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In ancient times people used the lime mortar or mud for construction works. Both clay and lime are the binding material. Lime has been used as a strong and durable mortar for thousands of years. However, cement has a following special properties over lime, it is abundantly used in construction works.
- The setting time of cement is comparatively faster than lime.
- Mortar containing lime harden slowly as compared to cement mortar.Also, cement has a property to set under water.
- The curing period of lime mortar is also more than cement.
- A cement gains strength earlier than lime.
Portland cement is an excellent building material generally used for its excellent binding properties giving strength to structural elements. Cement is stronger under compressive load.Portland cement is used either in the form of cement mortar or cement concrete.
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When Portland cement is mixed with required quantity of water and fine aggregate (sand) ’cement mortar’ is obtained and when cement is mixed with required quantity of water, coarse aggregates and fine aggregates (sand)‘cement concrete’ is obtained.
After adding water in cement, it acts like a gel type glue. it is therefore also used to stick various building materials. (i.e. brick masonry works, stone masonry work etc.)
Cement mortar is used for constructing wall, roofs, also for finishing (i.e. plaster to walls & ceilings). Cement concrete is used almost for all types of construction including dams & ports, hospitals, roads, schools, roads, housing and alsofor decorative applications (i.e. patios, floors, staircases, driveways, pool decks)
Portland cement can be partly replaced by various pozzolanic materials such as fly-ash, rice-husk ash, slags with a required amount which otherwise are harmful to the environment. We can change proportions of pozzolanas depending upon on the ultimate use and importance ofstructure. In this way, we can use the cement as a green building material and also a resolve the disposal problem of by-products and save the environment.
There are some very important compounds in cement responsible for its strength. It is therefore mostly used in construction for various applications.Furthermore, using of cement avoid the frequent repairs. Cement is also a cheaper material than other modern construction chemicals, if you view from the binding properties. The raw materials required for cement are along available globally to a larger or smaller extent.