ASTM International plans a standardised guide to help test concrete performance

ASTM International is working on a new guide designed to help concrete professionals use mortar mixtures when comparing the relative performance and compatibility of concrete materials.

The document will “standardise procedures used for many years in material-performance investigations,” says ASTM International member Ara Jeknavorian of Jeknavorian Consulting Services.

According to Jeknavorian: “This diagnostic tool will provide concrete technologists with useful defined mortar procedures to help anticipate an incompatibility of previously untested material combinations, or to troubleshoot unexpected concrete performance.”

The standards giant also adds that “the guide could help with material selection and quality control processes.” Suppliers, producers, test labs, and government agencies will all be able to benefit from the tool.

The guide (WK40615) is being developed by ASTM International’s committee on concrete and concrete aggregates (C09).

Jeknavorian says: “Technologists can use one of the guide’s mortar tests to compare the relative workability, workability retention, set time, strength, and air content of two or more combinations of cement, sand, admixture, and fly ash. Test results could indicate that a change in material properties that could either favourably or unfavourably impact concrete performance. Results could also flag a potential material incompatibility that could become evident from poor concrete workability, a high air content, or delayed set times.

“Should a discrepancy occur between parties on whether a particular material may be responsible for an unexpected concrete performance, the guide will enable two or more labs to conduct the same test procedures to help come to a consensus cause of the problem.”

ASTM International has more information at www.astm.org. The next meeting of ASTM International committee on concrete and concrete aggregates will take place on 24 to 27 June, 2018, in San Diego, California, USA.

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