Special Issue "Durability of Concrete Infrastructure"

A special issue of Infrastructures (ISSN 2412-3811).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 November 2021).

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Suvash Chandra Paul
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Civil Engineering, International University of Business Agriculture and Technology, Sector 10, Uttara Model Town, Dhaka 1230, Bangladesh
Interests: advances in construction materials; waste recycling; durability of concrete; nanoparticles in cement-based materials; 3D concrete printing technology
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Prof. Dr. Gideon van Zijl
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Civil Engineering, Stellenbosch University, Private Bag X1, Matieland 7602, Stellenbosch, South Africa
Interests: advanced cement-based materials; fiber-reinforced concrete; concrete durability; 3D concrete printing; sustainable construction materials

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The resistance of concrete structures against different kinds of environmental and chemical attack is important, as it defines the service life of the structures. Therefore, in the last few decades, there has been a tremendous flow of research literature in the field of concrete durability. Durability properties resisting deterioration processes such as corrosion due to chloride and carbonation attack, different chemical attacks, freezing and thawing, and alkali-silica-reaction in aggregates in concrete are the topics most discussed and studied by researchers. Additionally, the brittle nature of concrete could require additional technical solutions to guarantee the durability of reinforced concrete structures. The formation of large crack widths in conventional reinforced concrete is one of the major problems from a structural durability point of view, as it is well known that large cracks allow the fast penetration of gases and liquids into the concrete. Cracks in concrete structures are unavoidable because of the low tensile strength and the low deformability of conventional concrete. Nevertheless, fine cracks in cementitious composites have been shown to reduce the average ingress rates, which in turn have the potential to extend structural life until corrosion starts and reduces the corrosion rate. In recent years, new types of materials (e.g., high-performance cementitious composites, fiber-reinforced composites, engineering cementitious composites, strain-hardening cement-based composites, and nanoparticles-based composites) with potential applications in the protection of concrete structures have been developed. However, to meet the current strict building code requirements in many countries, these developments offer new outlooks that need to be explored and studied. Therefore, the principal objectives of this Special Issue are:

  • To collect the knowledge on the recent developments in various types of cementitious materials that have superior corrosion resistance to equivalent steel-reinforced mortar and concrete under mechanical and chemical loads.
  • To embrace the different durability measurement techniques such as new testing methods and modelling that have been developed by researchers.

This Special Issue aims to collect relevant research papers or reviews reporting significant progress in the assessment and comprehension of concrete corrosion and degradation phenomena, in the presence of constant and variable loads.

Topics of interest are related to the properties and resistance of cementitious composites in aggressive environments, based on:

  • Chloride- and carbonation-induced corrosion of rebars;
  • Corrosion inhibitors;
  • Cracking;
  • Alkali-silica reaction;
  • Freezing and thawing;
  • Chemical attack;
  • Concrete degradation modelling;
  • Corrosion in fiber-reinforced cementitious materials;
  • Nanoparticles-based coating/mortar for corrosion protection.

Dr. Suvash Chandra Paul
Prof. Dr. Gideon van Zijl
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Infrastructures is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • corrosion
  • cracking
  • chloride penetration
  • carbonation
  • alkali-silica reaction
  • degradation modelling

