Mass Concrete is defined as:
“Any volume of concrete with dimensions largeenough to require that measures be taken to copewith the generation of heat from hydration of thecement and attendant volume change to minimizecracking.” (ACI Manual of Concrete Practice)
Fundamental Papers on Mass Concrete
“Engineering Mass Concrete Structures”–PCA ProfessionalDevelopment Series
“Mass Concrete –ACI 207”ACI Manual of Concrete Practice
Cement Hydration is a very exothermic process, leading toa rise in temperature at the core of very large pours.
If the surface temperature is allowed to deviate greatlyfrom that of the core, thermal cracking will develop.
Most codes require a temperature differential of less than 36Ffrom the surface to the core of the section.
When dimensions are > 1m or 3ft, temperature riseshould be considered.
Common thought is mass concrete principles only apply tolarge dams. But they apply to any large pour:
Massive foundations, bridge piers, thick slabs, nuclear plants,structural columns, etc…