Advances in Sustainable Concrete System

A special issue of Crystals (ISSN 2073-4352). This special issue belongs to the section "Hybrid and Composite Crystalline Materials".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2021) | Viewed by 64858

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Guest Editor
School of Qilu Transportation, Shandong University, Jinan 250002, China
Interests: cementitious materials; industrial wastes; concrete pavement; concrete durability; geopolymer
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Guest Editor
Zhejiang University of Technology, Zhejiang, China
Interests: reinforced concrete; durability; corrosion

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Guest Editor
School of Water Conservancy Engineering, Zhengzhou University, Zhengzhou, China
Interests: geopolymer composites; fiber-reinforced concrete; nanoparticle reinforced concrete; green concrete composites
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
InTrans, CP Tech Center, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011, USA
Interests: concrete materials; mixture proportioning; durability; pavements; specifications

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Concrete is the most widely used construction material in the world and is typically produced using Portland cement (PC) as the binder. The mass of PC used in concrete construction brings a critical environmental issue due to the high emission of carbon dioxide gas during its manufacture from the calcination of limestone and the combustion of fossil fuel. On the other hand, the rising demands to reduce the cost of binder in concrete desiderate aim to offer an alternative source of PC. To date, new concrete systems, such as geopolymer concrete, magnesium phosphate concrete, and concrete using supplementary cementitious materials have been extensively explored in concrete research.

This Special Issue aims to publish current advanced concrete studies on environmentally friendly or cost-effective concretes or wastes recycling. The qualified papers focus on, but are not limited to, the properties, evaluation, novel manufacturing/experimental techniques, analytical methods, microstructure, modeling, design, production, and practical applications of new binders/aggregates in concrete, and their behaviors in the concrete structures of in situ performance, renovation, maintenance, recycling, durability, and sustainability.

Dr. Yifeng Ling
Prof. Dr. Chuanqing Fu
Dr. Peng Zhang
Dr. Peter Taylor
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • Concrete binder
  • Concrete structure
  • Geopolymer
  • Supplementary cementitious materials
  • Manufacturing/experimental techniques
  • Waste recycling
  • Sustainability
  • Self-healing concrete
  • Eco-efficient concrete
  • Microstructure
  • Durability

Published Papers (25 papers)

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Editorial

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4 pages, 172 KiB  
Editorial
Advances in Sustainable Concrete System
by Yifeng Ling, Chuanqing Fu, Peng Zhang and Peter Taylor
Crystals 2022, 12(5), 698; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst12050698 - 14 May 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1328
Abstract
In recent years, the implementation of a sustainable concrete system has been a great topic of interest in the field of construction engineering worldwide as a result of the large and rapid increase in carbon emissions and environmental problems from traditional concrete production [...] Read more.
In recent years, the implementation of a sustainable concrete system has been a great topic of interest in the field of construction engineering worldwide as a result of the large and rapid increase in carbon emissions and environmental problems from traditional concrete production and industry [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)

Research

Jump to: Editorial, Review

22 pages, 30686 KiB  
Article
Interpretable Machine Learning Models for Punching Shear Strength Estimation of FRP Reinforced Concrete Slabs
by Yuanxie Shen, Junhao Sun and Shixue Liang
Crystals 2022, 12(2), 259; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst12020259 - 14 Feb 2022
Cited by 23 | Viewed by 2876
Abstract
Fiber reinforced polymer (FRP) serves as a prospective alternative to reinforcement in concrete slabs. However, similarly to traditional reinforced concrete slabs, FRP reinforced concrete slabs are susceptible to punching shear failure. Accounts of the insufficient consideration of impact factors, existing empirical models and [...] Read more.
Fiber reinforced polymer (FRP) serves as a prospective alternative to reinforcement in concrete slabs. However, similarly to traditional reinforced concrete slabs, FRP reinforced concrete slabs are susceptible to punching shear failure. Accounts of the insufficient consideration of impact factors, existing empirical models and design provisions for punching strength of FRP reinforced concrete slabs have some problems such as high bias and variance. This study established machine learning-based models to accurately predict the punching shear strength of FRP reinforced concrete slabs. A database of 121 groups of experimental results of FRP reinforced concrete slabs are collected from a literature review. Several machine learning algorithms, such as artificial neural network, support vector machine, decision tree, and adaptive boosting, are selected to build models and compare the performance between them. To demonstrate the predicted accuracy of machine learning, this paper also introduces 6 empirical models and design codes for comparative analysis. The comparative results demonstrate that adaptive boosting has the highest predicted precision, in which the root mean squared error, mean absolute error and coefficient of determination of which are 29.83, 23.00 and 0.99, respectively. GB 50010-2010 (2015) has the best predicted performance among these empirical models and design codes, and ACI 318-19 has the similar result. In addition, among these empirical models, the model proposed by El-Ghandour et al. (1999) has the highest predicted accuracy. According to the results obtained above, SHapley Additive exPlanation (SHAP) is adopted to illustrate the predicted process of AdaBoost. SHAP not only provides global and individual interpretations, but also carries out feature dependency analysis for each input variable. The interpretation results of the model reflect the importance and contribution of the factors that influence the punching shear strength in the machine learning model. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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13 pages, 3509 KiB  
Article
Effect of Synthetic Quadripolymer on Rheological and Filtration Properties of Bentonite-Free Drilling Fluid at High Temperature
by Jiangfeng Wang, Mengting Chen, Xiaohui Li, Xuexuan Yin and Wenlong Zheng
Crystals 2022, 12(2), 257; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst12020257 - 14 Feb 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1988
Abstract
High temperature would dramatically worsen rheological behaviors and increase filtration loss volumes of drilling fluids. Synthetic polymers with high temperature stability have attracted more and more attention. In this paper, a novel quadripolymer was synthesized using 2-acrylamido-2-methylpropanesulfonic acid (AMPS), acrylamide (AM), sodium styrene [...] Read more.
