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17+ Types of Cement used in Construction Works with their Properties and Uses

The most widely used material on earth is concrete and cement is the main ingredient of concrete. Cement shows different properties and characteristics depending on the chemical compositions. This is how different types of cement are made to exhibit different properties by changing the chemical composition, fineness of the cement.

In the past several years there has been a series of researches carried out to produce different types of cement by varying the oxide compositions and fineness of cement. The efforts made in order to produce different types of cement suitable for different environmental conditions.

While making changes in oxide compositions it has been found that the results are not satisfactory so the additives were introduced. Additives are materials to be added in the clinker at the time of grinding.

In this article we will take a look on properties and use of various kinds of cement, these cements basically classified as Portland cement and Non-Portland cement.

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Table of Contents

Different Types of Cement Used in Construction Works

Different types of cement used in construction works are listed below with the respective IS codes.

  1. Ordinary Portland Cement
    • OPC 33 Grade- IS 269: 1989
    • OPC 43 Grade- IS 8112: 1989
    • OPC 53 Grade- IS 12269: 1987
  2. Rapid Hardening Cement- IS 8041: 1990
  3. Extra Rapid Hardening Cement
  4. Sulphate Resisting Cement- IS 12330: 1988
  5. Portland Slag Cement- IS 455: 1989
  6. Quick Setting Cement
  7. Super Sulphated Cement- IS 6909: 1990
  8. Low Heat Cement- IS 12600: 1989
  9. Portland Pozzolana Cement-
    • Fly Ash Based- IS 1489(Part-I): 1991
    • Calcinated Clay Based- IS 1489(Part-II): 1991
  10. Air Entraining Cement
  11. Coloured Cement: White Cement- IS 8042: 1989
  12. Hydrophobic Cement- IS 8043: 1991
  13. Masonry Cement- IS 3466: 1988
  14. Expansive Cement
  15. Oil Well Cement- IS 8229: 1986
  16. Resident Cement
  17. Concrete Sleeper Grade Cement- IRS-T 40: 1985
  18. High Alumina Cement- IS 6452: 1989
  19. Very High Strength Cement

Out of above following are Special Cements

  • Masonry Cement
  • Air Entraining Cement
  • Expansive Cement
  • Oil Well Cement

The types of cements are explained in detail below with their properties and uses.

Also Read: ASTM Classification of Cement

1) Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC)

Portland cement is most commonly used type of cement and majorly known as OPC.

Ordinary Portland Cement is classified into three grades namely grade 33, grade 43, grade 53 cement depending on the strength of the cement at 28 days when tested as per IS 4031-1988. The rating 33, 43, 53 is the 28 days characteristic compressive strength of cement.

If characteristic strength is not less than 33N/mm2 then cement is called as 33-grade cement.

If characteristic strength is not less than 43N/mm2 then cement is called as 43-grade cement.

If characteristic strength is not less than 53N/mm2 then cement is called as 53-grade cement.

The use of ordinary portland cement is decreasing rapidly now a days as because of the increasing popularity of blended cement as it consumes less energy, has a lesser environmental impact, and cheaper than OPC.

Use of Ordinary Portland Cement

  • Used in all general concrete constructions where concrete is not exposed to sulphate.

2) Rapid Hardening Cement (RHC)

Rapid hardening cement is somewhat similar to ordinary portland cement. Rapid hardening cement is cement in which there is development of high early strength i.e. fast hardening.

Strength developed in 3 days by rapid hardening cement is equal to strength developed by ordinary portland cement in 7 days.

The early strength gain and rapid hardening in rapid hardening cement is a result of higher fineness, high C3S content, and lower C2S content as compared to OPC. C3S has a property of development of early strength and faster hardening and C2S has the property of ultimate strength and slow hardening.

Due to high proportion of C3S there is greater evolution of heat of hydration and therefore should not be used in massive concrete construction but can be used in cold conditions.

Properties of Rapid Hardening Cement

  • Finer than ordinary portland cement
  • High C3S and low C2S content than OPC
  • Strength of RHC in 3 Days = Strength of OPC in 7 Days
  • Production cost is 10 to 15% higher than OPC

Use of Rapid Hardening Cement

  • Prefabricated concrete construction.
  • Where formwork needs to be removed early.
  • Repair works of road.
  • For use in cold weather conditions.

