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STUDY OF PONTOON AND USING STYROFOAM AND FIBER GLASS AS

ADDITIONAL MIXTURE
CIVIL ENGINEERING DEPARTMENT
POLYTECHNIC KUCHING SARAWAK

ABSTRACT
This study is carried on to produce pontoon which is a lightweight concrete
that able to float on water. The pontoon is made of cement and Styrofoam and fiber
glass are added as additional material into the mixture. The fiber glass is used as
bonding material in the mixture so the mix is strong and not fragile while the
Styrofoam acts as the floating material for the pontoon.
The main objective of this study is to produce pontoon that strong in
compressive strength and able to float steadily on water. The mixture is mix in 3 type
of mixture and each mixture is used to produce 1 test cube. Each of the cube will be
test in compressive strength where each cube is test for 7 day strength.
The result for the test, the higher the density of the mix, the higher the
compressive strength of cube. The conclusion from the test is the test cube does not
able to achieved the standard compressive strength for lightweight concrete which is
15-17kN/mm2, however the cube did not break such as the fail mod for normal
concrete because of the Styrofoam physical characteristic is elastic. The produced
pontoon is able to float on the water where the lower the density of the concrete, the
higher the buoyancy of the concrete.
Keyword: lightweight concrete, additional mixture, Styrofoam, fiber glass, pontoon.

INTRODUCTION

Concrete is a construction material that is used widely in construction


application where the cement acts as the bonding material in preparation of
concrete. The construction material which based on concrete fulfilled the
characteristic of strength and the durability of concrete is better compare to other
material such as wood and steel. The main ingredient for preparation of concrete is
cement, aggregate and water.
Cement is the main ingredient which acts as the bonding material between
aggregate while aggregate is the reinforcing material that harden the mix which is
largely used in the mixture and it also form 70% of the strength of the concrete.
Water is the material that reacts with the cement powder to form hydrated
cement that have the cohesive and sticky characteristic. The cement will be easy to
stick to the aggregate and form a strong bond. The process of hydration will start
immediately with the present of water and cement powder, the mix will eventually
harden and form a new composite called concrete. The different usage of additional
material in the mix with produce a high quality concrete or produce a specific
characteristic of concrete that suited with the user.
Concrete also can be mixed with additional material such as wood dust, fiber
glass, Styrofoam and so on that have a different effect on the final production of the
concrete. The study and the making of the product will able to produce a lightweight
concrete that able to float on water. Styrofoam is an alternative ways to producing a
lightweight concrete and reduce cost while fiber glass helps to strengthen the bond
of the concrete mix so that final product is stronger and solid.
S.G (Specific Gravity) is the density ratio between the material and sample. In
this study, we use S.G to estimate and calculate the density of concrete mixture.

Formula Specific Gravity:


Specific Gravity=

Weight of the substances


Weight of an equal volume of water

PROBLEM STATEMENT

1. To reduce the uses for cement by using Styrofoam and fiber glass as admixture

OBJECTIVE

1. To study the compressive strength of the lightweight concrete by adding


Styrofoam and fiber glass as additional mixture.
2. Produce a pontoon that able to float on water by using Styrofoam and fiber glass.

SCOPE

1. This study is carried out to study the compressive strength of the lightweight
concrete by using Styrofoam and fiber glass as admixture and not adding sand in
the mix.

METHODOLOGY
The study is conduct to produce designed lightweight concrete sample. To
achieve the objective of this study, the compressive strength test conducts when the
age of the concrete is 7 day.

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Chart 1.1 The methodology of work

Designing of concrete

In this study, the designing of the pontoon is based on the required density of
lightweight concrete. The design is based on each of the material specific gravity
where the design mix is shown in the table below.

Mix

Sampl
e

(Age)
Day

Density
(KG/mm2)

1
2
3

1
2
3

7
7
7

918
871
800

Wate
r
(KG)

6.5
6
5
Table 1.1

Cement
(KG)
12.5
10
7.5

Additional
Material (KG)
Polystyren Fibe
e
r
0.2
0.3
0.2
0.1
0.2
0.5

Chart 1.1 The progress for work for the pontoon.

