Materiales de Construcción, Vol 67, No 326 (2017)

PCE and BNS admixture adsorption in sands with different composition and particle size distribution

M. M. Alonso
Eduardo Torroja Institute for Construction Sciences (IETcc-CSIC), Spain

R. Martínez-Gaitero
Eduardo Torroja Institute for Construction Sciences (IETcc-CSIC), Spain

S. Gismera-Diez
Eduardo Torroja Institute for Construction Sciences (IETcc-CSIC), Spain

F. Puertas
Eduardo Torroja Institute for Construction Sciences (IETcc-CSIC), Spain


The choice of a superplasticiser (SP) for concrete is of great complexity, as it is well known that properties of the end product are related to admixture and its compatibility with concrete components. Very few studies have been conducted on the compatibility between SPs and the sand of mortars and concretes, however. Practical experience has shown that sand fineness and mineralogical composition affect water demand and admixture consumption. Clay-containing sand has been found also to adsorb SPs, reducing the amount available in solution for adsorption by the cement. This study analysed the isotherms for PCE and BNS superplasticiser adsorption on four sands with different fineness and compositions commonly used to prepare mortars and concretes. BNS-based SP did not adsorb on sands, while PCE-based admixtures exhibited variable adsorption depending on different factors. The adsorption curves obtained revealed that the higher the sand fineness, the finer the particle size distribution and the higher the clay material, the greater was PCE admixture adsorption/ consumption.


Sand; Superplasticizer; Clay; Fineness; Compatibility

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