Polymer concrete made by mixing cement, aggregates, water, and monomer, the plastic mixtures are poured into moulds, cured, dried, and polymerized, polymer concrete is polymerized either at room temperature or at elevated temperatures.
Here we will learn about polymer concrete, types of polymer concrete, polymer concrete properties & much more.
Introduction to polymer concrete:
Polymer concrete is a versatile, durable, composite materials made by mixing a variety of mineral fillers with a synthetic or natural resin binding agent, it is also known as resin concrete.
Polymerization can be achieved by the elevated thermal catalytic reaction, catalyst promoter reaction, radiation etc.
The strength obtained with this concrete can be 140 MPa with a short curing period, its properties depend on the type and amount of polymers used in the concrete.
Polymers used in polymers concrete are listed below:
Polyester styrene: These are synthetic rubber in polymers and copolymer solutions.
Vinylidene chloride: These are standard terms for substituted ethylene and copolymers such as polyester, polythene, polystyrene.
Epoxy – styrene: Synthetic polymers that are condensate of epichlorohydrin and suitable polyhydroxy material that is usually used a polyhydroxy / material is Bisphenol-A.
Acrylics: These are polymers and copolymers of esters of acrylic and methacrylic acid.
Types of polymer concrete:
Polymer impregnated concrete (PIC):
This concrete is one of the widely used polymers composites.
It is conventional concrete that is dried in an oven by dielectric heating in the open cell and removed by vacuum.
A low viscosity monomer diffuses through the open cell and polymerized by radiation, applying the heat or chemical initiation.
Latex modified concrete (LMC):
Latex modified concrete or polymers cement is made by mixing concrete cement, aggregates, water, and monomer.
Such plastic mixtures are poured into moulds, cured, dried, and polymerized.
The monomers that are used in PCC are polyester-styling, Epoxy-styrene, Furans & Vinylidene chloride.
Polymer Concrete (PC):
This concrete is bonded with a polymers binder instead of portland cement like traditional concrete.
The primary technique in producing this concrete is to reduce the total mass to zero as well as to reduce the amount of polymers needed to bind the aggregates.
This is achieved by thoroughly grading and mixing the aggregates to make maximum density and minimum void volume.
Properties of polymer concrete:
Polymer concrete has better tensile strength, compressive strength, flexural strength and wonderful abrasion resistance than cement-concrete.
This concrete has Excellent adhesion on most of the surfaces, also increases the adhesion on older surfaces.
This concrete attains 70% strength after one day of curing at room temperature, whereas standard concrete attains 20% strength in 28-days.
This concrete offers long-term durability, low permeability and water versatility.
It is very less permeable to water and aggressive chemical materials.
It produces lightweight concrete.
Advantages of polymer concrete:
- Polymer concrete can be applied in very thin cross-sections.
- It reduces the infiltration of carbon dioxide, protects the concrete from carbonation hence the loss of alkalinity.
- This concrete offers outstanding resistance against corrosion and chemical attack.
- Polymer binders set very quickly and resist weathering effects, thus are useful for repairing existing structures.
- It reduces shrinkage.
Disadvantages of polymer concrete:
- Polymer concrete is costly than conventional concrete.
- High skills and precision work are required when mixing polymers concrete.
- Two-component materials may have an inappropriate ratio, thus proper mixing is required.
- Chemicals utilized in polymers concrete could be dangerous, subsequently, it is necessary to make use of masks and hand gloves for skin safety.
Application of polymers concrete:
- It is used in rock bolts.
- Also used in the construction of electric poles.
- Used in waterproofing of the structure.
- They are also used in sewage work and disposal work.
- It has several industrial applications.
- They are also used in iron products.
- Also used in desalination plants.
- It is used in marine works.
- They are used in the prefabricated structural element.
- It is used in prestressed concrete.
Also read: Geopolymer Concrete, Asphalt Concrete & Fibre Reinforced Concrete
Curing time of polymer concrete is about 70% of its strength after one day at room temperature.
The durability of the polymers concrete has advantage over conventional cement concrete.
The cement concrete, water, chemical agents have much less damaging effects on the properties of polymers concrete.