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Scoping Study on New Technologies to Halt Concrete Shrinkage and Cracking

Project ID: 6330
Principal Investigator: Kurt Von Fay
Research Topic: Repair and Maintenance
Funded Fiscal Years: 2011
Keywords: None

Research Question

What technologies are available to help reduce or eliminate concrete shrinkage and cracking during concrete curing?

Are there any potential issues with the use of these technologies?

Which of these technologies could be successfully used in Reclamation structures?

Need and Benefit

Concrete is a very useful material, but one of its inherent defects is cracking. Virtually all concrete cracks, many times due to shrinkage during the curing process. Cracks in concrete structures could allow water or contaminants to penetrate into the structure, leading to possible deterioration through corrosion of reinforcement or freeze-thaw cycles. Cracks can be repaired, but these repairs can become expensive and labor intensive.

The reduction or elimination of shrinkage and cracking in concrete structures would benefit all involved in the construction of concrete structures. The Materials Engineering and Research Laboratory is responsible for providing more reliable, better quality, better performing concrete materials, and eliminating shrinkage and cracking in Reclamation structures would be of enormous benefit.

Contributing Partners

None

Research Products

Bureau of Reclamation Review

The following documents were reviewed by experts in fields relating to this project's study and findings. The results were determined to be achieved using valid means.

Evaluation of New Concrete Shrinkage Reducing Additive for Glen Elder Dam Spillway Inlet Slab Repair (final, PDF, 4.8MB)
By Kurt Von Fay
Report completed on August 29, 2011

The report descirbes use of a new concrete shrinkage reducing additive that was evaluated at Glen Elder Dam to reduce or prevent shrinkage cracking for concrete repair materials used for the approach apron concrete repairs. Comparisons were made between concrete with and without the additive.

Concrete placed with the additive had signifcantly fewer cracks than concrete made without the additive.
Keywords: concrete repair, concrete shrinkage, concrete cracking, sconcrete hrinakge reducing additive

Scoping Study on New Technologies to Halt Concrete Shrinkage and Cracking (final, PDF, 85KB)
By Westin Joy
Report completed on September 29, 2011

The primary objective of this scoping study was to begin the evaluation of relatively new technologies that may help reduce or eliminate concrete shrinkage and cracking. The report identifies those technologies that seem to show promise, identifies potential or known issues which may impact acceptance of the technologies on a large scale, discusses if using any of these technologies or a combination of technologies will benefit Reclamation and discusses future research recommendations.
Keywords: concrete, shrinkage, cracking, shrinkage reducing admixtures, magnesium oxide, super absorbing polymers, internal curing

Evaluation of New Concrete Shrinkage Reducing Additive for Glen Elder Dam Spillway Inlet Slab Repair (final, PDF, 4.8MB)
By Kurt Von Fay
Report completed on April 02, 2012

The report descirbes use of a new concrete shrinkage reducing additive that was evaluated at Glen Elder Dam to reduce or prevent shrinkage cracking for concrete repair materials used for the approach apron concrete repairs. Comparisons were made between concrete with and without the additive.

Concrete placed with the additive had signifcantly fewer cracks than concrete made without the additive.
Keywords: concrete shinkage, concrete repair, curing shrinkage, concrete cracking

This information was last updated on September 2, 2014
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