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Special Issue "Sustainable Cementitious Materials for the Construction Industry"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Sustainable Engineering and Science".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (10 November 2018)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Miguel-Ángel Climent

University of Alicante, Department of Civil Engineering, P.O. Box 99, E-03080 Alicante, Spain
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +34 965903400 x 2468
Interests: construction materials and structures; durability; sustainability; marine environment; corrosion of steel reinforcement in concrete; transport properties through concrete; non-destructive characterization
Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Isidro Sánchez

University of Alicante, Department of Civil Engineering, P.O. Box 99, E-03080 Alicante, Spain
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +34 965903400 x 2090
Interests: supplementary cementitious materials; recycled aggregates; geopolymer cements; non-destructive characterization
Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. José Marcos Ortega

University of Alicante, Department of Civil Engineering, P.O. Box 99, E-03080 Alicante, Spain
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +34 965903400 x 1167
Interests: construction materials and structures; supplementary cementitious materials; microstructure, durability; mechanical properties; non-destructive characterization; sustainability; non-optimum exposure conditions; real hardening environments

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The construction industry plays a central role in efforts towards achieving a sustainable development, because of its size and ubiquity. Concrete is the most-used construction material, both for residential buildings and infrastructure. Portland cement production is an industrial sector, which, despite being a high contributor to CO2 emissions, has made significant efforts towards sustainability by increasing energy efficiency, using alternative or renewable fuels, and by replacing considerable proportions of clinker with supplementary cementitious materials. These latter are termed "additions to cement" and include fly ash, blast furnace slag, silica fume, natural volcanic pozzolanic materials, rice husk ash, limestone powder, calcined clays, etc. Many of these additions are wastes or by-products of other industries, thus leading to a double benefit in terms of sustainability, since they reduce the emission of greenhouse gases and reduce waste treating and disposal needs.

Another key contribution to sustainability has come from the introduction of the idea of using aggregates obtained from construction and demolition wastes. Mineral aggregates are beginning to face shortages in certain countries, or their extraction is progressively subjected to severe environmental normative restrictions. Special mention needs to be included here to emerging fields, such as geopolymer-like cementitious materials. The binding properties of these materials are obtained, excluding the use of Portland cement clinker, through alkaline activation of slags, fly ash, etc. We must finally consider that all the above-mentioned creative initiatives for obtaining more sustainable materials need the guarantee that we obtain adequate levels of mechanical load bearing and durability properties for constructions.

The present Special Issue of Sustainability welcomes research papers reporting on studies that deal with new or classic cementitious materials, or strategies aiming to increase the sustainability and the durability of constructive elements and structures.

Prof. Dr. Miguel Ángel Climent
Prof. Dr. Isidro Sánchez
Prof. Dr. José Marcos Ortega
Guest Editors

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. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly 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 1400 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

  • Supplementary cementitious materials
  • Fly ash
  • Slags
  • Pozzolanic materials
  • Silica fume
  • Calcined clays
  • Recycled aggregates
  • Geopolymer cements

Published Papers (16 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Cracking, Bond, and Durability Performance of Internally Cured Cementitious Grouts for Prefabricated Bridge Element Connections
Sustainability 2018, 10(11), 3881; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10113881
Received: 27 September 2018 / Revised: 22 October 2018 / Accepted: 23 October 2018 / Published: 25 October 2018
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Abstract
The use of cementitious grouts in prefabricated bridge element (PBE) connections is a common practice in the USA. Given the important role that these connections play within the infrastructure, the grout materials used must provide good flowability, mechanical and durability properties, low shrinkage,
[...] Read more.
