15-year Tracking Study: Comparing Epoxy Polymer Concrete to Portland Cement concrete applied on slab-on-grade and bridge decks

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Title: 15-year Tracking Study: Comparing Epoxy Polymer Concrete to Portland Cement concrete applied on slab-on-grade and bridge decks

Author(s): Floyd E. Dimmick Sr.

Publication: Special Publication

Volume: 166

Issue:

Appears on pages(s): 211-232

Keywords: concretes; cracking (fracturing); durability; epoxy resins; erosion; finishes; polymer concrete; portland cements; spalling; surface defects; Materials Research

Date: 12/1/1996

Abstract:
A major problem confronting transportation departments is the surface deterioration of portland cement concrete (PCC) pavements and bridge decks. Some of these defects include cracking, spalling, polishing, and surface erosion. Each of these defects contributes to further deterioration within the concrete structure by allowing an infiltration of moisture, oxygen, deicing salts, chlorides, and other contaminants. Upon contact with the reinforcing steel, rusting occurs, causing internal tensile stresses that result in further surface spalling, hollow plane delamination and cracking. One effective technique used since the middle 1950s is to retard this corrosion process by preventing the penetration of chlorides and moisture into the concrete with in impermeable epoxy polymer concrete (EPC) overlay. These overlays also provide wear-resistant surfaces and extend the service life of the pavement or deck. Documented experience indicates that EPC overlays are cost effective, reduce overall annual maintenance costs, and provide a safe driving surface. This paper presents two project tracking studies. The first is a comparison of a new PCC slab placement to a thin EPC overlayment on an existing PCC pavement installed 15 years ago; the pavements are side-by-side. The documentation compares traffic volumes and surface deteriorations, such as wearability, spalling, polishing, and cracks. The second study involves a thin EPC overlay placed on a badly deteriorated PCC bridge deck 10 years ago to improve skid properties and provide an overall safer driving surface.