Optimization and Performance of Cost-Effective Ultra-High Performance Concrete


This paper presents a mix design method for ultra-high performance concrete (UHPC) prepared with high-volume supplementary cementitious materials and conventional concrete sand. The method involves the optimization of binder combinations to enhance packing density, compressive strength, and rheological properties. The water-to-cementitious materials ratio is then determined for pastes prepared with the selected binders. The sand gradation is optimized using the modified Andreasen and Andersen packing model to achieve maximum packing density. The binder-to-sand volume ratio is then determined based on the void content, required lubrication paste volume, and compressive strength. The optimum fiber volume is selected based on flowability and flexural performance. The high-range water reducer dosage and w/cm are then adjusted according to the targeted mini-slump flow and compressive strength. Finally, the optimized UHPC mix designs are evaluated to determine key properties that are relevant to the intended application. This mix design approach was applied to develop cost-effective UHPC materials. The results indicate that the optimized UHPC can develop 28-days compressive strength of 125 MPa under standard curing condition and 168–178 MPa by heat curing for 1 days Such mixtures have unit cost per compressive strength at 28 days of 4.1–4.5 $/m3MPa under standard curing.


Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering


This study was funded by the Energy Consortium Research Center of Missouri S&T under Grant No. SMR-1406-09 and the RE-CAST University Transportation Center at Missouri University of S&T under Grant No. DTRT13- G-UTC45.

Keywords and Phrases

Binders; Bins; Compressive strength; Concretes; Cost effectiveness; Costs; Curing; Design; Rheology; Sand; Sandwich structures; Conventional concrete; Cost effective; Mix designs; Rheological properties; Supplementary cementitious materials (SCMs); Ultra high performance concretes (UHPC); High performance concrete; Conventional concrete sand; Cost-effective

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

1359-5997; 1871-6873

Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version


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© 2017 Kluwer Academic Publishers, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Feb 2017