The use of cementitious grouts in prefabricated bridge element (PBE) connections is a common practice in the USA. Given the important role that these connections play within the infrastructure, the grout materials used must provide good flowability, mechanical and durability properties, low shrinkage, and good bond to the precast concrete element. However, this type of grout material has shown serviceability issues in the form of volume instabilities (primarily shrinkage). The inclusion of internal curing (IC) in cementitious grouts with the goal of reducing shrinkage has been successfully demonstrated in a previous study. The research presented in this paper extends upon that prior study and assesses the IC effect on properties relevant to PBE grout connections. The paper uses novel experimental techniques such as the dual ring test, formation factor concepts, and microstructural analysis to evaluate improvements in cracking, bond, and durability performance. The results show that, while the IC grouts did not alter the bond performance, they improved their cracking and durability properties. The inclusion of IC in cementitious grouts is presented here as a strategy to increase the durability and thus sustainability of bridge structures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Cementitious Materials for the Construction Industry)
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Open AccessArticle Recent History, Types, and Future of Modern Caisson Technology: The Way to More Sustainable Practices
Sustainability 2018, 10(11), 3839; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10113839
Received: 28 August 2018 / Revised: 10 October 2018 / Accepted: 10 October 2018 / Published: 23 October 2018
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Abstract
The construction of caisson breakwaters dates from ancient times (Brindisi battle and Caesarea Maritima, Roman Empire) of yore but has evolved with regards to technology and the materials available at all times (wood, gravel, and rubble mound). The growth in draught in
[...] Read more.
The construction of caisson breakwaters dates from ancient times (Brindisi battle and Caesarea Maritima, Roman Empire) of yore but has evolved with regards to technology and the materials available at all times (wood, gravel, and rubble mound). The growth in draught in vessels searching for deep water depths for berthing plus environmental problems have led to the 20th century facilitating the boom in vertical types and concrete caissons built in different ways (dry and floating techniques). Furthermore, structural criteria gave way to functional, environmental, and aesthetic criteria. The search for new, more efficient forms led to the construction of increasingly more complex elements including many that still require an economically viable construction system. To where will this search for new materials and forms take us? The use of composite materials could be considered, at the moment, as too expensive, but analyzing the cost with a wider approach, as Life Cycle Assessment, shows us that caissons in composite materials are cost effective and could be a solution. Furthermore, the possibility of using recyclable composites opens up big opportunities of using these materials at affordable costs. Caissons in composites or recycled composites are then a real alternative to concrete caissons. In Spain, two examples can be observed: a berthing area in Canary Island (Puerto del Rosario, South Atlantic Ocean) and a crown wall in Cartagena using polyester fiber bars (Mediterranean Sea). European policy in matters of sustainability promotes the circular economy, which means not only consider construction of caissons in recycled composites should be considered but also the comparison of all materials and construction procedures. Lastly, the calculation of the Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) should be promoted. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Cementitious Materials for the Construction Industry)
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Open AccessArticle Exposing Sustainable Mortars with Nanosilica, Zinc Stearate, and Ethyl Silicate Coating to Sulfuric Acid Attack
Sustainability 2018, 10(10), 3769; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10103769
Received: 17 September 2018 / Revised: 15 October 2018 / Accepted: 16 October 2018 / Published: 18 October 2018
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Abstract
Obtaining durable materials that lengthen the service life of constructions and thereby contribute to sustainability requires research into products that improve the durability of cementitious materials under aggressive conditions. This paper studies the effects of sulfuric acid exposure on four mortar types (control
[...] Read more.
Obtaining durable materials that lengthen the service life of constructions and thereby contribute to sustainability requires research into products that improve the durability of cementitious materials under aggressive conditions. This paper studies the effects of sulfuric acid exposure on four mortar types (control mortar, mortar with nanosilica, mortar with zinc stearate, and mortar with an ethyl silicate coating), and evaluates which of them have better performance against the acid attack. After 28 days of curing, the samples were exposed to a sulfuric acid attack by immersing them in a 3% w/w of H2SO4 solution. Physical changes (mass loss, ultrasonic pulse velocity, open porosity, and water absorption), and mechanical changes (compressive strength) were determined after the sulfuric acid exposure. A scanning electron microscope (SEM) was used to characterize the morphology of the surface mortars after the exposure. The control mortar had the highest compressive strength after the acid attack, although of the four types, the zinc stearate mortar showed the lowest percentage of strength loss. The zinc stearate mortar had the lowest mass loss after the acid exposure; moreover, it had the lowest capillary water absorption coefficient (demonstrating its hydrophobic effect) both in a non-aggressive environment and acid attack. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Cementitious Materials for the Construction Industry)
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Open AccessArticle Pressure-Induced Geopolymerization in Alkali-Activated Fly Ash
Sustainability 2018, 10(10), 3538; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10103538
Received: 24 August 2018 / Revised: 19 September 2018 / Accepted: 25 September 2018 / Published: 1 October 2018
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Abstract
The present study investigated geopolymerization in alkali-activated fly ash under elevated pressure conditions. The fly ash was activated using either sodium hydroxide or a combination of sodium silicate solution and sodium hydroxide, and was cured at 120 °C at a pressure of 0.22
[...] Read more.
