Freeze/thaw protection of concrete with optimum rubber crumb content

Alan Richardson, Kathryn Coventry, Gavin Ward

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

126 Citations (Scopus)
17 Downloads (Pure)


This research looks at utilising an optimum quantity of rubber crumb as an air entraining ad-mixture in concrete, thus providing maximum freeze-thaw protection and maximum strength. Microscopic and chemical analysis was carried out on the rubber sample to investigate how rubber crumb entrains air and reacts with the surrounding concrete. The work contained two pilot studies that informed the main test methodology. The pilot studies examined the air content/compressive strength relationship (1) and freeze/thaw cycle durations (2). Pilot study 1 informed the main test program by identifying an optimum addition of rubber crumb to a concrete mix, which was found to be 0.6% by weight of concrete. The main test investigated the use of rubber crumb in providing freeze-thaw protection of a C40 concrete mix after 3 days of curing. A freeze-thaw test was carried out on three separate batches of concrete containing washed rubber crumb, unwashed rubber crumb and plain concrete respectively. It was found rubber crumb was effective in providing freeze/thaw protection in both cases. This work builds on recent work to identify the best practical solution for reducing waste and providing the maximum freeze/thaw protection for a cleaner production process.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)96-103
JournalJournal of Cleaner Production
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2012


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