High temperature would dramatically worsen rheological behaviors and increase filtration loss volumes of drilling fluids. Synthetic polymers with high temperature stability have attracted more and more attention. In this paper, a novel quadripolymer was synthesized using 2-acrylamido-2-methylpropanesulfonic acid (AMPS), acrylamide (AM), sodium styrene sulfonate (SSS), and dimethyl diallyl ammonium chloride (DMDAAC). Firstly, the molecular structure was studied by Fourier transform–infrared spectroscope (FT-IR) and nuclear magnetic resonance (1H-NMR) analysis. It was shown that the synthetic polymer contained all the designed functional groups. Moreover, the effect of temperature and the quadripolymer concentration on the rheological behavior and filtration loss of the bentonite-free drilling fluid were investigated. It was experimentally established that when the adding amount of the quadripolymer was 0.9 wt%, the prepared drilling fluid systems exhibited relatively stable viscosities, and the filtration losses could be controlled effectively after hot rolling aged within 180 °C. Further, it was confirmed that the bentonite-free drilling fluid containing the synthesized quadripolymer had good reservoir protection performance. In conclusion, the synthetic quadripolymer is a promising rheology modifier and a filtrate reducer for the development of the bentonite-free drilling fluid at high temperature. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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14 pages, 41124 KiB  
Article
Bamboo Sawdust as a Partial Replacement of Cement for the Production of Sustainable Cementitious Materials
by Yunyun Tong, Abdel-Okash Seibou, Mengya Li, Abdelhak Kaci and Jinjian Ye
Crystals 2021, 11(12), 1593; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11121593 - 20 Dec 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 4088
Abstract
This paper reports on the utilization of recycled moso bamboo sawdust (BS) as a substitute in a new bio-based cementitious material. In order to improve the incompatibility between biomass and cement matrix, the study firstly investigated the effect of pretreatment methods on the [...] Read more.
This paper reports on the utilization of recycled moso bamboo sawdust (BS) as a substitute in a new bio-based cementitious material. In order to improve the incompatibility between biomass and cement matrix, the study firstly investigated the effect of pretreatment methods on the BS. Cold water, hot water, and alkaline solution were used. The SEM images and mechanical results showed that alkali-treated BS presented a more favorable bonding interface in the cementitious matrix, while both compressive and flexural strength were higher than for the other two treatments. Hence, the alkaline treatment method was adopted for additional studies on the effect of BS content on the microstructural, physical, rheological, and mechanical properties of composite mortar. Cement was replaced by alkali-treated BS at 1%, 3%, 5%, and 7% by mass in the mortar mixture. An increased proportion of BS led to a delayed cement setting and a reduction in workability, but a lighter and more porous structure compared to the conventional mortar. Meanwhile, the mechanical performance of composite decreased with BS content, while the compressive and flexural strength ranged between 14.1 and 37.8 MPa and 2.4 and 4.5 MPa, respectively, but still met the minimum strength requirements of masonry construction. The cement matrix incorporated 3% and 5% BS can be classified as load-bearing lightweight concrete. This result confirms that recycled BS can be a sustainable component to produce a lightweight and structural bio-based cementitious material. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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9 pages, 720 KiB  
Article
The Influence of Fly Ash Content on the Compressive Strength of Cemented Sand and Gravel Material
by Qihui Chai, Fang Wan, Lingfeng Xiao and Feng Wu
Crystals 2021, 11(11), 1426; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11111426 - 21 Nov 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1535
Abstract
Cemented sand and gravel (CSG) material is a new type of dam material developed on the basis of roller compacted concrete, hardfill, and ultra-poor cementing materials. Its main feature is a wide range of sources of aggregate (aggregate is not screened but by [...] Read more.
Cemented sand and gravel (CSG) material is a new type of dam material developed on the basis of roller compacted concrete, hardfill, and ultra-poor cementing materials. Its main feature is a wide range of sources of aggregate (aggregate is not screened but by simply removing the large particles it can be fully graded on the dam filling) and low amounts of cementitious materials per unit volume. This dam construction material is not only economical and practical, but also green and environmentally friendly. There are many factors affecting the mechanical properties of CSG materials, such as aggregate gradation, sand ratio, water content, water–binder ratio, fly ash content, admixture content, etc. Based on the existing research results of the team, this paper focuses on the influence of fly ash content on the compressive strength of CSG materials. Through a large number of laboratory measured data, we found: (1) The compressive strength law of materials at different ages; the compressive strength of CSG material at age 90 d is generally 10%~30% higher than that at 28 d, and it is proposed that 90 d or 180 d strength should be used as the design strength in the design of CSG material dam; (2) There is an optimal value of fly ash content in CSG materials: when the fly ash content is 50% of the total amount of cementitious materials (cement + fly ash), the fly ash content is defined as the optimal content, and the test data are verified by regression analysis. The discovery of an ‘optimal dosage’ of fly ash provides an important reference for the design and construction of CSG dams. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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22 pages, 7747 KiB  
Article
FE Modelling and Analysis of Beam Column Joint Using Reactive Powder Concrete
by Afnan Nafees, Muhammad Faisal Javed, Muhammad Ali Musarat, Mujahid Ali, Fahid Aslam and Nikolai Ivanovich Vatin
Crystals 2021, 11(11), 1372; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11111372 - 11 Nov 2021
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 2541
Abstract
Reactive powder concrete (RPC) is used in the beam-column joint region in two out of four frames. Finite element modeling of all specimens is developed by using ABAQUS software. Displacement controlled analysis is used rather than load control analysis to obtain the actual [...] Read more.
