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Self-healing capability of cementitious composites incorporating different supplementary cementitious materials
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The presence of deleterious substances and their transport are among the most important factors controlling the durability of cementitious composites. The present paper studies the relationship among the applied mechanical deterioration in terms of splitting tensile deformation, curing conditions and chloride ion permeability of Engineered Cementitious Composites (ECCs) that contain different supplementary cementitious materials (SCMs). Three SCMs, representing a wide range of compositions, were used in the study. The splitting tensile deformations are introduced to generate microcracks in ECC specimens, where cylindrical specimens were pre-loaded to different deformation levels. After that, the mechanically pre-cracked and pristine ECC specimens were exposed to three different curing conditions (continuous wet, continuous air, and freeze-thaw cycle) for up to 2 months. Rapid chloride permeability test (RCPT), microscopic observation and microstructural analysis were used to assess the rate and extent of self-healing. Test results indicate that the SCM type greatly affects the self-healing capability of cementitious composites as measured by chloride ion permeability. Although ECC samples with fly ash have more unhydrated cementitious materials, and therefore, expectedly, a higher capacity for self-healing, more evident self-healing product was observed from the ECC mixture incorporating slag. Therefore, in addition to the crack width distribution and curing condition, the reaction products associated with SCMs have a great impact on the self-healing capability of cementitious composites.