The present study investigated geopolymerization in alkali-activated fly ash under elevated pressure conditions. The fly ash was activated using either sodium hydroxide or a combination of sodium silicate solution and sodium hydroxide, and was cured at 120 °C at a pressure of 0.22 MPa for the first 24 h. The pressure-induced evolution of the binder gel in the alkali-activated fly ash was investigated by employing synchrotron X-ray diffraction and solid-state 29Si and 27Al MAS NMR spectroscopy. The results showed that the reactivity of the raw fly ash and the growth of the zeolite crystals were significantly enhanced in the samples activated with sodium hydroxide. In contrast, the effects of the elevated pressure conditions were found to be less apparent in the samples activated with the sodium silicate solution. These results may have important implications for the binder design of geopolymers, since the crystallization of geopolymers relates highly to its long-term properties and functionality. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Cementitious Materials for the Construction Industry)
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Open AccessArticle Mechanical Performance of Eco-Friendly Concretes with Volcanic Powder and Recycled Concrete Aggregates
Sustainability 2018, 10(9), 3036; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10093036
Received: 15 July 2018 / Revised: 13 August 2018 / Accepted: 20 August 2018 / Published: 27 August 2018
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Abstract
At present, reducing the environmental impact of the construction industry is a major subject of study. In terms of the use of recycled concrete aggregates (RCA), most recently conducted studies have shown that the use of a limited percentage of those aggregates does
[...] Read more.
At present, reducing the environmental impact of the construction industry is a major subject of study. In terms of the use of recycled concrete aggregates (RCA), most recently conducted studies have shown that the use of a limited percentage of those aggregates does not significantly affect the properties of concretes. This work analysed the mechanical properties of medium-strength concretes with a high contribution to sustainability, where cement and natural coarse aggregates (NCA) were partially replaced by volcanic powder (VP) and RCA, respectively. Three mixing ratios of VP replacement were tested in concretes without RCA and concretes with 30% RCA replacing NCA. Results show that when VP is used without RCA, up to 10% of the cement can be replaced by VP without a significant loss in the mechanical properties. When a combination of 5% VP and 30% RCA is used, the weakness of the recycled concrete is strengthened, obtaining stronger concretes than a control concrete with no recycled materials. Finally, the greenhouse gas assessment showed that the simultaneous incorporation of VP and RCA reduces CO2 emissions produced in the manufacture of concrete by up to 13.6%. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Cementitious Materials for the Construction Industry)
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Open AccessArticle Laboratory Evaluation of Hot Asphalt Concrete Properties with Cuban Recycled Concrete Aggregates
Sustainability 2018, 10(8), 2590; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10082590
Received: 29 June 2018 / Revised: 13 July 2018 / Accepted: 19 July 2018 / Published: 24 July 2018
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Abstract
Recycled Aggregates (RA) from construction and demolition waste (CDW) are a technically viable alternative to manufacture of asphalt concrete (AC). The main objective of this work is to evaluate the properties of hot asphalt mixtures that have been manufactured with different sources of
[...] Read more.
