University of Oulu

Perumal, P., Sreenivasan, H., Luukkonen, T., Kantola, A. M., Telkki, V.-V., Kinnunen, P., & Illikainen, M. (2021). High strength one-part alkali-activated slag blends designed by particle packing optimization. Construction and Building Materials, 299, 124004.

High strength one-part alkali-activated slag blends designed by particle packing optimization

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Author: Perumal, Priyadharshini1; Sreenivasan, Harisankar1; Luukkonen, Tero1;
Organizations: 1Fibre and Particle Engineering Research Unit, University of Oulu, Pentti Kaiteran katu 1, 90014 Oulu, Finland
2NMR Research Unit, Faculty of Science, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 3000, 90014 University of Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 4.6 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2021
Publish Date: 2021-06-29


This paper focuses on the development of high-strength and eco-friendly one-part (i.e., dry-mix) alkali-activated mortar with ground granulated blast furnace slag as the main precursor. In addition to slag, phyllite dust and silica fume were used as co-binders in binary and ternary blends to improve mechanical properties. Particle packing optimization was employed for the mix proportioning to achieve a compact matrix skeleton. The results revealed that a 10% increase in mortar strength was gained after adjusting the particle packing and an additional 20% increment was observed after blending the slag with other mineral admixtures. Ternary blend with all three binders achieved a mortar compressive strength value of 145 MPa (at 28 d age), which is the highest strength reported in one-part alkali-activated materials. Additionally, ternary blends present potential economic benefits because of their ability to replace slag with lower-cost industrial side streams.

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Series: Construction & building materials
ISSN: 0950-0618
ISSN-E: 1879-0526
ISSN-L: 0950-0618
Volume: 299
Article number: 124004
DOI: 10.1016/j.conbuildmat.2021.124004
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 114 Physical sciences
116 Chemical sciences
Funding: This work was supported by the funding from Business Finland (grant # 1215/31/2015) and Academy of Finland (grant #319676). V.-V.T. thanks Academy of Finland (grants #289649, 294027 and 319216) for the financial support. P.P. gratefully acknowledges the financial support received from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska Curie grant agreement No [839848].
EU Grant Number: (839848) W2W - Waste to Wealth (W2W): A total solution for municipal solid waste incinerated ash in geopolymer concrete
Academy of Finland Grant Number: 319676
Detailed Information: 319676 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
289649 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
294027 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
319216 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
Copyright information: © 2021 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (