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Abstract

As water is becoming a scarce material day-by-day, there is an urgent need to do


research work pertaining to saving of water in making concrete and in
constructions. Curing of concrete is maintaining satisfactory moisture content in
concrete during its early stages in order to develop the desired properties. However,
good curing is not always practical in many cases. Curing of concrete plays a major
role in developing the concrete microstructure and pore structure and hence
improves its durability and performance. Keeping importance to this, an attempt
has been made to develop self curing concrete by using water-soluble Polyethylene
Glycol as self-curing agent and light weight aggregate as Granite.
The aim of this investigation is to study the strength and durability properties of
concrete using water-soluble Polyethylene Glycol as self-curing agent. The function
of self-curing agent is to reduce the water evaporation from concrete, and hence
they increase the water retention capacity of concrete compared to the
conventionally cured concrete. The use of self-curing admixtures is very important
from the point of view that saving of water is a necessity everyday (each one cubic
metre of concrete requires 3m3 of water in a construction, most of which is used for
curing). In this study, compressive strength and split tensile strength of concrete
containing self-curing agent is investigated and compared with those of
conventionally cured concrete. It is found through this experimental study that
concrete cast with Polyethylene Glycol as self-curing agent is stronger than that
obtained by sprinkler curing as well as by immersion curing.
In the present study, the affect of admixture (PEG 400) on compressive strength,
split tensile strength and modulus of rupture by varying the percentage of PEG by
weight of cement from 0% to 2% were studied for M20. It was found that PEG 400
could help in self curing by giving strength on par with conventional curing. It was
also found that 1% of PEG 4000 by weight of cement was optimum for M20 grade
concretes for achieving maximum strength without compromising workability.

INTRODUCTION
Fresh concrete or plastic concrete is a freshly mixed material which can be moulded
into any shape. The relative quantities of Cement ,aggregates and water mixed
together , control the properties of concrete in wet state as well as in the hardened
state.
Curing of concrete is maintaining satisfactory moisture content in concrete during
its early stages in order to develop the desired properties and therefore it is one of
the most important requirements for optimum concrete performance in any
environment or applications. However, good curing is not always practical in many
cases. Therefore, the method of using self-curing agents will be a good alternative.
Self Curing
The ACI-308 code states that Internal curing refers to the process by which the
hydration of cement occurs because of the availability of additional internal water
that is not part of the mixing water. Internal curing is often also referred as Self
curing. Self Curing Concrete can be achieved by adding self curing agents. The
concept of self-curing agents is to reduce the water evaporation from concrete and
hence increase the water retention capacity of the concrete. It was found that water
soluble polymers can be used as self-curing agents in concrete. Curing of concrete
plays a major role in developing the concrete microstructure and pore structure and
hence improves its durability and performance.
A. Methods of Self- Curing (Internal Curing):

Currently, there are two major methods available for internal curing of concrete. The
first method uses saturated porous lightweight aggregate (LWA) in order to supply
an internal source of water, which can replace the water consumed by chemical

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shrinkage during cement hydration. The second method uses poly-ethylene glycol
(PEG) which reduces the evaporation of water from the surface of concrete and also
helps in water retention.

POLYETHYLENE GLYCOL

Polyethylene glycol is a condensation polymer of ethylene oxide and water with the
general formula H(OCH2CH2)nOH, where n is the average number of repeating
oxyethylene groups typically from 4 to about 180. The abbreviation (PEG) is termed
in combination with a numeric suffix which indicates the average molecular weights.
One common feature of PEG appears to be the water-soluble nature. Polyethylene
glycol is non-toxic, odorless, neutral, lubricating, non-volatile and non-irritating and
is used in a variety of pharmaceuticals.
CHEMICAL PROPERTIES OF PEG (POLYETHYLENE GLYCOL)