LITERATURE REVIEW
Introduction to Concrete

According to Abdullah A. Siam (2007, 634) Concrete is a structural material


that contains some simple elements but when mixed with water would form a rock
like material. Concrete mix is comprised of coarse aggregates usually gravel, fine
aggregates usually sand, cement, water, and any necessary additives. Concrete
possesses many favorable properties as a structural material, among which are its
high compressive strength and its property as a fire-resistant element to a
considerable extent.
The unfavorable properties include a relatively weak tensile strength as
compared to its compressive strength and the ability to form cracks in unpredictable
areas. With steel bars as internal reinforcement, the cracks can be controlled to
some degree. Unlike other building materials such as steel and plastic, concrete is
not a uniform material due to the fact that it contains a ratio of gravel and sand, thus
failure mode or location of the failure is unpredictable..
The strength of concrete is one of the important properties of concrete to
provide a comprehensive picture of quality in relation to the concrete because force
is directly related to the structure of hardened cement paste. Concrete strength also
increases with age and increased strength continues for some time. However, the
concrete at the age of 28 days were used as a measure of the strength. Increase the
compressive strength of concrete is highly dependent on temperature and humidity
during the process of hardening. Water-cement ratio is among the main factors that
control the strength of concrete.
Concrete strength is also very dependent on the way or preparation. For
example, in the preparation of concrete, if there is a change of quality ingredients
mixed or blended rate changes during the measurement, then it will cause the
produced concrete strength will change just like concrete added with additional
ingredients.

Additional Material

According to Sika Concrete Handbook (2013), concrete admixtures are


liquids or powders which are added to the concrete during mixing in small quantities.
Dosage is usually defined based on the cement content. Concrete admixtures have
significant impact on the fresh and/or hardened concrete properties. Admixtures can
act chemically and/or physically. Aggregates can occur naturally (fluvial or glacial),
industrially produced like lightweight aggregates as well as recycled aggregates. For
high-quality concrete they are cleaned and graded in industrial facilities by
mechanical processes such as crushing, washing, screening and mixing together.
Concrete aggregates should have a strong bond with the hardened cement paste,
should not interfere with the cement hardening, and should not have negative effect
on concrete durability.

Fiber

There are various types of fiber have been used in the concrete mix by
considering the nature of the mechanical, physical and chemical properties.
Generally, fiber materials are materials made of steel, glass, synthetic and natural
materials that are available in various sizes and shapes. Fiber used in this study is
fiber glass.
Fiber glass is a fiber material made of very fine glass. It is used as a
reinforcing agent in polymer products: which produces composite materials.
Polymers such as fiber reinforced polymer (fiber-reinforced polymerase or FRP) or
glass reinforced plastic (glass-reinforced plastic or GRP), more commonly known by
the name of the fiber glass.
Since ages, glass makers do tests with fiber glass, but mass production of
glass fiber can only be done with the creation of a better machine tools. Voltage
increases, the strength of a strong chemical resistance and excellent insulating
properties. Fiber glass will be soft when experiencing temperatures above 400C.
This fiber has high strength, low density, good electrical insulation and sound good
conductor. But this fiber has a defect that it is not suitable for use to build bridges
and airplane wings.

Types of Fiber Glass


Fiber glass contain different application based on each uses of the fiber its
self. (P.V Vijay, 2007). The types of fiber are shown below:

Types of Fiber
Glass

Uses

E-glass

Less alkali content and is usually used in high quantities and


properties of high mechanical. (Most used and cheap, mean
E is the electric-grade)

Z-glass
AR-glass
C-glass
S-glass
Low K-glass

Used in mortar and concrete through obstacles against


alkaline attack
Containing zirconium content that serves to resist the
corrosion of action alkaline (AR means alkaline resistant)
Used in applications requiring corrosion resistance against
acid such as chemical applications
Yield strength and high modulus applications (R mean force)
A fiber produced attempts to reduce the electrical properties
of content in electronic applications and similar D-glass
(Dielectric Glass)
Table 1.2: Types of Fiber Glass

