Characterization of fly ash for evaluating the alkali-silica reaction resistance of concrete

Jasso, Andres Jose
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Fly ash has been used extensively to control deleterious alkali-silica reaction in concrete. The majority of fly ashes can be used to control ASR induced expansion. Fly ashes with high CaO contents are less effective at reducing expansion and fly ashes with high alkali contents can be counter active. Class C fly ashes are less effective at reducing the pH of the pore solution because they are less pozzolanic. The pozzolanic reaction in Class F fly ashes enhances the ability for the hydration products to bind alkalis. This prevents the availability of these alkalis for ASR. This project aims to characterize fly ash in a way that best predicts how it will perform in concrete with an emphasis on ASR. Fly ashes with a variety of chemical compositions were evaluated using a range of analytical and characterization techniques. Research data from several universities were used to correlate their long term data with this project’s accelerated tests. This research aimed at evaluating the mineralogical, chemical, and physical characteristics that most affect the ability of a given fly ash to prevent ASR-induced expansion and cracking.