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CMT1501/101/3/2014

Tutorial letter 101/3/2014

Construction Materials I (Theory)
CMT1501
Semesters 1 & 2

Department of Civil &
Chemical Engineering

IMPORTANT INFORMATION:
This tutorial letter contains important information
about your module.


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CONTENTS

Page
1 INTRODUCTION .......................................................................................................................... 3
2 PURPOSE OF AND OUTCOMES FOR THE MODULE ............................................................... 3
2.1 Purpose ........................................................................................................................................ 3
2.2 Outcomes ..................................................................................................................................... 4
3 LECTURER(S) AND CONTACT DETAILS ................................................................................... 4
3.1 Lecturer(s) .................................................................................................................................... 4
3.2 Department ................................................................................................................................... 4
3.3 University ...................................................................................................................................... 5
4 MODULE-RELATED RESOURCES ............................................................................................. 5
4.1 Prescribed books .......................................................................................................................... 5
4.2 Recommended books ................................................................................................................... 5
4.3 Electronic Reserves (e-Reserves) ................................................................................................. 5
5 STUDENT SUPPORT SERVICES FOR THE MODULE ............................................................... 5
6 MODULE-SPECIFIC STUDY PLAN ............................................................................................. 6
7 MODULE PRACTICAL WORK AND WORK-INTEGRATED LEARNING .................................... 6
8 ASSESSMENT ............................................................................................................................. 6
8.1 Assessment plan........................................................................................................................... 6
8.2 General assignment numbers ....................................................................................................... 6
8.2.1 Unique assignment numbers ........................................................................................................ 6
8.2.2 Due dates for assignments ........................................................................................................... 7
8.3 Submission of assignments .......................................................................................................... 7
8.4 Assignments ................................................................................................................................. 9
9 OTHER ASSESSMENT METHODS ........................................................................................... 20
10 EXAMINATION ........................................................................................................................... 20
11 FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ........................................................................................ 20
12 SOURCES CONSULTED ........................................................................................................... 20
13 CONCLUSTION.......................................................................................................................... 20


CMT1501/101/3/2014

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1 INTRODUCTION
Dear Student

1.1 Tutorial matter
Some of this tutorial matter may not be available when you register. Tutorial material that
is not available when you register will be posted to you as soon as possible, but is also
available on myUnisa.

2 PURPOSE OF AND OUTCOMES FOR THE MODULE
2.1 Purpose

Qualifying students will be able to identify and apply the basic parameters to be
considered when selecting construction materials and perform simply laboratory
experiment according to relevant SANS codes such as the followings:
 SANS 5862-1 Consistency of freshly mixed concrete – slump test
 SANS 5862-2 Consistency of freshly mixed concrete – flow test
 SANS 50934-2 Admixtures for Concrete mortar and grout Part 2
 SANS 51008 Mixing water for concrete specification for sampling etc
 SANS 5865 Concrete tests – preparation and testing for compressive
strength
 SANS 845 – Bulk densities and void contents of aggregates
 Other relevant SANS codes such as SANS 38, 42, 121, 140:1-11, and 141
Students will also be able to discuss the technical aspects of mechanical, thermal,
acoustical and chemical properties within the framework of energy and life cycle
analysis. The basic environmental issues related to the selection of construction
materials are also analyzed. Students will also be able to plan and execute basic
management tasks involved in geotechnical work.

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2.2 Outcomes

 Demonstrate the knowledge of construction materials and their behavior with
reference to the environmental effects and mitigating procedures.
 The student must be able to design/perform different laboratory experiments
relating to the behavior of concrete and other engineering materials using all
the available local construction materials.
 Preparation of a comprehensive, compact and accurate good technical
report.

3 LECTURER(S) AND CONTACT DETAILS
3.1 Lecturer(s)

Tel No.: +27 791946442
E-mail: akinaae@unisa.ac.za
Contact Times: Mondays to Fridays 16H00 to 19H00

3.2 Department

Department of Civil and Chemical Engineering

Unisa (Florida Campus) Private
Bag x 6
Florida
1710

Phone: 011 471 2048/3132

Use the general E-mail address: civil&chemical@unisa.ac.za
CMT1501/101/3/2014

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3.3 University

http://www.unisa.ac.za

4 MODULE-RELATED RESOURCES
4.1 Prescribed books
Construction Materials, Methods, and Techniques –Building for a sustainable
future 3
rd
Edition, Author: William P. Spence & Eva Kultermann
ISBN-13:978-1-4354-8781-9

4.2 Recommended books
Construction Materials – Their Nature and Behaviour Edited By: J.M. Illston &
P.L.J. Domone (Third Edition) Published By: Spon Press Taylor & Francis Group
ISBN: 10:0-419-25860-4

4.3 Electronic Reserves (e-Reserves)

All course materials are available on myUnisa https://my.unisa.ac.za under the
module course code under Materials. Discussion forums are set up by your
lecturer and available for discussions with your peers https://my.unisa.ac.za Some
additional electronic resources are available from the Library site (via
www.unisa.ac.za).You may electronically “post or upload your assignments in line
with the guidelines explained in the booklet:

5 STUDENT SUPPORT SERVICES FOR THE MODULE

Important information appears in your my Studies @ Unisa brochure.

