Durabilité des bétons à ultra hautes performances rôle de la matrice cimentaire
The Reactive Powder Concretes (RPC), composed of Portland cement, silica fume, crushed quartz, fine sand and steel fibres, exhibit a very dense microstructure which limits the penetration of aggressive agents. They appear suitable for the storage of nuclear waste. This study aimed to determine experimentally the evolution of the RPC microstructure during a leaching attack by pure water, and to supply data required for the RPC long-term prediction of durability under these severe conditions.The steel fibres and mineral inclusions (sand and quartz) were considered as inert materials in the degradation process. Thus RPC matrices, and also a pure cement paste, and a cement and silica fume paste, were studied. The materials were characterised before and after a leaching test: microstructure by means of scanning electron microscopy, porosity, chemical and mineralogical composition, and diffusivity. A superficial degradation proceeds along a straight leaching front related to the dissolution of the remaining anhydrous cement silicates (C<sub>3</sub>S & C<sub>2</sub>S).The leaching of mineral species is controlled by the ionic diffusions from the material towards the aggressive solution.The degradation kinetics is proportional to the square root of time. As long as a sound core remains, the global behaviour of the partly degraded material is determined by the properties of the sound core. Two models related to the matrix transformation were used: DIFFU-Ca which characterised the leaching of calcium, and the 3D computer simulation of Portland cement hydration and microstructure development, from BENTZ & GARBOCZI.The digital results show a good agreement with the experimental values. This validates the hydration rates predicted with BENTZ & GARBOCZI and the phenomenology implemented in DIFFU-Ca. At the end of the study, it could be said that RPC appears as a suitable candidate for nuclear waste storage.The foreseen degradation depth after a 300 years leaching is about 1.4 cm in our experimental conditions.
- Génie – Thèses