Saturation Point of Superplasticizers Determined by Rheological Tests for Self Compacting Concrete
The dosage of superplasticizer is first determined in mortar mixtures and it is after adjusted in concrete mix trials. Other self compacting concrete (SCC) mix proportioning methods rely on the definition of the superplasticizer saturation dosage in pastes. These approaches to mix design have advantages over the ones based exclusively on concrete batching because it is less expensive and material demanding to perform tests in mortar and paste than in concrete. This paper presents the results of an experimental research carried out to investigate the use of tests performed in paste to define the optimum dosage of superplasticizer for self-compacting concrete. The materials employed were Portland cement, pozzolana and three types of superplasticizers: poly naphthalene sulfonate (PNS), poly melamine sulfonate (PMS) and a polycarboxylate. The saturation point of each superplasticizer was determined in pastes by rheological tests using a coaxial cylinder rheometer AR2000. Self-compacting concretes were prepared using the superplasticizer contents found. The results obtained led to the conclusion that in SCC mixture proportioning methods, the determination of the superplasticizer content in the paste phase is paramount. Nevertheless, final adjustment of w/c+f ratio was always needed in order to produce SCC.