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Subject CIV2223 Design of Concrete Structures Mix Design Procedure

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THE BRITISH METHOD OF MIX DESIGN

INTRODUCTION

The British method of mix design can be used to design mixes for compressive strength, incorporating either Portland cements or blended cements, and for flexural strength.

The factors influencing compressive strength, considered in this design method, are free-water/cement ratio, cement type, aggregate type and concrete age. The other factors, which are not directly considered in this design method includes aggregate to cement ratio, degree of compaction and curing.

FREE-WATER/CEMENT RATIO

The total amount of water in a mix consists of the water absorbed by the aggregate to

bring it to the saturated surface dry condition – the balanced condition when aggregates neither absorb water from nor release water into the mix – together with the free-water

required for the hydration of the cement and the workability of the fresh concrete.

strength of the concrete is related to the free-water in the mix, and is not dependent on

the absorption properties of the aggregates.

They have

relationship between compressive strength and the free-water/cement ratio.

been obtained for a large number of different concrete mixes using different Portland

cements and different types of aggregates.

The

Figure 1 shows a family of curves for the

Table 1 accompanies Figure 1, and sets out the approximate compressive strengths of concrete mixes made with a free-water/cement ratio of 0.5. The data is applicable to concretes of medium richness cured in water at 20 o C.

With all other mix variables held constant, values of compressive strength given in Table 1 show that an uncrushed coarse aggregate generally produces a concrete with lower strength than one made with crushed coarse aggregate. If local knowledge indicates that this is not the case, values in Table 1 should be modified accordingly. Factors such as the type of fine aggregate, the maximum size of aggregate and the overall grading have only a small effect on compressive strength.

A value of compressive strength is obtained from Table 1 for a mix made with a free- water/cement ratio of 0.5 for the specified age, type of cement, and aggregate to be used. This value is then plotted on Figure 1 and a curve is drawn from this point, parallel to the printed curves until in intercepts a horizontal line passing through the ordinate representing the previously calculated target strength. The corresponding value of free-water/cement ratio is then read, and the value compared with any maximum value of the ratio that may be specified. The lower value must be used.

Subject CIV2223 Design of Concrete Structures Mix Design Procedure

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90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7
90
80
70
60
50
40
30
20
10
0
0.3
0.4
0.5
0.6
0.7
0.8
Compressive strength ( MPa )

Free - water / cement ratio

Figure 1 Relationship between Compressive Strength and Water/Cement Ratio

Table 1: Approximate compressive strengths (MPa) of concrete mixes made with a free-water/cement ratio of 0.5

Type of

Type of coarse aggregate

Compressive Strengths (MPa) Age (days)

 

Cement

 

3

7

28

91

Type GP or

Uncrushed

17

24

38

45

Type SR

Crushed

22

31

45

54

Type HE

Uncrushed

24

36

47

52

Crushed

31

39

52

60

Subject CIV2223 Design of Concrete Structures Mix Design Procedure

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FREE-WATER CONTENT

The free-water content is read from Table 2 and depends on the type and maximum size of aggregate to give a concrete of specified workability.

Table 2: Approximate free-water content (kg m -3 ) for various levels of workability

Maximum size

Type of

Slump (mm)

of aggregate

aggregate

 
 

(mm)

0-10

10-30

30-60

60-180

10

uncrushed

135

160

185

200

crushed

160

185

210

225

20

uncrushed

120

140

160

175

crushed

150

170

190

200

40

uncrushed

100

125

145

160

crushed

140

155

170

185

CEMENT CONTENT

The cement content is simply calculated by dividing the free-water content by the free- water/cement ratio. The calculated value must be compared with any specified

maximum or minimum value.

minimum cement content, the latter must be used.

water/cement ratio of the mix being less than selected, or the free-water content being

greater than selected, which will produce a concrete with a mean strength higher than the calculated target strength or a higher workability than specified.

If the calculated cement content is less than the specified

This may result in either the free-

If the calculated cement content is higher than a specified maximum, then it is likely that the specification for both strength and workability requirements cannot be met simultaneously with the selected materials. This may require changing the cement type, the type and maximum size of aggregate, or the level of workability.

TOTAL AGGREGATE CONTENT

In order to be able to calculate the total aggregate content, an estimate of the density of the fully compacted concrete is required. This can be read from Figure 2. It is also necessary to know or to be able to assume the relative density of the aggregate. An approximation can be made by assuming an average value of specific gravity of 2.6 for

The specific gravity of Australian

uncrushed aggregate and 2.7 for crushed aggregate.

aggregates generally ranges from 2.5 to 2.9, depending on the source.

Based on aggregates being in the saturated surface dry condition, the total aggregate content = D - C- W.