Polystyrene (Styrofoam)

Styrofoam is composed of ninety-eight percent air, making it lightweight and


buoyant. Styrofoam can be used under roads and other structures to prevent soil
disturbances due to freezing and thawing.
Polystyrene (PS) is a synthetic aromatic polymer made from the monomer
styrene where can be solid or foamed. General purpose polystyrene is clear, hard,
and rather brittle. It is an inexpensive resin per unit weight and it is a rather poor
barrier to oxygen and water vapor and has a relatively low melting point. Polystyrene
is one of the most widely used plastics, the scale of its production being several
billion kilograms per year. Polystyrene can be naturally transparent, but can be
colored with colorants. Uses include protective packaging (such as packing peanuts
and CD and DVD cases), containers (such as "clamshells"), lids, bottles, trays,
tumblers, and disposable cutlery
Polystyrene is very slow to biodegrade and is therefore a focus of controversy.
It is often abundant as a form of litter in the outdoor environment, particularly along
shores and waterways, especially in its foam form.

Expanded Polystyrene Concrete (EPScrete)


Expanded polystyrene (EPS) concrete (also it known as EPScrete, EPS
concrete or lightweight concrete) is a form of concrete known for its light weight
made from cement and EPS (Expanded Polystyrene). It is a popular material for use
in environmentally "green" homes. It has been used as road bedding, in soil or geostabilization projects and as sub-grading for railroad track age.
It is created by using small lightweight Styrofoam or EPS balls as an
aggregate instead of the crushed stone that is used in regular concrete. It is not as
strong as stone-based concrete mixes, but has other advantages such as increased
thermal and sound insulation properties, easy shaping and formed by hand with
sculpturing and construction tools.
EPS concrete combines the construction ease of concrete with the thermal
and hydro insulation properties of EPS and can be used for a very wide range of
application where lighter loads or thermal insulation or both are desired.

Concrete Strength

The main factors affecting the strength of concrete are the number of voids
left in concrete, more compressible and this phenomenon will reduce strength.
Therefore, it is important to be compacted concrete as possible. Concrete strength
also increases with age, but the rate increases is greatly affected by proper curing
method. Preferably concrete stored in moist conditions to enable the cement
hydration occurs well. BS1881: Part 111 (1985) noted that quality of concrete shall
comply with the minimum force in accordance with the design and grade of concrete
produced at the age of 7 days, 14 days and 28 days, one of the properties is the
compressive strength of concrete strength.
Compressive Strength
Compressive strength is one of the most important aspects in determining the
quality of a concrete, whether good or not. To achieve these goals and objectives,
the concrete should be prepared carefully starting materials for concrete mixes up to
during and after providing concrete free from any defects in a vacuum or a fine
cavity. However, the mechanical properties such as strength of concrete are difficult
to explain in detail. (A.M Neville, 2004)
Concrete can resist compression better than other forms of stress and
generally in many cases, the compressive strength of concrete may be the most
important. Compression test results can be used for control purposes and
comparison. Compression testing on these cubes does not provide information about
the strength of concrete directly but instead represent potential strength concrete mix
when produced. However, these tests are useful and if interpreted correctly made
and it can be used to determine the quality of concrete.

RESULT

The lightweight concrete compressive strength is using different for each 3


different mixture that made from 7 days before the test. The result from the
compressive strength is recorded in Table 1.2.
Based on Table 1.2, each mix contains different compressive strength when
tested to the compressing machine. It is shown that the first batch that has 918kg/m3
density having a higher compressive strength that the other 2. This is because the
ratio of the material and the added additional material is suitable that cause the first
cube is more reinforce and stronger that the other 2.

Mix
1
2
3

Weigh Compressiv Compressiv


Sample
t
e Strength
e Strength
(kg)
(kN)
(N/mm2)
1
7
918
3.10
2.3
0.10
2
7
871
2.94
0
0
3
7
800
2.70
0
0
Table 1.2: Result from the compressive strength
Age
(Day)

Density
(kg/m3)

DISCUSSION

Based on observation, the fail mode occurred on the 3 test cube is shown in figure
below.

