The world uses approximately 10 billion tonnes of concrete each year, and the amount of this substance is only going to increase in the coming decades. However, concrete is a very complex material, and it must be handled carefully. Here are some tips for using concrete responsibly: – Ensure that the mix is workable and consolidated, so that it meets the desired characteristics of the concrete. – Keep the ratio of water and cement right, and use large-size aggregates to reduce the water content.
A good mix is a blend of coarse and fine aggregates. Fine aggregates are smaller than 0.001 inch and are used in most home construction projects. Coarse aggregates range in size from 0.25 inch to 1.5 inches. Regardless of their size, the materials should be clean, free of sand or soft particles mac be tong . Moreover, they should be free of any type of vegetable matter, and they should not contain traces of any type of organic material. If any of these components are present in the mix, the result will be a cement-fest instead of a building.
There are two main types of concrete. The first is called a “nominal mix,” which is used in ordinary construction. Most nominal mixes are based on a 1:2 ratio of sand and cement by volume. The second is known as a “design mix,” which relies on final proportions determined in lab tests and reflects the strength of the concrete structure. A third type of concrete, known as a “fresh mix,” is produced using a variety of mixing machines.
The final type is called ‘normal strength concrete’. It contains about a quarter of an inch of fine and 6.5 mm of coarse aggregate. It takes around 30 to 90 minutes to set. It’s used in roads, pavements, and buildings that don’t need a lot of tensile strength. It’s also not suitable for structures that will experience a lot of wind loading or vibration. Hence, it should not be used for such applications.
The normal strength of concrete is made with a 1:2 ratio of water and cement. This type of concrete sets within thirty to ninety minutes and is commonly used for roads, pavements, and buildings that don’t need high tensile strength. Its weakening property makes it unsuitable for many other uses, such as bridges and other types of infrastructure. Then again, it is very easy to mix the two types of concrete.
In contrast to ordinary concrete, architectural concrete uses less cement and is often stamped with different designs while still in a plastic state. This type of concrete is also made of pigments, which give the mixture a more realistic look. In addition, it should be free of any matter that can negatively affect the quality of the final product. A wide range of size is acceptable in most types of architectural or structural concrete. It is possible to use the same aggregates in both types, although it is not necessary to add aggregates of all sizes.