SEM-Backscattered Imaging analysis of Cementitious Composite Matrix Incorporating Mineral Admixture


Microstructure imaging interpretation of polished surface has become well established as a method for the study of cement and concrete microstructure. This paper is an attempt to provide micro-level examination to the microstructure of cement paste in concrete particularly the hydrated mineral admixture and interfacial transition zone, which received increasing attention due to their effect on the hardened concrete properties. Furthermore, illustrations are provided of the transition area of cement paste adjacent to the aggregate border as well as other cement paste areas. SEM images reveal that pozzolanic reaction is not the only benefit of using mineral admixture. Spherical shape of grains is important to improve the microstructure of cement paste particularly in the interfacial transition zone.