Durability of Fiber Cement Composites

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Title: Durability of Fiber Cement Composites

Author(s): A. J. Majumdar and P. L. Walton

Publication: Special Publication

Volume: 126

Issue:

Appears on pages(s): 745-772

Keywords: accelerated tests; asbestos cement products; cellulose fibers; durability; fiber cement composites; glass; glass fibers; microstructure; plastics, polymers, and resins; polyvinyl alcohol; pozzolans; Materials Research

Date: 8/1/1991

Abstract:
Fiber cement composites developed commercially as replacements for asbestos cement have been under investigation at the Building Research Establishment for a number of years. These include composites containing fibers of glass, polyvinyl alcohol, and cellulose. The suitability of other fibers, including some natural vegetable fibers for cement reinforcement, has also been examined in the past. A summary of the results obtained in some of these studies is presented. Among the composites just mentioned, glass fiber reinforced cement has received the most attention at BRE for historical reasons. In this study, different types of cement--portland, high-alumina, supersulfated, etc.--as well as portland cement modified by pozzolans and polymers--were used. For some of these composites, important mechanical properties after natural weathering for up to 20 years have been determined recently. A review of this work is given, and the results are analyzed in terms of mechanisms that are considered to be important in determining the long-term durability of these materials. It has not been possible yet to devise realistic accelerated aging tests for many of the new fiber cement composites to predict their long-term properties.