Skip to main content

About this Research Topic

Manuscript Submission Deadline 22 December 2022

Concrete is the most widely used man-made material in existence. It is second only to water as the most-consumed resource on the planet. The main ingredient for the preparation of cement based composites is the Portland cement; however, its manufacture demands an excessive amount of energy and generates prohibitive amounts of CO2 and other harmful emissions. Each year, more than 4 billion tons of cement are produced, accounting for around 8 percent of global CO2 emissions. In consequence, the production and use of Portland cement for concrete manufacture is unsustainable. Reducing CO2 emissions while producing enough cement to meet the demand is a global challenge, especially since the demand growth is expected to increase.

A lower Portland cement demand can be achieved through actions such as optimizing its use in concrete mixes, using concrete more efficiently, minimizing waste in construction, or maximizing the design life of buildings and infrastructure. Nevertheless, a sharper focus is needed by replacing cement with supplementary cementing materials, also called pozzolans. The most common pozzolans are fly ash, ground granulated blast furnace slag and silica fume.



The use of pozzolans in concrete benefits sustainable development because reduces the Portland cement content, thus lowers the CO2 footprint of concrete, reduces the demand for Portland cement in concrete mixtures, decreases the use of raw materials and the environmental burdens associated with resource extraction, processing, and lastly the transportation associated with the manufacturing of Portland cement. The use of supplementary cementing materials reduces the need for disposal of these by-products in landfills reducing potential impacts to groundwater, and invading valuable open space and biodiversity. The use of pozzolans also enhances concrete durability, thereby increases the functional service life of buildings and infrastructures, thus lowers the embodied energy from new construction and the energy and environmental impacts from demolition. Ultimately, concrete containing pozzolans requires less water in manufacture because the concrete typically will have a lower water content, which improves the strength and reduces permeability with durability benefits.

Despite all the benefits upon the use of pozzolans for concrete manufacture their availability is jeopardized by a shortage of these materials in years to come. For example, the fly ash production has been significantly reduced as the use of coal as fuel to power plants is being gradually replaced by natural gas, only in USA about 40% of coal-fired power plants have closed in the last years. Similarly, the iron production, source of the slag, must be lowered because 1 ton of steel emits to the atmosphere approximately 6 ton of CO2. Finally, silica fume has been related to health issues. All in all, the use of alternative materials to partially replace these pozzolans is required.

In this context, agricultural waste is an interesting alternative which has been investigated as a pozzolanic material over the past few years; however, the majority of the studies focus on workability of pastes, mortars and concretes, and at the most on short-term durability studies. In conclusion, long-term durability studies on the use of agricultural waste as supplementary cementing materials are greatly needed.



We invite researchers to contribute original research articles and review articles. Potential topics include, but are not limited to:

• Research on novel agricultural waste materials

• Pretreatment/post-treatment methods to potentiate the use of agricultural waste as a supplementary cementing material

• Ternary blends including agricultural and industrial wastes

Long-term durability studies of concrete containing agricultural waste including:

• Corrosion caused by chlorides

• Corrosion caused by carbonation

• Acid and sulfate attack

• Alkali-silica reaction

• Freezing-thawing cycles

Keywords: agricultural waste, durability, fly ash, silica fume, sugarcane bagasse ash.


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

Concrete is the most widely used man-made material in existence. It is second only to water as the most-consumed resource on the planet. The main ingredient for the preparation of cement based composites is the Portland cement; however, its manufacture demands an excessive amount of energy and generates prohibitive amounts of CO2 and other harmful emissions. Each year, more than 4 billion tons of cement are produced, accounting for around 8 percent of global CO2 emissions. In consequence, the production and use of Portland cement for concrete manufacture is unsustainable. Reducing CO2 emissions while producing enough cement to meet the demand is a global challenge, especially since the demand growth is expected to increase.

A lower Portland cement demand can be achieved through actions such as optimizing its use in concrete mixes, using concrete more efficiently, minimizing waste in construction, or maximizing the design life of buildings and infrastructure. Nevertheless, a sharper focus is needed by replacing cement with supplementary cementing materials, also called pozzolans. The most common pozzolans are fly ash, ground granulated blast furnace slag and silica fume.



The use of pozzolans in concrete benefits sustainable development because reduces the Portland cement content, thus lowers the CO2 footprint of concrete, reduces the demand for Portland cement in concrete mixtures, decreases the use of raw materials and the environmental burdens associated with resource extraction, processing, and lastly the transportation associated with the manufacturing of Portland cement. The use of supplementary cementing materials reduces the need for disposal of these by-products in landfills reducing potential impacts to groundwater, and invading valuable open space and biodiversity. The use of pozzolans also enhances concrete durability, thereby increases the functional service life of buildings and infrastructures, thus lowers the embodied energy from new construction and the energy and environmental impacts from demolition. Ultimately, concrete containing pozzolans requires less water in manufacture because the concrete typically will have a lower water content, which improves the strength and reduces permeability with durability benefits.

Despite all the benefits upon the use of pozzolans for concrete manufacture their availability is jeopardized by a shortage of these materials in years to come. For example, the fly ash production has been significantly reduced as the use of coal as fuel to power plants is being gradually replaced by natural gas, only in USA about 40% of coal-fired power plants have closed in the last years. Similarly, the iron production, source of the slag, must be lowered because 1 ton of steel emits to the atmosphere approximately 6 ton of CO2. Finally, silica fume has been related to health issues. All in all, the use of alternative materials to partially replace these pozzolans is required.

In this context, agricultural waste is an interesting alternative which has been investigated as a pozzolanic material over the past few years; however, the majority of the studies focus on workability of pastes, mortars and concretes, and at the most on short-term durability studies. In conclusion, long-term durability studies on the use of agricultural waste as supplementary cementing materials are greatly needed.



We invite researchers to contribute original research articles and review articles. Potential topics include, but are not limited to:

• Research on novel agricultural waste materials

• Pretreatment/post-treatment methods to potentiate the use of agricultural waste as a supplementary cementing material

• Ternary blends including agricultural and industrial wastes

Long-term durability studies of concrete containing agricultural waste including:

• Corrosion caused by chlorides

• Corrosion caused by carbonation

• Acid and sulfate attack

• Alkali-silica reaction

• Freezing-thawing cycles

Keywords: agricultural waste, durability, fly ash, silica fume, sugarcane bagasse ash.


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

Topic Editors

Loading..

Topic Coordinators

Loading..

Articles

Sort by:

Loading..

Authors

Loading..

views

total views views downloads topic views

}
 
Top countries
Top referring sites
Loading..

Share on

About Frontiers Research Topics

With their unique mixes of varied contributions from Original Research to Review Articles, Research Topics unify the most influential researchers, the latest key findings and historical advances in a hot research area! Find out more on how to host your own Frontiers Research Topic or contribute to one as an author.