Moghaddam, F, Sirivivatnanon, V & Vessalas, K 2019, 'The effect of fly ash fineness on heat of hydration, microstructure, flow and compressive strength of blended cement pastes', Case Studies in Construction Materials, vol. 10.View/Download from: Publisher's site
© 2019 In this paper, an experimental study on the effect of fly ash fineness on the heat of hydration, microstructure, flow and compressive strength of blended cement pastes was carried out and evaluated against control cement paste. Fly ashes with different fineness: classified fly ash, run-of-station fly ash and grounded run-of-station fly ash; with a median particle size of 17.4, 11.3 and 5.7 μm, respectively, from the same power station source in Australia were used to partially replace Portland cement at 20% and 40% by weight of cement using a fixed water-to-binder ratio of 0.40. Results of this study showed that the cumulative heat of hydration of blended cement paste decreased as fly ash content in blended cement paste was increased. For a given cement replacement level, blended cement paste containing finer fly ash released more heat of hydration when compared to coarser fly ash. Moreover, increasing the fineness of fly ash resulted in a higher consumption of calcium hydroxide at 7 and 28 days reflecting pozzolanic reactivity and, thus, a denser microstructure than blended pastes containing coarser fly ash as revealed by the X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and compressive strength results. In addition, the incorporation of fly ash in the blended pastes led to the introduction of an additional hydration peak in the heat evolution curve possibly due to the late activation of fly ash by calcium hydroxide renewing the C 3 A reaction and converting ettringite to monosulfate. The flow of the freshly blended cement pastes was also found to improve slightly with increasing fineness of the fly ash. In addition, the hardened blended cement pastes containing 20% ground run-of-station fly ash showed comparable compressive strength with the control cement pastes at both 7 and 28 days mainly due to the higher fineness of the ground run-of-station fly ash and increased reactivity compared to coarser grade fly ash.
The use of cement supplementary materials in structural concrete is widely accepted by the construction industry for technical, economical and environmental reasons. Metakaolin (MK), produced by calcining kaolinite at high temperature is suitable for concrete production due to its pozzolanic property. This paper reviews the some of the research published on effects of using MK on engineering properties of structural concrete as a cement replacement material. The review shows that the use of relatively finer MK to partially replace cement reduces the consistency of concrete and enhanced the strengths, deformational and durability properties of concrete. MK is most effective in enhancing compressive strength (particularly at early ages) compared to other strengths and modulus of elasticity was least improved. Drying shrinkage and creep of MK concretes are lower than those for the control concrete. The high pozzolanic reactivity of MK with calcium hydroxide contributes to both porosity reduction and pore-structure refinement in the pastes and concrete. As the consequence, the durability of concrete is improved through increased resistance to chloride penetration and controlled expansion, due to alkali-silica reaction and sodium sulphate attack.