Control of cracking with shrinkage-reducing admixtures

Surendra P Shah*, Sh Marikunte, W. Yang, C. Aldea

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Shrinkage cracking can be a critical problem in concrete construction, especially for flat structures such as highway pavements, slabs for parking garages, and bridge decks. One way to reduce the shrinkage cracking is to provide reinforcement in the form of wire mesh to resist tensile forces. In recent years, short, randomly distributed fibers have been used to control shrinkage cracking. The efficiency of shrinkage-reducing admixtures (SRAs) in controlling restrained shrinkage cracking of concrete is reviewed. A ring-type specimen was used for restrained shrinkage cracking tests. The SRA selected for this investigation was a propylene glycol derivative, which was used at 1 and 2 percent by weight of cement. Free (unrestrained) shrinkage, weight loss, compressive strength, and fracture toughness were also investigated. The results of SRA concretes were compared with that of plain concrete with the same water-to-cement ratio. A theoretical model based on nonlinear fracture mechanics was developed for predicting transverse cracking of the concrete ring specimen caused by drying shrinkage. The model prediction of time to cracking compared well with the experimental data. The model can be extended to different geometries and dimensions than those considered in this research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)25-36
Number of pages12
JournalTransportation Research Record
Issue number1574
StatePublished - Nov 1 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering


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