PERFORMANCE EVALUATION OF THE QUALITY OF CINA CEMENT AND BASF ADMIXTURE COMMONLY USED IN CONCRETE PRODUCTION IN THE REPUBLIC OF HAITI
A Haitian general contractor/civil engineer was having difficulties achieving the target concrete strength even when the mix was designed in compliance with the regulations and client criteria. An experiment was carried out to assess the quality and performance of the cement and admixture commonly used in construction practice in Haiti. The results of this experiment proved that the Haiti cement is an inferior product. On average, the compressive strength was 56% weaker in the Haiti mixes as compared to the US cement. Curing had significant effect of the mixes. When the mixes were not cured, the Haiti concrete never reached the target strength even when the cement content from the original design was increased to 50% and/or tested at 56 days. The admixture had no negative effect in the mixes. Significant increases in compressive strength was observed on both the Haiti and US mixes. In addition, the admixture should not be treated as a retarder. No significant increase in compressive strength was noted from 28 days to 56 days. Furthermore, the results of this research demonstrate that the most adequate solution for the Haitian contractors is to increase the cement content by at least 30% by weight from the original design. It is recommended that the Haitian Government, concrete producers, cement manufacturers, and researchers combine their expertise, effort, and resources to come up with solutions to improve the current deplorable conditions of construction practices in Haiti. This is so valuable to save lives, especially in a country like Haiti where powerful hurricanes and earthquakes are projected in the future.
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