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By Ken W Day,NetLibrary, Inc.

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The process took about five minutes. Coarse aggregate SS was usually guessed at 4 or 5 (it has only a small effect) and it was necessary to have in mind either a cement content or a w/c ratio. Of course, accuracy is improved by all the features now incorporated in Mixtune, the author’s computerized mix design system described in Chapter 3. A computer enables all these to be brought to bear in less than the five minutes for manual use of the original basic concept. As many as desired of these features may be added manually but to add them all would extend the process to an hour or more.

The mix design process will deal with a target average strength. The average strength selected must take into account: 1. 2. 3 4. The degree of variability anticipated. The degree of certainty of avoiding rejection required. Any early age strength requirement. The required durability. 1 Variability The reader will find further detail on variability in Chapter 10 but essentially variability is to be assessed in terms of standard deviation, which is a measure of the spread of results assuming concrete strength to be a normally distributed variable.

The essence of the theory is that when particles of two different sizes are mixed together the benefit of reduction in voids caused by the smaller particles filling the voids between the larger particles is partially offset by interference in the packing of both sizes. Dewar has been able to model both effects mathematically into a comprehensive system that has been computerized by Questjay Ltd in the UK. The operation of the system for concrete requires knowledge of only three parameters for each solid component.

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