Concrete is a primary material in construction industry, considering it’s resistance to wind storms, floods etc. Not many of you would know that concrete is a mixture of cement, water, stones and sand. It’s when this mixture is churned together to form a plastic mass, it can be molded into any shape. The paste on hardening becomes solid like a rock, which makes it reliable for strong building structures. Concrete also helps in protecting human lives against building fires but it is possible only when concrete is made up to the standards.
A substandard quality concrete can cause a construction blunder and many a times lead a structure to collapse. This is why engineers are so concerned about the quality of building materials.
Below are the types of concrete tests which can test the quality of concrete
1. Compression Test/ Rebound Hammer test
This is done to determine the compressive strength of concrete. Testing labs in Delhi strike a concrete wall with rebound hammer many a times, increasing the intensity of the impact. The rebound index of the hammer indicates the strength of the sample concrete wall.
2. Tensile Test
This test is very crucial to determine the amount of weight that concrete can withhold. By conducting splitting tensile testing, a lab can determine its breaking point and accordingly grade the concrete. This helps give construction guideline to the concern parties.
3. Permeability Tests
In the presence of oxygen, moisture, CO2 etc. concrete can grow weak. A variety of Permeability Tests involving water, oxygen or a combination of chemicals are conducted by certified testing labs to determine the durability of a block of concrete. By making it impermeable, the lifespan of a construction can be extended.
4. Air content test
This test is conducted to determine the amount of air in concrete. Greater amount of air in concrete may affect its durability in frost prone areas. The pressure test also helps determine the weights and gravity variation concrete can handle.
5. Setting time tests
This test determines the time taken by a particular kind of concrete to set. This test is conducted through a method called penetration resistance. This test helps in determining the time needed for handling, transporting, placing and giving required shape to concrete.
Importance of Concrete tests
Bridges, parking garages and other heavy structures made of concrete take certain load on a daily basis. Thus, it’s important that any voids or cracks shouldn’t be left in concrete of such structures or else it can be dangerous to inhabitants during earthquakes, floods or any other uncalled for incident.
Concrete tests not only determine the physical properties of it but also help in constructing much safer structures for the masses.
As we know, concrete is a heterogeneous mixture, hence, any impurity in even in one of the ingredients can alter the properties of it. For e.g. if normal drinking water is replaced with a saline solution, concrete durability is likely to get affected. It’s concrete that decides the fate of a constructions and its disasters. Testing labs in Delhi can play a great role in finding out the compressive strength of concrete.