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

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Article
Experimental Study on Chloride-Induced Corrosion of Soil Nail with Engineered Cementitious Composites (ECC) Grout
Infrastructures 2021, 6(11), 161; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures6110161 - 10 Nov 2021
Viewed by 227
Abstract
Conventionally, a soil nail is a piece of steel reinforcement installed inside a hole drilled into the slope and filled with cement paste (CP) grout. Chloride penetration is a major deterioration mechanism of conventional soil nails as the CP grout is easy to [...] Read more.
Conventionally, a soil nail is a piece of steel reinforcement installed inside a hole drilled into the slope and filled with cement paste (CP) grout. Chloride penetration is a major deterioration mechanism of conventional soil nails as the CP grout is easy to crack with an uncontrollable crack opening when the soil nail is subject to loading or ground movements. Engineered Cementitious Composites (ECC) are a class of fiber-reinforced material exhibiting excellent crack control even when loaded to several percent of strain, and therefore, ECCs have great potential to replace traditional CP grout in soil nails for achieving a long service life. In this study, the chloride ion transport characteristics and electrically accelerated corrosion process of steel rebar in ECC and CP grouts are systematically studied. The rapid chloride ion penetration test results showed a reduction of 76% and 58% passing charges in ECC with 0.15% and 0.3% pre-loading strain, respectively, as compared to that in un-cracked CP. Furthermore, the accelerated corrosion experimental data showed that ECC under pre-loading strain still exhibited a coefficient of chloride ion diffusion that is 20–50% lower than CP grout due to the ability to control crack width. Service life calculations based on experimentally measured parameters showed that the predicted corrosion rate and corrosion depth of soil nails in ECC grout were much lower than those in CP grout. The findings can facilitate the design of soil nails with excellent durability and long service life. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Durability of Concrete Infrastructure)
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Article
17-Year-Long Sewage Sludge Ash Concrete Exposure Test
Infrastructures 2021, 6(5), 74; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures6050074 - 11 May 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 734
Abstract
This study was conducted on concrete using sewage sludge ash (SSA) with the aim to establish an efficient use of SSA as a cement replacement material. Concrete specimens with three degrees of strength were made from two different SSAs and exposed in temperate [...] Read more.
This study was conducted on concrete using sewage sludge ash (SSA) with the aim to establish an efficient use of SSA as a cement replacement material. Concrete specimens with three degrees of strength were made from two different SSAs and exposed in temperate plain and cold mountain regions for a prolonged period of time to investigate the long-term properties of SSA concrete. After 17 years of exposure, the properties of the specimens were examined. SSA concrete basically maintained its strength after 17 years of exposure. No significant drop in the relative dynamic modulus of elasticity was detected in SSA concrete left in a cold mountain region, despite the fact that it would be exposed to a considerable number of freeze-and-thaw cycles. It was also confirmed that the SSA concrete exhibited high resistance against carbonation. A small amount of Katoite formed in the hardened cement/SSA mixture, probably due to the high content of Al2O3 in SSA. No abnormal formation of ettringite was observed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Durability of Concrete Infrastructure)
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Article
Durability-Based Design of Structures Made with Ultra-High-Performance/Ultra-High-Durability Concrete in Extremely Aggressive Scenarios: Application to a Geothermal Water Basin Case Study
Infrastructures 2020, 5(11), 102; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5110102 - 17 Nov 2020
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1283
Abstract
This paper provides the formulation and description of the framework and methodology for a Durability Assessment-based Design approach for structures made of the Ultra-High-Durability Concrete materials conceived, produced and investigated in the project ReSHEALience (Rethinking coastal defence and Green-energy Service infrastructures through enHancEd-durAbiLity [...] Read more.
This paper provides the formulation and description of the framework and methodology for a Durability Assessment-based Design approach for structures made of the Ultra-High-Durability Concrete materials conceived, produced and investigated in the project ReSHEALience (Rethinking coastal defence and Green-energy Service infrastructures through enHancEd-durAbiLity high-performance cement-based materials) funded by the European Commission within the Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation programme (Call NMBP 2016–2017 topic 06-2017 GA 780624). The project consortium, coordinated by Politecnico di Milano, gathers 13 partners from 7 countries, including 6 academic institutions and 7 industrial partners, covering the whole value chain of the concrete construction industry. The innovative design concept informing the whole approach herein presented has been formulated shifting from a set of prescriptions, mainly referring to material composition and also including, in case, an allowable level of damage defined and quantified in order not to compromise the intended level of “passive” protection of sensitive material and structural parts (deemed-to-satisfy approach; avoidance-of-deterioration approach), to the prediction of the evolution of the serviceability and ultimate limit state performance indicators, as relevant to the application, as a function of scenario-based aging and degradation mechanisms. The new material and design concepts developed in the project are being validated through design, construction and long-term monitoring in six full-scale proofs-of concept, selected as representative of cutting edge economy sectors, such as green energy, Blue Growth and conservation of R/C heritage. As a case study example, in this paper, the approach is applied to a basin for collecting water from a geothermal power plant which has been built using tailored Ultra-High-Durability Concrete (UHDC) mixtures and implementing an innovative precast slab-and-buttress structural concept in order to significantly reduce the thickness of the basin walls. The geothermal water contains a high amount of sulphates and chlorides, hence acting both as static load and chemical aggressive. The main focus of the analysis, and the main novelty of the proposed approach is the prediction of the long-term performance of UHDC structures, combining classical structural design methodologies, including, e.g., cross-section and yield line design approaches, with material degradation laws calibrated through tailored tests. This will allow us to anticipate the evolution of the structural performance, as a function of exposure time to the aggressive environment, which will be validated against continuous monitoring, and pave the way towards a holistic design approach. This moves from the material to the structural durability level, anticipating the evolution of the structural performance and quantifying the remarkable resulting increase in the service life of structures made of UHDC, as compared to companion analogous ones made with ordinary reinforced concrete solutions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Durability of Concrete Infrastructure)
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Article
Alkali-Silica Reaction Resistance and Pore Solution Composition of Low-Calcium Fly Ash-Based Geopolymer Concrete
Infrastructures 2020, 5(11), 96; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5110096 - 06 Nov 2020
Viewed by 925
Abstract
Low-calcium fly ash-based geopolymer concrete is generally reported to be less vulnerable to alkali-silica reaction (ASR) than conventional ordinary Portland cement concrete. However, the lack of understanding of pore solution composition of the low-calcium fly ash-based geopolymer limits the investigation of the underlying [...] Read more.
Low-calcium fly ash-based geopolymer concrete is generally reported to be less vulnerable to alkali-silica reaction (ASR) than conventional ordinary Portland cement concrete. However, the lack of understanding of pore solution composition of the low-calcium fly ash-based geopolymer limits the investigation of the underlying mechanisms for the low ASR-induced expansion in the geopolymer concrete. This study presents a systematic investigation of the pore solution composition of a low-calcium fly ash-based geopolymer over a period of one year. The results show that the pore solution of the fly ash geopolymer is mainly composed of alkali ions, silicates, and aluminosilicates species. The lower expansion of the geopolymer concrete in the current study is most probably due to the insufficient alkalinity in the geopolymer pore solution as the hydroxide ions are largely consumed for the fly ash dissolution. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Durability of Concrete Infrastructure)
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Review

