Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Measuring Young’s Modulus of Low-Density Foam Concrete Using Resonant Frequency

Version 1 : Received: 20 February 2019 / Approved: 21 February 2019 / Online: 21 February 2019 (13:12:08 CET)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Journal reference: Journal of Testing and Evaluation 2021
DOI: 10.1520/JTE20200414


Foam concrete is a construction material with controllable low strength and untraditional physical properties. Its highly crushable nature leaves it a niche as an engineered energy-absorbing material in many value-added applications; however, fundamental understanding of the material properties is crucial. As foam concrete is highly cellularized and ductile, conventional concrete testing methods such as compression test are insufficient to characterize the key material attributes of foam concrete, especially when the foam density is low. The resonant frequency test (ASTM C215) is specified for evaluating dynamic Young’s modulus of normal concrete. Inspired by the non-destructive feature of this test, we investigate the possibility of using the resonant frequency test to continuously monitor the modulus build-up of foam concrete with age. For the representativeness of the samples, three variables are considered in material design—bulk density ranging from 0.4 to 1.2 g/cm3, water to cementitious materials ratio of 0.42 and 0.47, and fly ash replacement of 10 and 30% by weight of cement. After examining the different vibration modes, the fundamental transverse frequency is determined most suitable for interpreting the foam modulus. The experimental results demonstrate good accuracy of using this approach for the measurement of different samples. It is also confirmed that, for a given foam concrete, the foam modulus can be predicted by knowing the foam density and solid modulus of its base cement paste, which provides an important insight for the further studies and real applications of foam concrete.


cellular material; cellular concrete; foam concrete; foam material; mechanical property; Young’s modulus; foam modulus


ENGINEERING, Civil Engineering

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