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Structural Concrete Using Oil

Palm Shell (OPS) as Lightweight


Aggregate

Fazeen Mohamed

Structural lightweight Aggregate


Concrete
Important and versatile material in modern construction.

Applications includes multi-storey building frames and floors,


bridges, offshore oil platforms, and pre-stressed or precast elements
of all types.
It solves weight and durability problems in buildings and exposed
structures.
It has strengths comparable to normal weight concrete, yet is
typically 25% to 35% lighter.
Offers design flexibility and substantial cost savings.

OPS as Lightweight Aggregate


The aim is to produce structural lightweight concrete
using solid waste, oil palm shell (OPS), as a coarse
aggregate.
Lightweight aggregates are classified as those having
dry unit weights (of less than) 1200 kg/m3 (Owens,
1993).
OPS aggregate has a unit weight of 500-600 kg/m3
(approximately
60%
lighter
compared
to
the
conventional crushed stone aggregates).
Earlier investigations showed that OPS can be used as
coarse aggregate in concrete (Mannan and Ganapathy,

OPS as Lightweight Aggregate


Studies have been conducted to investigate the important
characteristics of OPS concrete, to create wider acceptance of OPS
as a lightweight concrete alternative to be as used as building
material for low-cost housing construction.

Fig 1. Footbridge about 2 m in


span constructed by Universiti
Malaysia Sabah (UMS) 2001

Fig 2. low-cost house with


a floor area of about 59 m2
constructed by Universiti
Malaysia Sabah (UMS) 2003

Properties of Crushed OPS


Properties
Maximum grain size, mm
Shell thickness, mm
(Average shell thickness = 2.0
mm)
Specific gravity
Bulk unit weight, kg/m3
Fineness modulus
24-h water absorption, %

Oil palm shell (OPS)


12.5mm
0.5 3.0

1.17
500 600
6.08
33.0

Results and Discussions


Kurian, 2006)

Table. Properties of OPS


concrete.
Air-dry density, kg/m3

1963

Compressive strength,
MPa

28.12

Modulus of elasticity,
GPa

5.31

Pullout bond strength,


MPa

7.18 9.36

(Teo, Mannan, &

Results and Discussions


Kurian, 2006)
Propertie
s

(Teo, Mannan, &

Result

Workability The slump obtained in the OPS concrete was in the range of 50 to 70 mm.
This showed that the OPS concrete had a medium degree of workability
and was within the range of a workable concrete.
Density

Air dry density was with in the allowable limit (1963kg/m3 <2000 kg/m3),
thus making it lightweight.
Compared to normal weight concretes of 2400 kg/m3, OPS concrete is
approximately 20% lighter.
OPS concrete would decrease 20% dead load when used in construction.

Compressi
ve
Strength

Cubes tested at an age of 28 days produced strengths of 28.1 Mpa.


This is approximately 65% higher than the minimum required strength of
17 MPa for structural lightweight concrete recommended by ASTM C330.

The highest 28-day compressive strength achieved by using OPS as light weight aggregate was 53
Mpa (Payam, Mohd Zamin, Hilmi, Norjidah, 2011), Department of Civil Engineering,UM

Conclusion
Based on this investigation (Teo, Mannan, & Kurian, 2006), the following
conclusions can be drawn:
OPS has good potential as a coarse aggregate in structural concrete
production.
Can be used for low to moderate strength applications such as structural
members for low-cost houses.
The compressive strength of OPS satisfies the requirement for structural
lightweight concrete.
The bond property of OPS concrete is comparable to other types of lightweight
concretes.
Although OPS concrete has a low modulus of elasticity, beam tests revealed
that the deflection under the design service loads is between 252 and 263,
which are within the allowable limit provided by BS 8110.
Based on the beam test results, ultimate moment for the singly reinforced