. However, when the temperature was 600 °C, spalling occurred, so the residual mechanical strength rapidly declined. SEM observations confirmed that polypropylene fibers melted at high temperatures, thereby forming other channels that helped to reduce the internal vapor pressure of the UHPC and maintain a certain residual strength. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ultrahigh-Performance Concrete)
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Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

1. Title: Machine Learning Predictive Model for Properties of Ultra-High Performance Concrete

Authors: Moncef Nehdi and Afshin Marani

2. Title: System Dynamics Model for Sustainability of Ultra-High Performance Concrete

Authors: Moncef Nehdi and Rashid Rehan

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