An An Analysis of Crystalline Admixtures in Terms of Their Influence on the Resistance of Cementitious Composites to Aggressive Environments
This paper describes the influence of crystalline admixtures on the chemical resistance of cement composites exposed to aggressive environments. The effect of the crystalline admixtures was determined by a series of physical-mechanical and innovative physical-chemical methods. Specifically, this concerned the measurement of flexural strength, compressive strength, determination of the dynamic modulus of elasticity by the ultrasonic pulse velocity test, and an analysis of the internal structure by mercury intrusion porosimetry and x-ray computed tomography. Physical-chemical analyses were also performed; namely an x-ray diffraction analysis to determine the mineralogical composition and electron microscopy to examine the microstructure. The use of non-destructive testing methods (ultrasonic pulse velocity test and computed tomography) made it possible to compare the properties of the same specimens for 16 months. The specimens were stored in reference laboratory conditions, a sodium sulphate solution and an ammonium chloride solution. The physical-mechanical tests and physical-chemical analyses clearly showed the benefit that crystalline admixtures have for the resistance of cementitious composites attacked by chemically aggressive solutions without affecting the fresh-mixture rheology or decreasing the strength of the composites.