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concrete in which the binder is an organic polymer; a construction and structural material that is a solidified mixture of a macromolecular substance with a mineral aggregate. Furan, polyester, epoxy, or phenol-formaldehyde resins are usually the binder in polymer concrete, although coumarone-indene resins are sometimes used. Quartz sand, granite and basalt chips, and ground sandstone are the aggregates.
The technology of polymer concrete does not differ significantly from the production of ordinary cement concretes; the difference in cost (polymer concrete is markedly more expensive) results mainly from the cost of the binder. Polymer concretes with furan resin binders are the most common. Asphalt or bituminous concretes, which are produced by mixing molten asphalt or tars with inert mineral aggregates, may be considered a special group of polymer concretes.
Cement concrete with polymer additives is called polymer-cement or cement-polymer concrete. In this form of concrete, the polymer is only a component added to improve the properties of the product. Polymers are added to the concrete mix in the form of aqueous dispersions (latices or emulsions) or solutions. Water-soluble monomers, which polymerize after addition to the concrete mix, are also used. The polymer content in polymer-cement concrete ranges from 1–3 to 15–20 percent by weight, depending on the intended use. Water dispersions of polyvinyl acetate are most often used.
Polymer and polymer-cement concretes have greater tensile strength and are less brittle and more susceptible to deformation than cement concretes. They have higher water impermeability and resistance to cold, abrasion, and aggressive liquids and gases.
Polymer and polymer-cement concretes are used for floors in industrial plants, garages, and hospitals. They are used in the production of high-quality road and airfield pavings and for repairing damaged concrete surfaces and patching cracks.
Polymer-cement mixtures and polymer concretes with fine aggregates are used as waterproofing and protective coverings, finishing and decorative facing materials, and mastics. Polymer concretes with a lightweight aggregate—for example, claydite or perlite sand—are used to make heat-insulating slabs. Polymer concretes are also used in the production of nonreinforced thin-walled articles and models of various structures, as well as in underground structures (in the construction of components of mine support and sewers).
REFERENCESSatalkin, A. V., V. A. Solntseva, and O. S. Popova. Tsementno-polimernye betony. Leningrad, 1971.
Skupin, L. Polimernye rastvory iplastbetony. Moscow, 1967. (Translated from Czech.)
Solomatov, V. I. Polimertsementnye betony i plastbetony. Moscow, 1967.
Cherkinskii, Iu. S. Polimertsementnyi beton. Moscow, 1960.
L. A. SHITS