The future for concrete
What is Graphene Concrete?
I will explain what graphene concrete is in a simple explanation, then a scientific explanation.
Simple explanation: Imagine taking the lead out of a pencil, crushing the graphite and mixing it in concrete. The concrete then becomes 30% stronger than traditional concrete. The extra strength means structures can be built using less concrete, reducing cement usage and reducing co2. There are other benefits, for example, the reduction of water permeability and improvements in durability.
Note: graphite in a pencil is not graphene. I am using the example to make it easy to understand.
It is estimated that Graphene concrete will be 5% more expensive than a traditional C30 concrete per cubic metre. However, an overall saving of between 10% and 20% can be made due to less concrete being required to build structures.
Scientific explanation: Graphene is a form of carbon consisting of planar sheets which are one atom thick. The atoms are arranged in a honeycomb-shaped lattice. Graphene is remarkably strong and is 200 times stronger than steel, and conducts heat and electricity with great efficiency.
About Graphene Concrete
How is it used?
Graphene is being developed as a concrete additive that can be powder or liquid. The additive can be added to the concrete just as any other additive during concrete batching.
Graphene oxide nano sheets where added to the mixing water in a concentration of 0.02 to 0.08 %, and the flexural strength after 28 days increased from 2.7 to 15.6 percent.
Research has found that graphene concrete is 146% stronger in compressive strength than standard concrete. Higher compressive strengths means that structures can be built lighter improving carbon emissions.
Graphene concrete is four times less water permeable than standard concrete. Water permeability determines concrete durability as it stops water penetrating into the concrete microstructure.
Made from Waste
Graphene can be sourced from sustainable sources, for example graphene has been made from garbage.
The Graphene Concrete Challenge
Like all new innovations, especially structural where a failure can be catastrophic, lots of testing is required, and new codes of practice need to be written.
Graphene has been around for over ten years, and we are only just beginning to understand the benefits of this new material. Graphene is the future of concrete, but it may take some time before it becomes standard practice.
The more projects that are used to test graphene concrete, the quicker the material will become used. With the drive for carbon reduction, hopefully, this will be accelerated over the next few years.
Fibo Intercon is dedicated to carbon reduction and sustainability in concrete production.
We have tools to help you reduce your carbon footprint and improve your sustainability. The tools include:
- Concrete Waste Recycling
- High PH Cement Water Treatment
- Carbon Reduction Calculator
- Co2 and pollution reduction
- Cement Dust Air Filter
- Concrete Recycling
- The Circular Economy
- Self Cleaning and Dosing Pan Mixers