Experimental Study of Sand-Cement Brick with Expanded Polystyrene Beads and Silica Fume as Partial Replacement Materials
The construction industry is growing fast alongside the growth of the economy and the population. As one of the major building materials, brick is in high demand for construction purposes. The continuous growth will eventually lead to a shortage of raw materials in long run, such as sand and Ordinary Portland cement. This issue could be resolved by utilizing the waste materials, Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) beads and Silica Fume (SF), in replacement of sand and cement in the production of bricks, respectively. In this study, 120 specimens were produced with EPS beads removed 10% to 15% of sand while SF removed 10% to 20% of cement. The cement-to-sand ratio and water-to-cement ratio were 1:2.5 and 0.5 respectively. The performance of bricks was analyzed in the aspect of compressive strength, density, water absorption, and strength to weight ratio (s-w ratio). EPS beads were found to reduce the compressive strength and density, while SF strengthen the mix thus compensating for the performance loss caused by EPS beads. For construction application, the EPS beads and SF with the replacement of 15% and 10% respectively, were recommended, as it achieved the minimum requirement of the industry.
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