Shotcrete Admixture Types

Shotcrete AdMixture Types

In the world of commercial construction, shotcrete is an essential building material that requires certain additives to ensure its strength, durability, and workability. While many people use the terms “cement additives” and “shotcrete admixtures” interchangeably, they are two different types of materials. Additionally, the term “add mixture” has been shortened, and is correctly written “admixture.”

Cement Additives vs. Shotcrete Admixtures

Shotcrete admixtures have specific purposes and are tailored to enhance the specific properties of the mixture. Cement additives, on the other hand, are used in traditional cement manufacturing and are not as specialized as shotcrete admixtures.

Cement Additive 

The cement manufacturing process involves combining raw materials such as limestone, clay, and sand and then firing the mixture in a kiln. The resulting rocky product, known as clinker, is then ground up to create a powder. Cement additives are added during the manufacturing process to improve the material’s properties and aid in manufacturing. Some common cement additives include strength enhancers, grinding aids, and anti-foaming agents. There are also different types of cement/supplemental cementitious materials such as fly ash and ground blast furnace slag that can be blended with ordinary Portland cement. 

Cement Additive Types

  • Grinding additives: improve the cement’s particle size distribution
  • Strength additives: increase compressive and flexural strength
  • Specialty additives: have specific functions such as reducing water consumption or reducing cracking

Shotcrete Admixtures

The American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) defines shotcrete admixtures as materials that are added to the shotcrete mix to improve its properties. There are different types of shotcrete admixtures available, each with specific benefits and purposes.

Shotcrete refers to a process of spraying concrete or mortar through a hose onto a surface. Shotcrete has become increasingly popular due to its ease of application and high performance. The primary binder used in shotcrete is cement, but additives are also often used to enhance specific properties of the mixture. When discussing shotcrete, the term “additive” is usually replaced with “admixture.” This is because the admixtures used in shotcrete are different from those used in traditional cement manufacturing and have a more specific purpose. 

Admixture Types for Compressive and Flexural Strength

Compressive and flexural strength admixtures help enhance the shotcrete’s ability to withstand pressure and bending forces and ensure the structural integrity of the final product.  Shotcrete admixtures for compressive and flexural strength are typically used in structural applications, such as in the construction of bridges or tunnels, where high strength is necessary to withstand heavy loads and forces. This is achieved through the addition of various compounds such as silica fume or steel fibers, which work to enhance the density and bonding properties of the concrete. Water-reducing admixtures also enhance strength by reducing the amount of water required to form a cohesive mix, which increases strength.

Shotcrete Admixture Types for Durability

Durability is essential for shotcrete used in harsh environments or for long-term applications. Durability-focused admixtures such as air-entraining agents, permeability-reducing admixtures, and corrosion inhibitors help to reduce cracking and improve resistance to water, salt, and other corrosive agents. These admixtures are often used in applications where the concrete will be exposed to harsh environmental conditions, such as corrosion inhibitors in marine construction projects, which protect the reinforcement against deterioration.

Admixture Types for Workability of Material

Workability-focused admixtures help the material maintain its consistency during placement. These admixtures typically contain compounds such as superplasticizers or water-reducing agents, which work to reduce the viscosity and improve the flow of the concrete. This makes the concrete easier to apply and allows for more precise placement of the material. Shotcrete admixtures for workability are often used in applications where there are tight spaces or intricate designs that require precise application. Additionally, pumping aids allow for longer pump hoses and increased elevation pumping.

Shotcrete Admixture Types for Job Site Requirements

Job site requirements can vary significantly and can include factors such as distance from the plant, pump height, flowability, and air quality. Shotcrete admixtures used to address job site requirements include pump aids, which improve the flow and distance of the mixture, and rebound reducers, which reduce the amount of material lost due to rebound. These admixtures are used in construction projects where the site conditions present unique challenges such as extreme temperatures or specific site conditions. For example, an accelerator may be added to the concrete mixture to speed up the curing process in cold weather, or a retarding agent may be added to slow the setting time in hot weather. Shotcrete admixtures and cement additives play crucial roles in the commercial construction industry. They help improve the strength, durability, and workability of shotcrete, making them essential building materials. Understanding the different types of admixtures and additives and their benefits can help contractors choose the right materials for their projects and achieve the desired results in any shotcrete application.

  • EdenCrete® Shotcrete Admixture - Reduce overspray, improve flow & carve-ability in your Shotcrete. Improve permeability & durability. EdenCrete adds millions of carbon nanotube bridges to your Shotcrete, better wet & hardened.
  • EdenCrete® Shotcrete Additives - Eden Innovations reviews various shotcrete additives and compares the properties and function of each. Find out which additives are best for your shotcrete job.
  • Shotcrete admixture types EdenCrete® Shotcrete Admixtures - Eden Innovations reviews various shotcrete Admixtures and compares the properties and function of each. Find out which Admixtures are best for your shotcrete job.

Contact Us

14 + 3 =

Social Media