Concrete Science

The MIT Concrete Sustainability Hub uses a range of modeling techniques, starting at the atomic level, to predict structures and properties that will improve how cement is designed, reduce CO2 emissions, and enable US leadership in future cement technologies.

In addition to the reports and research briefs below, please review links related to this topic in the right side bar (on desktop browsers) or at the bottom of this page (on mobile browsers).

Concrete Science Research Brief: Modeling C3S Impurities Using Cluster Expansion
March 18, 2014

This is the first study where very accurate DFT (Density Functional Theory) calculations are applied to large supercells of clinker using the cluster expansion method. Simulations can be carried...

Graph of resilience at high temperatures
Concrete Science Research Brief: Resilience at High Temperatures
January 13, 2014

These calculations on C-S-H resilience provide insight toward damage mechanisms in concrete at high temperatures (e.g., fire environments) that precede polymerization of silica chains....

Concrete Science Research Brief: Early Hydration: A Local Business
November 1, 2013

A new reaction zone hypothesis reconciles a number of experimental observations on the early hydration kinetics of cement. The new MBK simulation model provides a tool for exploring the...

Concrete Science Research Brief: Controlling the Reactivity of Fly Ash
August 15, 2013

The significance of structure and composition has been displayed in the context of cementitious additives including fly ash and slag. This work has provided a “formula” for model additives to...

Degree of Hydration
Concrete Science Research Brief: Early Age Fracture Resistance
June 1, 2013

Bringing together the correct recipe of experiments (scratching, splitting and calorimetry), the relationships between these mechanical properties and hydration degree were determined. More...

Concrete Science Research Brief: Nano-Engineering Creep
May 1, 2013

We have shown that the multi-scale logarithmic creep can be predicted from direct simulations at fundamental scales. This lays the groundwork for an unprecedented understanding of the mechanisms...

Concrete Science Research Brief: Clinker Grindability - Microstructure Matters
April 1, 2013

This multi-scale investigation of fracture properties with the microscratch test highlights the importance of microstructure in clinker grindability. This original approach also provides a means...

Concrete Science Research Brief: Predicting C-S-H Aging
March 1, 2013

This is the first time that rigidity theory has been applied to such a complex material. Importing glass science tools to C-S-H brings new ideas to predict the effect of composition on cement...

Concrete Science News Brief: Nucleation Seeding of Alkali Activated Paste
February 1, 2013

This study examines the rate controlling step that leads to a better understanding of how to use supplementary cementitious materials such as slag and fly ash to produce more sustainable mixes....

Concrete Science Research Brief: Properties of Polymorphs of Belite
January 1, 2013

This research provides new information about polymorphs of belite obtained by atomic scale modeling. Results of impurity defects, which vary reactivity for γ-C2S and β-C2S polymorph, can be used...