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ISRN Materials Science
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 173587, 7 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/173587
Research Article

Using of Microsilica for Strength Improvement of Fiber Reinforced Cementitious Surface Compounds

Building Physics Institute, Housing & Building National Research Center, P.O. Box 1770, Cairo, Egypt

Received 9 September 2012; Accepted 11 October 2012

Academic Editors: K. Hokamoto and V. Ralchenko

Copyright © 2013 S. S. Shebl et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

This study represents an extension work to investigate the role of ultra fine sand (UFS) in enhancing the mechanical properties of fiber reinforced cementitious compounds. The micro-structural origins were identified by scanning electron microscope (SEM). About 50% of UFS had a diameter of less than 20 μm. Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC) was partially substituted by UFS at 3, 5, 7 and 10% by weight of binder. It was found that as UFS loadings increase, the flexural, compressive, and tensile strengths increased up to about 5% UFS loading by 12.9, 15.7 and 30.1%, respectively, thereafter, a decrease in these properties was observed. This can be attributed to the pozzolanic effect besides the filling effect of UFS resulting in enhancing the interfacial bonds between the sand grains and hydration products that makes the paste more homogeneous and dense. The effect of both short natural and artificial fiber loadings on the structural performance of compounds was also studied. Loadings of 2%, by weight, of short natural date palm leaves’ midribs fibers (DP) and artificial polypropylene fibers (PP) were added to the 5% UFS blended mix. An increase in both flexural and tensile strength was achieved, while a decrease in the compressive strength was observed.