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CAPITAL PROJECTS INVOLVING CONCRETE

S. Ebow Coleman, Ph.D., P.E. President, C3S, Inc.

Concrete A Global Construction Material


Construction on the Afghanistan-Tajikistan Bridge

Source: http://www.aed.usace.army.mil/fullphoto.asp?Link=photos/AT-Bridge-052.jpg&PhotoID=39 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers - Afghanistan Engineer Project

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Concrete A Global Construction Material

Source: http://www.internationalrivers.org/en/image/tid/111

Three Gorges Dam across the Yangtze River, China

Source: DigitalGlobe

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Concrete A Global Construction Material


Construction Site in Mecca, Saudi Arabia

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Concrete A Global Construction Material

Joina Centre, Harare, Zimbabwe

Source: www.skyscrapercity.com

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Capital Project
Requires skilled and trained personnel Huge capital outlay Often takes several months or years

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Concrete: Ingredients
Portland cement Gravel/Crushed rock Sand Water Mineral admixture Chemical admixture Others

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Types of Portland Cement and Their Phase Compositions


Type of Cement I. II. III. IV. V. General Description General Purpose Modified General Purpose High Early Strength Low Heat Sulfate Resistant Potential Compound Composition % C3S 48-50 45-47 55-57 29-31 42-44 C2S 24-26 28-30 14-16 45-47 35-37 C3A 5-13 5-7 11-13 4-6 3-5 C4AF 7-9 11-13 7-9 12-14 11-13

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Cement Clinker
C3S

C3A

C4AF

Phase compositions identied by shapes

C2S

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Portland Cement What to look out for


MgO Total Alkali
High Alkali Cement Low Alkali Cement

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Potential Issues in Capital Projects Coarse & Fine Aggregates Environmental Effect on Concrete Degradation Incompatible Materials Vague Specification Mineral Admixtures Chemical Admixtures
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Coarse & Fine Aggregates


Constitute 65-75% by volume of concrete Weathered aggregates Reactive aggregates

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Coarse & Fine Aggregates

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Environmental Effect on Concrete Degradation

Concrete Failures: Sulfate Attack


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Incompatible Materials

Reactive Aggregates High Alkali Cement Moisture

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Vague Specification

A damaged wastewater tank (three years old)


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Vague Specification (continued)


Type I/II Cement Type I: C3A ~ 5-13% Type II: C3A ~ 5-7%

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Mineral Admixtures
Natural Pozzolans, e.g. volcanic ash Fly ash, silica fume Reactive silica is key ingredient
Basic Pozzolanic Reaction: 2 Steps
Cement + H2O

C-S-H +

Ca(OH)2 + Mineral Admixture (SiO2)

C-S-H
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Mineral Admixtures

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Excess causes surface defects

Mineral Admixtures

Effervescence on wall of dam absence of mineral admixture

Source:www.SkagitTours.com

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Chemical Admixtures
Retarders Accelerators Water reducers Superplasticizers Air-entraining agents Others

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Chemical Admixtures

Plant manufacturing structural members


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Chemical Admixtures
Inadvertent dosage caused excess entrained air Lower than specified compressive strength Several structures rejected

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What is needed on a capital project?


Consistent monitoring of materials Project Planning Phase Construction Phase Quality Control of Completed Structures Knowledgeable and experienced engineers

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CAPITAL PROJECTS INVOLVING CONCRETE


S. Ebow Coleman, Ph.D., P.E. President C3S, Inc.

QUESTIONS & ANSWERS