Microstructure of Cement-Based Grouts Containing Fly Ash and Brine


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Title: Microstructure of Cement-Based Grouts Containing Fly Ash and Brine

Author(s): Akthem A. Al-Manaseer, Muir D. Haug, Moir D.Haug and Lionel C. Wong

Publication: Special Publication

Volume: 132


Appears on pages(s): 635-654

Keywords: durability; microstructure; scanning electron microstructure; grout; salt water; fly ash; Materials Research

Date: 5/1/1992

Study examines the microstructure properties of cement-based grout consisting of Type II rapid-hardening portland cement, Saskatchewan fly ash, and brine. The liquid brine is composed mainly of salts of sodium, calcium, potassium, and magnesium obtained from an underground potash mine. A scanning electron microscope (SEM), with an electron probe x-ray microanalyzer, was used to study the mechanism by which fly ash and brine alters the microstructure characteristics of cement grouts under confining pressures of 0, 3.4, and 6.9 MPa (0, 500, and 1000 psi). The SEM examination was conducted at 7, 14, and 365 days. This examination revealed that grout mixes containing brine had a gel-like substance covering the entire surface of the hydrated products. The probe x-ray microanalyzer identified the gel-like substance as consisting mainly of sodium chloride salt. Fly ash cement particles were also found to be encapsulated by the sodium chloride gel-like substance. This encapsulation may decrease the rate of pozzolanic reaction between fly ash particles and the lime available in the cement. Microscopic examination of specimens mixed with brine also showed the presence of long fibrous crystals with diameters ranging from 3 to 20 æm growing on the surface of the gel-like substance. Generally, at 7 and 14 days, the fly ash-cement grouts were found to have more such fibers than the grout containing no fly ash. This trend reversed at 365 days.