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6 MODULE-SPECIFIC STUDY PLAN

Use your my Studies @ Unisa brochure for general time management and planning
skills. Also the New Study Guide has been prepared in a systematic manner with a
guided lesson plan for easy study.

7 MODULE PRACTICAL WORK AND WORK-INTEGRATED LEARNING

The Practical aspect of this module is covered in CMTPRA1 Modules

8 ASSESSMENT
8.1 Assessment plan

This course is part of a semester system. Use your myStudies @Unisa brochure for
general time management and planning skills.

8.2 General assignment numbers

Assignments are numbered consecutively per module, starting from 01

8.2.1 Unique assignment numbers

FIRST SEMERSTER SECOND SEMERSTER
ASSIGNMENT 1 834834 ASSIGNMENT 1 886225
ASSIGNMENT 2 874619 ASSIGNMENT 2 773881
ASSIGNMENT 3 818486 ASSIGNMENT 3 824654

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8.2.2 Due dates for assignments

FIRST SEMESTER
Assignment 1: (Compulsory)

Assignment 2: (Compulsory)
Assignment 3: (Compulsory)
12 March 2014

10 April 2014

23 April 2014
SECOND SEMESTER
Assignment 1: (Compulsory)

Assignment 2: (Compulsory)
Assignment 3: (Compulsory)
03 September 2014
17 September 2014
1 October 2014


8.3 Submission of assignments


Note: The cut –off dates given here are the official, last dates on which a given
assignment may be submitted. Students must adhere to these dates only. All other dates
referring to cut-off submission dates for assignments, as may be posted on myUnisa or
elsewhere, refers to administrative dates as managed by the Assignments Department
and does NOT influence or change the above dates

Website

Please note that the department has a web site where additional information on
the department and the modules are available.

The address is: http://www.unisa.ac.za/Default.asp?Cmd=ViewContent&ContentID=19740

Tutorial Letters are available from the myUnisa website. (See my Studies @ Unisa)
Should you encounter any problems in submitting an assignment on myUnisa, you may
contact the help line at: myUnisaHelp@unisa.ac.za



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Plagiarism
An assignment is designed to be a product of your own study and your own thought. It is
not intended to be a piece of work which merely reproduces details, information or ideas
from a study guide, from books or articles, or from the Internet.

If you do this, you commit plagiarism. Plagiarism is the act of copying word for word with or
without acknowledgment from study sources (e.g. books, articles, the Internet). In other
words, you must submit your own ideas in your own words, sometimes interspersing
relevant short quotations that are properly referenced.

Yes, simply copying a few pages from the prescribed book is plagiarism. Pasting
paragraphs from Wikipedia into your assignment is plagiarism. And it does not stop being
plagiarism if you mention the source.

Skilled scientific writers can use direct block quotations to make a specific point. They
know what they are doing. You still need to develop your own voice, your own style of
arguing the point. Do not plagiaries.

Note that you also commit plagiarism if you copy the assignment of another student. We
do encourage you to work together and form study groups, but you are expected to
prepare and submit your own assignments.

When we receive two or more identical assignments, we are not able to work out who
copied from whom. We will therefore penalize both students.

If you commit plagiarism you will be penalized and given no marks for your
assignment. This will have a serious effect on your chances to succeed in your
studies because you will have no semester mark.

Furthermore, you may be penalized or subjected to disciplinary proceedings by the
University. Plagiarism is also an offence in terms of the law.

A Signed Declaration
Every essay-type assignment we receive must include the following declaration along with
your name and the date:

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“I declare that this assignment is my own work and that all sources quoted
have been acknowledged by appropriate references”.

We will subtract marks if this declaration is absent from your assignment, just as we will
subtract marks if your assignment does not have a Table of contents, List of references
cited, and so on.

8.4 Assignments
FIRST SEMESTER
ASSIGNMENT 01

Please answer all the following questions on the Mark Reading Sheet

1. The trunk of a tree performs only one of the listed functions
1) it conducts electricity through electromagnetic ions
2) it conducts the mineral solutions absorbed by the roots upwards to the crown
3) It acts as a pipe for mineral passage to the crown.

