Part one of a two-part series on admixtures, this article explores practical considerations. The use of admixtures has increased nearly 50% in the past decade, based on the value of admixtures used per ton of cement in the United States. Concrete admixtures can enhance the performance of concrete, but only if civil engineers can adapt to changing technology. A 1999 survey of more than 200 civil and structural engineers found that 24% of the engineers indicated that their firms did not specify concrete admixtures. This figure is in marked contrast to the near universal acceptance of admixtures by concrete producers and contractors. One explanation may be that contractors and producers have a direct, economic incentive to use products that reduce their costs and increase productivity. The reasons engineers cited for using admixtures included the following improvements to the concrete: workability and flowability, strength, setting and curing time, weather and surface protection, quality and durability, and economy. Unfortunately, instead of realizing a financial benefit from admixtures, many engineers consider only the cost of added training and the liability associated with innovation. The bottom line is that each engineer must take responsibility for his or her own education about higher performance concrete and admixtures. Technical assistance is readily available from industry journals, educational programs sponsored by industry organizations and government agencies, and admixture manufacturers. A timeline running across the bottom of the article traces the development of concrete admixture technology from 1824 to 2000+.

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  • Corporate Authors:

    Civil Engineering News, Incorporated

    1255 Roberts Boulevard, Suite 230
    Kennesaw, GA  United States  30144
  • Authors:
    • Hill, R
    • Chusid, M
  • Publication Date: 2000-6


  • English

Media Info

  • Features: Photos; Tables;
  • Pagination: p. 82-86
  • Serial:
    • Civil Engineering News
    • Volume: 12
    • Issue Number: 5
    • Publisher: Civil Engineering News, Incorporated
    • ISSN: 1051-9629

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00795631
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jul 11 2000 12:00AM