Influence of particle size distribution and MSWI bottom ash aggregate replacement in zero-slump concrete

Perry M.F. van de Wouw, Miruna V.A. Florea, H.J.H. (Jos) Brouwers

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In Europe, approximately 18 million tonnes of bottom ash (BA) is being produced annually through the incineration of municipal solid waste (MSWI). Currently, this is either stockpiled, limitedly applied as road base material, or, in the Netherlands, for some specifically treated BA fractions the application as aggregate in concrete is becoming more accepted. With the application of BA in concrete, stockpiling, the extraction of virgin materials, and the CO2 production footprint can be reduced. Earth-moist or zero-slump concrete (ZSC) mass products are ideal for the incorporation of MSWI BA due to their absence of reinforcement, higher porosity, and primarily non-structural applications. This study focusses on investigating how the mix design of ZSC is influenced by coarse and fine aggregate replacement with BA over a distribution modulus range. To this aim, a spherical central composite design approach is used to acquire a broad understanding on the interaction and influence of the 3 independent variables (sand replacement, gravel replacement, and distribution modulus (q)) on ZSC mix design.
It is found that for BA containing ZSC, pre-saturation of the BA reduces the required mixing water. Additionally, both the additions of fine and coarse pre-saturated BA increase the total amount of water in the system while an equal workability is maintained. In turn, this water can potentially contribute to internal curing at a later stage. Due to the porosity of the BA, the overall density of the concrete is found to decrease with an increase in both fine and coarse aggregate replacement. Furthermore, an increased q-value with an
equal cement content and workability results in a lower powder content with a higher binder concentration in the powders, and therefore a lower water-binder ratio. Finally, for the particle packing optimisation with porous materials, the use of the envelope volume (including porosity and voids) of particles is proposed.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings ICSBM 2019 Volume 3
EditorsV. Caprai, H.J.H. Brouwers
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 12 Aug 2019
Event2nd International Conference of Sustainable Building Materials (ICSBM 2019) - Eindhoven , Netherlands
Duration: 12 Aug 201915 Aug 2019


Conference2nd International Conference of Sustainable Building Materials (ICSBM 2019)


  • Zero-Slump Concrete
  • MSWI Bottom Ash
  • Mix Design
  • Aggregate Replacement
  • Distribution Modulus


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