Cement Types Uses Buying Tips Difference between ppc & opc

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There are different types of cement manufactured to meet different physical & chemical requirements for specific construction projects by altering following ingredients while manufacturing:

1. Ordinary Portland Cement

  • It is the most common type of cement.
  • It is used for all ordinary purposes such as making concrete, mortar, etc.
  • OPC is available in three different grades namely grade 33, 43 and 53.

Composition of Ordinary Portland Cement

  • It is manufactured by mixing limestone/chalk with shale/clay to form clinker which is then finely crushed to form grey color cement.

Grades of Ordinary Portland Cement

  • It is available in three different grades in India as:
  1. 33-grade (IS: 269′ 1998),
  2. 43-Grade (IS: 8112′ 2000)
  3. 53-grade (IS: 12269′ 1999)

Properties of Ordinary Portland Cement

  • It has an adequate resistance to dry shrinkage and cracking, but less resistance to chemical attack.
  • It has a medium rate of strength development and heat generation.

Application of Ordinary Portland Cement

  • This cement is suitable for all type of concrete construction.
  • It is widely used for the construction of high-rise buildings, roads, dams, bridges, flyovers, etc.
  • It is also is used for making grouts and mortars.

2. Portland Blast Furnace Slag Cement (IS: 455)

  • It is the mixture of ordinary Portland cement and fine granulated blast furnace slag.
  • It contains 25-65 percent (by weight) of blast furnace slag.

Composition of Portland Blast Furnace Slag Cement

  • It is manufactured by grinding clinker and specific amounts of blast furnace slag together.
  • A small percent of gypsum is also added for controlling its setting time.

Properties of Portland Blast Furnace Slag Cement

  • They possess better work ability, cohesiveness, and plasticity.
  • These qualities are explained to be due to lesser specific gravity and greater specific surface area of slag cement.
  • They have better resistance to sulfates of alkali metals, alumina, and iron.

Application of Portland Blast Furnace Slag Cement

  • It is better suited for structures meant for water retaining such as retaining wall, rivers, ports, tunnels for improvement in impermeability.
  • Used in mass concreting works such as dams, foundations which require low heat of hydration.

3. Portland Pozzolana Cement (IS: 1489)

  • It is a variation of Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC), which includes a mixture of pozzolanic materials, OPC and gypsum.

Composition of Portland Pozzolana Cement

  • It is manufactured by adding pozzolanic materials such as fly ash, shales, clays etc. with Ordinary Portland cement.

Properties of Portland Pozzolana Cement

  • The pozzolana cement has many properties similar to Ordinary Portland Cement. But it also offers some additional properties, which are given below:
  1. It produces less heat. Due to this property, it can be used in mega projects.
  2. It offers greater resistance to sulfates and corrosive actions of sea water.

Application of Portland Pozzolana Cement

  • Its properties make it more useful for construction near or along the coast and also in sulfate soil.
  • It can also be used in sewage works and for underwater construction.

4. Rapid Hardening Cement (IS: 8041)

  • Rapid hardening cement is a special type of cement that achieves high strength in less time.
  • It is also called as High-Early Strength Portland Cement.

Composition of Rapid Hardening Cement

  • It manufactured by combining lime stone (finely grounded) and shale at high temperature.
  • It contains high percentage of Tricalcium Silicate (C3S)

Properties of Rapid Hardening Cement

  • It attains maximum strength with-in 24-72 hours.
  • The strength of rapid hardening cement at the 3 days is similar to 7 days strength of OPC with the same water-cement ratio.
  • Relatively high proportion of limestone and fine grained helps in quicker and complete hydration of cement particles during setting and helps in gaining early strength.

Application of Rapid Hardening Cement

  • It is used in those types of projects, where quick hardening is required.
  • In precast concrete, when the form work to be remove early
  • It is also used when the roads or airfield to be repairs, and the roads can throw open to traffic quickly.
  • It can be used in the cold weather concreting.

5. Extra Rapid Hardening Cement

  • It accelerates the setting and hardening process.

Composition of Extra Rapid Hardening Cement

  • It is manufactured by Inter grinding Calcium Chloride (CaCl2) with Rapid Hardening Cement.
  • The percentage of Calcium Chloride during the manufacturing process should not exceed 3%.

Properties of Extra Rapid Hardening Cement

  • The gain of strength disappears with the age.
  • It should be transported, placed, compacted and finished within 20 minutes after mixing .

Application of Extra Rapid Hardening Cement

  • It is used for repair and maintenance, eg, fence posts, setting manholes, repairs to paths and steps.
  • It is suitable for concrete, mortar, rendering and floor screeds.

6. Acid Resistant Cement

  • This cement has good resistance to action of acid.

Composition of Acid Resistant Cement

  • Acid-resistant cement is composed of the following:
  1. Acid-resistance aggregates such as quartz, quartzites, etc.
  2. Additive such as sodium fluosilicate Na2 SiF6
  3. Aqueous solution of sodium silicate or soluble glass.

Properties of Acid Resistant Cement

  • The addition of additive sodium flousilicate accelerates the hardening process and it also increases resistance of cement to acid and water.

