Types of Cement

There are various types of cement used in construction, each type has its own different properties, uses & benefits, depending on the composition material used during its manufacturing.

Cement is a binding material that forms a bond between the aggregates and the material.

Cement has the flexibility to form a paste by mixing water, this paste strongly adheres to aggregates such as sand, bricks, stones, and other substances.

When a paste is obtained with water, cement exhibits the typical properties of freezing and hardening.

Cement is defined as a finely ground mixture of calcium aluminate and silicates of various compositions which hydrates when blended with water to form a rigid continuous structure with good compressive strength.

With the development of technology, the quality of various cement has been developed hence there are different types of cement are used in construction works.

Types of Cement used in Building Construction:

Here we have provided 18 types of cement used in construction industry as follows:

1. Ordinary Portland cement (OPC):

Ordinary Portland cement is the most extensively used cement suitable for all normal concrete construction.

It is the most commonly produced cement that is used worldwide with an annual world production of approximately 3.8 million cubic meters per year.

This cement is suitable for all types of concrete construction.

2. Portland Pozzolana Cement (PPC):

Portland pozzolana cement is prepared by grinding pozzolana clinker with Portland cement.

It can also be produced by adding pozzolana with gypsum or calcium sulfate by uniformly mixing Portland cement and fine pozzolans.

This cement has better resistance to various chemical attacks on concrete than ordinary Portland cement.

These types of cement is used for laying marine constructions, sewage works, sewage works and concrete underwater such as bridges, piers, dams and large concrete works, etc.

3. Rapid Hardening Cement:

Rapid hardening cement achieves high strength within the initial days used in the construction where the formwork is completed in the initial stage and they are similar to ordinary Portland cement.

This cement has a high amount of lime contains an increased c3s content material and better grinding which develops higher strength than OPC within the early stages.

The strength of rapid hardening cement after 3 days is similar to the strength of OPC after 7 days with the same water-cement ratio.

This cement increases the speed of construction and reduces the cost of construction by saving the cost of the formwork used in prefabricated concrete construction, highway works, etc.

4. Quick setting cement:

Quick setting cement sets quickly, while the strength gain is the same as Ordinary Portland Cement.

In each circumstance, the formalities can already be eliminated.

This type of cement is used where the work is to be completed in quick intervals for concreting in stagnant or flowing water.

5. Low heat cement:

Low heat cement is produced by raising the ratio of C2S to lower than 6% whereas maintaining a proportion of tricycle aluminium.

This provides less hydration heat to the concrete, thus used in larger concrete constructions than gravity dams because the low heat of hydration prevents the breakage of the concrete.

This cement has increased efficiency against sulfates which is less reactive and has an initial setting time compared to OPC.

6. Sulfate resisting cement:

Sulfate-resistant cement is used to reduce the risk of sulfate attack on concrete, thus used in the construction of foundations where the amount of sulfate in the soil is high.

This cement has decreased the content material of C3A and C4AF.

In places such as canal lining, culverts, retaining walls, siphons, etc., sulfate-resistant cement is used in construction exposed to excessive sulfate action by water and soil.

7. Blast Furnace Slag Cement:

Blast furnace slag is obtained by grinding cement cinder with approximately 60% slag and more or less resembles the properties of Portland cement.

These types of cement can be used for various tasks which can be economic considerations predominate.

8. High Alumina Cement:

High alumina cement is obtained by melting the mixture of bauxite, lime, and grinding with clinker, while it is more hardened cement with initial and final setting times of 3.5 and 5 hours respectively.

The compressive strength of this cement is greatly increased compared to the exceptional Portland cement, it is extra practically used in works where concrete is subjected to extreme temperatures, frost, and acidic action.

9. White Cement:

White cement is made of raw material that is free of iron oxide, it is expensive and used for architectural purposes such as going through precast curtain walls and panels, terrazzo surfaces, etc.

Also used for interior and exterior decorative work such as buildings, slabs, floors, decorative concrete products, gardens path, outdoor rendering of swimming, etc.

10. Colour Cement:

This colored cement might be colored through coloring matters like yellow ocher, Venetian red, ferric oxide, and many others.

This means that colored pigments (2% –10%) are added to normal Portland cement or white cement.

In preparing coloured cement, iron is partially placed in the place of clay, these types of cement are employed in marine works because of the resistive action of seawater.

They are extensively used for decorative works in flooring.

11. Air Entraining Cement:

During the clinker grinding, air-entraining cement is produced by adding indigenous air-entraining agents such as resins, gum, sodium salts of sulfates, etc.

These types of cement is particularly preferred with small water-cement ratios to improve work efficiency and frost resistance of concrete.

