Evaluation of air void parameters of fly ash incorporated self consolidating concrete by image processing

Özerkan, Nesibe Gözde
Self consolidating concrete (SCC) is defined as an innovative concrete that does not require vibration for placing and compaction and it is able to flow under its own weight, completely filling formwork and achieving full compaction. Although significant amount of research has been carried out regarding the fresh properties, mix design, placing methods and strength of various SCC mixes, only a very limited amount of work has been done to assess the durability performance of SCC. Concretes in cold climates are subjected to freeze-thaw cycles which are one of the major durability problems, and if the concrete is in a saturated or nearly saturated condition, those cycles lead to expansion of the water in the capillary pores of concrete causing great internal stresses. For a durable concrete subjected to freeze-thaw cycles, an adequate air void system is obtained by using air-entraining admixtures. The performance of the air void system is characterized by air void parameters that are determined using microscopical examination of the concrete microstructure. In this thesis a software tool, based on image analysis of concrete surface, is developed to evaluate the air void parameters of concrete using both American and European standards. Later on, an experimental program is conducted to evaluate the effect of freezing-thawing on self consolidating concrete that contain different percentages of fly ash (FA) and air entraining agents. For this purpose, a total of ten self consolidating concrete mixtures that contain four different contents of fly ash, and three different levels of air entrainment were prepared. During the casting operation, the workability properties of SCCs were observed through slump flow time and diameter, air content, V-funnel flow time, L-box height ratio, and segregation ratio. Hardened properties were evaluated by compressive strength, permeability tests (water absorption, sorptivity and rapid chloride permeability test), freezing-thawing test, resonant frequency test, ultrasonic pulse velocity test. The developed tool was used to characterize and evaluate the effects of air void parameters of SCC on its resistance to freeze-thaw cycles. At the end of this experimental investigation, it was concluded that the addition of air entraining agent increased the flowability and an increase in the fly ash content decreased the effect of air entraining agent. On the other hand, during image processing, it was observed that the surface preparation procedures have a crucial effect on processing quality. Moreover, spacing factor -which is the most important air void characteristic that is utilized for determination of the resistance to freezing-thawing- should not be restricted to 0.2 mm for SCC, since SCCs with spacing factors smaller than 0.4 mm could still exhibit good freezethaw resistance.


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Citation Formats
N. G. Özerkan, “Evaluation of air void parameters of fly ash incorporated self consolidating concrete by image processing,” Ph.D. - Doctoral Program, Middle East Technical University, 2009.