Self compacting concrete

SCC can be used in most applications where traditionally vibrated concrete is used. It is suitable for high performance, densely reinforced structures as well as for less demanding unreinforced applications for instance the backfill (Petersson, et al., 2000, pg. 3). SCC can be fibre reinforced and is equally applicable for in situ construction as well in precasting. It has the capability to fill formwork and encapsulate and condense reinforcing bars only through the action of gravity and with maintained homogeneity. This ability is achieved by designing the concrete in such a way that it gains suitable inherent rheological properties. These properties are achieved through by not subjecting the concrete to any exterior energy input from vibrators, tampering or comparable actions.
The predominant reason for the development of SCC has been the concern for reduced durability that is caused by inadequate homogeneity of the cast concretes. However, SCC has also been used to improve the quality of concrete work and to allow for the ability for automation of the construction work as well as improve the working conditions on construction sites (Cleland, et al., 1996, pg. 483). Other benefits of SCC over other forms of concrete include, it can be placed at a speedier and swifter rate without the need for mechanical vibration and with reduced screeding and this results to savings in placement costs, there are better quality and more uniform and consistent architectural surface finish with minimal to no remedial surface work, there is enhanced consolidation around reinforcement and bond with reinforcement, it improved permeability and is labor savings, it shortens constructions periods which translates to lower construction costs and minimized the traffic of ready-mixed trucks and pumps for the period of placement and finally increased work environment safety by doing away with the need for consolidation(Petersson, et al., 1999, pg. 276).
Self –compacting concrete has indeed opened a world of possibilities in the engineering field. It has eliminated the need for vibrated concrete and with it comes a myriad of benefits, these chiefly being a substantially reduced construction cost and provided a safer work environment for the workers.