Reactive powder concrete (RPC) is used in the beam-column joint region in two out of four frames. Finite element modeling of all specimens is developed by using ABAQUS software. Displacement controlled analysis is used rather than load control analysis to obtain the actual response of the structure. The prepared models were verified by using experimental results. The results showed that using RPC in the joint region increased the overall strength of the structure by more than 10%. Moreover, it also helped in controlling the crack width. Furthermore, using RPC in the joint region increased the ductility of the structures. Comparisons were made by varying the size of the mesh and viscosity parameter values. It was found that by increasing the mesh size and viscosity parameter value, analysis time and the number of steps during analysis were reduced. This study provides a new modeling approach using RPC beam-column joint to predict the behavior and response of structures and to improve the shear strength deformation against different structural loading. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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11 pages, 2865 KiB  
Article
Effect of Different NaOH Solution Concentrations on Mechanical Properties and Microstructure of Alkali-Activated Blast Furnace Ferronickel Slag
by Zongxian Huang, Yuqi Zhou and Yong Cui
Crystals 2021, 11(11), 1301; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11111301 - 26 Oct 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1696
Abstract
Blast furnace ferronickel slag (BFFS) is a kind of industrial solid waste that has not been effectively utilized in construction industry. The effects of different NaOH concentrations on the mechanical properties and microstructure of alkali-activated blast furnace ferronickel slag were investigated in this [...] Read more.
Blast furnace ferronickel slag (BFFS) is a kind of industrial solid waste that has not been effectively utilized in construction industry. The effects of different NaOH concentrations on the mechanical properties and microstructure of alkali-activated blast furnace ferronickel slag were investigated in this study. The results show that an optimal concentration for compressive strength is found, both higher and lower concentrations cause strength degradation. The pore structure, phase composition and hydration heat revealed that less C-A-S-H gel is produced at low concentration and result in the low compressive strength The phase composition and hydration heat revealed that more hydrotalcite is produced than C-A-S-H at high concentration due to more violent reaction at the early age hinders the growth of C-A-S-H in the later stage. FT-IR also shows that high concentration decreased the Al/Si ratio and polymerization of C-A-S-H which also leads to the low strength at high concentration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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10 pages, 3892 KiB  
Article
Effects of Different Content of Phosphorus Slag Composite Concrete: Heat Evolution, Sulphate-Corrosion Resistance and Volume Deformation
by Kuisheng Liu and Yong Cui
Crystals 2021, 11(11), 1293; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11111293 - 25 Oct 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1252
Abstract
Phosphorus slag (PS) and limestone (LS) composite (PLC) were prepared with a mass ratio of 1:1. The effects of the content of PLC and the water/binder ratio on the mechanical properties, durability and dry shrinkage of concrete were studied via compressive strength, electric [...] Read more.
Phosphorus slag (PS) and limestone (LS) composite (PLC) were prepared with a mass ratio of 1:1. The effects of the content of PLC and the water/binder ratio on the mechanical properties, durability and dry shrinkage of concrete were studied via compressive strength, electric flux, sulfate dry/wet cycle method, saturated drainage method, isothermal calorimeter, adiabatic temperature rise instrument and shrinkage deformation instrument. The results show that PLC can greatly reduce the adiabatic temperature rise of concrete. The adiabatic temperature rise is 55 °C with 33 wt.% PLC, 10 °C lower than that of the control sample. The addition in the content of PLC does not affect the long-term strength of concrete. When the water/binder ratio decreases by 0.1–0.15, the long-term strength of concrete with PLC increases by about 10%, compared with the control group. At the age of 360 days, the chloride permeability of L-11 (i.e., the content of PLC was 20%, the water/binder ratio was 0.418) and L-22 (i.e., the content of PLC was 33%, the water/binder ratio was 0.39) decrease to the “very low” grade. The strength loss rate of L-11 and L-22 after 150 sulfate dry/wet cycles is about 18.5% and 19%, respectively, which is 60% of the strength loss rate of the control sample. The drying shrinkage of L-11 and L-22 reduces by 4.7% and 9.5%, respectively, indicating that PLC can also reduce the drying shrinkage. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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16 pages, 3079 KiB  
Article
Study on Energy Evolution and Damage Constitutive Model of Siltstone
by Ruihe Zhou, Longhui Guo and Rongbao Hong
Crystals 2021, 11(11), 1271; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11111271 - 20 Oct 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1315
Abstract
In order to study the energy evolution characteristics and damage constitutive relationship of siltstone, the conventional triaxial compression tests of siltstone under different confining pressures are performed, and the evolution laws of input energy, elastic strain energy and dissipative energy of siltstone with [...] Read more.