Recycled Aggregates (RA) from construction and demolition waste (CDW) are a technically viable alternative to manufacture of asphalt concrete (AC). The main objective of this work is to evaluate the properties of hot asphalt mixtures that have been manufactured with different sources of CDW (material from concrete test specimens, material from the demolition of sidewalks and waste from prefabrication plants) from Cuba. Dense asphalt mixtures were manufactured with a maximum aggregate size of 19 mm, partially replacing (40%) the natural aggregate fraction measured between 5 mm and 10 mm with three types of RA from Cuba. Marshall specimens were manufactured to determine the main properties of the AC in terms of density, voids, stability and deformation. Additionally, the stiffness modulus of the AC was evaluated at 7 °C, 25 °C and 50 °C. The results corroborate the potential for using these sources of CDW from Cuba as a RA in asphalt concrete, thereby contributing an important environmental and economic benefit. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Cementitious Materials for the Construction Industry)
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Open AccessArticle Short-Term Performance of Sustainable Silica Fume Mortars Exposed to Sulfate Attack
Sustainability 2018, 10(7), 2517; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10072517
Received: 28 June 2018 / Revised: 13 July 2018 / Accepted: 13 July 2018 / Published: 18 July 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (2258 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Nowadays, the reuse of wastes is essential in order to reach a more sustainable environment. The cement production results in CO2 emissions which significantly contribute to anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. One way to reduce them is by partially replacing clinker by additions,
[...] Read more.
Nowadays, the reuse of wastes is essential in order to reach a more sustainable environment. The cement production results in CO2 emissions which significantly contribute to anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. One way to reduce them is by partially replacing clinker by additions, such as silica fumes or other wastes. On the other hand, the pore structure of cementitious materials has a direct influence on their service properties. One of the most popular techniques for characterizing the microstructure of those materials is mercury intrusion porosimetry. In this work, this technique has been used for studying the evolution of the pore network of mortars with different percentages of silica fume (until 10%), which were exposed to aggressive sodium and magnesium sulfate solutions up to 90 days. Between the results of this technique, intrusion-extrusion curves and logarithms of differential intrusion volume versus pore size curves were studied. This characterization of the pore network of mortars has been complemented with the study of their compressive strength and their steady-state ionic diffusion coefficient obtained from samples’ resistivity. Generally, silica fume mortars showed different performance depending on the aggressive condition, although the greatest deleterious effects were observed in the medium with presence of both magnesium and sodium sulfates. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Cementitious Materials for the Construction Industry)
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Open AccessArticle Influence of Rice Straw Fibers on Concrete Strength and Drying Shrinkage
Sustainability 2018, 10(7), 2445; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10072445
Received: 1 June 2018 / Revised: 9 July 2018 / Accepted: 10 July 2018 / Published: 13 July 2018
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Abstract
Fibers have been used in construction materials for centuries. This study investigated the impact of the addition of rice straw fibers (RSF) on the compressive and flexural strengths of concrete, drying shrinkage, and on the heat of cement hydration. RSF was saturated before
[...] Read more.
Fibers have been used in construction materials for centuries. This study investigated the impact of the addition of rice straw fibers (RSF) on the compressive and flexural strengths of concrete, drying shrinkage, and on the heat of cement hydration. RSF was saturated before being added to concrete. Addition of RSF in concrete reduced concrete strength, increased concrete drying shrinkage, and increased the induction period of cement hydration. It was suggested that water squeezed out of RSF during mixing and sample consolidation increased effective water-to-cement ratios (w/c) and resulted in reduction of concrete strength and increase of concrete drying shrinkage. The increase of retardation time was attributed to leaching of organic and inorganic compounds out of RSF into the pore solution. It was shown that samples containing washed RSF did not have noticeable improvement in compressive strength over samples containing unwashed (as received) RSF. However, samples containing washed RSF had lower drying shrinkage and shorter induction period compared to those containing unwashed RSF. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Cementitious Materials for the Construction Industry)
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Open AccessArticle Improving Sustainability through Corrosion Resistance of Reinforced Concrete by Using a Manufactured Blended Cement and Fly Ash
Sustainability 2018, 10(6), 2004; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10062004
Received: 18 April 2018 / Revised: 9 June 2018 / Accepted: 11 June 2018 / Published: 14 June 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (3359 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The objective of this paper is to report the improvement of sustainability through the increase of reinforced concrete corrosion resistance by using a blended cement and fly ash. Different reinforced concrete mixtures were prepared with partial substitution of a manufactured blended cement with
[...] Read more.
