A holistic perspective on the role of concrete admixtures for sustainable concrete construction

Chemical admixtures have long been known for the beneficial role they play in improving the engineering properties of concrete and mortar mixtures. Looking back over the past decades, the use of air entraining agents and superplasticizers can be considered among the major influences that have allowed extending the use of concrete for many diverse applications. Moreover, ACI 212.3R reports that chemical admixtures provide numerous benefits to concrete mixtures such as increasing compressive and flexural strengths at all ages and increasing durability through reduction in permeability. A holistic review of the numerous functions provided by chemical admixtures is discussed to help identify future admixture capabilities required for the design, placeability, and increased service life of sustainable concrete construction. Performance attributes of the next generation of chemical admixtures will include allowing the acceptable use of a wider range of aggregates and supplementary cementitious materials, and enabling more predictable plastic and hardened concrete properties.
Author: A.A. Jeknavorian

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