In order to study the energy evolution characteristics and damage constitutive relationship of siltstone, the conventional triaxial compression tests of siltstone under different confining pressures are performed, and the evolution laws of input energy, elastic strain energy and dissipative energy of siltstone with axial strain and confining pressure are analyzed. According to the test results, the judgment criterion of the rock damage threshold is improved, and an improved three-shear energy yield criterion is proposed., The damage constitutive equation of siltstone is established based on the damage mechanics theory through the principle of minimum energy consumption and by considering the residual strength of rock, and lastly, the rationality of the model is verified by experimental data. The results reveal that (1) both the input energy and dissipative energy gradually increase with the increase of axial strain, and the elastic strain energy first increases and then decreases with the increase of axial strain, and reaches its maximum at the peak. (2) The input energy and dissipation energy increase exponentially with the increase of the confining pressure, and the elastic strain energy increases linearly with the increase of confining pressure. (3) According to the linear relationship between the sum of shear strain energy and hydrostatic pressure, an improved three-shear energy yield criterion is established. (4) The model curve can better describe the strain softening stage and the residual strength characteristics of siltstone. The relative standard deviation between the model results and the test results is only 4.35%, which verifies the rationality and feasibility of the statistical damage constitutive model that is established in this paper. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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18 pages, 7377 KiB  
Article
An Experimental Study of the Road Performance of Cement Stabilized Coal Gangue
by Junfeng Guan, Meng Lu, Xianhua Yao, Qing Wang, Decai Wang, Biao Yang and Huaizhong Liu
Crystals 2021, 11(8), 993; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11080993 - 20 Aug 2021
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 2627
Abstract
The research into the road performance of coal gangue is of great significance for the consumption of coal gangue and reducing pollution. In this paper, the coal gangues were prepared by separation and crushing processes, and their gradations were also optimized. Aiming to [...] Read more.
The research into the road performance of coal gangue is of great significance for the consumption of coal gangue and reducing pollution. In this paper, the coal gangues were prepared by separation and crushing processes, and their gradations were also optimized. Aiming to identify the possible problems of coal gangue as a pavement base, an unconfined compressive strength test, a splitting test, a freeze–thaw test, and a drying shrinkage test of cement stabilized gangue with varying cement amounts were carried out, and the test results were compared and analyzed. The test results showed that the maximum dry density and optimum moisture content (OMC) of the optimized cement stabilized gangue and cement stabilized macadam increased with cement content. The maximum dry density and OMC of cement stabilized macadam were larger than that of cement stabilized gangue with the same cement content. The optimized 7-day unconfined compressive strength of cement stabilized gangue can meet the requirements for a secondary and lower highway base and subbase. The OMC and cement content are the critical factors affecting the compressive strength loss rate of cement stabilized gangue after freeze–thaw cycles. The smaller the OMC of cement stabilized gangue and the larger the cement content, the lower the compressive strength loss rate. With an increase in cement content, the drying shrinkage strain of cement stabilized gangue increased. The results show that a cement content of 4% is optimal for the cement stabilized coal gangue, which can be used for the light traffic base and heavy traffic subbase of class II and below highways. It provides a basis, guide, and reference for the application of coal gangue materials in a high-grade highway base. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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23 pages, 6715 KiB  
Article
Performance Evaluation of Sustainable Concrete Comprising Waste Polypropylene Food Tray Fibers and Palm Oil Fuel Ash Exposed to Sulfate and Acid Attacks
by Hossein Mohammadhosseini, Rayed Alyousef, Shek Poi Ngian and Mahmood Md. Tahir
Crystals 2021, 11(8), 966; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11080966 - 16 Aug 2021
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 2586
Abstract
Sulfate and acid attacks cause material degradation, which is a severe durability concern for cementitious materials. The performance of concrete composites comprising waste plastic food trays (WPFTs) as low-cost fibers and palm oil fuel ash (POFA) exposed to acid and sulfate solutions has [...] Read more.
Sulfate and acid attacks cause material degradation, which is a severe durability concern for cementitious materials. The performance of concrete composites comprising waste plastic food trays (WPFTs) as low-cost fibers and palm oil fuel ash (POFA) exposed to acid and sulfate solutions has been evaluated in an immersion period of 12 months. In this study, visual assessment, mass variation, compressive strength, and microstructural analyses are investigated. For ordinary Portland cement (OPC), six concrete mixtures, including 0–1% WPFT fibers with a length of 20 mm, were prepared. In addition, another six mixtures with similar fiber dosages were cast, with 30% POFA replacing OPC. It was discovered that adding WPFT fibers and POFA to concrete reduced its workability. POFA concrete mixes were found to have higher long-term compressive strength than OPC concrete mixes cured in water. As a result of the positive interaction between POFA and WPFT fibers, both the crack formation and spalling of concrete samples exposed to acid and sulfate solutions were reduced, as was the strength loss. The study’s findings show that using WPFT fibers combined with POFA to develop a novel fiber-reinforced concrete subjected to chemical solutions is technically and environmentally feasible. WPFT fibers have a significant protective effect on concrete against chemical attacks. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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11 pages, 2342 KiB  
Article
A Numerical Study on Chloride Diffusion in Cracked Concrete
by Qiannan Wang, Guoshuai Zhang, Yunyun Tong and Chunping Gu
Crystals 2021, 11(7), 742; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11070742 - 25 Jun 2021
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 1982
Abstract
The cracks in concrete are a fast transport path for chlorides and influence the service life of concrete structures in chloride environments. This study aimed to reveal the effect of crack geometry on chloride diffusion in cracked concrete. The chloride diffusion process in [...] Read more.