Figure 4.1: One of the sample cube with the added Styrofoam and fiber glass as
admixture.
Based on observation, the failure mode happen on each cube does not differ
on each other. It did not break like normal concrete due to present of Styrofoam that
have elastic characteristic. All the tested cubes fail because of cracking and not the
same as fail mode for normal concrete.
CONCLUSION

From the study, the compressive strength of concrete using admixtures of


Styrofoam and fiber glass cannot cope with the concrete compressive strength of the

concrete is usually caused by the use of Styrofoam and fiber glass has no coarse
aggregate.
The optimum density of the mix in this study is the mix that has a density of
918 kg / m3 for concrete compressive strength is higher and more stable and
buoyant force equal to the density of the mixture compared with 2 and 3. This
lightweight concrete has a high ruggedness and not easily broken because of the
fiber glass as a binder and also lightweight Styrofoam properties make it suitable for
use in construction, such as pontoon, structural walls, concrete block and thermal
insulation on the roof. This research is also little to raise awareness about recycling
and reduce disposal Styrofoam.
Overall, there are two objectives in this study. The first objective is to study the
properties of lightweight concrete compressive strength by using Styrofoam and fiber
glass as an additional material and adding sand into the mix. The first objective was
not achieved due to the compressive strength of lightweight concrete produced does
not meet the standards of lightweight concrete that is 15-17kN / mm2. Comparison
between all concrete light that has been generated, the maximum compressive
strength reaches only 0.10N / mm2 at 7 days of curing of the mix first, third sample.
The second objective is to produce pontoon that can float on the water surface using
Styrofoam and fiber glass. The second objective can be achieved in this study
because the buoyancy of lightweight concrete is high.
Overall conclusion of the study is; the lower the density of each concrete mix,
the higher buoyancy of concrete cubes. But the higher the density of the concrete,
the higher the compressive strength can be obtained on the concrete compression
test.

REFERENCE

1. British Standard Institution (1983 a), Testing Concrete Part 116: Method for
Determination of Compressive Strength of Concrete Cubes (BS1881) Ltd:
London
2. Buku Sifat Konkrit by A.M. Neville (Penterjemah oleh: Abd Ghafar Abd Rahman
dan ZuberHj. Din). A.M. Neville (1994) Sifat Konkrit Dewan Bahasa dan
Pustaka, Kementerian Pendidikan Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur.
3. American Concrete Institute, Detroit (1992), Specifications of Masonry
Structures ACI 530.1-92/ASCE 6-92/TMS 602-92, Reference manual
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of Construction Fifth Edition Short, W. Kinniburgh (1963) Lightweight
Concrete C.R. Books
5. J. Aspdin(1918) Cement from Rock Quarrying for Cement Manufacture
6. D.J. Cook, Surrey University (1983) Expanded Polystyrene Concrete,
Concrete Technology and Design, New Concrete Materials, Vol. 1, pp. 41-69
7. Surrey University (1983) FIP Manual of Lightweight of Lightweight Aggregate
Concrete: Second Edition
8. BK. Marsh (1997) Design of Normal Concrete Mixes Second Edition,
Construction Research Communications Ltd: UK
9. Shan Somayaji (2000) Civil Engineering MaterialSecond Edition, ISBN13:
9780130839060
10. M. Sidney, J.F Young, D. Darwid (1990) Concrete Second Edition.
11. Abdullah A. Siam (2007,634) Properties of Concrete Mixes with Waste Glass
12. Yuan Li (2008) Standardized Physical Property Testing of Self-consolidating
Concrete (SCC).
13. Sika Concrete Handbook (2013), Dipl.-Ing. HTL Jrg Schlumpf, Sika Services

AG, Dipl.-Ing. Bastian Bicher, Sika Services AG, Dipl.-Ing. Oliver Schwoon, Sika
Services AG.