Properties of Good Concrete
The word concrete comes from a Latin word 'concretus' meaning compact or condensed. Concrete is the most widely used construction material in the entire world. Rather than existing as an independent material, concrete is a mix of various materials. These materials include cement, water, fine aggregate, and crushed stones or gravel. Sand and gravel or crushed stones are examples of fine aggregate and coarse aggregate, respectively.
Concrete is an essential part of any construction project. It forms a crucial part of any building or structure. Just take a look at the buildings that surrounds you, the pavements you walk on, and other various structures around.
Concrete has many incredible attributes that make it excellent for buildings and structures. Some of these properties include:
Concrete is a very strong material that can withstand great tensile and compressive stresses without yielding. This strength is, of course, a function of the material components of the concrete mix. This variability explains why poorly graded concrete is weaker than a well-graded mix.
Concrete is an extremely workable material that is great even for large construction projects. The subsequent handling, transportation, placing, and finishing process is also as seamless as the mixing. The consistency of fresh mix concrete must be such that it is workable and can be compacted by the means that are available on site.
Concrete lasts for ages and can resist weathering action, chemical action, abrasion, and both tensile and compressive stress for long periods without compromising its structural integrity. This attribute makes a concrete structure more stable and suitable for places with rough conditions.
The first instances of human-made concrete date back to 500 BC. The fact that we are still able to see this concrete shows just how durable concrete is. The longevity of concrete makes it a great material for permanent buildings and other structures like bridges and even dams.
Concrete is reasonably cheap and versatile and can be used extensively for a variety of structures including roads, buildings, pavements, pathways, and even bridges, to name a few.