Influence of CuringTime on Behaviour in Seawater of High-Strength Mortar With Silica fume

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Title: Influence of CuringTime on Behaviour in Seawater of High-Strength Mortar With Silica fume

Author(s): A. M. Paillere, G. Platret, P. Roussel, and J. Gawsewitch

Publication: Special Publication

Volume: 126

Issue:

Appears on pages(s): 559-576

Keywords: curing; mortars; porosity; seawater; silica fume; superplasticizers; Materials Research

Date: 8/1/1991

Abstract:
The durability in seawater of high-strength concretes produced with the addition of silica fume replacing a part of the cement was investigated. The influence of the wet-curing time on the behavior in seawater of high-strength mortars (strength in excess of 60 MPa) in which a part of the cement was replaced by densified silica fume, was determined. The various curing times applied to the specimens, after mold removal, were 48 hr, 7 days, and 28 days at 100 percent relative humidity, followed by storage for 28 days at 20 C and 50 percent relative humidity before the start of tests for resistance to seawater for 1 year. Investigation of the porosity of these mortars shows that, just after curing, the silica fume, as expected, reduces the total porosity of the reference mortar (25 to 45 percent) and substantially alters the pore-size distribution--the shorter the curing time, the more marked this effect. However, as hydration continues at 50 percent RH, the porosity of the reference mortar decreases and the differences in total porosity with respect to the mortars containing silica fume become smaller--the longer the initial curing time and the higher the C3 A content of the cement, the greater this effect. This explains the results of resistance to seawater, where it is found that silica fume contents of less than 10 percent do not lead to any significant improvement in behavior in seawater. This shows that the type of curing and the ambient conditions under which strength increases may limit the beneficial effects of silica fume on durability, when the addition of the silica fume is accompanied by a corresponding reduction of the cement content. It is also found that the best curing method is the specimens in fresh water for the first 7 days, while a curing time of only 48 hr is highly detrimental in terms of the subsequent behavior of the mortars in seawater.