3) Extra Rapid Hardening Cement (ERHC)

As name indicates Extra rapid hardening cement is obtained by integrating calcium chloride with rapid hardening cement. The addition of calcium chloride is done in order to allow very fast hardening of the cement.

The composition of calcium chloride in extra rapid hardening cement should not exceed 2 percent by weight of rapid hardening cement.

Extra rapid hardening cement should not be stored for a period of more than a month and concrete made with ERHC should be transported, placed, compacted and leveled within 20 minutes.

The strength of extra rapid hardening cement is 25% greater than rapid hardening cement at one or two days and also about 10 to 20% higher at 7 days. The strength gain will stop after some time and strength of ERHC and OPC will be the same.

Properties of Extra Rapid Hardening of Cement

  • Formed by integrating Rapid Hardening Cement with Cement Calcium Chloride.
  • Calcium Chloride content should not exceed 2% by weight of Rapid Hardening Cement in ERHC.
  • ERHC posses 25% more strength than RHC.

Uses of Extra Rapid Hardening of Cement

  • Suitable for use in cold weather.

4) Sulphate Resisting Cement (SRC)

The cement which offers resistance to sulphate attack is known as sulphate resistance cement. Sulphate solution permeates into the concrete and attack calcium hydroxide, hydrated calcium aluminate and results in excessive expansion and ultimately into cracks.

The sulphate attack generally takes place due to alternate wetting and drying which is usually takes place in marine structures.

Sulphate resistance cement consists of low C3A and low C4AF content as C3A reacts faster than sulphates. The C3A content should not be more than 5% for sulphate resistant cement.

Properties of Sulphate Resisting Cement

  • Formed by using low C3A, low C4AF, and high Sulphates.
  • C3A percentage is restricted to 5%

Uses of Sulphate Resisting Cement

  • Used in marine structures
  • Used in the construction of foundations where the soil is having more sulphate content.
  • Used to fabricate pipes which will be buried in soil rich in sulphates.
  • Used in the construction of sewage treatment plant units.

5) Portland Slag Cement

Portland slag cement is cement made by mixing portland cement clinker, gypsum, and granulated blast furnace slag in suitable proportions and grinding it to obtain uniform cement particles. It also can be prepared by separately grinding all the ingredients and then mixing them together.

Portland slag cement is physically same as ordinary portland cement but has a property of low heat of hydration and it shows better resistance to chloride, soils, water containing sulphates or metals like iron also acidic water. That is why it is preferred in the marine environment.

As compared to OPC Portland slag cement has strength generation and rate of hardening somewhat slower in first 28 days. Because of low heat of hydration the PSC is suitable for mass concrete construction but not suitable for cold weather.

Properties of Portland Slag Cement

  • Made by mixing portland cement clinker, gypsum, and granulated blast furnace slag in proper proportions.
  • It has Low Heat of Hydration
  • Gives better Resistance to Chloride and Acidic Water.

Uses of Portland Slag Cement

  • Used in marine structures.
  • Structures near acidic water.
  • Used in mass concrete constructions like dams, abutments etc.

Also Read: ASTM Classification of Cement

6) Quick Setting Cement

Quick setting cement has the property of a very fast setting. Gypsum is added to the cement at the time of grinding so as to increase the setting time of cement. So by reducing the gypsum content the the quick setting property can be achieved.

For the preparation of a quick setting, cement gypsum content is reduced and some quantity of aluminum sulphate is added. Because of the quick setting property the cement need to be transported, placed, finished very early.

Properties of Quick Setting Cement

  • Obtained by reducing Gypsum.

Uses of Portland Slag Cement

  • Used for underwater construction.
  • Used in Grouting.

7) Super Sulphated Cement

Preparation of super sulphated cement is carried out by grinding together a mixture of 80 to 85% granulated slag, 10 to 15% burnt gypsum, and 5% of portland cement clinker. The super sulphated cement is finer than portland cement and more sensitive to deterioration while storing than OPC.

