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what is cement

Cement is a binder

A substance that sets and

A finely ground, grayish color
hardens independently, and can bind
other materials together

STAGE 1 : materials used before inventiron o

f cement

Clay (calcium Calcined Gypsum mortar

silicate) (Calcium sulphate dihidrate)

Mixture of lime (CaCo3) standard water

“A cement is a binder, a substance that sets and hardens and can bind other materials
together. It principal constituents for constructional purpose are compounds of
Ca(calcareous) and Al + Si (argillaceous)”

Chemical Composition of Cement

The cements have property of setting and hardening
under water, by virtue of certain chemical reaction
Lime 63% with it and are called ‘hydraulic cements’
Silica 22%
Alumina 06%
Iron oxide 03%
Gypsum 01 to 04%

Classification of Cements


Natural Cement It is the variety of

artificial cement. It
Puzzolana Cement is called Portland
cement because on
hardening (setting)
Slag Cement its color resembles
to rocks near
Portland in
Portland Cement England.

Portland Cement
“An extremely finely ground product by calcinising together , at above 1500oC , an intimate and properly
proportioned mixture of argillaceous (clay) and calcareous (lime) raw materials, without the addition of anything
subsequent to calcination , excepting the retarder gypsum”
Clinker CCN Mass %
Tricalcium silicate (CaO)3 · SiO2 C3S 45–75%

Dicalcium silicate (CaO)2 · SiO2 C2S 7–32%

Tricalcium aluminate (CaO)3 · Al2O3 C3A 0–13%

Tetracalcium aluminoferrite (CaO)4 · Al2O3 ·

C4AF 0–18%

Gypsum CaSO4 · 2 H2O 2–10%

Calcium Oxide - CaO

Pile of Portland cement

Magnesium Oxide - MgO 4%

Chemical Composition of Portland Cement

Raw materials of Portland Cement and it’s use
Calcareous materials, CaO [eg. Limestone ]
• Principal Constituent and its proportion
can be regulated
• Excess of lime reduces the strength and
makes the cement expand & disintegrate
• Lesser amount of lime also reduces the
strength by quick setting
Argillaceous materials, Al2O3 and SiO2 [eg.
Clay ]
• Imparts strength
• Makes quick setting
• Excess of alumina weakens the cement
Powdered Coal. or fuel oil
• For burning
Gypsum (CaSO4 2H2O)
• Retards and enhances quick setting

Manufacturing Cement

1. Mixing and Crushing of raw materials

a) Dry process

a) Wet process

2. Burning

3. Grinding

4. Storage and Packing

Manufacturing of Portland cement
Agillaceous Callareous Powdered
materials materials A Rotary Klin
coal + air

NO Crushing & Hot Clinkers

Is Wet Grinding

YES Cooler

Grinding in Ball 2 -4 %
Mill Gypsum


Storage Silos

Grinding Water



Flow Chart of Portland cement manufacturing process

Correcting Basin A

1. BLASTING : loader
The raw materials 2. TRANSPORT :
that are used to The raw materials
manufacture are loaded into a
cement (mainly dumper.
limestone and clay)
Quarry face
are blasted from 1. BLASTING 2. TRANSPORT
the quarry.

storage at
the plant


3. CRUSHING AND TRANSPORTATION : The raw materials, after crushing, are transported to the plant by
conveyor. The plant stores the materials before they are homogenized.

Raw grinding and burning
1. RAW
GRINDING : The storage at Raw mill
the plant
raw materials are conveyor Raw mix
very finely ground in
order to produce the
raw mix.





2. BURNING : The raw mix is preheated before it goes into the kiln, which is heated by a flame that can be as hot as 2000 °C.
The raw mix burns at 1500 °C producing clinker which, when it leaves the kiln, is rapidly cooled with air fans. So, the raw mix
is burnt to produce clinker : the basic material needed to make cement.
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Grinding, storage, packing, dispatch
1.GRINDING : The Gypsum and the secondary additives are added
clinker and the to the clinker.
gypsum are very clinker
finely ground giving Finish grinding
a “pure cement”.
Other secondary
additives and
cementitious 1. GRINDING
materials can also be silos

added to make a
blended cement. dispatch


2. STORAGE, PACKING, DISPATCH :The cement is stored in silos before being dispatched either in bulk or in bags to
its final destination.