The cracks in concrete are a fast transport path for chlorides and influence the service life of concrete structures in chloride environments. This study aimed to reveal the effect of crack geometry on chloride diffusion in cracked concrete. The chloride diffusion process in cracked concrete was simulated with the finite difference method by solving Fick’s law. The results showed that the apparent chloride diffusivity was lower in more tortuous cracks, and the cracks with more narrow points also showed lower apparent chloride diffusivity. For tortuous cracks, a higher crack width meant relatively more straight cracks, and consequently, higher apparent chloride diffusivity, while a lower crack width resulted in more tortuous cracks and lower apparent chloride diffusivity. The crack depth showed a more significant influence on the chloride penetration depth in cracked concrete than crack geometry did. Compared with rectangular and V-shaped cracks, the chloride diffusion process in cracked concrete with a tortuous crack was slower at the early immersion age. At the same crack depth, the crack geometry showed a marginal influence on the chloride penetration depth in cracked concrete during long-term immersion. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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24 pages, 11448 KiB  
Article
Stress–Strain Behavior of FRC in Uniaxial Tension Based on Mesoscopic Damage Model
by Weifeng Bai, Xiaofeng Lu, Junfeng Guan, Shuang Huang, Chenyang Yuan and Cundong Xu
Crystals 2021, 11(6), 689; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11060689 - 16 Jun 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2375
Abstract
Fiber-reinforced concrete (FRC) is widely used in the field of civil engineering. However, the research on the damage mechanism of FRC under uniaxial tension is still insufficient, and most of the constitutive relations are macroscopic phenomenological. The aim is to provide a new [...] Read more.
Fiber-reinforced concrete (FRC) is widely used in the field of civil engineering. However, the research on the damage mechanism of FRC under uniaxial tension is still insufficient, and most of the constitutive relations are macroscopic phenomenological. The aim is to provide a new method for the investigation of mesoscopic damage mechanism of FRC under uniaxial tension. Based on statistical damage theory, the damage constitutive model for FRC under uniaxial tension is established. Two kinds of mesoscopic damage mechanisms, fracture and yield, are considered, which ultimately determines the macroscopic nonlinear stress–strain behavior of concrete. The yield damage mode reflects the potential bearing capacity of materials and plays a key role in the whole process. Evolutionary factor is introduced to reflect the degree of optimization and adjustment of the stressed skeleton in microstructure. The whole deformation-to-failure is divided into uniform damage phase and local failure phase. It is assumed that the two kinds of damage evolution follow the independent triangular probability distributions, which could be represented by four characteristic parameters. The validity of the proposed model is verified by two sets of test data of steel fiber-reinforced concrete. Through the analysis of the variation law of the above parameters, the influence of fiber content on the initiation and propagation of micro-cracks and the damage evolution of concrete could be evaluated. The relations among physical mechanism, mesoscopic damage mechanism, and macroscopic nonlinear mechanical behavior of FRC are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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12 pages, 2721 KiB  
Article
Effect of Ultrafine Metakaolin on the Properties of Mortar and Concrete
by Shengli Zhang, Yuqi Zhou, Jianwei Sun and Fanghui Han
Crystals 2021, 11(6), 665; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11060665 - 10 Jun 2021
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 2609
Abstract
This study investigated the influence of ultrafine metakaolin replacing cement as a cementitious material on the properties of concrete and mortar. Two substitution levels of ultrafine metakaolin (9% and 15% by mass) were chosen. The reference samples were plain cement concrete sample and [...] Read more.
This study investigated the influence of ultrafine metakaolin replacing cement as a cementitious material on the properties of concrete and mortar. Two substitution levels of ultrafine metakaolin (9% and 15% by mass) were chosen. The reference samples were plain cement concrete sample and silica fume concrete sample with the same metakaolin substitution rates and superplasticizer contents. The results indicate that simultaneously adding ultrafine metakaolin and a certain amount of polycarboxylate superplasticizer can effectively ensure the workability of concrete. Additionally, the effect of adding ultrafine metakaolin on the workability is better than that of adding silica fume. Adding ultrafine metakaolin or silica fume can effectively increase the compressive strength, splitting tensile strength, resistance to chloride ion penetration and freeze–thaw properties of concrete due to improved pore structure. The sulphate attack resistance of mortar can be improved more obviously by simultaneously adding ultrafine metakaolin and prolonging the initial moisture curing time. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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18 pages, 2364 KiB  
Article
Experimental Study on the Effect of Compound Activator on the Mechanical Properties of Steel Slag Cement Mortar
by Junfeng Guan, Yulong Zhang, Xianhua Yao, Lielie Li, Lei Zhang and Jinhua Yi
Crystals 2021, 11(6), 658; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11060658 - 10 Jun 2021
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 2473
Abstract
In this study, activator, metakaolin, and silica fume were used as a compound activator to improve the activity of steel slag powder. The influence of activator, steel slag powder, metakaolin, and silica fume on the resulting strength of steel slag cement mortar was [...] Read more.
