Cold Weather Concreting
According to the American Concrete Institute, Cold Weather Concreting requires special practices in order to prevent damage to concrete due to freezing at early ages;
- Ensure that the concrete develops the recommended strength for the safe removal of forms;
- Maintain curing conditions that foster normal strength development;
- Limit rapid temperature changes;
- Provide protection consistent with the intended serviceability of the structure.
Basically, concrete placed during cold weather will develop sufficient strength and durability to satisfy intended service requirements when it is properly proportioned, produced, placed, and protected.
The good casting of concrete in cold weather is obtained when the concrete is secured against damages because of early frost, temperature stresses and when the concrete curing process is managed and under control before, during and after casting.
Why Is It Important?
Then you are in overall terms safe to pour and harden your concrete even under severe cold conditions.
There will, of course, be some cost added to enable a safe winter casting and to prevent you from taking any additional risk when doing winter concreting. But the cost of taking the required precautions shouldn’t be excessive compared to the risk of the additional cost of damages and unexpected delays.
Temperature monitoring with sensors
Monitoring the concrete temperature development inside the structure and follow the temperature distribution in e.g. cross-sections provides you with insights: You can see, if your precautions are correct or need to be adjusted. Following the differences between the real and the expected temperature curve from your simulations, supports you in your decision making. If you have done a reliable calibration of the maturity-strength relation for your specific concrete mix design, then you can take decisions and actions based upon the data from the measurements inside the concrete structures.
Insights you get by monitoring
Decisions before choosing a monitoring solution
Having a clear answer to the question on top makes it easier for you to choose the optimal system. In this way you avoid choosing a system, that does not fit to your needs or on the other hand, might be too extensive and expensive.