Advances in Materials Science and Engineering

New Generation of Cement-based Composites: Design, Testing and Assessment

Publishing date
01 Dec 2022
Submission deadline
22 Jul 2022

1University of Porto, Porto, Portugal

2Sakarya University, Sakarya, Turkey

This issue is now closed for submissions.

New Generation of Cement-based Composites: Design, Testing and Assessment

This issue is now closed for submissions.


Civil engineering plays a crucial role in a more innovative, sustainable, and inclusive society - essential pillars of the 2030 Agenda. Building materials dominate a large part of the total energy consumption of buildings and infrastructure during their life cycle and contribute to total GHG emissions, imputed to operational and embodied energy. This is particularly relevant for concrete materials since concrete is the second most-consumed material worldwide, after water. Thus, the concrete industry can significantly develop a more sustainable society. New generations of concrete, such as high and ultra-high-performance concrete (HPC and UHPC) and 3D printable concrete (3DPC) require a considerable volume of very fine material to optimize the granular skeleton and make a very compact microstructure. The design of HPC and UHPC generally employs a high amount of cement, supplementary cementitious materials (SCM), such as fly ash, limestone filler, or granulated blast furnace slag and fine aggregates. Thus, HPC, UHPC, and 3DPC are exciting to recycle or valorize waste materials from other industries as partial surrogates of natural aggregates, cement, or standard SCM. This would reduce the need to landfill these materials and natural resources extraction, maintaining an acceptable, and sometimes even better, concrete quality while fomenting a circular economy.

It is, however, the hardened properties and conformity to design that give the manufactured component value. Conventional quality control destructive techniques tests are time-consuming and do not allow a quick and easy assessment of material/element properties. Moreover, standard test methods for measuring setting (such as the Vicat test) and strength properties cannot evaluate the physicochemical and microstructural changes that continuously occur in cementitious materials. Thus, implementing a real-time non-destructive monitoring protocol to quantitatively assess the time history of the material from a very early age, allowing to assess, predict and model fundamental properties are essential, such as non-destructive tests based on acoustic emission and electrical resistivity techniques, rheology test methods, among others.

The purpose of this Special Issue is to publish research that demonstrates the effectiveness of innovative concepts on the design, optimization, assessment, and quality control, particularly dealing with novel and non-destructive test methods for real-time assessment and modeling, promoting reliability close to construction stakeholders and wider use of HPC, UHPC, and 3DPC, while contributing to a smarter, sustainable and innovative construction. We invite researchers to contribute original research as well as review articles that will stimulate the continuing efforts to understand the recent advances and innovation in the research fields of HPC and UHPC.

Potential topics include but are not limited to the following:

  • Ultra-high-performance concrete
  • High-performance concrete
  • 3D printing concrete
  • Low carbon concrete
  • Waste valorization/recycling in concrete materials
  • Cement replacement by waste materials
  • Aggregate replacement by waste materials
  • Novel real-time test methods
  • Non-destructive tests
  • Rheology test methods
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