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Review
Review on Performance Evaluation of Autonomous Healing of Geopolymer Composites
Infrastructures 2021, 6(7), 94; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures6070094 - 22 Jun 2021
Viewed by 658
Abstract
It is a universal fact that concrete is one of the most employed construction materials and hence its exigency is booming at a rocket pace, which in turn, has resulted in a titanic demand of ordinary Portland cement. Regrettably, the production of this [...] Read more.
It is a universal fact that concrete is one of the most employed construction materials and hence its exigency is booming at a rocket pace, which in turn, has resulted in a titanic demand of ordinary Portland cement. Regrettably, the production of this essential binder of concrete is not merely found to consume restricted natural resources but also found to be associated with emission of carbon dioxide—a primary greenhouse gas (GHG) which is directly answerable to earth heating, resulting in the gigantic dilemma of global warming. Nowadays, in order to address all these impasses, researchers are attracted to innovative Geopolymer concrete technology. However, crack development of various sizes within the concrete is inevitable irrespective of its kind, mix design, etc., owing to external and internal factors viz., over-loading, exposure to severe environments, shrinkage, or error in design, etc., which need to be sealed otherwise these openings permits CO2, water, fluids, chemicals, harmful gases, etc., to pass through reducing service life and ultimately causing the failure of concrete structures in the long term. That is why instant repairs of these cracks are essential, but manual mends are time-consuming and costly too. Hence, self-healing of cracks is desirable to ease their maintenances and repairs. Self-healing geopolymer concrete (SHGPC) is a revolutionary product extending the solution to all these predicaments. The present manuscript investigates the self-healing ability of geopolymer paste, geopolymer mortar, and geopolymer concrete—a slag-based fiber-reinforced and a variety of other composites that endow with multifunction have also been compared, keeping the constant ratio of water to the binder. Additionally, the feasibility of bacteria in a metakaolin-based geopolymer concrete for self-healing the cracks employing Bacteria-Sporosarcina pasteurii, producing Microbial Carbonate Precipitations (MCP), was taken into account with leakage and the healing process in a precipitation medium. Several self-healing mechanisms, assistances, applications, and challenges of every strategy are accentuated, compared with their impacts as a practicable solution of autogenously-healing mechanisms while active concretes are subjected to deterioration, corrosion, cracking, and degradation have also been reviewed systematically. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Durability of Concrete Infrastructure)
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