INFLUENCE OF OIL PALM SPIKELETS FIBRE ON MECHANICAL PROPERTIES OF LIGHTWEIGHT FOAMED CONCRETE
As issues related to sustainable construction in Malaysia gains more importance, research on the utilization of waste by products especially from oil palm in concrete is vigorously implemented. Utilization of different parts of oil palm fibres in lightweight foamed concrete have garnered positive outcomes in terms of conservation of natural resources, lessening of environmental problem and can improve concrete's durability and mechanical properties. Lightweight foamed concrete (LFC) is well-known as a low-density concrete with a wide range of applications. It is good in compression but poor under flexural load, as it produces multiple microcracks and cannot withstand the additional stress induced by applied forces without supplementary reinforcing elements. Hence this study was performed to examine the potential use of oil palm spikelets fibre (OPSF) in LFC in order to improve its engineering properties. LFC specimens were strengthened with OPSF fibre at different percentages of 0.15%, 0.30%, 0.45%, and 0.60%. LFC density of 1000 kg/m3 was prepared with a constant cement-to-sand ratio of 1:1.5, and cement-to-water ratio of 0.45. The parameters that had been evaluated were flexural strength, compressive strength and splitting tensile strength. The results revealed that the addition of 0.45% of OPSF fibre gave the best compressive, bending and splitting tensile strengths result. OPSF fibre in LFC aided to evade the promulgation of cracks in the plastic state in the cementitious matrix.
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