Application of Acid Resistant Cement

  • It is used for acid-resistance and heat resistance coatings of installations of chemical industry.

7. Sulphate Resisting Cement (IS: 12330)

  • This cement is highly sulphate resistant caused due to low C3A content.

Composition of Sulphate Resisting Cement

  • It is manufactured with less than 5% tricalcium aluminate C3A to withstand Sulphate attacks.

Properties of Sulphate Resisting Cement

Its low heat of hydration helps to avoid shrinkage cracks.

Application of Sulphate Resisting Cement

  • It is used in construction exposed to severe sulphate action by water and soil in places like canals linings, culverts, retaining walls, siphons etc.
  • It is used to reduce the risk of sulphate attack on concrete and thus is used in construction of foundations where soil has high sulphate content.

8. Low Heat Cement (IS: 12600)

  • It is a type of cement which generates low amount of heat or hydration during setting and hardening.

Composition of Low Heat Cement

  • It is prepared by maintaining the percentage of compounds evolving maximum heat of hydration such as tricalcium sulphate (C3S) tricalcium aluminate (C3A) below 6% and by increasing the proportion of dicalcium silicate C2S by 46%.

  • It is resistant to sulphate, rupture, anti-seepage.
  • It is also resistant to sulphate attack on reinforcement majorly in concrete pipes.

Application of Low Heat Cement

  • It is used in mass concrete construction like dams, as the low heat of hydration prevents the cracking of concrete due to heat.
  • It is used to make the road and workroom surface of factories such as chemical plants and sulphuric acid factories.

9. Hydrophobic Cement (IS: 8043)

  • It contains admixtures which decreases the wetting ability of cement grains.

Composition of Hydrophobic Cement

  • It is manufactured by mixing admixtures like acidol, oxidized petrolatum, napthalene soap which forms layer and act as water repellent.

Properties of Hydrophobic Cement

  • Its strength after 28 days is equal to that of Ordinary Portland Cement.

Application of Hydrophobic Cement

  • It can be used in the construction of water structures such as dams, spillways, or other submerged structures.
  • It can be used in extremely wet climatic conditions.
  • It is majorly used in the tunnel construction as the underground repairs are difficult and costly.
  • It is also used in the structures that are exposed to rain or rain puddling, such as green roofs, other kinds of roofs, parking structures, and plazas.

10. Quick Setting Cement

  • It is the types of cement which sets quickly.

Composition of Quick Setting Cement

  • It is produced by following controls in the manufacturing process to accelerate the setting time of the cement:
  1. The quantity of retarding agents like gypsum is reduced.
  2. The quantity of alumina rich compound is reduced.
  3. The clinker is ground to extreme fineness.

Properties of Quick Setting Cement

  • It sets into a stone like mass within a period of fewer than 30 minutes.

Application of Quick Setting Cement

  • It is majorly used where quick strength is needed in short span of time.
  • It is used while constructing piers for bridges and other structures in running or standing water.

11. Air En-training Cement

  • It is special cement which has air bubbles introduced in the cement that provides the space for expansion of minute droplets of waters in the concrete due to freezing and thawing.
  • It protects from cracks and damage of concrete.

Composition of Air En-training Cement

  • It is manufactured by adding some indigenous air en-training agents such as glues, resins, sulphates, etc., during the grinding stage of clinker.

Process of Air En-training Cement

  • Here are the ways of incorporating air in concrete:
  1. Using gas forming materials as aluminium powder, zinc powder and hydrogen peroxide.
  2. Using surface active agents that reduces surface tension.
  3. Using cement dispersing agents.

Properties of Air En-training Cement

  • It is used to improve the work ability of concrete with smaller water-cement ratio.
  • It improves the frost resistance of concrete.
  • It is also resistant to sulphate and alkali-silica reactivity.

Application of Air En-training Cement

  • It is used where concrete needs adequate durability against cycles of climatic freezing and thawing.

12. Masonry Cement (IS: 3466)

  • Masonry cement is specially formulated and manufactured to produce masonry mortar.

Composition of Masonry Cement

  • It is a product obtained by inter-grinding a mixture of Portland Cement clinker with inert materials (Non-pozzolanic), gypsum and air en-training plasticizer.

Properties of Masonry Cement

  • It has slow hardening process.
  • It also improves work ability.

Application of Masonry Cement

  • It used use in brick, block, and stone masonry construction.
  • It is also used to produce stucco or plaster.

13. High Alumina Cement (IS: 6452)

  • It is the type of Cement which contains alumina in considerably larger proportions than normal cement.
  • It is also known as calcium aluminum cement.

Composition of High Alumina Cement

  • It is manufactured by grinding the clinkers of Alumina (Bauxite) and Calcareous material (Lime) by fusing or splintering process.
  • The total alumina content is generally above 32 percent.
  • No other raw material is added, not even gypsum is mixed with the clinker during grinding.
Constituents Content Percentage (%)
Silica 3-8
Alumina 37-44
Lime 36-40
Iron Oxide 9-10
Titanium 1.5-2
Magnesium 0.5-1
Insoluble Residues 1

Properties of High Alumina Cement

  • It is resistant to the corrosive action of acids and salts of seawater.
  • They react quickly with lime.
  • It attains high strength and heat of hydration.
  • It can withstand high temperature.

