Special Cements are the new Trend for Sustainable Construction
Specialized cement products have found its way into construction application of various areas like, residential buildings, non-residential buildings, agriculture, industrial and consumer sectors. The products used for these purposes vary based on the requirements. Recently there is an increasing demand for environmentally friendly products in construction. Following this trend, many companies are coming forward with the introduction of eco-friendly cements with high belite content. Special cements are cements that serve specific function such as changing the setting time of concrete, providing different colors for architectural effects, divulging greater ability, imparting retention of water and malleability to mortars, while also repelling the infiltration of water in walls along with reducing the cost of the cementing agent.
Portland cement is an essential component for the daily life. It is one of the most consumed materials in the world. Oil and natural gas formulates 98% of the energy sources needed for the power plants; the cement industry alone consuming 2.1% of the primary fuel of the total industrial sector, with an energy cost of approximately 40 to 60% from the total production expenses.
On the other hand, the climate change is directly related to the CO2 emission. On the global level, the cement industry produces approximately 1.4 billion tons of CO2/ year, which is nearly 6% of the total CO2 production and 4% of the global warning. 54% from the CO2 are provided from the calcination process, 34% from the fuel combustion and 12% from the electricity. An average of 0.83 tons of CO2 is emitted per ton of cement with 80% clinker. There is therefore an urgent need to reduce the energy consumption and the CO2 emission in the cement sector. Recent data revealed that a good utilization of waste materials might reduce the CO2 emission by up to 9%
One way to achieve these targets is to limit the consumption of Portland cement clinker by enhancing the production of blended cements within the scope of the international standard specifications. Other solutions deal with the partial substitution of the high-lime cement by the lower temperature belite. A number of special cements are now available to the concrete construction industry. Each type serves a specific function in terms of application, performance and durability. Although each may be used by itself to answer a special construction need, some may be used with other standard or special types to achieve special esthetic or functional objectives.
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