Cement is a binding substance used in construction that sets, solidifies, and then attaches to other materials. Concrete is a mixture of aggregates, usually gravel and sand, bound together by water and cement. Construction of concrete requires different types of cement based on the soil, climatic conditions, and the type of concrete structure required. Here are some different types of cement in India :
- Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC)
- Rapid Hardening Cement
- Portland Pozzolana Cement (PPC)
- Low Heat Cement
- Quick setting cement
- Sulfates resisting cement
- White Cement
- Air Entraining Cement
- Coloured cement
- High Alumina Cement
- Expansive cement
- Blast Furnace Slag Cement
- Hydrographic cement
Here’s a list of Different Types Of Cement Recognised by ASTM
- Type 1: Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC) is the general use material.
- Type 2: This type of cement is moderately resistant to sulfate. Its MH variant is heat-of-hydration resistant and is used in buildings that might come in contact with soil or water-sulfate.
- Type 3: This type of cement hardens more rapidly than most blocks of cement that take about a month to harden.
- Type 4: This category of cement is a low heat cement that radiates ver little warmth while it is setting and drying. Wherever too much heat is undesirable, this type of cement can be used.
- Type 5: These types of cement are highly resistant to sulfate and can be used with highly alkaline water and/or soil.
There are other varieties of cement too such as:
- Types 1A, 2A, and 3A are variants of types 1,2, and3 mentioned above. These cements have air-entraining materials mixed in them to make them moisture-resistant.
- Types IP (Portland pozzolana), IT (Ternary blended), IS (Portland-slag cement). And IL (Portland-limestone) are hydraulic types of cement with special properties. Slag cement, also known as IS cement, has granulated blast furnace slag that is often used to replace a portion of the portland cement before mixing it into concrete.
- Type LH (High Heat of hydration), MH (Moderate Heat of hydration), HS (High Sulfate resistance), MS (Moderate Sulfate resistance), HE (High Early strength), and GU (General Use) are types of cement classified based on their properties.
Let’s Learn Why These Types of Cement are Different!
1. Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC)
OPC (Ordinary Portland Cement) is the most commonly used cement for all types of construction. It is also the most widely used and produced type of cement in the world with an annual global production of 3.8 million cubic meters each year.
2. Portland Pozzolana Cement (PPC)
- Portland Pozzolana Cement (PPC) is a type of cement that is prepared by grinding portland cement with pozzolanic clinker.
- It can also be produced by adding calcium sulfate or gypsum and/or by uniformly blending fine pozzolana with portland cement.
- This type of cement is highly resistant to chemical attacks when compared with ordinary portland cement. This property makes it the most suitable for the construction of marine structures, and sewage works as well as for underwater concrete structures such as dams, oilers, bridges, etc.
3. Rapid Hardening Cement
Rapid hardening cement is used in concrete when formworks are to be removed at an early stage. Thereby, the cost of construction can be reduced while the rate of construction increases. It is similar to OPC with increased lime content, finer grinding, and higher c3s content.
However, it has higher strength development than OPC. the strength of rapid hardening cement at 3 days is similar to the strength of OPC at 7 days even with the same cement-water ratio. This type of cement is used in the construction of roads, prefabricated concrete, etc.
4. Quick setting cement
You might think, from the name, that rapid hardening cement and quick-setting cement are quite similar but no. This type of cement is used in construction under running or static water.
- Quick-setting cement sets earlier than rapid hardening cement.
- At the same time, the rate of gain of strength of quick-setting cement is similar to OPC but less than rapid hardening cement.
- The formwork of this type of cement can be removed early just like rapid hardening cement.
5. Low Heat Cement
- Low heat cement is obtained by increasing C2S while keeping the tricalcium aluminate percentage in the mixture below 6%.
- The quantity of tricalcium aluminate determines the heat of hydration of concrete.
- Low heat cement is perfect for mass concrete construction because the low heat of hydration prevents the concrete from cracking due to heat.
- Low heat cement is a type of cement with a greater initial setting time than OPC. it is also less reactive and more resistant to sulfates.
6. Sulfates Resisting Cement
This type of cement reduces the risk of concrete coming in contact with sulfates. This is also the reason they are widely used in the construction of foundations as the soil has high sulfate content. C4AF and C3A are less in this type of cement.
Sulfate resisting cement finds itself in rampant use for constructions that might get exposed to sulfate action by soil and water such as in siphons, retaining walls, culverts, canal linings, etc.
7. Blast Furnace Slag Cement
This type of cement is produced by grinding clinkers with 60% slag. The properties of blast furnace slag cement more or less resemble the properties of Portland cement. It is used widely in places where there is an economic consideration.
8. High Alumina Cement
High alumina cement is produced by melting a mixture of lime and bauxite and mixing them with clinkers. It is a type of rapid hardening cement with a final and initial setting times of 5 and 3.5 hours respectively.
The comprehensive strength of high alumina cement is quite high and more workable than OPC. It is used in concretes that have to face acidic action, frost, and high temperatures.
9. White Cement
White cement, a type of ordinary portland cement, is prepared from raw materials of iron oxide. It is white and is costlier than ordinary types of cement in India. They find themselves in profound use for architectural purposes such as terrazzo surfaces, facing panels, precast curtain walls, etc.
There are several other uses of white cement such as building,
- Swimming pools
- Paths of gardens
- Ornamental concrete products
- Facing slabs
- External renderings of buildings
10. Coloured cement
Coloured cement is produced by taking a mixture of 5% to 10% mineral pigments and ordinary cement. They are widely used in decorative work on floors.
11. Air Entraining Cement
Air entraining cement is obtained by mixing indigenous air-entraining agents such as sodium salts of sulfates, glues, resins, etc. with clinkers. Both the materials are ground together to get air-entraining cement.
This type of cement is perfectly suitable for improving the workability with smaller cement to water ratio. It also improves the frost resistance of concrete.
12. Expansive cement
This type of cement expands slightly over time and will not shrink during or after its time of hardening. Expansive cement is specifically used for prestressed concrete ducts and grouting anchor bolts.
13. Hydrographic cement
This type of cement is obtained by mixing several water-repelling chemicals. It has high strength and workability. Because of the property of repelling water, it stays unaffected during the rains or monsoon.
Hydrographic cement finds major use in the construction of water structures such as water retaining structures, spillways, water tanks, dams, etc.
The Bottom Line: Facts on Types of Cement
Concrete and cement are terms often used interchangeably but actually cement is an ingredient in concrete. Cement is a mixture of tricalcium silicate, dicalcium silicate, tricalcium aluminate, and tetra-calcium aluminoferrite. It takes around 24 hours to 48 hours after the initial set for cement to dry after which forms can be removed and people can walk on it. The surface becomes okay for vehicles to drive over after 7 days of partial curing. It takes about a month for a concrete structure to be fully cured.