Hunt for concrete solution

May 10, 1996

A technique that reveals the progress of disease in humans, animals and plants could help stop premature corrosion in concrete.

Chlorides in water are highly corrosive and cause devastating damage to the steel reinforcement bars that give concrete structures their strength. But scientists know little about the rate and precise nature of the seepage.

Researchers at Dundee, Kent and Surrey universities are using nuclear magnetic resonance techniques to show the chloride-laden water's voyage of penetration and how the chloride ion, found in seawater and de-icing salt, interacts with the concrete.

The consortium, funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, includes mathematicians, physicists, chemists and concrete technologists. It believes it has the edge on rivals worldwide trying to find a solution.

Geoff Hunter, head of Dundee's chemistry department, said: "The beauty of these techniques is that stray field imaging is now allowing us to see what has never been seen before, namely water travelling through concrete, and magic angle spinning spectroscopy is giving us information about the chemical processes also occurring in the concrete."

You've reached your article limit.

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Most Commented

James Fryer illustration (27 July 2017)

It is not Luddism to be cautious about destroying an academic publishing industry that has served us well, says Marilyn Deegan

Jeffrey Beall, associate professor and librarian at the University of Colorado Denver

Creator of controversial predatory journals blacklist says some peers are failing to warn of dangers of disreputable publishers

Hand squeezing stress ball
Working 55 hours per week, the loss of research periods, slashed pensions, increased bureaucracy, tiny budgets and declining standards have finally forced Michael Edwards out
Kayaker and jet skiiers

Nazima Kadir’s social circle reveals a range of alternative careers for would-be scholars, and often with better rewards than academia

hole in ground

‘Drastic action’ required to fix multibillion-pound shortfall in Universities Superannuation Scheme, expert warns