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Mixing and Crushing: b) Wet Process
• Limestone is crushed,
powdered and stored in silos

• Clay is washed with water to

remove organic matter and
stored in basin

• Both these materials are

mixed in grinding mill to
form slurry

• Slurry contains 38-40%

Figure showing manufacturing of cement using wet process water stored in correcting

Burning Process : View of complete setup
Fig. Rotary Cement Kiln

Powdered Slurry Tank

5 to inclined
Coal refractory-lined Slurry
Hot Air rotary kin

Hot clinker
Clinker Gypsum

Cement to strong
mill and packing bags

Burning Process : Zones of Rotary Kiln
Rotary Klin Slurry
• Upper part of the kiln
• About 400 0C
• Most of the water in the
slurry gets evaporated

• Center part of the kiln

5 to 6 o inclined • About 700oC – 1000oC
• Lime gets decomposed into
CaO and CO2

• Lower part of the kiln

• About 1250oC - 1500oC
• Reacts with clay to form
various bouge compounds

Burning Process : Chemical Reactions in Rotary Klin Zones

• Calcination Zone :

CaCO3 CaO + CO2

• Clinkering Zone :

2CaO + SiO2 Ca2SiO4 ( Dicalcium silicate – C2S )

3CaO + SiO2 Ca3SiO5 ( Tricalcium silicate – C3S )

3CaO + Al2O3 Ca3Al2O6 ( Tricalcium aluminate – C3A )

4CaO + Al2O3 + Fe2O3 Ca4Al2Fe2O10

(Tricalcium aluminoferrite – C4AF)

Grinding and Packaging
• Cooled clinkers are ground to fine powder in ball mills
• At final stages of grounding about 2-3% of powdered
gypsum is added.
(This is to avoid setting of cement quickly when it comes
in contact with water)

• Gypsum acts as a retarding agent for early setting of the cement

3CaO + Al2O3 + x CaSO4 . 7H2O 3CaO . Al2O3 . xCaSO4 . 7H2O

After initial set Gypsum Tricalcium sulphoaluminate (Insoluble)

• Ground cement is stored in silos
• From silos they are automatically packaged into bag which are about 50 Kg

Properties of cement : Setting and hardening
 When the cement is mixed with water, hydration and hydrolysis reactions of Bogue compounds
of cement begin, resulting in formation of gel and crystalline products.

 These products have the ability to surround inert materials liks sand , bricks , crushed stones,

“ Setting is the stiffening of original plastic mass due to the formation of tobermonite gel”. It can be divided
into 2 stages a) Initial Set b)Final Set

 Initial Set is when paste being to stiffen

 Final Set is when the paste beginning to harden and able to sustain some loads

“ Hardening is the development of strength due to formation of crystals”

Setting and hardening

Unhydrated Cement


Metastable Crystalline hydration

Gel products

Stable Gel Crystalline products

Figure showing setting and hardening of cement

Sequence of changes during setting and hardening

Cement 1st day Hydration 7th day 28th day Gelation of

Gelation of
+ of C3A and C2S and
Water Paste C4F C3S

Function of Gypsum (CaSO4·2H2O ) in cement

• Tricalcium aluminate (C3A) combines with water very rapidly with the evolution
of large amount of heat
C3A + 6H2O C3A . 6H2O + Heat

• After the initial set, the paste becomes stiff.

• Adding gypsum retards the dissolution of C3A by forming insoluble calcium
3CaO . Al2O3 . xCaSO4 . 7H2O

• The above reaction shows how gypsum retards the early initial set of cement

Heat of Hydration of Cement

• When cement is mixed with water, hydration , hydrolysis an gelation reaction

starts and some heat is liberated
• On an average of 500 kJ/Kg of heat is evolved during complete hydration of

Bogue Compounds Heat of hydration (kJ/kg)

C3A 880
C3S 500
C4AF 420
C2S 250

Heat of hydration of Bogue compounds

• Different grades of cement are specified by IS 1489-1991. Cements are mainly classified on the basis of
compressive strength of particular cement.
For example if cement has compressive strength of 33 N/mm2 then it is classified under grade 33.
Mainly 3 grades of cements are used:
• Fineness=300 m2/kg
Compressive strength after 3 days=16 N/mm2
Compressive strength after 7 days=22 N/mm2
Compressive strength after 28 days=33N/mm2
Grade 33 cement has high workability and is mainly used for mortar in masonry work and for plastering.


• Fineness=225 m2/kg
Compressive strength after 3 days=23 N/mm2
Compressive strength after 7 days=33 N/mm2
Compressive strength after 28 days=43 N/mm2
Grade 43 cement is moderately sulphate resisting and has good workability. Grade 43 cement has low chloride
content and thus resists corrosion on R.C.C. Grade 43 cement has smooth and better finish.
Grade 43 cement is mainly used in:
Ready mix concrete.(R.M.C)
• Reinforced cement concrete work (R.C.C)
• Pre-cast concrete. (Example in Delhi Metro pillars)
• Silos and chimneys.


