Building Materials · concrete


Concrete is used in nearly every type of construction. Traditionally concrete has been primarily composed of cement, water and aggregates (which include coarse and fine aggregates). Although aggregates make up the bulk of the mix, it is the cement which contributes to the strength of concrete.

Concrete is not a homogeneous material, and its strength vary greatly depending on ingredients and method of manufacture. However, concrete is treated as a homogeneous material in design. Steel Reinforcement are often included to increase the tensile strength of concrete. Such concrete is called R.C.C (reinforced cement concrete).

Concrete without such steel reinforcement is called P.C.C (Plain cement concrete).

Facts: Around 7.5 billion cubic meters of concrete is produced each year.

Advantages of concrete:

  1. Moulded to any shape.
  2. Availability of materials.
  3. Low maintenance.
  4. Water and Fire resistance.
  5. Good rigidity.
  6. Compressive strength.
  7. Economical.
  8. Low-skilled labour.

Disadvantages of concrete:

  1. Low tensile strength.
  2. Requires forms and shoring.
  3. Relatively low strength.
  4. Time-dependent Volume changes.
  5. Variable properties.
  6. CO2 emission.

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