While other ACI competitions focus mainly on strength or hardened concrete performance, this competition will focus on workability and rheological properties of cement-based materials. Also, as sustainability is an important topic in concrete design and construction, this aspect also needs to be considered. Teams are challenged to create a mortar mixture with optimum flowability and stability. Students are to mix mortar at the convention competition site and their mixture will be poured into a mold made in the shape of the letters aci from the top of the letter “a”. Both flowability and mixture stability will be evaluated. In creating their mortar mixture, teams will have to pay careful attention to the specified material requirements just as concrete producers must meet specification and project requirements on a daily basis.
Flowablity, mixture stability, cost of the mixture, global warming potential (GWP) related to CO2 emissions from the production of the constituent materials, and quality of the written report will be used to determine the winners of the competition. First-, second-, and third-place entries will each be awarded a certificate of recognition, will be recognized in Concrete International magazine if space allows, and will be recognized on ACI's website. In addition, the first-place team will receive a $750 award, the second-place team will receive $500, and the third-place team will receive $250, for each prize category. Winners will not be announced, and prizes will not be awarded until the Student Awards Program on Monday following the competition. A feedback session will be provided by the competition organizers following the Student Awards Program.