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OFFICE OF RESEARCH, DEVELOPMENT, AND TECHNOLOGY AT THE TURNER-FAIRBANK HIGHWAY RESEARCH CENTER

Concrete Laboratory Overview

Technote: Portland Limestone Cement

Portland Limestone Cement on left side with vertical line dividing the right side that has the following words listed: background, history, engineering principles, case study resources, anecdotal implementation challenges, best practices.

Sustainable Pavements Program

The Concrete Laboratory collaborates with the Sustainable Pavements Program to advance concrete infrastructure materials sustainability by participating in Product Category Rule committees and correlating global

NIST Low Carbon Cements

The Concrete Laboratory participates in the NIST Low Carbon Cements and Concretes Consortium working to promote performance specifications and quantify carbonation/mineralization within cementitious materials.

FHWA’s Mobile Concrete Technology Center (MCTC)

The Concrete Laboratory collaborates with the Mobile Concrete Technology Center (MCTC) by performing complementary durability testing, estimating global warming potentials of concrete mixture designs, and advancing new technologies.

Vision

To provide state agencies and others with the tools to evaluate novel materials for implementation in concrete infrastructure.

Recent Projects

Take a look at the recent projects we have worked on in the Concrete Lab!

Laboratory Purpose

The Concrete Laboratory conducts research to improve the mechanical performance, durability performance, and sustainability of concrete infrastructure materials by:

  • Investigating and characterizing concrete materials and their components including cement, supplementary cementitious materials (SCMs), alternate cementitious materials (ACMs), admixtures, water, and aggregates.
  • Assessing and improving concrete durability and sustainability.
  • Developing and evaluating new test methods and enhancing existing testing procedures.
  • Collaborating with academia and industry to advance emerging technologies.
  • Performing forensic investigations requested within the Agency, by State departments of transportation (DOTs), and other governmental agencies.

The Concrete Laboratory is accredited by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) Materials Reference Laboratory and certified by the Cement and Concrete Reference Laboratory (CCRL). The Concrete Laboratory’s capabilities include performing:

  • mixing, curing, microstructural characterization (low temperature differential scanning calorimetry, dynamic vapor sorption, x-ray fluorescence),
  • physical characterization (specific gravity, absorption, unit weight),
  • early-age properties testing (rheology, setting, calorimetry),
  • workability testing (slump, box test),
  • mechanical properties (compressive strength, flexural strength, modulus of elasticity, pull-off bond testing),
  • durability properties (resistivity, formation factor, chloride migration, freeze-thaw), and
  • volume instability (creep, plastic shrinkage, chemical shrinkage, drying shrinkage, autogenous shrinkage, dual ring test, coefficient of thermal expansion).

 

Concrete Laboratory Capabilities