The Role of Nanotechnology for the Development of Sustainable Concrete

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Title: The Role of Nanotechnology for the Development of Sustainable Concrete

Author(s): H.J.H. (Jos) Brouwers

Publication: Special Publication

Volume: 254

Issue:

Appears on pages(s): 69-92

Keywords: mineral oxide engineering; particle size engineering; nanotechnology

Date: 10/1/2008

Abstract:
The present paper addresses several topics in regard to the sustainable design and use of concrete and the role of nanotechnology. First, major features concerning the sustainable aspects of the material concrete are summarized. Then the major constituent, cement, (from an environmental point of view), is discussed in detail, particularly the hydration and application of slag cement. The intelligent combining of mineral oxides, which are found in clinker, slag, and fly ashes, is designated as mineral oxide engineering. It results, among others, in environmentally friendly binders, recipes for soil stabilization (new building products), and impermeable/durable concretes. Subsequently, the mixture design of concrete is treated, whereby distinction is made between self-consolidating concrete and earthmoist concrete. By combining the particle sizes of all components, including the powders (cement, fillers), optimum mixtures in regard to workability/compactability and hardened state properties are obtained. This so-called particle size engineering results in concretes that meet all technical requirements, but that also make optimum use of the cement it is containing. This paper concludes with summarizing the opportunities and challenges involved with the introduction of both approaches, viz. mineral oxide engineering and particle size engineering, in the construction industry.