Calcium aluminate cements (CACs) were originally developed to provide improved durability in sulphate bearing environments and there are many cases of good performance in such environments extending over more than seventy years. Today, due mainly to their high cost, they are not used in situations where Portland cement concretes perform well, but find many specialist applications in severe chemical or abrasive environments. These include sewage pipes, subject to acid corrosion due to bacteriological actions and areas of high abrasive wear in hydraulic dams. In these types of applications, CACs effectively extend the range of performance of cementitious materials and compete with materials such as metals or plastics. However, these applications in conventional concrete account for only a minority of the CACs used today. A major use is in refractory concretes, where they combine the advantages of casting complex shapes at ambient temperatures with performance up to temperatures of more than 1600 C. In addition to this long-established type of application, they are finding increasing use as a component of complex mixtures, with other cementitious materials such as Portland cement and calcium sulphates, where a vast range of different properties can be obtained including rapid hardening, combination of water, and controlled dimensional variation. The past and present day applications of CACs are reviewed, and an explanation is given how their chemistry makes it possible to obtain materials with different properties to Portland cements. 34 refs.
Primary author(s): Scrivener K L
Lafarge Laboratoire Central de Recherche
Source: Calcium Aluminate Cements 2001. Proc.Int.Conf.
Edinburgh,16-19 July 2001,p.3-23