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Formulating a Low-Alkalinity, High-Resistance and Low-Heat Concrete for Radioactive Waste Repositories

Abstract : Investigations were carried out in order to formulate and characterize low-alkalinity and low-heat cements which would be compatible with an underground waste repository environment. Several systems comprising Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC), a fast-reacting pozzolan (silica fume (SF) or metakaolin (MK)) and, in some cases, a slow-reacting product (fly ash (FA) or blastfurnace slag (BFS)) were compared. Promising results were obtained with some binary mixtures of OPC and SF, and with some ternary blends of OPC, SF and FA or BFS pH of water in equilibrium with the fully hydrated cements dropped below 11. Dependence of the properties of standard mortars on the high contents of FA and SF in the low-pH blends was examined. Combining SF and FA seemed attractive since SF compensated for the low reactivity of FA, while FA allowed to reduce the water demand, and dimensional variations of the mortars. Finally, low-heat ($\Delta T$<20°C under semi-adiabatic conditions) and high strength ($\approx 70-80$ MPa) concretes were prepared from two low-pH cements a binary blend made from 60% of OPC and 40% of SF, and a ternary blend including 37.5% OPC, 32.5% SF and 30% FA.
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Céline Cau Dit Coumes, Simone Courtois, Didier Nectoux, Stéphanie Leclercq, Xavier Bourbon. Formulating a Low-Alkalinity, High-Resistance and Low-Heat Concrete for Radioactive Waste Repositories. Cement and Concrete Research, Elsevier, 2006, 36 (12), pp.2152-2163. ⟨10.1016/j.cemconres.2006.10.005⟩. ⟨cea-02354116⟩

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