Application of High Alumina Cement

  • It is also used in refractory concretes where it requires more strength at very high temperature.

14. Expanding Cement

  • It is a type of cement which expands and whereas other cements shrink.

Composition of Expanding Cement

  • It is produced by adding an expanding medium like sulpho-aluminate and a stabilizing agent to the ordinary cement.

Properties of Expanding Cement

  • These types of cement have the quality to expand slightly with time, but they do not shrink during and after the time of hardening.

Application of Expanding Cement

  • It is mostly used for grouting purposes in anchor bolt and prestressed concrete ducts.
  • It is also used for repairing the damaged concrete surfaces.

15. Oil Well Cement (IS: 8229)

  • It is designed for cementing offshore and onshore wells under high pressure and temperature.

Composition of Oil Well Cement

  • It is usually consist of Portland or pozzolanic cement with special organic retarders to prevent the cement from setting too quickly.

Properties of Oil Well Cement

  • It prevents the cement from setting too quickly.
  • There are no chemical effect of oils.

Application of Oil Well Cement

  • It is used for cementing work in the drilling of oil wells where they are subject to high temperatures and pressures.
  • Its cement slurries are used to protect casing from damage from surrounding water.

16. Coloured Cement

  • The cement of desired colour may be obtained by intimately mixing mineral pigments with ordinary cement.

Composition of Coloured Cement

  • It is manufactured by mixing colour pigments in a definite proportion with Portland Cement.
  • The amount of pigment used depends upon the shade of the desired colour (generally less than 10 per cent by weight).
  • The following pigments are used to obtain coloured cement:
Pigment Colour
Chromium oxide Green
Cobalt Blue
Iron Oxide Shades of Red, Brown and Yellow
Manganese dioxide Black and deep Brown

Properties of Coloured Cement

  • The amount of colouring material may vary from 5 to 10 percent.
  • If this percentage exceeds 10 percent, the strength of cement is affected.

Application of Coloured Cement

  • It is used for external finishing of walls and floors, manufacture of tiles and precast stones.
  • It is also used for garden paths, swimming pools, and sport courts.

17. White Cement (IS: 8042)

  • It is same as the Ordinary Portland Cement except the color.

Composition of White Cement

  • It is prepared from raw materials free from colouring ingredients Iron oxide, manganese oxide or chromium oxide
  • The cement is burnt by oil fuel instead of coal.

  • It has quick drying process.
  • It possesses high strength.
  • It has superior aesthetic values.

Application of White Cement

  • It is used for floor finish, plastering, pointing of masonry, manufacture of precast stones, tiles, runway markings.
  • It is used for prestige construction projects and decorative works.
  • The miscellaneous applications of white cement are in swimming pools where it replaces the use of glazed tiles.

Difference between OPC and PPC

1. Composition

Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC) Portland Pozzolana Cement (PPC)
OPC is produced simply by mixing limestone/chalk with shale/clay to form clinker which is then finely crushed to form grey color cement. It is manufactured by adding pozzolanic materials such as fly ash, shales, clays etc. with Ordinary Portland cement.

2. Raw Material

Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC) Portland Pozzolana Cement (PPC)
  • Calcareous (material containing lime)
  • Argillaceous (material containing silica and alumina)
  • Gypsum
  • OPC cement.
  • Gypsum.
  • Pozzolanic material.

3. Properties

4. Grades

Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC) Portland Pozzolana Cement (PPC)
33 Grade, 43 Grade, and 53 Grade OPC cement are available No specified grade of PPC cement is available.

5. Environmental Impact

Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC) Portland Pozzolana Cement (PPC)
It emits CO2 during the manufacturing process. It constitutes industrial and natural waste which makes it eco-friendly.

6. Application/ Uses

Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC) Portland Pozzolana Cement (PPC)
  • It is suitable where fast construction is required.
  • It is widely used for the construction of high-rise buildings, roads, dams, bridges, flyovers, etc.
  • It is suitable for all types of construction work.
  • For example RCC casting of buildings, mass concreting, plastering and other non-structural works.
  • It can also be used in sewage works and for underwater construction.

7. Cost

Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC) Portland Pozzolana Cement (PPC)
Costlier Cheaper

8. Identification

Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC) Portland Pozzolana Cement (PPC)
The ISI mark on this cement bag is black in color. The ISI mark on this cement bag is red in color.

Tips before Purchasing Cement

1. ISI Mark

  • It is mandatory for any cement manufacturer to have ISI mark. Hence, the bag must carry the ISI mark.

2. Manufacturing Date

  • Check the date, week number and year of the manufacturing which is printed on the cement bags.
  • Avoid purchasing cement bags manufactured before 3 months of the purchase date as strength of cement decreases with over period of time.

3. Manufacturer

  • Check for the manufacturer’s name or trademark on the bag

4. Type of Cement

  • Check for the cement type and grade on cement bag.

5. Bag Stitching

  • Check the stitching of cement bag and ensure that the cement bag has not been re-stitched.

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