12. Expander Cement:

Exapnder cement expands slightly over time and does not shrink after hardening.

This cement is mainly used to grind anchor bolts and prestressed concrete ducts.

13. Hydrographic Cement:

Hydrographic cement is prepared by mixing water-repelling chemical substances which has excessive reasonableness and strength.

These cement has the property of draining water which stays unaffected throughout monsoon or rain.

14. Waterproof cement:

Waterproof cement has the property of resisting moisture penetration.

These are obtained by mixing waterproof substances such as calcium stearate, aluminum stearate, and gypsum with tannic acid in ordinary Portland cement throughout grinding.

Waterproof cement has two functions:

  • To withstand the absorption of water.
  • To make concretely impermeable to water under pressure.

Chemically inert substances such as aluminum soap, calcium soap, vegetable oil, waxes, resins, col- tar residues, and bitumen act as pore-blocking agents and water-repellent agents.

They improve resistance to moisture penetration.

15. Slag cement types:

The slag cement is prepared from blast furnace slag and hydrated lime.

The blast furnace slag consists of a combination of calcium and aluminum silicate which is granulated by pouring into a stream of cold water, then dried and blended with hydrated lime and then the powder is finely powdered.

This cement is slower in hardened so an accelerator such as clay, slate, or caustic soda is usually added as they set much slowly than Portland cement with lower strength and poor abrasion resistance.

Slag cement is used to a limited extent for making concrete in bulk construction, where strength is comparatively insignificant.

16. Super sulfate cement:

Super sulfate cement is made by grinding granulated blast furnace slag (80–85%) and calcium sulfate (10–15%) with Portland cement clinker or slaked time (1–2%).

The quantity of SO3 within the mixture is 5 to 7% while the blast furnace slag is 85%.

This cement is similar to Portland cement in setting and hardening, however is sensitive to any excess sand and water requires extra care in proportion to their mixing.

This cement is suitable for where concrete is exposed to seawater and sulfate-containing soils.

Due to its low heat liberation, it may be used for large-scale concrete works.

17. Acid-resistant cement (silicate cement Types):

Acid-resistant cement is prepared by mixing an inert acid-resistant aggregate with sodium, potassium, or silicon ester in appropriate proportions.

Their cementing property because of the addition of suitable setting agents such as sodium silicon fluoride, ethyl acetate, or silica precipitation due to water evaporation.

The band developed by silicate cement is tough but also brittle, this cement turns very porous and permeable to liquids on drying.

For this reason, it should always be kept wet or immersed in liquid to prevent the gel from shrinking.

18. Sorel cement:

Sorrel cement is made by mixing a strong solution of magnesium chloride with finely ground calcined magnesia.

The fabric is usually known as magnesium oxychloride cement, which hardens in three to 4 hours principally used in composite floors.

These floorings are non-slip, fire-proof, easily scratch-able, sturdy, and capable of decide-up wax or oil polish.

The hardening rate is still increased by the addition of calcium chloride or formate, while the quick rate of the setting is especially useful in chilly weather.

It is believed that CaCl2 accelerates the hydration of C2S and C3S, contributing to the strength of cement components.

Alternatively, hydration of C3A is recaptured, the optimum amount of CaCl2 used for such purposes is 1.5% by weight of the total weight of cement.

However, if it is exceeded, steel corrosion embedded within the concrete is promoted, particularly if the concrete is less compact or porous.

Uses of Various types of Cement:

  • Cement is used in cement mortar and cement concrete.
  • Ordinary Portland cement is usually used to make cement mortar and concrete.
  • Rapid hardening cement is used for the construction of highway slabs.
  • Low heat cement is used for constructing dams, retaining walls, bridge abutments (mass concrete).
  • Blast furnace slag cement is used for marine structures and other underground works.
  • Sulfate-resistant cement used for canal lining culverts or structures where the surface is exposed to extreme sulfate action.
  • White and color cement used for Terrazzo surface, face plasters, decorative works.
  • Basically, cement is used to construct buildings, highway pavements, bridges, water reservoirs, dams, tunnels, shells, domes, etc.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Which type of cement is used for house construction?

Ordinary Portland Cement.

Which grade of cement is mostly used in construction?

Grade 43 OPC is the most used grade for house construction.

Which is better OPC or PPC?

PPC has a lower heat rate of hydration than OPC.


The term cement means a substance that acts as a bonding agent for material, hydraulic cement is able to set and harden underwater whereas non-hydraulic cement hardens in the air, therefore these types of cement cannot be used underwater.

Hello, I'm Rahul Patil founder of Constructionor.com, I had studied B.E. Civil. This blog provides authentic information regarding civil structures, equipment, materials, tests & much more.

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