Fineness=225 m2/kg
Compressive strength after 3 days=27 N/mm2
Compressive strength after 7 days=37 N/mm2
Compressive strength after 28 days=53 N/mm2
Grade 53 cement has low chloride content and is moderately sulphate resisting. Volume of cement required is less
due to high strength and surface area which saves the cost of construction.
Grade 53 cement is used in:
Industrial buildings, roads and subways.
• Pre-cast concrete.
• R.C.C Bridges.
• Concrete sleeper for railways.
Special Cement : White Portland Cement (or) White cement
• Is white in color due to absence of iron
• Obtained by calcining the raw materials
of Portland cement which are free from
iron oxide

• More expensive than ordinary Portland
• Acts as pore – blocking and water –
 Repairing and joining marble pillars and blocks repelling agent
 Manufacture of tiles and mosaic walls

Special Cement : Water proof Cement (or) Hydrophobic cement

• Is a cement obtained by adding water proofing

substances like calcium stearate, aluminium
stearate and gypsum with tannic acid to
ordinary Portland cement

• More expensive than ordinary Portland cement

• Acts as pore – blocking and water – repelling

 Used to make concrete which is impervious to water under pressure
 Used in construction, where absorption of water need to be avoided
 Used in construction of bridges and under water constructions

Ordinary Portland Cement Portland Pozzolana Cement
(OPC) High Alumina Cement

Expansive cement Quick setting cement

Rapid Hardening Cement Sulphates resisting cement White Cement

Low Heat Cement Hydrographic cement

Colored cement Blast Furnace Slag Cement Air Entraining Cement

1. Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC)
• Ordinary Portland cement is the most widely used type of cement which
is suitable for all general concrete construction.
• It is most widely produced and used type of cement around the world
with annual global production of around 3.8 million cubic meters per
• This cement is suitable for all type of concrete construction.
2. Portland Pozzolana Cement (PPC)
• Portland pozzolana cement is prepared by grinding pozzolanic clinker with Portland
• It is also produced by adding pozzolana with the addition of gypsum or calcium sulfate or
by intimately and uniformly blending portland cement and fine pozzolana.
• This cement has high resistance to various chemical attacks on concrete compared with
ordinary portland cement and thus it is widely used.
• It is used in marine structures, sewage works, sewage works and for laying concrete
under water such as bridges, piers, dams and mass concrete works etc.
3. Rapid Hardening Cement
• Rapid hardening cement attains high strength in early days it is used in concrete where
formworks are removed at an early stage and is similar to ordinary portland cement
• This cement has increased lime content and contains higher C3S content and finer grinding
which gives greater strength development than OPC at an early stage.
• The strength of rapid hardening cement at the 3 days is similar to 7 days strength of OPC
with the same water-cement ratio.
• Thus, advantage of this cement is that formwork can be removed earlier which increases
the rate of construction and decreases cost of construction by saving formwork cost.
• Rapid hardening cement is used in prefabricated concrete construction, road works, etc.
4. Quick setting cement
• The difference between the quick setting cement and rapid hardening
cement is that quick setting cement sets earlier while rate of gain of
strength is similar to Ordinary Portland Cement, while rapid hardening
cement gains strength quickly.
• Formworks in both cases can be removed earlier.
• Quick setting cement is used where works is to be completed in very short
period and for concreting in static or running water.
5. Low Heat Cement
• Low heat cement is prepared by maintaining the percentage of tricalcium
aluminate below 6% by increasing the proportion of C2S.
• This makes the concrete to produce low heat of hydration and thus is used
in mass concrete construction like gravity dams, as the low heat of
hydration prevents the cracking of concrete due to heat.
• This cement has increased power against sulphates and is less reactive and
initial setting time is greater than OPC.
6. Sulphates Resisting Cement
• Sulfate resisting cement is used to reduce the risk of sulphate attack on
concrete and thus is used in construction of foundations where soil has
high sulphate content.
• This cement has reduced contents of C3A and C4AF.
• Sulfate resisting cement is used in construction exposed to severe sulphate
action by water and soil in places like canals linings, culverts, retaining
walls, siphons etc.
7. Blast Furnace Slag Cement
• Blast furnace slag cement is obtained by grinding the clinkers with
about 60% slag and resembles more or less in properties of
Portland cement.
• It can be used for works economic considerations is predominant.
8. High Alumina Cement
• High alumina cement is obtained by melting mixture of bauxite and lime
and grinding with the clinker.
• It is a rapid hardening cement with initial and final setting time of about
3.5 and 5 hours respectively.
• The compressive strength of this cement is very high and more workable
than ordinary Portland cement and is used in works where concrete is
subjected to high temperatures, frost, and acidic action.
9. White Cement
• It is prepared from raw materials free from Iron oxide and is a type of
ordinary portland cement which is white in color.
• It is costlier and is used for architectural purposes such as precast
curtain wall and facing panels, terrazzo surface etc. and for interior
and exterior decorative work like external renderings of buildings,
facing slabs, floorings, ornamental concrete products, paths of gardens,
swimming pools etc
10. Colored cement
• It is produced by mixing 5- 10% mineral pigments with
ordinary cement.
• They are widely used for decorative works in floors.
11. Air Entraining Cement
• Air entraining cement is produced by adding indigenous air
entraining agents such as resins, glues, sodium salts of sulphates
etc. during the grinding of clinker.
• This type of cement is especially suited to improve the workability
with smaller water cement ratio and to improve frost resistance of
12. Expansive Cement
• Expansive cement expands slightly with time and does not
shrink during and after the time of hardening .
• This cement is mainly used for grouting anchor bolts and
prestressed concrete ducts.
• 13. Hydrographic cement
• Hydrographic cement is prepared by mixing water repelling chemicals and
has high workability and strength.
• It has the property of repelling water and is unaffected during monsoon or
• Hydrophobic cement is mainly used for the construction of water structures
such dams, water tanks, spillways, water retaining structures etc.