In this study, activator, metakaolin, and silica fume were used as a compound activator to improve the activity of steel slag powder. The influence of activator, steel slag powder, metakaolin, and silica fume on the resulting strength of steel slag cement mortar was investigated by orthogonal experiments. For four weight fractions of steel slag powder (10%, 20%, 30%, 40%), the experimental results indicate that the compressive strength of mortar can reach up to more than 85% of the control group while the flexural strength can reach up to more than 90% of the flexural strength of the control group. Through orthogonal analysis, it is determined that the activator is the primary factor influencing the mortar strength. According to the result of orthogonal analysis, the optimal dosages of activator, steel slag powder, metakaolin, and silica fume are suggested. The GM (0, N) prediction model of compressive strength and flexural strength was established, and the compressive strength and flexural strength of mortar with the optimal dosage combinations were predicted. The prediction results show that by using the optimal dosage combination, the mortar strength can reach the level of P·O·42.5 cement. Considering the different strength and cost requirements of cementitious materials in practical engineering, the economic benefits of replacing cement with steel slag powder activated by compound activator in various proportions and equal amounts were presented. The results show that the method proposed in this study can reduce the cost of cementitious materials. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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19 pages, 4918 KiB  
Article
Effect of Full Temperature Field Environment on Bonding Strength of Aluminum Alloy
by Haichao Liu, Yisa Fan and Han Peng
Crystals 2021, 11(6), 657; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11060657 - 9 Jun 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1881
Abstract
In this paper, the influence of temperature on the bonding strength of aluminum alloy joints under the full temperature field is studied. Based on the service temperature range of vehicle bonding structures, the failure strength of aluminum alloy joints at different temperature points, [...] Read more.
In this paper, the influence of temperature on the bonding strength of aluminum alloy joints under the full temperature field is studied. Based on the service temperature range of vehicle bonding structures, the failure strength of aluminum alloy joints at different temperature points, namely −40 °C, −20 °C, 0 °C, 25 °C (RT), 40 °C, 60 °C and 80 °C, is tested. The results showed that compared with the failure strength of the adhesive at −40 °C, it decreased by 47.69% and 68.15% at RT and 80°C, respectively; the Young’s modulus of the adhesive decreased by 57.63% and 75.42% at RT and 80°C, respectively; with the increase of temperature, the young’s modulus, tensile strength and failure strain of the adhesive decreased. In addition, the failure strength of aluminum alloy joints varied with temperature. To be specific, the stiffness of joints decreased gradually from 25 °C to 80 °C and increased gradually from −40 °C. Based on the failure strength data of bonded joints at different temperature points, the secondary stress failure criteria of bonded joints at different temperatures were obtained. Then, the surface function of failure criteria under the full temperature field was established to provide reference for failure prediction of bonded structures under different temperatures and stresses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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14 pages, 4792 KiB  
Article
Experimental Evaluation of Untreated and Pretreated Crumb Rubber Used in Concrete
by Hamad Hassan Awan, Muhammad Faisal Javed, Adnan Yousaf, Fahid Aslam, Hisham Alabduljabbar and Amir Mosavi
Crystals 2021, 11(5), 558; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11050558 - 17 May 2021
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 2731
Abstract
The present research aims at evaluating the mechanical performance of untreated and treated crumb rubber concrete (CRC). The study was also conducted to reduce the loss in mechanical properties of CRC. In this study, sand was replaced with crumb rubber (CR) with 0%, [...] Read more.
The present research aims at evaluating the mechanical performance of untreated and treated crumb rubber concrete (CRC). The study was also conducted to reduce the loss in mechanical properties of CRC. In this study, sand was replaced with crumb rubber (CR) with 0%, 5%, 10%, 15%, and 20% by volume. CR was treated with NaOH, lime, and common detergent for 24 h. Furthermore, water treatment was also carried out. All these treatments were done to enhance the mechanical properties of concrete that are affected by adding CR. The properties that were evaluated are compressive strength, indirect tensile strength, unit weight, ultrasonic pulse velocity, and water absorption. Compressive strength was assessed after 7 and 28 days of curing. The mechanical properties were decreased by increasing the percentage of the CR. The properties were improved after the treatment of CR. Lime treatment was found to be the best treatment of all four treatments followed by NaOH treatment and water treatment. Detergent treatment was found to be the worse treatment of all four methods of treatment. Despite increasing the strength it contributed to strength loss. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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10 pages, 1232 KiB  
Article
Effect of Recycled Coarse Aggregate and Bagasse Ash on Two-Stage Concrete
by Muhammad Faisal Javed, Afaq Ahmad Durrani, Sardar Kashif Ur Rehman, Fahid Aslam, Hisham Alabduljabbar and Amir Mosavi
Crystals 2021, 11(5), 556; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11050556 - 16 May 2021
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 2722
Abstract
Numerous research studies have been conducted to improve the weak properties of recycled aggregate as a construction material over the last few decades. In two-stage concrete (TSC), coarse aggregates are placed in formwork, and then grout is injected with high pressure to fill [...] Read more.