2. Certain timbers show a propensity to conduct suspensions of minerals which are
subsequently deposited within the timber
1) FALSE
2) TRUE

3. Wood is generally acidic in nature
1) FALSE
2) TRUE

4. The pH of the heartwood varies
1) between 4.5 – 5.5
2) between 5.5 – 6.5
3) between 6.5 – 7.5

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4) between 7.5 – 8.5

5. Acidity in wood is due primarily to the generation of acetic acid by hydrolysis of the acetyl
groups of the hemicelluloses in the presence of moisture.
1) TRUE
2) FALSE

6. This acidity in wood is not strong enough to cause corrosion of certain metals
1) TRUE
2) FALSE

7. The term ‘bituminous materials’ is generally taken to include all materials consisting of
aggregate bound with neither bitumen nor tar
1) FALSE
2) TRUE

8. Bituminous materials consist of a graded aggregate bound together with bitumen
1) TRUE
2) FALSE

9. Rock asphalt consists of porous limestone or sandstone impregnated with 10% bitumen
content
1) TRUE
2) FALSE

10. Lake asphalt consists of a bitumen ‘lake’ with finely divided mineral matter dispersed
throughout the bitumen

1) FALSE
2) TRUE
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FIRST SEMESTER
ASSIGNMENT 02
QUESTION 1

Discuss the importance of Non-destructive test(s) in evaluating the strength and durability of
hardened concrete. (20)

QUESTION 2

Discuss possible factors a designer must consider when choosing stone for a building project.(15)

QUESTION 3

Briefly discuss the chemical properties of any construction material (e.g. Iron) and how its
original chemical composition is affected by its immediate environment. (20)

QUESTION 4

The table below shows the classification of soils using the Unified Classification System. Fill in
the missing information under the headings: description, rating as subgrade material, and rating
as surfacing material. (30)

Type Letter
Symbol
Description Rating as
Subgrade Material
Rating as
surfacing Material
Gravel and gravelly soils GW


GP


GM


GC


Sand and sandy soils SW



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SP


SM


SC


ML


Silts and clays with liquid
limit greater than 50
a

CL


OL


Silts and clays with liquid
limit greater than 50
a

MH
CH


OH


Highly organic soils Pt


(30)
QUESTION 5

What do you understand by waterproofing and describe six ways in which waterproofing can be
accomplished. (15)

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FIRST SEMESTER
ASSIGNMENT 03

QUESTION 1

1) Discuss the standard procedure followed in the production of softwood timber. (5)
2) What do you understand by the equilibrium moisture content and in what ways does
moisture affect wood (5)
3) Explain why wood floats even though the wood fibres have a specific gravity of 1.5 (5)
4) What are the two processes used to apply fire-resistant chemicals to wood (5)
[20]

QUESTION 2

1) How does aluminum compare with copper as a conductor of electricity (5)
2) How can galvanic corrosion be reduced or eliminated in ferrous and nonferrous metals (5)
3) What are the two processes used to apply fire-retardant chemicals to wood (5)
4) What are the plywood exposure durability classifications? (5)
[20]

QUESTION 3

1) How does hardwood plywood differ from industrial plywood? (5)
2) Differentiate between laminated veneer and glued laminated members (5)
3) Differentiate between plywood, oriented strand board and composite panels (5)
4) What are the five commonly used plywood in building constructions (5)
[20]

QUESTION 4

1) How do plasticizers change the properties of plastics? (5)
2) Briefly discuss the uses of silicones in building construction (5)
3) Identify the following plastics by their standard abbreviations:
ABS, PMMA, PA, PE and PVC (5)

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4) Discuss briefly the most important mechanical properties of plastics used in construction
and what are the two major classifications of plastic (5)
[20]

QUESTION 5

1) In what ways do various bonding agents cure? (5)
2) State the two classes of adhesives (5)
3) Indicate clearly the difference between a sealer and a sealant and state two types of
sealants (5)
4) Briefly describe a working joint. (5)
[20]

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SECOND SEMESTER
ASSIGNMENT 01

Please answer the following question on the Mark Reading Sheet

1. Immediately after placing, the concrete is still in a solid state.
1) TRUE
2) FALSE

2. Whilst the concrete is in its semi-fluid, plastic state the aggregate and cement
1) particles tend to settle and the mix water has a tendency to migrate upwards.
2) FALSE
3) TRUE

