Characterization of substances

VDZ Characterization of substances

With our equipment we are able to carry out comprehensive investigations on numerous substances:

  • cements (main constituents: Portland cement clinker, granulated blastfurnace slag, pozzolanas, trass, fly ash, burnt shale, limestone, silica fume; minor constituents; sulfate agents: gypsum, anhydrite; additives), raw meal, kiln dust, other binders
  • mineral raw materials (e.g. clays, marl) and aggregates (sand, gravel, crushed aggregates)
  • lime and lime products
  • admixtures and additions for concrete and mortar, pigments
  • fossil and alternative fuels

For these substances we can offer the following investigations:

Physical investigations

  • bulk density according to EN 459-2
  • water demand according to EN 196-3, Puntke method
  • water retention capacity according to EN 413-2
  • penetrometer measurements, penetration depth according to EN 413-2 or DIN 4211
  • slump according to DIN 1164 or ASTM C 185
  • standard consistency according to EN 413-2, EN 459-2 or ASTM C 185
  • air content in fresh mortar according to EN 459-2
  • setting time according to EN 196-3, EN 480-2
  • soundness according to EN 196-3, DIN 1164 or ASTM C 151
  • flexural tensile strength and compressive strength according to EN 196-1
  • zeta potential (electro-acoustic measurements)
  • thermal analysis – DSC up to 600 °C, TG/DTA (STA) up to 1500 °C
  • net and gross calorific values by combustion calorimetry
  • heat of hydration according to EN 196-8 or isothermal heat flow calorimetry
  • sulfate resistance by the SVA, Wittekindt and CEN methods
  • ultra accelerated mortar bar test on alkali-silica reactivity (ASR) according to the DAfStb Alkali Guidelines

Chemical investigations

  • standard investigations on cement, clinker and other cement constituents according to EN 196-2
  • XRF (X-ray fluorescence) analysis on pressed tablets or fused beads
  • alkalis in concrete admixtures according to EN 480-12
  • chlorides in concrete admixtures according to EN 480-10
  • ion chromatography
  • metals and semimetals (trace element analysis) by AAS (atom absorption spectrometry) or ICP-MS
  • elemental analysis (H, C, N, O, S) according to DIN 51712, DIN 51732, ISO 13878, ISO 20884
  • TOC and TC according to EN 13639
  • water-soluble chromate according to EN 196-10 or the former TRGS 613
  • fluoride, bromine, sulfite
  • aluminium, iron, silicon (photometrically)
  • reactive SiO2
  • reactive CaO
  • pozzolanicity according to EN 196-5
  • cement main constituents according to prCEN/TR 196-4
  • fuels – ash according to DIN 51719
  • fuels – volatile constituents according to DIN 51720
  • fuels – alkalis, halogens, sulfur, nitrate according to prEN 14585:2006
  • fuels – total carbon according to EN 13639
  • fuels – biogenic content according to prCEN/TS 15440
  • fuels – water by the Karl Fischer method ISO 12937
  • organic components in solids (VOC, VCO, VNOx, CSO2)
  • organic components by GC-MS or IR spectroscopy
  • BTEX analysis according to VDI 2100, sheet 2

Mineralogical investigations

  • methylene blue procedure
  • granulated blastfurnace slag content by counting 
  • light-optical microscopy on thin sections and polished sections 
  • petrography of aggregates 
  • scanning electron microscopy (SEM and ESEM) and microanalysis (EDX)
  • qualitative and quantitative X-ray diffraction (XRD), Rietveld refinement


Dr. Jörg Rickert

Dr Jörg Rickert

+49-211-45 78-283

+49-211-45 78-44427

Service offer

Chemistry and mineralogy: characterization of substances - consulting service - product optimisation

Quality standards

The VDZ gGmbH is accredited by the Germany's National Accreditation Body according to DIN EN ISO/IEC 17025.