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Compressive Strength Test on Drilled Concrete Cores is required to determine the
strength ofhardened concrete in structure. Following are the specification for drilled
concrete cores to be suitable for compressive strength test:
Diameter of concrete core:
The diameter of the core specimen for the determination of compressive strength in
load bearing structural members shall be at least 3.70 inch[94 mm]. For concrete with
nominal maximum size of aggregate greater than or equal to 1.5 inch[37.5 mm], the
preferred minimum core diameter shall be ,three times the nominal maximum size of
coarse aggregate but it should be at least two times the nominal maximum size of the
coarse aggregates.
Length of concrete core:
The preferred length of capped specimen is between 1.9 and 2.1 times the diameter.
High lengths can be trimmed and for specimens having low length, correction factor has
to be applied in compressive test.
Moisture conditioning of concrete core:
After cores have been drilled, wipe off the surface drilled water and allow the surface
moisture to evaporate. When surface appears dry, but not greater than 1 hour after
drilling, place cores in separate bags or non absorbent containers and seal to prevent
moisture loss.
Maintain cores at ambient temperatures and protect from exposure to direct sunlight.
Transport the cores as soon as possible to laboratory. Cores can be taken out of the
bags for a maximum tie of 2 hrs to permit
capping before testing. If water is used for grinding or sawing the core ends, complete
these operations as soon as possible, but not later than 2 days after drilling. Minimize
the duration of exposure to water during end preparation.
Allow the cores to remain in the sealed plastic bags or non absorbent containers for at
least 5 days after last being wetted and before testing.

Sawing of the ends of concrete core:
The ends of core specimen shall be flat, and perpendicular to the longitudinal axis.
Sawing should be such that prior to capping the following requirements are met:
a) Projections, if any shall not extend more than 0.2 inch[5mm] above the end surfaces
b) The end surfaces shall not depart from perpendicularity to the longitudinal axis by a
slope of more than 1.8 d or 1:0.3d where d is the average core diameter.
Capping of concrete core:
If the ends of cores do not confirm to the perpendicularity and plainness
requirement, they shall be sawed or ground or capped.
If cores are capped, the capping device shall accommodate actual core diameters
and produce caps that are concentric with the core ends.
The material used for capping shall be such that its compressive strength is greater
than that of the concrete in the core.
Caps shall be made as thin as practicable and shall not flow or fracture before the
concrete fails when specimen is tested.
Capped surface shall be right angles to the axis of the specimen and shall not
detach depart from a plane by more than 0.05 mm.
Measure core lengths to the nearest 0.1 inch [2 mm] before capping.
Measurement of concrete core:
Before testing, measure the length of the capped or ground specimen to the nearest
0.1 inch [2 mm] and compute this to calculate the length diameter [L/D] ratio.
Determine the average diameter by averaging the two measurements taken at
right angles to each other at the mid height of the specimen.
Measure core diameters to the nearest 0.01 inch[.2 mm] when the difference in core
diameters does not exceed 2% of their average, otherwise measure to the nearest
0.1 inch[2mm].
Do not test cores if the difference between smallest and largest diameter of the core
exceeds 5% of their average.
Testing of concrete core:
Test the specimen within 7 days after coring.
Calculation of compressive strength:
Calculate the compressive test of the specimen using the computed cross sectional area
based on average diameter of the specimen. If the L/D ratio is 1.75 or less, correct the
result obtained by multiplying with
correction factors as given below:
L/D Ratio
1.75 0.98
1.5 0.96
1.25 0.93
1.0 0.87
The value obtained after multiplying with correction factor is called corrected
compressive strength, this being equivalent strength of a cylinder having L/D ratio of 2.
The equivalent cube strength can be calculated by multiplying the corrected cylinder
strength by 5/4.
Report of compressive strength test:
Report the results with addition of the following information:
a) Length of core drilled to the nearest 5 mm
b) Length of the specimen before and after capping to nearest 2 mm and average
diameter of core to the nearest 0.2 mm or 2 mm.
c) Compressive strength to the nearest 0.1 MPa when diameter is measured to nearest
0.2 mm and to the nearest 0.5 MPa when diameter is measured to the nearest 2mm
after correction for L/D ratio.
d) Direction of application of load with respect the horizontal plane of the concrete as
e) Moisture conditioning history
f) If water was used during end preparation, the date and time end preparation was
completed and core was placed in concealed bags.
g) The date and time when tested
h) Nominal maximum size of the aggregates.
Also Read: Tips for Core Extraction & Testing of Concrete