The objective of this paper is to report the improvement of sustainability through the increase of reinforced concrete corrosion resistance by using a blended cement and fly ash. Different reinforced concrete mixtures were prepared with partial substitution of a manufactured blended cement with fly ash from a thermal power plant in Andorra (Teruel, Spain). These mixtures were manufactured using three different water/cement ratios (0.46, 0.59, and 0.70) and three substitution percentages of cement by fly ash (0%, 25%, and 50%). The test cylinders underwent an accelerated carbonation process and exposure to different chloride levels, with the aim of characterizing the corrosion level of the different mixtures. The addition of local FA matched or even improved the resistance of the control mixture against carbonation and chlorides. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Cementitious Materials for the Construction Industry)
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Open AccessArticle From Julius Caesar to Sustainable Composite Materials: A Passage through Port Caisson Technology
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1225; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041225
Received: 22 February 2018 / Revised: 6 April 2018 / Accepted: 11 April 2018 / Published: 17 April 2018
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Abstract
The breakwater construction technique using floating concrete caissons is well-known nowadays as a widespread system. Yet do we really know its origin? Since Julius Caesar used this technology in Brindisi (Italy) up to the Normandy landings in June 1944, not only has this
[...] Read more.
The breakwater construction technique using floating concrete caissons is well-known nowadays as a widespread system. Yet do we really know its origin? Since Julius Caesar used this technology in Brindisi (Italy) up to the Normandy landings in June 1944, not only has this technology been developed, but it has been a key item in several moments in history. Its development has almost always been driven by military requirements. The greatest changes have not been conceptual but point occurring, backed by the materials used. Parallelisms can be clearly seen in each new stage: timber, opus caementitium (Roman concrete), iron and concrete… However, nowadays, achieving a more sustainable world constitutes a major challenge, to which the construction of caissons breakwaters must contribute as a field of application of new eco-friendly materials. This research work provides a general overview from the origins of caissons until our time. It will make better known the changes that took place in the system and their adaptation to new materials, and will help in clarifying the future in developing technology towards composite sustainable materials and special concrete. If we understand the past, it will be easier to define the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Cementitious Materials for the Construction Industry)
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Open AccessArticle Influence of Waste Brick Powder in the Mechanical Properties of Recycled Aggregate Concrete
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1037; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041037
Received: 9 March 2018 / Revised: 23 March 2018 / Accepted: 28 March 2018 / Published: 31 March 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (22247 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Brick and concrete are the main materials contributing to demolition and construction waste. Considering this precedent, the effects of using both residuals in medium strength concretes are analyzed. Waste brick powder is used as a cement replacement in three different levels: 5%, 10%,
[...] Read more.
Brick and concrete are the main materials contributing to demolition and construction waste. Considering this precedent, the effects of using both residuals in medium strength concretes are analyzed. Waste brick powder is used as a cement replacement in three different levels: 5%, 10%, and 15%, and it is tested in concretes with no recycled aggregates and concretes with 30% of recycled coarse aggregates replacing natural ones. The compressive strength, the flexural strength, and modulus of elasticity are calculated and compared to a control concrete with no brick powder and no recycled aggregates. The effects of the simultaneous use of both residuals on the physical properties of the recycled concrete are highlighted. Results show that 15% of cement can be replaced by waste brick powder together with 30% of recycled aggregates without suffering significant losses in the strength of the final material when compared to a control concrete. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Cementitious Materials for the Construction Industry)
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Open AccessArticle QSI Methods for Determining the Quality of the Surface Finish of Concrete
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 931; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10040931
Received: 1 March 2018 / Revised: 20 March 2018 / Accepted: 21 March 2018 / Published: 23 March 2018
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Abstract
The surface finish of a concrete element may become an index of its quality, relating the external and internal porosity with the mechanical and durability properties. Few methods are used to determine the surface quality of concrete elements. Mention must be made the
[...] Read more.
The surface finish of a concrete element may become an index of its quality, relating the external and internal porosity with the mechanical and durability properties. Few methods are used to determine the surface quality of concrete elements. Mention must be made the Quality Surface Index (QSI) proposes a simplified method to quantify the surface occupied by the pores in relation with the total surface inspected, analyzing groups of pores by their diameter. The method of the CIB W29 (Commission W29 “Concrete Surface Finishings”) proposes an inspection of the concrete element and its visual comparison with some standard templates. Finally, the digital processing of images allows the zones with surface defects to be delimited and quantified according to premises of quality introduced into the control software. These three methods are employed in this work and are applied in three concrete walls situated three meters from the observer (M-1, M-2 and M-3). Following the conversion of the results of the method with ImageJ and QSI, the results suppose differences that go from 0.1 tenths (2%) for M-3 up to 0.3 tenths (8%) for M-1. All values are within the obtained range with CIB W29 templates. This can validate the QSI and digital processing methods and allows a quick verification of the results. With the digital method, it is obtained that 23.5% of the total pores of M-1 have a diameter of less than 10 mm2 and 44% of less than 100 mm2. For M-2 and M-3 the proportions of pores with a dimension below 10 mm2 is of 43.1% and 27.7%, respectively, and that 77.5% and 60.7% are smaller than 100 mm2. From all the above it can be highlighted that M-1 is the one with the lowest amount of pores, however the proportion of the largest is greater than for M-2 and M-3. In the case of M-3, although it has a lower proportion of larger pores than M-1, its greater amount means it is the worst in terms of surface finish of the three. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Cementitious Materials for the Construction Industry)
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Open AccessArticle Influence of Waste Glass Powder Addition on the Pore Structure and Service Properties of Cement Mortars
Sustainability 2018, 10(3), 842; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10030842
Received: 6 March 2018 / Revised: 9 March 2018 / Accepted: 15 March 2018 / Published: 16 March 2018
PDF Full-text (4227 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
At present, reusing waste constitutes an important challenge in order to reach a more sustainable environment. The cement industry is an important pollutant industrial sector. Therefore, the reduction of its CO2 emissions is now a popular topic of study. One way to
[...] Read more.
At present, reusing waste constitutes an important challenge in order to reach a more sustainable environment. The cement industry is an important pollutant industrial sector. Therefore, the reduction of its CO2 emissions is now a popular topic of study. One way to lessen those emissions is partially replacing clinker with other materials. In this regard, the reuse of waste glass powder as a clinker replacement could be possible. This is a non-biodegradable residue that permanently occupies a large amount of space in dumping sites. The aim of this work is to study the long-term effects (400 days) of the addition of waste glass powder on the microstructure and service properties of mortars that incorporate up to 20% of this addition as clinker replacement. The microstructure has been characterised using the non-destructive impedance spectroscopy technique and mercury intrusion porosimetry. Furthermore, differential thermal analysis was also performed. Compressive strength and both steady-state and non-steady-state chloride diffusion coefficients have also been determined. Considering the obtained results, mortars with 10% and 20% waste glass powder showed good service properties until 400 days, similar to or even better than those made with ordinary Portland cement without additions, with the added value of contributing to sustainability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Cementitious Materials for the Construction Industry)
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Open AccessArticle Influence of Graphene Nanosheets on Rheology, Microstructure, Strength Development and Self-Sensing Properties of Cement Based Composites
Sustainability 2018, 10(3), 822; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10030822
Received: 22 February 2018 / Revised: 4 March 2018 / Accepted: 6 March 2018 / Published: 15 March 2018
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (7333 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In this research, Graphene oxide (GO), prepared by modified hammer method, is characterized using X-ray Diffraction (XRD), Fourier Transform Infrared (FT-IR) Spectrometry and Raman spectra. The dispersion efficiency of GO in aqueous solution is examined by Ultraviolet–visible spectroscopy and it is found that
[...] Read more.
In this research, Graphene oxide (GO), prepared by modified hammer method, is characterized using X-ray Diffraction (XRD), Fourier Transform Infrared (FT-IR) Spectrometry and Raman spectra. The dispersion efficiency of GO in aqueous solution is examined by Ultraviolet–visible spectroscopy and it is found that GO sheets are well dispersed. Thereafter, rheological properties, flow diameter, hardened density, compressive strength and electrical properties of GO based cement composite are investigated by incorporating 0.03% GO in cement matrix. The reasons for improvement in strength are also discussed. Rheological results confirm that GO influenced the flow behavior and enhanced the viscosity of the cement based system. From XRD and Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA) results, it is found that more hydration occurred when GO was incorporated in cement based composite. The GO based cement composite improves the compressive strength and density of mortar by 27% and 1.43%, respectively. Electrical properties results showed that GO–cement based composite possesses self-sensing characteristics. Hence, GO is a potential nano-reinforcement candidate and can be used as self-sensing sustainable construction material. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Cementitious Materials for the Construction Industry)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Effects of Environment in the Microstructure and Properties of Sustainable Mortars with Fly Ash and Slag after a 5-Year Exposure Period
Sustainability 2018, 10(3), 663; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10030663
Received: 30 January 2018 / Revised: 22 February 2018 / Accepted: 27 February 2018 / Published: 1 March 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (2125 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Nowadays, getting a more environmentally sustainable cement production is one of the main goals of the cement industry. In this regard, the use of active additions, like fly ash and ground granulated blast-furnace slag, has become very popular. The behaviour, in the short-term,
[...] Read more.
Nowadays, getting a more environmentally sustainable cement production is one of the main goals of the cement industry. In this regard, the use of active additions, like fly ash and ground granulated blast-furnace slag, has become very popular. The behaviour, in the short-term, of cement-based materials with those additions is well-known when their hardening is produced under optimum conditions. However, real structures are exposed to different environments during long periods, which could affect the development of microstructures and the service properties of cementitious materials. The objective of this work is to analyse the effects in the long-term (up to 5 years approximately) produced by the exposure to different non-optimum laboratory conditions in the microstructure, mechanical and durability properties of mortars made with slag and fly ash commercial cements. Their performance was compared to that observed for ordinary Portland cement (OPC) mortars. The microstructure has been analysed using mercury intrusion porosimetry. The effective porosity, the capillary suction coefficient, the chloride migration coefficient and mechanical strengths were analysed too. According to the results, mortars prepared using slag and fly ash sustainable commercial cements, exposed to non-optimum conditions, show a good performance after 5-years hardening period, similar or even better than OPC mortars. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Cementitious Materials for the Construction Industry)
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Review

Jump to: Research

Open AccessReview Engineering Properties of Concrete with Waste Recycled Plastic: A Review
Sustainability 2018, 10(11), 3875; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10113875
Received: 25 September 2018 / Revised: 23 October 2018 / Accepted: 23 October 2018 / Published: 25 October 2018
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Abstract
The abundance of waste plastic is a major issue for the sustainability of the environment as plastic pollutes rivers, land, and oceans. However, the versatile behavior of plastic (it is lightweight, flexible, strong, moisture-resistant, and cheap) can make it a replacement for or
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The abundance of waste plastic is a major issue for the sustainability of the environment as plastic pollutes rivers, land, and oceans. However, the versatile behavior of plastic (it is lightweight, flexible, strong, moisture-resistant, and cheap) can make it a replacement for or alternative to many existing composite materials like concrete. Over the past few decades, many researchers have used waste plastic as a replacement for aggregates in concrete. This paper presents a comprehensive review of the engineering properties of waste recycled plastic. It is divided into three sections, along with an introduction and conclusion. The influence of recycled waste plastics on the fresh properties of concrete is discussed first, followed by its influence on the mechanical and durability properties of concrete. Current experimental results have shown that the mechanical and durability properties of concrete are altered due to the inclusion of plastic. However, such concrete still fulfills the requirements of many engineering applications. This review also advocates further study of possible pre-treatment of waste plastic properties for the modification of its surface, shape, and size in order to improve the quality of the composite product and make its use more widespread. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Cementitious Materials for the Construction Industry)
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