Multifunctional properties of carbon nanotube/fly ash geopolymer nanocomposites

Mohamed Saafi, Kelly Andrew, Pik Leung Tang, David McGhon, Steven Taylor, Mahubur Rahman, Shangtong Yang, Xiangming Zhou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

64 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Fly ash-based geopolymers are currently being considered as a viable replacement to ordinary Portland cement (OPC) due to multifold benefits such as cost efficiency, chemical stability, corrosion resistance, rapid strength gain rate, low shrinkage and freeze-thaw resistance. However, geopolymers tend to be more brittle than OPC and thus unsuitable for concrete structures due to safety concerns. Geopolymers with improved electrical properties can also be used as self-sensing materials capable of detect their own structural damage. Therefore, this paper is aimed at investigating the effect of multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) on the mechanical and electrical properties of fly ash (FA) geopolymeric composites. Geopolymeric matrices containing different MWCNTs concentrations (0.0%, 0.1%, 0.5% and 1.0% by weight) were synthesized and their mechanical properties (i.e., flexural strength, Young’s modulus, flexural toughness and fracture energy), electrical conductivity and piezoresistive response were determined. A scanning electron microscope (SEM) was employed to evaluate the distribution quality of MWCNTs within the matrix and determine their crack-bridging mechanism. The experimental results showed that the MWCNTs were uniformly distributed within the matrix at 0.1 and 0.5-wt% and they were poorly distributed and severely agglomerated within the matrix at 1-wt%. The experimental results also showed that the addition of MWCNTs increased the flexural strength, Young’s modulus and flexural toughness by as much as 160%, 109% and 275%, respectively. The MWCNTs also enhanced the fracture energy and increased the electrical conductivity by 194%. The geopolymeric nanocomposites exhibited a piezoresistive response with high sensitivity to micro-crack propagation.
LanguageEnglish
Pages46–55
Number of pages10
JournalConstruction and Building Materials
Volume49
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2013

Fingerprint

Coal Ash
Geopolymers
Carbon Nanotubes
Multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCN)
Fly ash
Carbon nanotubes
Nanocomposites
Fracture energy
Portland cement
Bending strength
Toughness
Electric properties
Elastic moduli
Mechanical properties
Chemical stability
Concrete construction
Corrosion resistance
Crack propagation
Electron microscopes
Cracks

Keywords

  • multifunctional properties
  • carbon nanotube
  • fly ash geopolymer nanocomposites

Cite this

Saafi, M., Andrew, K., Tang, P. L., McGhon, D., Taylor, S., Rahman, M., ... Zhou, X. (2013). Multifunctional properties of carbon nanotube/fly ash geopolymer nanocomposites. Construction and Building Materials, 49, 46–55. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.conbuildmat.2013.08.007
Saafi, Mohamed ; Andrew, Kelly ; Tang, Pik Leung ; McGhon, David ; Taylor, Steven ; Rahman, Mahubur ; Yang, Shangtong ; Zhou, Xiangming. / Multifunctional properties of carbon nanotube/fly ash geopolymer nanocomposites. In: Construction and Building Materials. 2013 ; Vol. 49. pp. 46–55.
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Multifunctional properties of carbon nanotube/fly ash geopolymer nanocomposites. / Saafi, Mohamed; Andrew, Kelly; Tang, Pik Leung; McGhon, David; Taylor, Steven; Rahman, Mahubur; Yang, Shangtong; Zhou, Xiangming.

In: Construction and Building Materials, Vol. 49, 12.2013, p. 46–55.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Multifunctional properties of carbon nanotube/fly ash geopolymer nanocomposites

AU - Saafi, Mohamed

AU - Andrew, Kelly

AU - Tang, Pik Leung

AU - McGhon, David

AU - Taylor, Steven

AU - Rahman, Mahubur

AU - Yang, Shangtong

AU - Zhou, Xiangming

PY - 2013/12

Y1 - 2013/12

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AB - Fly ash-based geopolymers are currently being considered as a viable replacement to ordinary Portland cement (OPC) due to multifold benefits such as cost efficiency, chemical stability, corrosion resistance, rapid strength gain rate, low shrinkage and freeze-thaw resistance. However, geopolymers tend to be more brittle than OPC and thus unsuitable for concrete structures due to safety concerns. Geopolymers with improved electrical properties can also be used as self-sensing materials capable of detect their own structural damage. Therefore, this paper is aimed at investigating the effect of multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) on the mechanical and electrical properties of fly ash (FA) geopolymeric composites. Geopolymeric matrices containing different MWCNTs concentrations (0.0%, 0.1%, 0.5% and 1.0% by weight) were synthesized and their mechanical properties (i.e., flexural strength, Young’s modulus, flexural toughness and fracture energy), electrical conductivity and piezoresistive response were determined. A scanning electron microscope (SEM) was employed to evaluate the distribution quality of MWCNTs within the matrix and determine their crack-bridging mechanism. The experimental results showed that the MWCNTs were uniformly distributed within the matrix at 0.1 and 0.5-wt% and they were poorly distributed and severely agglomerated within the matrix at 1-wt%. The experimental results also showed that the addition of MWCNTs increased the flexural strength, Young’s modulus and flexural toughness by as much as 160%, 109% and 275%, respectively. The MWCNTs also enhanced the fracture energy and increased the electrical conductivity by 194%. The geopolymeric nanocomposites exhibited a piezoresistive response with high sensitivity to micro-crack propagation.

KW - multifunctional properties

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KW - fly ash geopolymer nanocomposites

UR - http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.conbuildmat.2013.08.007

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