A New Family of Latexes for Portland Cement


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Title: A New Family of Latexes for Portland Cement

Author(s): Lou A. Kuhlmann

Publication: Special Publication

Volume: 166


Appears on pages(s): 141-164

Keywords: latex; methyl methacrylate; permeability; polymer concrete; portland cement; styrene; temperature; Materials Research

Date: 12/1/1996

A new family of latexes has been developed for use in portland cement that has a minimum film-formation temperature (MFFT) well above working temperature, eliminating the two major drawbacks of latex-modified mixtures: formation of a crust on the surface and difficulty in cleaning tools. Instead of coalescing to form a film, as do the typical latex modifiers for portland cement, these latex particles maintain their shape as spheres. Of the several formulations studied, two are reported here: a styrene polymer and a methyl methacrylate polymer, both carboxylated. In addition to extensive laboratory testing of both polymers, two field trials with the styrene latex formulation were conducted. These laboratory and field studies demonstrated that film formation is not necessary for latexes to contribute to the performance of portland cement mixes. The data from these studies are encouraging, but also revealed that much more work needs to be done to fully understand the capabilities and limitations of this family of latexes.