Almeida, Fernando Do Couto Rosa

Fernando Do Couto Rosa Almeida

PhD Student
Project title: New generation high performance cementitious composites for safer and more cost-effective infrastructure.

Cementitious materials (concrete and mortars) are the main construction materials. Despite their worldwide popularity, there is still a major concern about their sustainability and durability, especially in terms of conserving resources, reducing wastes and decreasing the environmental impacts of repair and replacement. In general, cementitious materials are very susceptible to cracking provoked by autogenous shrinkage due to their associated self-desiccation process. The problem is even more critical in concrete with blended cements, including Portland cement with ground granulated blast-furnace slag (GGBS). This research focuses on the contribution for developing a new technology addressing the need for safer and more cost-effective infrastructure. In this context, Superabsorbent polymers (SAP) are novel materials that can be used as internal curing agent in concrete and mortars. Their high capacity to absorb and release water helps to control cement hydration processes and hence to avoid cracking susceptibility in cementitious materials. The main aim of this project is to advance the current state-of-the-art and to critically assess the compatibility of SAPs in blended cements with supplementary cementitious materials, in particular GGBS, commonly available on the international markets.