As C3A has property of resistance to sulphates the quantity of C3A is kept well below 3.5% in super sulphated cement. Just because it has low heat of hydration and high resistance to chemical attack it can be used in the construction of dams.

Properties of Super Sulphated Cement

  • Obtained by using 80% to 85% Granular Slag, 10% to 15% hard burnt Gypsum, and 5% of Portland Cement Clinker.
  • Low heat of hydration.
  • Resistance to chemical attack.

Uses of Super Sulphated Cement

  • It is used where Concrete is likely to be attacked by Sulphates.
  • It should be used in places with temperatures below 40°C.
  • Used for construction of dams.
  • Used in mass concrete construction.

8) Low Heat Cement

Low heat cement is portland cement with reduced quantities of rapid hardening compounds like C3S and C3A and increased quantity of C2S. C2S has property of slow hardening so special care should be taken at the time of removing formwork.

Even if strength gain is slow in case of low heat cement but at the end of 28 days the ultimate strength will be same as that of ordinary portland cement. As per Indian standards heat of hydration of low heat cement should be as follows

7 days = not more than 65 calories per gram

28 days = not more than 75 calories per gram

All other properties like setting time, soundness are same as that of ordinary portland cement.

Properties of Low Heat Cement

  • Obtained by reducing C3S, C3A content and increasing C2S content.
  • Low heat of hydration.
  • Slow rate of strength gain and hardening.

Uses of Low Heat Cement

  • Used in the construction of abutment.
  • Used in the construction of retaining wall.
  • Used in mass concrete construction.

9) Portland Pozzolana Cement

Portland pozzolana cement is obtained by grinding together portland cement clinker and pozzolana but without addition of gypsum. The percentage composition of pozzolana should be 10 to 25 % as that of portland cement clinker.

Portland pozzolana cement produces low heat of hydration. It offers a greater resistance to acidic water and calcium hydroxide.

Properties of Portland Pozzolana Cement

  • Obtained by grinding portland cement clinker and pozzolana without gypsum.
  • Pozzolana= 10 to 15% as that of portland cement clinker.
  • Low heat of hydration.

Uses of Portland Pozzolana Cement

  • Used in marine and hydraulic structures.
  • Used in mass concrete constructions like dams, bridge piers etc.
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Also Read: ASTM Classification of Cement

10) Air Entraining Cement

Air entraining cement is obtained by mixing air entraining agents with ordinary portland cement clinker at the time of grinding. The air entraining agents can be added upto the extent of 0.025-0.1% by weigth of cement clinker.

The Air entraining agents can be used are alkali salts of wood resin, synthetic detergents of alkyl aryl sulphonate, calcium lignousuphate, calcium salts, animal fats, and vegetable fats.

Air entraining agent will produce small bubbles after mixing with water and can influence the workability, segregation and bleeding of concrete. Generally workability of air entrained concrete is more than non air entrained concrete.

Properties of Air Entraining Cement

  • Obtained by mixing air-entraining agents at the time of grinding with portland cement clinker or at the time of mixing of OPC with other concrete ingredients.
  • Increases the workability of concrete.
  • It has the property of resistance to freezing.

Uses of Air Entraining Cement

  • Used in very critical RCC sections to allow proper concrete filling.

11) Coloured Cement

Coloured cement is prepared by mixing portland cement with 5 to 10% of colour imparting pigments. Pigment when mixed with OPC by mechanically of manually doesn’t show signs of uniform distribution so it is recommended to add pigments at the time of grinding.

Different colours are obtained by the addition of pigments by taking grey or white cement as a base but the use of white cement is costly and grey cement can only be used for the production of red and brown cement.

Properties of Coloured Cement

  • Obtained by mixing portland cement with 5 to 10% of colour imparting pigments.

Uses of Coloured Cement

  • Coloured cement is generally used for finishing works.

12) Hydrophobic Cement

Hydrophobic cement is obtained by grinding ordinary portland cement with water repellent film-forming substances. Water repellent film-forming substances can be oleic acid and stearic acid.