• physical tests
• Laboratory tests
• Quality tests on cements at construction site (also called field tests on cement) are carried
to know the quality of cement supplied at site. It gives some idea about cement quality
based on color, touch and feel and other tests.
• Tests on Cement at Construction site

Color test Presence of lumps Adulteration test

Temperature test Float tests

Setting testv Date of packing Strength test

Color Test of Cement
• The color of the cement should be uniform. It should be grey color with a light greenish
Presence of Lumps
• The cement should be free from any hard lumps. Such lumps are formed by the absorption
of moisture from the atmosphere. Any bag of cement containing such lumps should be
Cement Adulteration Test
• The cement should feel smooth when touched or rubbed in between fingers. If it is felt
rough, it indicates adulteration with sand.
Temperature Test of Cement
• If hand is inserted in a bag of cement or heap of cement, it should feel cool and not warm.

Float Test
• If a small quantity of cement is thrown in a bucket of water, the particles should float for
some time before it sinks.
Setting Test
• A thick paste of cement with water is made on a piece of glass plate and it is kept under
water for 24 hours. It should set and not crack.
Strength of Cement Test
• A block of cement 25 mm ×25 mm and 200 mm long is prepared and it is immersed for 7
days in water. It is then placed on supports 15cm apart and it is loaded with a weight of
about 34 kg. The block should not show signs of failure.
• The briquettes of a lean mortar (1:6) are made. The size of briquette may be about 75 mm
×25 mm ×12 mm. They are immersed in water for a period of 3 days after drying. If
cement is of sound quality such briquettes will not be broken easily.
Date of Packing:
• Strength of cement reduces with time, so it is important to check the manufacturing date of
the cement. Generally, the cement should be used before 90 days from the date of
• Laboratory tests

• CONSISTENCY TEST: This is a test to estimate the quantity of mixing water to form
a paste of normal consistency defined as that percentage water requirement of the cement
paste, the viscosity of which will be such that the Vicat’s plunger penetrates up to a point
5 to 7 mm from the bottom of the Vicat’s mould.
• The water requirement for various tests of cement depends on the normal consistency of
the cement, which itself depends upon the compound composition and fineness of the

• When water is added to cement, the resulting paste starts to stiffen and gain strength and lose the
consistency simultaneously.
• The term setting implies solidification of the plastic cement paste.
• Initial and final setting times may be regarded as the two stiffening states of the cement.
• The beginning of solidification, called the initial set, marks the point in time when the paste has become
• The time taken to solidify completely marks the final set, which should not be too long in order to
resume construction activity within a reasonable time after the placement of concrete.
• The initial setting time may be defined as the time taken by the paste to stiffen to such an
extent that the Vicat’s needle is not permitted to move down through the paste to within 5
± 0.5 mm measured from the bottom of the mould.
• The final setting time is the time after which the paste becomes so hard that the angular
attachment to the needle, under standard weight, fails to leave any mark on the hardened
concrete. Initial and final setting times are the rheological properties of cement.
SOUNDNESS TEST: It is essential that the cement concrete does not undergo large
change in volume after setting.
This is ensured by limiting the quantities of free lime and magnesia which slake slowly
causing change in volume of cement (known as unsound).
Soundness of cement may be tested by LeChatelier method or by autoclave method. For
OPC, RHC, LHC and PPC it is limited to 10 mm, whereas for HAC and SSC it should not
exceed 5 mm.
• It is a very important test to assure the quality of cement since an unsound cement
produces cracks, distortion and disintegration, ultimately leading to failure.
• COMPRESSIVE STRENGTH: Compressive strength is the basic data required for mix design.
By this test, the quality and the quantity of concrete can be controlled and the degree
of adulteration can be checked.