Numerous research studies have been conducted to improve the weak properties of recycled aggregate as a construction material over the last few decades. In two-stage concrete (TSC), coarse aggregates are placed in formwork, and then grout is injected with high pressure to fill up the voids between the coarse aggregates. In this experimental research, TSC was made with 100% recycled coarse aggregate (RCA). Ten percent and twenty percent bagasse ash was used as a fractional substitution of cement along with the RCA. Conventional concrete with 100% natural coarse aggregate (NCA) and 100% RCA was made to determine compressive strength only. Compressive strength reduction in the TSC was 14.36% when 100% RCA was used. Tensile strength in the TSC decreased when 100% RCA was used. The increase in compressive strength was 8.47% when 20% bagasse ash was used compared to the TSC mix that had 100% RCA. The compressive strength of the TSC at 250 °C was also determined to find the reduction in strength at high temperature. Moreover, the compressive and tensile strength of the TSC that had RCA was improved by the addition of bagasse ash. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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23 pages, 9925 KiB  
Article
Prediction of Compressive Strength of Rice Husk Ash Concrete through Different Machine Learning Processes
by Ammar Iqtidar, Niaz Bahadur Khan, Sardar Kashif-ur-Rehman, Muhmmad Faisal Javed, Fahid Aslam, Rayed Alyousef, Hisham Alabduljabbar and Amir Mosavi
Crystals 2021, 11(4), 352; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11040352 - 29 Mar 2021
Cited by 44 | Viewed by 4097
Abstract
Cement is among the major contributors to the global carbon dioxide emissions. Thus, sustainable alternatives to the conventional cement are essential for producing greener concrete structures. Rice husk ash has shown promising characteristics to be a sustainable option for further research and investigation. [...] Read more.
Cement is among the major contributors to the global carbon dioxide emissions. Thus, sustainable alternatives to the conventional cement are essential for producing greener concrete structures. Rice husk ash has shown promising characteristics to be a sustainable option for further research and investigation. Since the experimental work required for assessing its properties is both time consuming and complex, machine learning can be used to successfully predict the properties of concrete containing rice husk ash. A total of 192 data points are used in this study to assess the compressive strength of rice husk ash blended concrete. Input parameters include age, amount of cement, rice husk ash, super plasticizer, water, and aggregates. Four soft computing and machine learning methods, i.e., artificial neural networks (ANN), adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system (ANFIS), multiple nonlinear regression (NLR), and linear regression are employed in this research. Sensitivity analysis, parametric analysis, and correlation factor (R2) are used to evaluate the obtained results. The ANN and ANFIS outperformed other methods. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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16 pages, 10709 KiB  
Article
Effects of High-Volume Ground Slag Powder on the Properties of High-Strength Concrete under Different Curing Conditions
by Yuqi Zhou, Jianwei Sun and Zengqi Zhang
Crystals 2021, 11(4), 348; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11040348 - 29 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1957
Abstract
Massive high-strength concrete structures tend to have a high risk of cracking. Ground slag powder (GSP), a sustainable and green industrial waste, is suitable for high-strength concrete. We carried out an experimental study of the effects of GSP with a specific surface area [...] Read more.
Massive high-strength concrete structures tend to have a high risk of cracking. Ground slag powder (GSP), a sustainable and green industrial waste, is suitable for high-strength concrete. We carried out an experimental study of the effects of GSP with a specific surface area of 659 m2/kg on the hydration, pore structure, compressive strength and chloride ion penetrability resistance of high-strength concrete. Results show that adding 25% GSP increases the adiabatic temperature rise of high-strength concrete, whereas adding 45% GSP decreases the initial temperature rise. Incorporating GSP refines the pore structure to the greatest extent and improves the compressive strength and chloride ion penetrability resistance of high-strength concrete, which is more obvious under early temperature-matching curing conditions. Increasing curing temperature has a more obvious impact on the pozzolanic reaction of GSP than cement hydration. From a comprehensive perspective, GSP has potential applications in the cleaner production of green high-strength concrete. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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15 pages, 7349 KiB  
Article
Experimental and Numerical Study of Lattice Girder Composite Slabs with Monolithic Joint
by Xuefeng Zhang, Huiming Li, Shixue Liang and Hao Zhang
Crystals 2021, 11(2), 219; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11020219 - 23 Feb 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 5076
Abstract
This paper studies the behavior of lattice girder composite slabs with monolithic joint under bending. A full-scale experiment is performed to investigate the overall bending resistance, deflection and the final crack distribution of latticed girder composite slab under uniformly distributed load. A finite [...] Read more.
This paper studies the behavior of lattice girder composite slabs with monolithic joint under bending. A full-scale experiment is performed to investigate the overall bending resistance, deflection and the final crack distribution of latticed girder composite slab under uniformly distributed load. A finite element model is given for the analysis of the latticed girder composite slabs. The effectiveness and correctness of the numerical simulations are verified against experimental results. The experimental and numerical studies conclude that the lattice girder composite slabs conform to the requirement of existing design codes. A parametric study is provided to investigate the effects of lattice girder with following conclusions: (a) the lattice girder significantly increases the stiffness of the slab when comparing with the precast slab without reinforcement crossing the interface; (b) the additional reinforcement near the joint slightly increases the stiffness and resistance, while it prevents damage near the joint. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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16 pages, 3803 KiB  
Article
Acoustic Emission Study on the Damage Evolution of a Corroded Reinforced Concrete Column under Axial Loads
by Ye Chen, Shuang Zhu, Shenghua Ye, Yifeng Ling, Dan Wu, Geqiang Zhang, Nianfu Du, Xianyu Jin and Chuanqing Fu
Crystals 2021, 11(1), 67; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11010067 - 15 Jan 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2046
Abstract
In this paper, the damage of a reinforced concrete (RC) column with various levels of reinforcement corrosion under axial loads is characterized using the acoustic emission (AE) technique. Based on the AE rate process theory, a modified damage evolution equation of RC associated [...] Read more.
