What is cement foaming agent?
Cement foaming agent is used in the production of cellular concrete. Its primary function is to strengthen the foam bubbles and to prevent their collapse when air is entrained in them. In addition, the selected substance provides other functions such as increasing workability, improving freeze-thaw resistance and reducing drying shrinkage.
A particular feature of the invention is that the selected material is not deposited in the foam bubbles nor along their walls, but is lodged within the latticework of the pore structure. This results in a three-dimensional pore system that is much stronger than the pore systems of conventional cellular concretes. The selected substance also serves to interconnect the foam wall particles and thus increases their strength. In addition, it serves to disperse and hold water within the pore system so that small pockets of water are available throughout the mixture for use by the cement when it is hydrating.
This improvement in foam concrete strength and stability is achieved in part by keeping the Water-cement ratio low. A further important factor is the use of a high proportion of fines which promote uniform embedding of the foam bubbles in the mix and reduce their tendency to collapse when they are added with the mineral filler.
Various combinations of filler-cement ratios were tested in order to obtain an optimum mix for the production of cellular concrete having a desirable wet density and good compressive strength when fully cured. It was found that a high proportion of fly ash improves both the wet density and the compressive strength. In contrast, silica fume tends to decrease the compressive strength.
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