Dissatisfaction with this state of affairs led to the search for better materials and in the mid-1960s

polyester and epoxy resin-based mortars became available. Their adhesive bonding capability, rapid development of high strength and outstanding chemical resistance offered clear advantages over the indifferent bond and rapid carbonation experienced with simple cementitioEis mortar, sufficient to justify their considerably higher cost. Whilst these speciality compositions continue to give excellent service when used in appropriate situations, their indiscriminate substitution soon ]ed to other problems. The rapid curing reactions of these chemicals were often accompanied by a considerable rise in temperature and in some cases substantial shrinkage of the resin binder. When coupled with the subsequent thermal contraction this could induce severe stresses in the parent concrete adjacent to the bond line. A substantial difference between the coefficients of thermal expansion of the resin mortars and their concrete substrates could also exacerbate this situation and give rise to further distress under conditions of thermal cycling. Ignorance of these precepts and the demand for higher strength in shorter time at lower cost caused much disillusionment and damage to the reputation of diese materials. Whilst further investigation and testing showed that the problems could be prevented by careful formulation and appropriate specification, these unfortunate experiences spurred interest in the reappraisal of cementitious mortars to overcome their shortcomings by similar careful formulation. The outcome has been a swing back to cementitious repair materials, now greatly sophisticated, but overcoming all the deficiencies of the traditional material. Initially, all the effort went into the development of" mortar formulations, since concrete repair practice had largely revolved around hand-applied patch repairs. The chemical resistance of cementitious mortars and concretes is very limited and so they have been replaced on a large scale by resin compositions in the field of industrial flooring. Where this need has not been anticipated at the design stage, or where a change of use has ensued, the deterioration of concrete by chemical attack may dictate the use of resin mortars for repair work. These mortars are blends of reactive resin binders with graded fillers, usually silica sands and ground mineral powders. The binder may be a polyester resin or an epoxy or modified epoxy type. Other sophisticated resins are used as binders in flooring compositions to meet very specific needs, but seldom find their way into the concrete repair market. Both polyester and epoxy resin binders are thin syrupy liquids which remain stable for a long period under suitable storage conditions. They harden rapidly by a chemical reaction which is brought about when a second component, usually called the hardener, is added and stirred in.

the hardener and the tiller being separately weighed at the factory into their respective containers. In the repair role they are usually required in somewhat thicker sections and so the length of run applied at one time may need to be restricted to avoid excessive thermal contraction strain. In a weII-formulated epoxy mortar the shrinkage can be as low as 20 miciostrain (in fact a suitable method of measuring it reliably has only recently been developed) (Staynes.e. Most of the responsibility for this proportioning is taken out of the hands of the site operative and the specialist formtilator supplies the products in a package of a size appropriate to typical site needs. J9SS).Epoxy resins Epoxy resins harden by an additive chemica] reaction. An excess of either component can mean that the hardened resin is softened and weakened by the effect of the unreacted liquid. As a result. In this case the hardener is a reactive liquid whose quantity must be measured carefully to match the chemical requirement of the syrupy resin base. epoxy mortars can be laid over almost infinitely large areas and so are used for heavy duty floor screeds. The reaction of epoxy resins causes a slight reduction in volume in the l i q u i d stage. It is still incumbent upon the site operative to ensure that the full quantities supplied are thoroughly blended together. although the effect of bulk upon the buildup of exothermic heat must always be borne in mind. . Whilst progress has been made in developing formulations which are tolerant of a small excess of either component. the resin base. i. epoxy mortars can be used for much larger repairs than polyesters. by the addition of a reactive hardener. generally confined to small works. but once gelation occurs there is virtually no further shrinkage as a direct result of the reaction although. when used at 5mm thickness. considerably more care needs to be taken to ensure that these two components are used in their correct proportions. and so are commonly employed in the repair of chipped arrises and localized floor damage etc. Thus. not a catalytic one. as with polyesters. if the hardening occurs rapidly there w i l l be a rise in temperature (because the reaction is exothermic) and consequently some thermal contraction on cooling. They can be quite a boon in the precasting yard and on the construction site where high strength repairs may be required with the minimum of delay.

which are respectively about four times and six times those of ordinary Portland cement (OPC) concretes. The strengths attained by these materials are of the order of 50-100 N/mruin compression. They are often used for the repair of floors prior to overlaying with a flooring composition of one sort or an other. The rapid development of serviceable strength (typically in an hour or two for polyester resins and a day for epoxy resins) may often be sufficient to justify the cost. columns. stair treads and other similarly demanding applications.2 can be applied in these difficult situations to thicknesses of 50mm or much greater in smaller pockets. with careful formulation and intelligent design the effect can be neutralized. The . high strength and high abrasion resistance are required there may be no cheaper alternative. they achieve a compressive strength of 40 N/mm. Where chemical resistance. but perhaps more impressive are their tensile and Hex Lira I strengths.5 there is a risk of differential thermal stresses developing at the bond line if a concrete-resin mortar composite is subject to changes in temperature. Although the addition of mineral fillers reduces diis differential to about 2.Although the cost of resin mortars may be high^ it is often a small proportion of the cost of the whole repair exercise. Because of their amorphous nature. Often there is no need for very high strength and advantage can be taken of the availability of lightweight fillers to permit higher build in vertical and overhead situations. walls and soffits where cementitious materials are precluded for whatever reason. it has already been stated that polyester mortars are used for small patches and epoxy mortars for larger ones. For more general concrete repairs to beams. Lightweight epoxy mortars with a relative density of around 1. resin binders have coefficients of thermal expansion many times greater than that of concrete (typically 65xlO-6/°C compared with 12xl0-*/°C for concrete). This gives them superior performance under conditions of severe impact and abrasion and accounts for their use in the repair of floor joint arrises. Whilst this can cause total disruption of the joint. the advantage over a cement it ions mortar being the rate of hardening and the absence of moisture to delay the application of the topping.and still have better impact strength than concrete.

allowing differential thermal stresses to decay fairly rapidly. Short-term problems may arise because the repair materials contract during cure relative to the surrounding concrete. 1983) puts these considerations to the test and examines the compatibility of a resin mortar topping with a cementitious substrate. incompatibilities in the form of differing elastic moduli may affect the transmission of load through the member. Furthermore> the lower modulus resin systems have some capacity to creep under load. formulators have produced epoxy resin mortars which. can withstand the thermal shock of steam cleaning without impairing their bond to the concrete substrate. i -■ i. ASTM C-KE4 (ASTM. in the case of flooring systems. By subjecting a composite specimen to thermal cycling. Whilst a heavily tilled resin mortar can be formulated to have a modulus value approaching that of concrete (about 28 GPa). During service. By taking careful account of these factors. . creep of the repair material under sustained stress may cause the repair to become less effective with time. Additionally. the differential thermal stress can be reduced by using a slightly more flexible resin.differential stress developed at the interface by a change in temperature is dependent upon the differencce in the thermal coefficients of the two materials and their relative elastic moduli. The implications of a mismatch in properties between the repair system and the substrate on the structural behaviour of a repaired concrete member is discussed in some detail by Emberson and Mays (1990 a and b). Thus the difference in thermal coefficients need not impair the durability of bond when epoxy mortals are formulated tor concrete repair work. any development of excessive stress at the bond line is readily revealed by the onset of del animation.

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