Anti-Aging Research Applied to Glass and Concrete
Concrete that won’t crack? Glass that won’t warp? We might be closer to both, thanks to new research that identifies the ideal pressure at which to manufacture these materials so that they won’t change shape over time or through temperature changes.
Certain conditions improve the angles at which molecular bonds occur, making glass and concrete stronger, explained Mathieu Bauchy, one of the authors of the study in a press release—just like the angles of steel trusses, such as those in the Eiffel tower, make a structure stand tall. These stronger bonds effectively drive “thermal reversibility,” in these materials, or the ability to recover volume and enthalpy after a heating and cooling cycle. “If you use the right pressure and the right composition of the material [in manufacturing], you can design reversible glasses that show little or no aging over time,” says Bauchy.
Now that Bauchy and co-author Matthieu Micoulaut have identified these optimal conditions, we might see more durable display screens, windows, and cement. And that could mean emitting less carbon dioxide to fix crumbling bridges and buildings in the future (see Reducing Environmental Impacts of Cement and Concrete) and avoiding embodied carbon to replace windows (see Twenty-Year Payback for Embodied Carbon of Triple-Glazed Windows).
Pearson, C. (2015, March 17). Anti-Aging Research Applied to Glass and Concrete. Retrieved from https://www.buildinggreen.com/newsbrief/anti-aging-research-applied-glass-and-concrete