Decision paths for the development of robust self-compacting concrete

Helpful tool for the mixture optimisation

With regard to materials, the applied concrete technology and regulations today have little in common with the potentials that research and development have created over the course of the last decades. Beyond high investments in machinery, one of the reasons is that the potentials chemical admixtures offer are not being adequately implemented in daily processing. Self-compacting concrete (SCC) is a good example for this. To date, SCC has been mostly used in the precast industry, for being considered as delicate to handle in the field due to its lacking robustness against scatter in the environmental conditions and the raw materials. However, also in the precast industry, the technology has not evolved significantly on the materials side, where mixtures often adhere to what was called the general purpose approach after Okamura [1], despite a variety of negative implications such as high viscosity, over-strengths and high shrinkage. The reason might be found in the fact that until today, this seems to be the only reliably function mixture composition approach, but it fully neglects the potentials chemical admixtures can bring, which have undergone a significant evolution since the invention SCC. This paper is supposed to provide some easy-to-handle decision tools for the optimisation of robust SCC against temperature scatter based on the water to powder ratio and the PCE type.

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