Physical and chemical studies on cement containing sugarcane molasses
Molasses is generally used as a grinding aid in cement and as a water reducer and retarder in concrete. In China, the output primarily consists of sugarcane molasses. In this paper, the effects of sugarcane molasses on the physical performance and hydration chemistry of conventional Portland cement were investigated. The setting times, the normal consistency of cement pastes, the compressive strengths and fluidities of the mortars were respectively determined according to Chinese Standard GB/T 1346, GB/T17671 and GB/T 2419. The effect of molasses on the hydration kinetics of cement was investigated using a calorimeter. The hydration products and pore size distribution of the cement pastes were analysed by X-ray powder diffraction, differential scanning calorimetry and a mercury injection apparatus. The results show that a small amount of sugarcane molasses retards the setting and hardening of cement paste and increases the fluidity of cement mortar, while excess molasses accelerates the setting and hardening. Molasses improves significantly the compressive strength at 3d due to the decrease of porosity. The addition of 1.0 % molasses accelerates the formation of ettringite, prevents the second hydration of aluminate phase and delays the hydration of C3S.
KeywordsSugarcane molasses Physical properties Hydration
The authors are grateful for the financial support of the National Natural Science Foundation of China (51202109), and the Program for Changjiang Scholars and Innovative Research Team in University (IRT1146). The support by the facilities of the Modern Analysis and Testing Centre at NJTECH, where the detailed microstructural analyses were performed, is also acknowledged.
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