Subject CIV2223 Design of Concrete Structures Mix Design Procedure

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Where D = wet density of concrete, kg m -3 C = cement content, kg m -3 W = free-water content, kg m -3

2700 2600 Specific gravity of combined aggregate (on a saturated surface-dry basis) 2500 2.9 2400
2700
2600
Specific gravity of
combined aggregate
(on a saturated
surface-dry basis)
2500
2.9
2400
2.8
2.7
2300
2.6
2.5
2200
2.4
2100
100 120
140
160
180
200
220
240
260
280
3
Wet density of concrete (kg m )

3

Free - water content (kg m )

Figure 2 Wet density of fully compacted concrete

FINE AND CORSE AGGREGATE CONTENTS

The proportion of fine aggregate for use in a given mix is selected from the curves in Figure 3. The best proportion to use in a given mix will depend on the shape and the maximum size of the coarse aggregate, the fineness modulus of the fine aggregate, the chosen free-water/cement ratio, and the desired workability of the mix. The proportion of fine aggregate found from Figure 3 will generally produce a satisfactory concrete in the first trial mix, which can then be adjusted as required to meet the prevailing conditions.

To determine the fine and course aggregate contents, multiply the value read from Figure 3 by the total aggregate content.

Subject CIV2223 Design of Concrete Structures Mix Design Procedure

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Percentage of fine aggregatePercentage

of fine aggregatePercentage

of fine aggregate

Maximum aggregate size : 10 mm

Slump : 0 - 10 mm Vebe : 12s 80 Fineness modulus 70 60 3.5
Slump
:
0
-
10
mm
Vebe
:
12s
80
Fineness
modulus
70
60
3.5
3.0
50
2.5
40
2.0
30
1.5
20
10
0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1.0 80 70 Fineness modulus 60 3.5 50 3.0 40 2.5
0.2 0.4
0.6
0.8
1.0
80
70
Fineness
modulus
60
3.5
50
3.0
40
2.5
30
2.0
1.5
20
10
0.2 0.4
0.6
0.8
1.0
10 - 6 - 12s 30 mm 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10
10
-
6 - 12s
30 mm
80
70
60
50
40
30
20
10
0.2 0.4
0.6
0.8
1.0
30 - 60 mm 3 - 6s 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10
30
-
60 mm
3
-
6s
80
70
60
50
40
30
20
10
0.2 0.4
0.6
0.8
1.0

Free - water/cement ratio

Maximum aggregate size : 20 mm

80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1.0
80
70
60
50
40
30
20
10
0.2 0.4
0.6
0.8
1.0
80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1.0
80
70
60
50
40
30
20
10
0.2 0.4
0.6
0.8
1.0

Free - water/cement ratio

Maximum aggregate size : 40 mm

80 70 Fineness 60 modulus 50 3.5 40 3.0 2.5 30 2.0 20 1.5 10
80
70
Fineness
60
modulus
50
3.5
40
3.0
2.5
30
2.0
20
1.5
10
0.2 0.4
0.6
0.8
1.0
80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1.0
80
70
60
50
40
30
20
10
0.2 0.4
0.6
0.8
1.0
80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1.0
80
70
60
50
40
30
20
10
0.2 0.4
0.6
0.8
1.0

Free - water/cement ratio

80

70

60

50

40

30

20

10

60 180 mm 0 - 3s - 3.5 3.0 2.5 2.0 1.5
60
180 mm
0 - 3s
-
3.5
3.0
2.5
2.0
1.5
0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1.0 80 70 3.5 60 3.0 50 2.5 40 2.0 30
0.2 0.4
0.6
0.8
1.0
80
70
3.5
60
3.0
50
2.5
40
2.0
30
1.5
20
10
0.2 0.4
0.6
0.8
1.0
80 70 60 3.5 3.0 50 2.5 40 2.0 30 1.5 20 10 0.2 0.4
80
70
60
3.5
3.0
50
2.5
40
2.0
30
1.5
20
10
0.2 0.4
0.6
0.8
1.0

Figure 3 Proportions of fine aggregate determined from Fineness Modulus

Subject CIV2223 Design of Concrete Structures Mix Design Procedure

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Fine aggregate content = total aggregate content ¥ proportion of fines.

Coarse aggregate content = total aggregate content – fine aggregate content.

Coarse aggregate content can be subdivided if single sized 10, 20 and 40 mm aggregates are to be combined. The best proportions will depend on aggregate shape and concrete usage, but the following ratios are suggested as a guide:

1:2 for combination of 10mm and 20mm aggregates. 1:1.5:3 for combination of 10mm, 20mm and 40 mm aggregates.

TRIAL MIXES

The design procedure outlined above is based on materials which may not be what is used for your design. It is unlikely that the first mix design would achieve the target results. It usually takes a few trials before a satisfactory design is achieved.

After each trial mix, the concrete mix design should be adjusted before the next trial. The following items may be given consideration:

Density: The density of the concrete measured during the trial mix should be checked against the assumed density during the mix design, and necessary adjustments should be made accordingly.

fine

aggregate/coarse aggregate ratio. Slump can be increased by increasing the water content and/or decreasing the fine aggregate/coarse aggregate ratio. A slump

Slump:

The

slump

can

be

adjusted

by

adjusting

the

water

content

and

the

adjustment of 20 mm can be achieved by changing the water content by 5 kg and fine

aggregate by 5 kg. not altered.

The water/cement ratio should be maintained so that the strength is

Strength:

the Figure 1. Use the results from the trial mix, the water/cement ratio and the strength, and plot a pint in Figure 1. Draw the curve parallel to the other curves through the point, and use this curve to estimate the water/cement ratio required for the target strength.

The strength can be adjusted by adjusting the water/cement ratio according to