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A study on the early-strength improvement of slag cements

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2009
Akgün, Erdinç
Use of alternative raw materials, especially industrial by-products, is necessary for a sustainable cement industry. By replacing clinker with industrial by-products, consumption of natural resources and energy is decreased. Therefore, both economical and environmentally friendly cements are produced. Several industrial by-products such as fly ash, silica fume, and slag, one of the most widely used industrial by-products, can be used to produce standard blended cements. Besides its many advantages, slag cements are reported to have lower early compressive strengths. Therefore, the objective of this study is to investigate the early-strength improvement of slag cements. In the experimental study, in order not to change the cement type, the additives were incorporated within the minor additional constituent ranges, i.e. less than 5%. First, CEM III/A type control cement was prepared by blending clinker (K) and slag (S), which were separately ground in a laboratory type ball mill. Ground limestone (L) of varying fineness, silica fume (F), and sodium hydroxide (N) were prepared to be used as minor additional constituent. The ground clinker, slag, and gypsum, and the additives at various ratios were blended to obtain 15 CEM III/A type slag cements other than the control. Finally, the fresh and the hardened properties of the cements were determined. As a result of this experimental study, it was observed that addition of limestone generally increased the early compressive strength of slag cements. However, silica fume and sodium hydroxide either decreased or did not affect the early compressive strength of the slag cements.