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Characterization and piezo-resistivity studies on graphite-enabled self-sensing cementitious composites with high stress and strain sensitivity

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Carbon-based conductive fillers have recently been incorporated into a cement matrix to develop an intrinsic self-sensing concrete for data monitoring without the need for embedded, attached, or remote sensors while maintaining or improving its mechanical properties and durability. This paper studies cementitious composites filled with graphite as a novel self-sensing construction material. Experiments were systematically conducted to investigate the dispersion, chemical, mechanical, electroconductivity and piezo-resistivity properties of the composites. Experimental results showed an effective mixing with uniform dispersion of the graphite which acted as an inert filler in the mix and did not alter the microstructure of cement hydration products. Isothermal calorimetry, TGA and rheology tests showed good hydration and adequate workability of the composites with low graphite concentration (≤10%), while the effect of adding graphite on the compressive strength is insignificant for graphite concentration up to 10%. Monotonic and cyclic compressive test results indicated a repeatable piezo-resistivity performance for low graphite concentration cementitious composites whose stress sensitivity values vary from 0.75 to 7.25%/MPa, and strain sensitivity/ gauge factor (GF) 150-1250 with some hysteresis. These combinations showed a stable and reliable piezo-resistivity and the ability to detect damage upon failure.



Self-sensing, Cementitious composites, Graphite, Piezo-resistivity, Structural health monitoring, Smart materials

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Cement and Concrete Composites

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Elsevier BV
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (2485568)
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EP/S02302X/1)

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2023-07-17 12:41:12
Published version added
2023-06-20 23:32:52
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