3. The following are the properties of an early age concrete
1) bleeding, segregation, plastic-settlement and plastic shrinkage
2) creep, poisson’s ratio, w:c ratio and movement
3) strength, elasticity, creep and durability

4. The most important engineering properties of hardened concrete have been
identified as a combination of:
1) elasticity, durability, creep and movement due to changes in temperature & moisture
2) workability, durability, segregation and plastic shrinkage
3) poisson’s ratio, plastic settlement, bleeding and w:c ratio

5. The maximum value of stress in a loading test is usually taken as the strength.
1) FALSE
2) TRUE


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6. The strength of cement paste is governed by its porosity, which in turn depends on the
water/cement ratio and degree of hydration.
1) TRUE
2) FALSE

7. The following factors have been identified as responsible for the strength of Portland
cement concrete
1) water/cement ratio, effect of age, temperature, humidity and aggregate properties
2) cement concentration and aggregate size
3) paste strength and water/cement content

8. Admixtures are chemicals that are added to the concrete immediately before or during
mixing and significantly change its fresh, early age or hardened state.
1) TRUE
2) FALSE

9. Only small quantities of admixtures are required in concrete mix, typically
1) 45% - 49% by weight of the cement
2) 1% - 2% by weight of the cement
3) 35% - 45% by weight of the cement

10. Plasticizers are also called workability aids increase the fluidity of a cement paste or
concrete
1) FALSE
2) TRUE


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SECOND SEMESTER
ASSIGNMENT 02
QUESTION 1
Briefly describe the following:
 Soil water (5)
 Soil-bearing capacities (5)
 Soil alterations (5)
 Soil compaction (5)
 Soil stabilization with admixtures (5)
[25]
QUESTION 2
Discuss the role of water in concrete and its desired properties [10]

QUESTION 3
Elaborate on the importance of the following material properties
 Modulus of Elasticity:- (5)
 Ductility:- (5)
 Hardness:- (5)
 Impact Strength:- (5)
 Fatigue Strength:- (5)
[25]

QUESTION 4
Assuming you are appointed as a foreman on a construction site and the order sheet for the
concrete placement was handed over to you which will be delivered to the site in the next
38hours. Assuming the formwork preparation has been completed, describe the placement
method you will apply to the following scenarios:
a. Deep reinforced members such as foundation wall (5)
b. Deep mass concrete such as reinforced concrete slab. (5)
[10]

QUESTION 5
Discuss the thermal properties to be considered for plastics used in construction. [25]

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SECOND SEMESTER
ASSIGNMENT 03

QUESTION 1

1) Briefly discuss the two basic methods of protecting exterior joints (5)
2) What do you understand by bentonite? (5)
3) How does cutback asphalt differ from asphalt emulsions? (5)
[15]

QUESTION 2

1) What are the two major uses of cutback asphalts (5)
2) List four asphalt products used in making roof repairs (5)
3) Discuss the possibility of retarding the rapid setting times of concrete in hot weather. (5)
[15]

QUESTION 3

1) What type of binder is used with aggregate to produce quality asphalt pavements? (5)
2) Differentiate between saturated felts and fibre glass felts (5)
3) State clearly the types of fibre used in making fireproofing paper (5)
4) What are the fire rating classes used to rate asphalt roofing materials (5)
[20]

QUESTION 4
1) How does a small scratch in glass reduce the tensile strength of a sheet? (5)
2) Why is glass resistant to corrosion and how does glass rate on optical clarit. (5)
3) What type of glass helps reduce heat transfer into a building in the summer
and heat loss to the outside during winter? (5)
4) How does insulating glass differ in construction from laminated glass? (5)
[20]
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QUESTION 5

1) What acoustical measurements are considered when selecting interior
finishing materials? (5)
2) What purpose do coatings serve on interior finishes? (5)
3) What is the recommended moisture content for wood to be painted? (5)
4) What purpose do stirrups serve when installing reinforcing bars in a form? (5)
[20]


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9 OTHER ASSESSMENT METHODS

None

10 EXAMINATION

Use your my Studies @ Unisa brochure for general examination guidelines and examination
preparation guidelines.

11 FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

The my Studies @ Unisa brochure contains an A-Z guide of the most relevant study
information.

12 SOURCES CONSULTED
CONSTRUCTION MATERIALS METHODS, AND TECHNIQUES – BUILDING FOR A
SUSTAINABLE FUTURE 3
rd
Edition. By: William P. Spence & Eva Kultermann

13 CONCLUSION
The students are expected to be proactive in interacting with myunisa as necessary information
that will assist the students will be posting on the medium. Also do not hesitate to engage your
lecturer via the available medium indicated in this tutorial letter.