PEG 400 is strongly hydrophilic. The partition coefficient of PEG 400 between
hexane and water is 0.000015 (log P = -4.8), indicating that when PEG 400 is mixed
with water and hexane, there are only 15 parts of PEG 400 in the hexane layer per 1
million parts of PEG 400 in the water layer. PEG 400 is soluble in water, acetone,
alcohols, benzene, glycerine, glycols, and aromatic hydrocarbons, and is slightly
soluble in aliphatic hydrocarbons
PHYSICAL PROPERTIES OF PEG (POLYETHYLENE GLYCOL)
Depend on molecular weight the wide range of the physical property such as
solubility, hygroscopic, vapour pressure, melting or freezing point and viscosity are
variable: Solubility- Increasing the molecular weight of PEG results in decreasing
solubility in water & solvents. PEG are also soluble in many polar organic solvents
such as acetone, alcohols. Hygroscopic- PEGs are hygroscopic, it means that they
attract and retain moisture from the atmosphere. Hygroscopic decrease as
molecular weight increases. Viscosity- PEGs can be considered Newtonian fluids, so

the kinematic viscosity of PEGs decreases as temperature increases. Stability- PEGs


have low volatility and are thermally stable for a limited period of time below 300c
and without O2

LIGHT WEIGHT AGGREGATES

Wen-Chen Jau stated that self curing concrete is provided to absorb water from
moisture
from air to achieve better hydration of cement in concrete. It solves the problem
when the
degree of cement hydration is lowered due to no curing or improper curing by using
a selfcuring
agent like poly-acrylic acid which has strong capability of absorbing moisture from
the atmosphere and providing water required for curing concrete.
M.V.Jagannadha Kumar, M.Srikanth, Dr.K.Jagannadha Rao studied that the optimum
dosage
of PEG400 for maximum strengths (compressive, tensile and modulus of rupture)
was found
to be 1% for M20 and 0.5% for M40 grades of concrete. As percentage of PEG400
increased
slump increased for both M20 and M40 grades of concrete. Strength of self-curing
concrete is
on par with conventional concrete. Self-curing concrete is the answer to many
problems faced
due to lack of proper curing.
A.Aielstein Rozario,
permeability of

Dr.C.Freeda

Christy,

M.Hannah

Angelin

said

that

the

concrete decreases with an increase in the replacement of fly ash with cement and
in addition
of P.E.G dosages. So the penetration of chemicals is decreased with the addition of
PEG and
the concrete is safe against sulphates. The percentage of weight loss of the
concrete
specimens are also decreased for every grades of concrete. From the results, we
know that the
self- curing concrete has the ability to resist the sulphates present in the soils and in
the sea
waters. It is very economical also, so it can be adoptable for the constructions.
PietroLura The main aim of his study was to reach a better comprehension of
autogenous
shrinkage in order to be able to model it and possibly reduce it. Once the important
role of
self-desiccation shrinkage in autogenous shrinkage is shown, the benefits of
avoiding selfdesiccation
through internal curing become apparent.
Ole and Hansen describe a new concept for the prevention of self-desiccation in
hardening
cement-based materials using fine, super absorbent polymer (SAP) particles as a
concrete
admixture. The SAP will absorb water and form macro inclusions and this leads to
water
entertainment, i.e. the formation of water-filled macro pore inclusions in the fresh
concrete.
Consequently, the pore structure is actively designed to control self-desiccation. In
this work,
self-desiccation and water entertainment are described and discussed.
Roland Tak Yong Liang, Robert Keith Sun carried work on internal curing composition
of

concrete which includes a glycol and a wax. The invention provides for the first time
an
internal curing composition which, when added to concrete or other cementations
mixes
meets the required standards of curing as per Australian Standard AS 3799.
A.S. El-Dieb investigated water retention of concrete using water-soluble polymeric
glycol as
self-curing agent. Concrete weight loss and internal relative humidity measurements
with
time were carried out, in order to evaluate the water retention of self-curing
concrete. Water
transport through concrete is evaluated by measuring absorption%, permeable
voids%, and
water sorptivity and water permeability. The water transport through self-curing
concrete is
evaluated with age. The effect of the concrete mix proportions on the performance
of selfcuring
concrete was investigated, such as, cement content and water/cement ratio.