Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New optical technique captures real-time dynamics of cement setting

21.01.2020

Material characterization approach can pinpoint cement setting times, could lead to more environmentally friendly cement

Researchers have developed a nondestructive and noninvasive optical technique that can determine the setting times for various types of cement paste, which is used to bind new and old concrete surfaces. The new method could aid in the development of optimized types of cement with less impact on the environment.


For real-time characterization of cement setting, the researchers combined diffuse reflection measurements with an optical model.

Credit: José Ortiz-Lozano

"Our noninvasive optical method characterizes and determines the setting time of cement, which is a very important parameter for the construction industry," said José Ortiz-Lozano, a member of the research team from Universidad Autónoma de Aguascalientes, Tecnológico Nacional de México and Centro de Investigaciones en Óptica, in Mexico. "It can also precisely assess the cement hydration process in real-time. This information is crucial for both the study of physical chemistry and the quantitative characterization of the nanomechanical properties of cement-based materials."

In the Optical Society's (OSA) journal Applied Optics, the researchers describe the new method, which combines laser-based technology with an optical model to calculate the dynamic behavior of the cement paste. The researchers show that their approach can accurately calculate both the initial setting time -- the time available for mixing the cement and placing it in position -- and the final setting time, when the cement reaches its full strength.

"Our group is trying to enhance the performance of cement-based materials, such as cement pastes, mortars and concrete," said Ortiz-Lozano. "New material characterization methods, such as the one we report here, can be used to improve the behavior and performance of cement by optimizing its constituents. This could lead to new types of cement that use less water and raw materials like limestone and clay, which would make them more environmentally friendly."

Studying cement with light

Although a variety of techniques exist to study the dynamics of setting cement, they come with various drawbacks such as being destructive, invasive or influenced by human factors. The new method uses the optical properties of cement paste to directly calculate the initial and final cement setting time by measuring the diffuse light that reflects off the cement.

As the cement sets, the diffuse light reflection changes as it reacts with water and the spaces between the cement particles change. The amount of water present and the protective surface layer at each setting stage also influence the diffuse reflection properties. The researchers combined the diffuse reflection measurements with the Kubelka-Munk model, which is used to describe diffuse reflection of opaque samples.

"This new optical method was developed using tools, components and materials common among the optical industry," said Ortiz-Lozano. "It would be, therefore, quite simple and economic to implement in cement quality control laboratories. It can be applied to any type of cement once the appropriate calibration is performed with the Kubelka-Munk model."

The researchers applied the new technique to six cement samples and found that the results for all the samples were repeatable and agreed well with measurement techniques commonly used today.

"This laser-based technique gives continuous and accurate assessment of cement hydration process with high repeatability and reproducibility, showing its potential for studying the physical chemistry properties of cement," said Ortiz-Lozano.

Next, the researchers plan to acquire more data using more types of cement, mortars, concretes as well as additional water to cement ratios and cement pastes that contain chemical and/or mineral admixtures. They are also planning to perform the work required to normalize the method as a standard.

###

Paper: J. J. Soto-Bernal, G. V. Vázquez, R. Gonzálezmota, I. Rosales-Candelas, J. A. Ortiz-Lozano, H. A. De-León-Martínez, "Optical Method to Characterize and Assess Setting Evolution of Cement Pastes," Applied Optics, 59, 13, D1-D5 (2020). Included in a forthcoming Feature Issue on Optics Theory and Practice in Iberoamerica.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1364/AO.59.0000D1

About Applied Optics

Applied Optics publishes in-depth peer-reviewed content about applications-centered research in optics. These articles cover research in optical technology, photonics, lasers, information processing, sensing and environmental optics. Applied Optics is published three times per month by The Optical Society and overseen by Editor-in-Chief Ronald Driggers, University of Central Florida, USA. For more information, visit OSA Publishing.

About The Optical Society

Founded in 1916, The Optical Society (OSA) is the leading professional organization for scientists, engineers, students and business leaders who fuel discoveries, shape real-life applications and accelerate achievements in the science of light. Through world-renowned publications, meetings and membership initiatives, OSA provides quality research, inspired interactions and dedicated resources for its extensive global network of optics and photonics experts. For more information, visit osa.org.

Media Contact

mediarelations@osa.org

Media Contact

James Merrick
jmerrick@osa.org
202-416-1994

 @opticalsociety

http://www.osa.org 

James Merrick | EurekAlert!
Further information:
https://www.osa.org/en-us/about_osa/newsroom/news_releases/2020/new_optical_technique_captures_real-time_dynamics/
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/AO.59.0000D1

More articles from Materials Sciences:

nachricht New material has highest electron mobility among known layered magnetic materials
13.02.2020 | Princeton University

nachricht Graphene forms under microscope's eye
13.02.2020 | Rice University

All articles from Materials Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Skyrmions like it hot: Spin structures are controllable even at high temperatures

Investigation of the temperature dependence of the skyrmion Hall effect reveals further insights into possible new data storage devices

The joint research project of Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) that had previously demonstrated...

Im Focus: Making the internet more energy efficient through systemic optimization

Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, recently completed a 5-year research project looking at how to make fibre optic communications systems more energy efficient. Among their proposals are smart, error-correcting data chip circuits, which they refined to be 10 times less energy consumptive. The project has yielded several scientific articles, in publications including Nature Communications.

Streaming films and music, scrolling through social media, and using cloud-based storage services are everyday activities now.

Im Focus: New synthesis methods enhance 3D chemical space for drug discovery

After helping develop a new approach for organic synthesis -- carbon-hydrogen functionalization -- scientists at Emory University are now showing how this approach may apply to drug discovery. Nature Catalysis published their most recent work -- a streamlined process for making a three-dimensional scaffold of keen interest to the pharmaceutical industry.

"Our tools open up whole new chemical space for potential drug targets," says Huw Davies, Emory professor of organic chemistry and senior author of the paper.

Im Focus: Quantum fluctuations sustain the record superconductor

Superconductivity approaching room temperature may be possible in hydrogen-rich compounds at much lower pressures than previously expected

Reaching room-temperature superconductivity is one of the biggest dreams in physics. Its discovery would bring a technological revolution by providing...

Im Focus: New coronavirus module in SORMAS

HZI-developed app for disease control is expanded to stop the spread of the pathogen

At the end of December 2019, the first cases of pneumonia caused by a novel coronavirus were reported from the Chinese city of Wuhan. Since then, infections...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

70th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting: Around 70 Laureates set to meet with young scientists from approx. 100 countries

12.02.2020 | Event News

11th Advanced Battery Power Conference, March 24-25, 2020 in Münster/Germany

16.01.2020 | Event News

Laser Colloquium Hydrogen LKH2: fast and reliable fuel cell manufacturing

15.01.2020 | Event News

 
Latest News

Electric solid propellant -- can it take the heat?

14.02.2020 | Physics and Astronomy

Pitt study uncovers new electronic state of matter

14.02.2020 | Physics and Astronomy

Researchers observe quantum interferences in real-time using a new extreme ultra-violet light spectroscopy technique

14.02.2020 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>