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2d Design of PFA Concrete

Design of a PFA concrete mix follows the same five stages as describe in OPC
concrete mix design, but includes some restrictions and modifications.

1 Additional Information

The modified mix design process is given below using the following symbols:
Free water content (kg/m3) W
Cement content (kg/m3) C
PFA content(kg/m3) F
Proportion of PFA (%) p
Use the same mix design form shown in Table 1 with an extra supplemental
addtitioal mix design form to account for the changes.

2 Select target W/C(C+0.3F) ratio

The same standard deviations and associated k factors, or specified margins,

appropriate for Portland cement concrete are used.
The 28 days strength of a mix having a W/(C+0.3F) ratio of 0.5 is taken from
Table 10 according to the type of cement and coarse aggregate to be used.
This strength is the plotted on Fig. 4 at the starting line shown and the value of
the ratio W/(C+0.3F) required for the target mean strength is taken as the free
water/cement ratio appropriate for this strength.

3. Select free water content

Obtain the water content from Part A of table 9 for the maximum size and type of
coarse aggregate to be used, and the required level of workability for Portland
cement concrete.
Modify this value by reducing the water content by the value given in Part B
appropriate to the proportion of pfa specified.

4. Determine cement content and PFA content

The proportion of PFA, p, is specified as a percentage of the combined weight of

100 F
cement and PFA. P=
Modification are made to reduce the cement content and to establish the PFA
(100 - p)W
content. C=
(100 - 0.7p)[W/(C 0.3F)]

Where: Ratio W/(C + 0.3F) is derived from stage 1

Free water content W is obtained from stage 2
Compare with specified limited cement contents in Items 3.2 and 3.3 on the basis
of the combined weights of cement and PFA which is given as Item 3.1 in Table
Compare the value obtained from calculation C6 given as Item 3.5 in Table 12
with the specified minimum cement limit for a PFA concrete mix.
Having determined both C and F the value of the ratio W/(C+F) can be
determined and compared with the maximum free water/cement ratio specified as
Item 3.8.

5. Determine total aggregate content

Estimate density of fresh concrete from Fig. 5 as ordinary cement mix design.
Obtain total aggregate content by subtracting the weight of cement, PFA and
water form the wet density of the concrete.
Total aggregate content (SSD) = D (D + F) - W
6. Select fine aggregate content

Use same diagrams given in Fig. 6 for PFA concrete execpt that the value of the
W/(C+F) ratio shall be used as the free water/cement ratio.
Obtain proportion of fine aggregate from Fig. 6 for the appropriate condition of
maximum aggregate size, the workability required, the grading of the fine
aggregate and the W/(C+F) ratio.
Once the proportion of fine aggregate is obtained, evaluate the fine and coarse
aggregates content as described in oridnary mix design.

1.3 Design of PFA concrete

Example 10

Specification of the mix:

Characteristic compressive strength 35 N/mm2 at 28 days
A margin of 12 N/mm2 is specified
Cement: OPC class 42.5
PFA proportion 30%
Slump required, 10-30 mm
Maximum free-water/Cement ratio 0.6
Minimum cement content 300 kg/m3
Coarse aggregate: Uncrushed single sized 10 mm and 20 mm (1:2 by weight)
Fine aggregate: Uncrushed with 70% passing 600 m sieve
Relative density of aggregate : 2.6 (assumed)
Volume of trial mix: 0.05 m3
(Source: Building Research Establishment)
(Source: Building Research Establishment)
(Source: Building Research Establishment)