Soft Matter will be publishing a web- theme in collaboration with the the ‘Micro-structure, setting and aging of cement: from soft matter physics to sustainable materials’ conference being held this week.
From 5 to 8 % of the global human CO2 production comes from the production of cement, so research on concrete and cement plays a crucial role for sustainable development. As 60% of CO2 emissions from cement production come from the chemical dissociation of calcium carbonate, the forefront of industrial and academic research is in chemical modifications of cement. It is becoming increasingly clear that no progress is really possible without understanding how the chemical modification of cement can affect its structure, cohesion and mechanics, from the nano-scale components of the material up to the microscale. From the early stages to the onset of setting, cement is very much a soft matter with structural heterogeneity and complexity on multiple length and timescales akin to other soft glassy materials. Bringing together cement researchers with soft matter scientists and glasses physicists, the web theme aims to open a new interdisciplinary perspective on the problem.
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