The water repellent film formed around the particles will protect the cement from deterioration for a long time allowing transportation and long storage. Normal OPC cement will get deteriorated and loose strength if stored for a long time or under unfavorable conditions but Hydrophobic cement won’t lose any strength in those circumstances.

The film will break down when it cement and aggregate are mixed together in concrete formation and cement will be ready for hydration.

Hydrophobic cement has greater water resistance than OPC. This cement type is costlier than ordinary portland cement.

Properties of Hydrophobic Cement

  • Obtained by grinding ordinary portland cement with water repellent film-forming substances like oleic acid and stearic acid(0.1 to 0.4%).
  • The water repellent film formed around the particles will protect the cement from deterioration for a long time.
  • Water resisting property.

Uses of Hydrophobic Cement

  • Used to build any water related structures like pipes, tanks.

13) Masonry Cement

Masonry cement is obtained by mixing ordinary portland cement or blended hydraulic cement and plasticizing materials and materials which improves the properties like workability, water resistance and setting time.

Masonry cement is used only for masonry mortar works but should not be used for any kind of concrete works.

Properties of Masonry Cement

  • High water resistance.
  • Improved workability.

Uses of Masonry Cement

  • Used for making of mortar.
  • Used for plaster works.

14) Expansive Cement

Cement which does not shrink during hardening and even after hardening is known as expansive cement.

ordinary portland cement concrete usually shrinks during drying, hardening and even after hardening and this is known as drying shrinkage.

To avoid the problem of drying shrinkage expansive cement is used which expands slightly with the time avoiding the drying shrinkage problem.

Properties of Expansive Cement

  • Expands slightly with the time

Uses of Expansive Cement

  • Used where concrete is supposed to undergo drying shrinkage.

15) Oil Well Cement

Oil well cement is special form of cement used in oil wells for the purpose of sealing. Oil wells are drilled for large depths through the rocks and soil and there is a possibility that oil or gases can come out from the gap between the metal case and rock.

The escaped gases can cause a very big security problem can even result in explosion. To avoid this the gap in between casing and rock is filled by using this oil well cement.

The oil well cement can be made by adjusting the chemical composition of cement or adding retarders to ordinary portland cement.

Properties of Oil Well Cement

  • Obtained by adjusting the chemical composition of cement or adding retarders to ordinary portland cement.

Uses of Oil Well Cement

  • Used to fill the gaps between metal casing and rocks and cracks and gaps in between rocks itself in oil wells.

16) Resident Cement

Cement which gains considerable strength in just few hours is known as resident cement. The very rapid strength generation results in evolution of enormous amount of heat because of which it is also suitable for cold weather conditions.

The shrinkage rate of resident cement is much higher than OPC whereas it is poor in sulphate resistance.

Properties of Resident Cement

  • Handling time of just about 8 to 10 minutes.
  • High strength in a few hours.

Uses of Resident Cement

  • In precast concrete industries.
  • Used for fast repair of pavements.

17) High Alumina Cement

High alumina cement is obtained by fusing the mixture of alumina and calcareous materials and grinding them to form a uniform powder.

High alumina cement is having property of high strength development about 20% strength is gained in just one day.

Properties of High Alumina Cement

  • Obtained by fusing the mixture of alumina and calcareous materials

Uses of High Alumina Cement

  • High ultimate strength development.
  • About 20% strength is gained in just one day.

18) Very High Strength Cement

These are some of the generally used very high strength cements

  • Macro-defect-free Cement
  • Densely Packed System
  • Pressure Densification and Warm Pressing
  • High Early Strength Cement
  • Pyrament Cement
  • Magnesium Phosphate Cement(MPC)

Also Read: ASTM Classification of Cement

Video Explanation on Types of Cement

FAQs on Types of Cement

What are the 5 types of cement?

As per ASTM classification basic 5 types of cement are
1.Type-I
2.Type-II
3.Type-III
4.Type-IV
5.Type-V
Also we have type-IA, IIA and IIIA

Which is the most commonly used cement?

Ordinary portland cement is most commonly used cement. OPC can be classified into 3 different grades namely Grade 33, Grade 43, Grade 53.

What is Type V cement?

Type V cement is High Sulphate Resistant Cement.

Types of Cement PPT

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