Learning Objectives

After reading this article, you should be able to:

• Understand how crystalline technology works with concrete to provide high performance waterproofing qualities.

• Explain the difference between porosity, permeability and the mechanics by which water is absorbed through concrete structures.

• Discuss how crystalline waterproofing technology improves the durability of concrete structures and reduces maintenance.

• Identify appropriate crystalline technology product applications for various types of concrete construction.

• Analyze how crystalline technology admixtures can impact building life cycle and project construction costs.

lifespan of concrete structures, thereby reducing long-term maintenance costs. This article explores how crystalline technology provides a high level of performance to concrete mixtures, materials, and structures, and what design professionals need to know in order to specify and understand how this chemical technology will enhance building projects.

Due to its composition, a mixture of rock, sand, cement, and water, concrete is often susceptible to damage and deterioration from water and chemical penetration.

The Nature of Concrete

The aggregate base of a concrete mixture is formed by rock and sand. This cement and water mixture creates a paste that binds the aggregates together. As the cement particles hydrate, or combine with water, they form calcium silicate hydrates. The mixture then hardens into a solid, rock-like mass.

Concrete is also a water-based product. To make this mixture workable, easy to place, and consolidate, more water than is necessary for the hydration of the cement is used. This extra water, known as the water of convenience, will bleed out of the concrete, leaving behind pores and capillary tracts. Although concrete appears to be a solid material, it is both porous and permeable.

Concrete is both porous and permeable.

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