UBC Faculty Research and Publications

The Influence of CaCl₂-Blended Acrylic Polymer on Steel Rebar Corrosion and Acid Attack Resistance of Mortar Onuaguluchi, Obinna; Banthia, Nemkumar


A realistic forecast of the impact of CaCl₂-blended acrylic polymer (CP) emulsions on steel reinforcement corrosion is difficult without a detailed study. This is traceable to the conflicting effects of cement additives on the chloride threshold value, pore solution chemistry, and matrix resistivity. Hence, in the study reported herein, the actual influence of 0.5–1.5 wt% CP on rebar corrosion was assessed via an accelerated corrosion test. The macrocell current, half-cell potential measurements (HCP), reinforcement cover crack propagation, and rebar deterioration were monitored. The resistance of mortar specimens to acid-induced degradation was also evaluated over time. The corrosion test results indicate that steel rebar corrosion initiation in the mortar expedited as the CP dosage in mixtures increased. Consequently, the time required for the CP-modified specimens to crack shortened. Moreover, non-uniform rebar section loss and surface crack width widening were also observed in CP-modified mortar specimens. However, X-ray diffraction (XRD) analyses of the plain Ref and 1.5% CP corrosion byproduct residues indicated that key phases such as akaganeite, goethite, lepidocrocite, hematite, and magnetite were quantitatively similar. Interestingly, the addition of 1.0–1.5% CP to mixtures enhanced the acid attack resistance of mortars. For now, these results indicate that CP should only be used as a chemical admixture in unreinforced cement composites.

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