Alkali-silica reaction (ASR) - Testing

In order to avoid damage resulting from alkali-silica reactions (ASR) the alkali reactivity of aggregates or concrete compositions must be known so that, if necessary, appropriate measures can be taken. Tests on the alkali reactivity of aggregates can be carried out in accordance with the Alkali Guidelines stipulated by the German Committee for Structural Concrete (DAfStb) or according to RILEM. In cases where the Alkali Guidelines stipulate the substitution of the aggregate or the use of cement with low effective alkali content (NA-cement acc. to DIN 1164-10) the alkali reactivity of a concrete composition can also be proved by an ASR performance test to ensure that aggregates or cements are not unnecessarily excluded from use. 

In the case of concrete road pavements (e.g. on airfields or motorways) the ASR damage potential caused by alkalis from de-icing agents, which can intrude from outside into the concrete, is particularly high. Therefore, the General Circular on Road Construction (ARS) No. 04/2013 issued by the Federal Ministry for Transport, Building and Urban Development (BMVBS) stipulates requirements for concrete road pavements that should reliably prevent concrete roads from being damaged by ASR. According to the ARS No. 04/2013 the non-alkali-reactivity potential of coarse aggregates and concrete compositions of the moisture class WS has to be proven. The Research Institute is acknowledged as an ASR-expert by the Federal Ministry for Transport, Building and Urban Development (BMVBS) respectively the Federal Highway Research Institute (BASt).

Expert opinion on the alkali reactivity potential of aggregates and concrete compositions according to the General Circular on Road Construction (ARS) No. 04/2013

  • ASR Performance testing of concrete compositions 
  • WS basic testing of coarse aggregates
  • WS confirmation test of aggregates and other concrete constituents on the basis of a passed ASR performance testing or WS basic testing 

Testing of aggregates

ServiceMethod
Accelerated mortar bar test at 80°C (reference method)Part 3 Alkali Guidelines
RILEM AAR-2
Accelerated mortar bar test at 70°C (alternative method)Part 3 Alkali Guidelines
Concrete test with fog chamber storage at 40 °CPart 3 Alkali Guidelines
Concrete prism test at 60 °CPart 3 Alkali Guidelines
RILEM AAR-4.1

Testing of concrete compositions (ASR performance testing)

ServiceMethod
Concrete test at 60 °C without external alkali supplyAFNOR P 18-454
Concrete test at 60 °C with external alkali supplyVDZ Method
Concrete test at 60 °C on two drilled core halves (with or without alkali supply)VDZ Method
Concrete test with fog chamber storage at 40 °C with cored specimensVDZ Method
Analysis of damage resulting from deleterious ASRReflected light microscopy, transmitted light microscopy, and scanning electron microscopy

Expert reports for the suitability of aggregates and concrete compositions

ServiceMethod
Preparation of expert reportsIn accordance with the general circular for road construction No. 04/2013 and for aviation areas

Contact

Dr. Christoph Müller

Dr. Christoph Müller

Phone:
+49-211-45 78-351

Fax:
+49-211-45 78-296

Contact

Ingmar Borchers

Phone: +49-211-45 78-368

Fax: +49-211-45 78-219

Service offer

Concrete and mortar: testing of fresh and hardened concrete – tests regarding alkali-silica reaction – testing aggregates and admixtures

Quality standards

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

Further Information

on the mechanism and avoiding damaging alkali-silica reaction can be found on the following pages