Shrinkage mitigation in alkali-activated composites: A comprehensive insight into the potential applications for sustainable construction





Journal title

Results in Engineering


Vol. 0 No. 101452


Hakim S. Abdelgader


1 - 82


The extant body of literature articulates a noticeable disparity in the susceptibility to cracking and concomitant material degradation between alkali-activated composites (AAC) and ordinary Portland cement (OPC), predominantly attributable to shrinkage and subsequent drying phenomena. This divergence derives from the nanoscopic porosity of AAC binders, which is substantially finer than their OPC counterparts. However, experimental research validates that the judicious incorporation of alternative cementitious materials and fibrous reinforcements enriches the shrinkage characteristics of AAC, thereby enhancing its overall structural performance. Given the crucial role of shrinkage in defining the material integrity of AAC, especially under constrained environmental conditions, an in-depth understanding of shrinkage mechanisms materializes as a necessity for conceiving efficient shrinkage-mitigating strategies. In light of the growing interest in optimizing AAC through various material integrations and methodological innovations aimed at shrinkage diminution, this scholarly review undertakes an extensive synthesis of the laboratorial investigations focused on AAC shrinkage behavior and mitigation. However, this article critically evaluates widespread strategies for shrinkage mitigation, explicating their operative mechanisms. Moreover, it is outlined gaps in the existing research paradigm, promoting for targeted scholarly endeavors to yield a more clear understanding of shrinkage dynamics and to facilitate the advancement of environmentally sustainable AAC composites. Meanwhile, this study intended to consolidate existing research on developing trends in order to gain a comprehensive understanding of the possible uses of AACs and identify viable strategies for addressing AAC shrinkages. By addressing the challenges related to micro-cracking and shrinkage, the long-term durability of AACs may be improved, leading to increased adoption of these materials as sustainable building options in the construction industry today.

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