Strength & Durability

Strength & Durability

Compressive and Flexural Strength - SCIC #14
Concrete made with slag cement provides higher compressive and flexural strengths compared with portland cement concrete. SCIC #14, Compressive and Flexural Strength, examines the factors that effect concrete strength, and explains how slag cement improves both compressive and flexural strength of concrete. Benefits of increased strength include: improved safety and reliability; optimized element designs, which allow for thinner, lighter and fewer members in structures; optimized mixture designs that experience less shrinkage, curling and heat; and lower life cycle costs through increased service life.
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Slag Cement and Life Cycle Prediction Models - SCIC #23
Life cycle prediction models balance the initial fixed cost of construction labor and materials against the variable cost of extended maintenance and repair. SCIC #23, Slag Cement and Life Cycle Prediction Models, examines how slag cement can positively affect some of the properties that increase the useful life of a concrete structure and decrease life cycle cost, including low permeability, increased corrosion resistance, high strength, improved resistance to alkali-silica reactivity and sulfate attack, and reduced thermal stress. This information sheet provides a short case study of a life cycle prediction model.
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Reducing Permeability - SCIC #6
Permeability is a measure of how easy it is for water, air and other substances to penetrate concrete. When substituted for portland cement in quantities between 25% and 65%, slag cement plays a vital role in reducing permeability in concrete. SCIC #6, Reducing Permeability, explains how low-permeability concrete has a reduced potential for corrosion of reinforcing steel, and provides a brief discussion of how standard test method ASTM C1202 measures permeability. This information sheet includes a bar graph measuring the effects on permeability of using different quantities of slag cement in concrete.
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Mitigating Sulfate Attack - SCIC #7
Sulfate attack is a common form of concrete deterioration that occurs when concrete comes into contact with water containing sulfates. SCIC #7, Mitigating Sulfate Attack, explains why sulfate attack happens, and examines three ways in which slag cement mitigates sulfate attack in concrete: by reducing the overall amount of tri-calcium aluminate; by reducing permeability, making it harder for sulfates to penetrate; and by reacting with excess calcium hydroxide, reducing its presence. The information sheet includes a bar graph comparing the effects of different amounts of slag cement on sulfate resistance.
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Mitigating Alkali-Silica Reaction - SCIC #8
Alkali-silica reaction (ASR) is a chemical reaction between the alkalis in portland cement and certain siliceous aggregates. In its worst incarnation, ASR can cause severe concrete cracking and deterioration. SCIC #8, Mitigating Alkali-Silica Reaction, details the ASR process, and explains why slag cement can reduce the potential for it by: reducing alkalis in the concrete mix; consuming alkalis in the hydration process, reducing their availability for ASR; reducing pore size and mobility of the alkalis; and reducing the pore liquid that reacts with the aggregate.
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Reducing Thermal Stress in Mass Concrete - SCIC #9
According to ACI 207, “mass concrete is any large volume of concrete with dimensions large enough to require that measures be taken to cope with the generation of heat and attendant volume change to minimize cracking.” Cement hydration generates heat. Heat dissipates from concrete slowly; the thicker the section, the longer it will take the interior to cool. This can result in large temperature differentials between the concrete surface and its interior. The concrete is then subject to high thermal stresses, which can result in cracking and loss of structural integrity. The information sheet examines the effect that various levels of slag cement replacement will have on thermal stress.
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Case Study:

Pinellas Bayway Bridge

The Pinellas Bayway Bridge provides a 65 ft (20 m) clearance bridge structure that replaces a 50-year-old, two lane drawbridge with a new four-lane fixed-span bridge that accommodates an increased flow of traffic. The new Pinellas Bayway not only makes travel from St. Petersburg, FL, to St. Petersburg Beach easier by car but it includes a 12 ft (3.5 m) wide pedestrian walkway separated from traffic by a barrier wall.

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