University of Oulu

Hoang Nguyen, Valter Carvelli, Mostafa Y. Ismail, Mirja Illikainen, Paivo Kinnunen, Autogenous self-healing of polypropylene fiber reinforced ettringite-based composite, Cement and Concrete Composites, Volume 143, 2023, 105238, ISSN 0958-9465,

Autogenous self-healing of polypropylene fiber reinforced ettringite-based composite

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Author: Nguyen, Hoang1; Carvelli, Valter2; Ismail, Mostafa Y.1;
Organizations: 1Fibre and Particle Engineering Research Unit, University of Oulu, Pentti Kaiteran katu 1, 90014, Oulu, Finland
2Department A.B.C., Politecnico di Milano, Piazza Leonardo Da Vinci 32, 20133, Milan, Italy
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 8.6 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2023
Publish Date: 2023-08-14


This study intends to advance the poor knowledge on the ability of an ettringite-based binder to obtain autogenous self-healing and its relevant mechanism. We developed a high-performance polypropylene fiber-reinforced cementitious composite using a slag-based ettringite binder and investigated its autogenous healing property under water-saturated conditions. Cracks were created via four-point bending loads on prismatic specimens at different crack opening displacements (i.e., 0.5, 1, and 2 mm in total crack opening). After curing times, the mechanical retention and recovery of the damaged composite were compared with the sound sample. We found that the material effectively heals micro cracks (i.e., under 100 μm) after 1 month of aging, while larger cracks could not completely close during the total curing times (up to 3 months). The healing products were mainly CaCO₃ and ettringite observed through both experiments and thermodynamic modelling. These crystals mainly formed from the carbonation of ettringite and other AFm phases in aqueous conditions. The strength retention slightly reduced (about 10%) after healing, however, the composite still exhibited deflection-hardening behavior. Findings show the high potential of ettringite-based binder to be a matrix for self-healing cementitious composites. Further improvements, nevertheless, are needed to increase the healing rate and strength recovery of the composite.

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Series: Cement & concrete composites
ISSN: 0958-9465
ISSN-E: 1873-393X
ISSN-L: 0958-9465
Volume: 143
Article number: 105238
DOI: 10.1016/j.cemconcomp.2023.105238
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 212 Civil and construction engineering
216 Materials engineering
Funding: P. Kinnunen and H. Nguyen are grateful for the financial support from the University of Oulu & The Academy of Finland Profi5 326291, as well as the Academy of Finland project 329477.
Academy of Finland Grant Number: 329477
Detailed Information: 329477 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
Copyright information: © 2023 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (