Effect of Admixtures on Mechanical Properties of Cementitious Mortar

Ahmed Jawad Shaukat, Hu Feng, Anwar Khitab, Ahmad Jan


In the current study, the primary focus is to investigate the effect of Styrene Butadiene Rubber (SBR), silica fume and fly ash on compressive and flexure strengths of cementitious mortar. Three types of specimens are prepared; the first series comprises of control specimen; the second one consists of the mortar’s specimen modified with SBR and the third one consists of the mortar’s specimen modified with SBR in a combination of fly ash and silica fumes. Mortar samples are cast in the weight ratio of 1:2.75 (cement: sand). The SBR is added at a rate of 20% of the mass of cement. The water to cement ratio (W/C) is kept at 0.5 for control specimens and the quantity of mixing water in SBR-containing samples is reduced by the same amount as the SBR is added: The adjustment is meant to obtain same consistency for all the specimens.  20% fly ash and 2.5% silica fume are added to the mortar as replacement of cement. Compressive and flexure tests are carried out according to ASTM standards. Moreover, SEM is also performed on samples at the age of 28 days. Studies reveal that SBR and SCMs reduce the mechanical strength of the mortars. SEM and EDS studies show that SBR hinders the formation of albite, whereas silica content from silica fumes and fly ash converts CaCO3 to Wollastonite (a white loose powder), which is responsible for the reduction of mechanical strength. The study also confirms that the addition of SBR in place of water hinders the formation of primary and secondary hydration products.


Doi: 10.28991/cej-2020-03091610

Full Text: PDF


Cementitious Composites; Mortar; Styrene Butadiene Rubber; Silica Fumes; Fly Ash; Mechanical Properties; SEM.


Khitab,A. Materials of Construction. Allied Books (2012).

Neville,A.M. “Properties of Concrete Fourth and Final Edition.” In Perason-Prentice Hall (2004).

Khitab,A., and Anwar,W. “Classical Building Materials.” In Advanced Research on Nanotechnology for Civil Engineering Applications (2016): 1–27.

Jalil, Affan, Anwar Khitab, Hamza Ishtiaq, Syed Hassan Bukhari, Muhammad Tausif Arshad, and Waqas Anwar. “Evaluation of Steel Industrial Slag as Partial Replacement of Cement in Concrete.” Civil Engineering Journal 5, no. 1 (January 27, 2019): 181-190. doi:10.28991/cej-2019-03091236.

Khitab,A., Arshad,M.T., Awan,F.M., and Khan,I. “Development of an Acid Resistant Concrete: A Review.” International Journal of Sustainable Construction Engineering and Technology. 4 (2013): 33–38.

Hou, Peng-kun, Shiho Kawashima, Ke-jin Wang, David J. Corr, Jue-shi Qian, and Surendra P. Shah. “Effects of Colloidal Nanosilica on Rheological and Mechanical Properties of Fly Ash–cement Mortar.” Cement and Concrete Composites 35, no. 1 (January 2013): 12–22. doi:10.1016/j.cemconcomp.2012.08.027.

Jo, Byung-Wan, Chang-Hyun Kim, Ghi-ho Tae, and Jong-Bin Park. “Characteristics of Cement Mortar with Nano-SiO2 Particles.” Construction and Building Materials 21, no. 6 (June 2007): 1351–1355. doi:10.1016/j.conbuildmat.2005.12.020.

Asad, Mehwish, Ayub Elahi, Huma Pervaiz, Usman Ali Naeem, Sidra Iftekhar, Muhammad Bilal Asif, Amber Taseer, Ayyaz Tajammal Mirza, and Naeem Ejaz. "Role of Supplementary Cementitious Materials in enhancing Concrete Properties." Life Science Journal 10, no. 12s (2013): 956–960.

Gartner, Ellis. “Industrially Interesting Approaches to ‘low-CO2’ Cements.” Cement and Concrete Research 34, no. 9 (September 2004): 1489–1498. doi:10.1016/j.cemconres.2004.01.021.

Huntzinger, Deborah N., and Thomas D. Eatmon. “A Life-Cycle Assessment of Portland Cement Manufacturing: Comparing the Traditional Process with Alternative Technologies.” Journal of Cleaner Production 17, no. 7 (May 2009): 668–675. doi:10.1016/j.jclepro.2008.04.007.

Vipulanandan, C., and E. Paul. "Characterization of polyester polymer and polymer concrete." Journal of Materials in Civil Engineering 5, no. 1 (1993): 62-82. doi:10.1061/(ASCE)0899-1561(1993)5:1(62).

Rossignolo, João A., and Marcos V.C. Agnesini. “Durability of Polymer-Modified Lightweight Aggregate Concrete.” Cement and Concrete Composites 26, no. 4 (May 2004): 375–380. doi:10.1016/s0958-9465(03)00022-2.

Sakai, Etsuo, and Jun Sugita. “Composite Mechanism of Polymer Modified Cement.” Cement and Concrete Research 25, no. 1 (January 1995): 127–135. doi:10.1016/0008-8846(94)00120-n.

Ollitrault-Fichet, R., C. Gauthier, G. Clamen, and P. Boch. “Microstructural Aspects in a Polymer-Modified Cement.” Cement and Concrete Research 28, no. 12 (December 1998): 1687–1693. doi:10.1016/s0008-8846(98)00153-7.

Kim. “Influence of Polymer Types on the Mechanical Properties of Polymer-Modified Cement Mortars.” Applied Sciences 10, no. 3 (February 5, 2020): 1061. doi:10.3390/app10031061.

Shirshova, Natasha, Angelika Menner, Gary P. Funkhouser, and Alexander Bismarck. “Polymerised High Internal Phase Emulsion Cement Hybrids: Macroporous Polymer Scaffolds for Setting Cements.” Cement and Concrete Research 41, no. 4 (April 2011): 443–450. doi:10.1016/j.cemconres.2011.01.017.

Schulze, Joachim. “Influence of Water-Cement Ratio and Cement Content on the Properties of Polymer-Modified Mortars.” Cement and Concrete Research 29, no. 6 (June 1999): 909–915. doi:10.1016/s0008-8846(99)00060-5.

Wu, Ke-Ru, Dong Zhang, and Jun-Mei Song. “Properties of Polymer-Modified Cement Mortar Using Pre-Enveloping Method.” Cement and Concrete Research 32, no. 3 (March 2002): 425–429. doi:10.1016/s0008-8846(01)00697-4.

Issa, Mohsen A., Mohammad A. Alhassan, and Hameed Shabila. "High-performance plain and fibrous latex-modified and microsilica concrete overlays." Journal of materials in civil engineering 20, no. 12 (2008): 742-753. doi:10.1061/(ASCE)0899-1561(2008)20:12(742).

A.Al-Hadithi,A.I., and Al-Kubaysi,G.S.J. “Improving the Mechanical Properties of Steel Fiber Concrete by using Acrylic Polymer.” The Iraqi Journal for Mechanical and Material Engineering. Special Is (2010): 46–51.

Singh, S.B., Pankaj Munjal, and Nikesh Thammishetti. “Role of Water/cement Ratio on Strength Development of Cement Mortar.” Journal of Building Engineering 4 (December 2015): 94–100. doi:10.1016/j.jobe.2015.09.003.

Tchetgnia Ngassam, Inès Leana, Sandrine Marceau, and Thierry Chaussadent. “Durability of Polymer Modified Repair Mortars on Concrete Structures.” Advanced Materials Research 687 (April 2013): 397–402. doi:10.4028/www.scientific.net/amr.687.397.

Wang, Min, Rumin Wang, Hao Yao, Shameel Farhan, Shuirong Zheng, Zhujun Wang, Congcong Du, and Hao Jiang. “Research on the Mechanism of Polymer Latex Modified Cement.” Construction and Building Materials 111 (May 2016): 710–718. doi:10.1016/j.conbuildmat.2016.02.117.

Singh, Manisha, Jignesh Goswami, and Rabin Santra. “Effect of Styrene Butadiene Ratio on Mechanical Properties of Concrete Mixture.” Polymer-Plastics Technology and Engineering 51, no. 13 (September 2012): 1334–1339. doi:10.1080/03602559.2012.702251.

Liu, Jun, Yun Zhang, Runqing Liu, and Bing Zhang. “Effect of Fly Ash and Silica Fume on Hydration Rate of Cement Pastes and Strength of Mortars.” Journal of Wuhan University of Technology-Mater. Sci. Ed. 29, no. 6 (December 2014): 1225–1228. doi:10.1007/s11595-014-1072-7.

Barluenga, G., and F. Hernández-Olivares. “SBR Latex Modified Mortar Rheology and Mechanical Behaviour.” Cement and Concrete Research 34, no. 3 (March 2004): 527–535. doi:10.1016/j.cemconres.2003.09.006.

Xin, Deng, Zhu Xinping, Chen Hanlin, Wang Dingpeng, and Yin Wei. "Mechanical properties of polyester fiber and sbr latex compound-modified mortar for tunnel grouting." Electronic Journal of Geotechnical Engineering 21, no. 4 (2016): 1365-1374.

Numan, Hesham A., Mohammed Hazim Yaseen, and Hussein A. M. S. Al-Juboori. “Comparison Mechanical Properties of Two Types of Light Weight Aggregate Concrete.” Civil Engineering Journal 5, no. 5 (May 21, 2019): 1105–1118. doi:10.28991/cej-2019-03091315.

ASTM C349-18. Standard Test Method for Compressive Strength of Hydraulic-Cement Mortars (Using Portions of Prisms Broken in Flexure). West Conshohocken, PA (2018).

ASTM C348-19. Standard Test Method for Flexural Strength of Hydraulic-Cement Mortars. West Conshohocken, PA (2019).

Richardson, I. G., and G. W. Groves. “Microstructure and Microanalysis of Hardened Ordinary Portland Cement Pastes.” Journal of Materials Science 28, no. 1 (1993): 265–277. doi:10.1007/bf00349061.

Scrivener,K., Snellings,R., and Lothenbach,B. A Practical Guide to Microstructural Analysis of Cementitious Materials. Eds: Scrivener K, Snellings R, and Lothenbach B CRC Press (2018).

Mohamed, Heba A. “Effect of Fly Ash and Silica Fume on Compressive Strength of Self-Compacting Concrete Under Different Curing Conditions.” Ain Shams Engineering Journal 2, no. 2 (June 2011): 79–86. doi:10.1016/j.asej.2011.06.001.

Thomas, M. D. A. Optimizing the use of Fly Ash in Concrete. Vol. 5420. Skokie, IL: Portland Cement Association, (2007).

Harrisson, Arthur Michael. "Constitution and Specification of Portland Cement." Lea's Chemistry of Cement and Concrete (2019): 87–155.

Zhu, Hui, R. C. Newton, and O. J. Kleppa. "Enthalpy of formation of wollastonite (CaSiO3) and anorthite (CaAl2Si2O8) by experimental phase equilibrium measurements and high-temperature solution colorimetry." American Mineralogist 79, no. 1-2 (1994): 134-144.

Full Text: PDF

DOI: 10.28991/cej-2020-03091610


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2020 Ahmed Jawad Shaukat

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.