In this paper, the damage of a reinforced concrete (RC) column with various levels of reinforcement corrosion under axial loads is characterized using the acoustic emission (AE) technique. Based on the AE rate process theory, a modified damage evolution equation of RC associated with the axial load and different corrosion rates is proposed. The experimental results show that the measured AE signal parameters during the loading process are closely related to the damage evolution of the RC column as well as the reinforcement corrosion level. The proposed modified damage evolution equation enables dynamic analysis for the damage of corrosion on a RC column under axial loading for a further real-time quantitative evaluation of corrosion damage on reinforced concrete. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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17 pages, 5755 KiB  
Article
Influence of Temperature on the Moisture Transport in Concrete
by Qingzhang Zhang, Zihan Kang, Yifeng Ling, Hui Chen and Kangzong Li
Crystals 2021, 11(1), 8; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst11010008 - 23 Dec 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2858
Abstract
Moisture with harmful ions penetrates into the interior of concrete, which causes deterioration of the concrete structure. In this study, a moisture saturation equilibrium relationship of concrete was tested under different temperatures and relative humidity conditions to develop moisture absorption and desorption curves. [...] Read more.
Moisture with harmful ions penetrates into the interior of concrete, which causes deterioration of the concrete structure. In this study, a moisture saturation equilibrium relationship of concrete was tested under different temperatures and relative humidity conditions to develop moisture absorption and desorption curves. Based on experimental data and numerical simulation, a model of moisture transport in concrete was established. The results from the model indicate that the moisture absorption rate was lower at higher temperatures and largely dependent on the saturation gradient, while the desorption was increased at higher temperatures and mostly affected by the saturation gradient. The proposed model was highly in agreement with the experimental data. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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16 pages, 3094 KiB  
Article
Energy Evolution Analysis and Brittleness Evaluation of High-Strength Concrete Considering the Whole Failure Process
by Ruihe Zhou, Hua Cheng, Mingjing Li, Liangliang Zhang and Rongbao Hong
Crystals 2020, 10(12), 1099; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst10121099 - 30 Nov 2020
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 1923
Abstract
In this work, we aimed to solve the problems that exist in the brittleness evaluation method of high-strength concrete through a triaxial compression test of C60 and C70 high-strength concrete. Then, the relationship between the energy evolution of its elastic energy, dissipative energy, [...] Read more.
In this work, we aimed to solve the problems that exist in the brittleness evaluation method of high-strength concrete through a triaxial compression test of C60 and C70 high-strength concrete. Then, the relationship between the energy evolution of its elastic energy, dissipative energy, pre-peak total energy and additional energy and its axial strain, confining pressure, and concrete strength grade was analyzed. Taking the accumulation rate of pre-peak elastic strain energy and the dissipation rate of dissipative energy, and the release rate of post-peak elastic energy, as the evaluation indicators to characterize the brittleness of high-strength concrete. A brittleness evaluation method that reflects the whole failure process of high-strength concrete is proposed and verified by experiments. The results show that with the increase of the confining pressure, the proportion of elastic energy in the whole process of high-strength concrete failure gradually decreases. The storage rate of pre-peak elastic energy and the release rate of post-peak elastic energy are gradually reducing, the brittleness index gradually decreases, and the confining pressure inhibits the brittleness of high-strength concrete. Under the same confining pressure, the brittleness index of C70 concrete is greater than that of C60 concrete, which indicates that, with the increase of the strength grade, the brittleness level of concrete gradually increases and the ductility decreases. These findings have a certain theoretical significance for the scientific design of high-strength concrete structures and the improvement of their safety in the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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Review

Jump to: Editorial, Research

14 pages, 4684 KiB  
Review
Review on the Application of Supplementary Cementitious Materials in Self-Compacting Concrete
by Lang Pang, Zhenguo Liu, Dengquan Wang and Mingzhe An
Crystals 2022, 12(2), 180; https://doi.org/10.3390/cryst12020180 - 26 Jan 2022
Cited by 23 | Viewed by 4143
Abstract
For the sustainable development of construction materials, supplementary cementitious materials (SCMs) are commonly added to self-compacting concrete (SCC). This paper reviewed the application techniques and hydration mechanisms of SCMs in SCC. The impacts of SCMs on the microstructure and performance of SCC were [...] Read more.
For the sustainable development of construction materials, supplementary cementitious materials (SCMs) are commonly added to self-compacting concrete (SCC). This paper reviewed the application techniques and hydration mechanisms of SCMs in SCC. The impacts of SCMs on the microstructure and performance of SCC were also discussed. SCMs are used as a powder material to produce SCC by replacing 10% to 50% of cement. Hydration mechanisms include the pozzolanic reaction, alkaline activation, and adsorption effect. Moreover, the filling effect and dilution effect of some SCMs can refine the pore structure and decrease the temperature rise of concrete, respectively. Specifically, the spherical particles of fly ash can improve the fluidity of SCC, and the aluminum-containing mineral phase can enhance the resistance to chloride ion penetration. Silica fume will increase the water demand of the paste and promote its strength development (a replacement of 10% results in a 20% increase at 28 days). Ground-granulated blast furnace slag may reduce the early strength of SCC. The adsorption of Ca2+ by CaCO3 in limestone powder can accelerate the hydration of cement and promote its strength development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Sustainable Concrete System)
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