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1. Too much lime (calcium oxide) in the kiln charge will result in excess free lime in the cement.

has the effect of
(a) Causing rapid hardening of concrete.
(b) Causing cracking in fresh concrete.
(c) Causing cracking in mature concrete.
(d) Causing delayed setting of concrete.
(e) Improving the quality of the cement by increasing the potential strength gain.

2. Silica fume and fly ash are used in blended cements. These materials have the following property:
(a) Both are finer than cement with silica fume being finer by a factor of about 100 and flyash
by about10.
(b) Both are hydraulic materials.
(c) Both contain mainly silica, with fly ash having about 30% alumina.
(d) (a) and (b) and (c).
(e) (a) and (c).

3. Ironstone or some other source of iron is added to the kiln charge even though C4AF has little effect
on strength. This is done primarily because
(a) Ironstone reduces the fluxing or catalytic effect of alumina, permitting a more uniform
product to form.
(b) Ironstone acts as a fluxing agent or catalyst.
(c) Iron in combination with lime removes excess alumina by forming C4AF.
(d) (a) and (b) and (c).
(e) None of the above.

4. Silica fume and fly ash are described as secondary hydrators. This is because
(a) The amount of these materials in a concrete mix is secondary when compared with the
amount of Portland cement in the mix.
(b) Both materials are byproducts of other processes.
(c) Both materials react with CSH in their hydration hence the Portland component has to
hydrate first.
(d) Both materials require Ca(OH)2 for hydration.
(e) Both materials are fine and fill the voids left by the hydrating Portland cement.

5. The different materials in cement C2S, C3S, C3A, C4AF all contribute to strength. The way they
contribute on an equal weight basis is as follows:
(a) C2S and C3S contribute about the same throughout hydration.
(b) C2S and C3S finally contribute about the same but C2S hydrates more rapidly and therefore
contributes more to the early strength gain.
(c) C2S and C3A are the main contributors, with C3A hydrating more rapidly than C2S.
(d) C4AF makes little contribution.
(e) (b) and (d).

6. The term the alkalis refers to which components in cement:

(a) The hydroxides of calcium, magnesium, and sodium.
(b) The hydroxides of calcium, magnesium, sodium and potassium.
(c) The hydroxides of sodium and potassium.
(d) The oxides of sodium and potassium.
(e) The oxides of calcium, magnesium, sodium and potassium.
7. Low heat of hydration cement is made by
(a) Increasing the content of C3S.
(b) Increasing the content of C2S.
(c) Blending GP (Portland) cement with about 10 % by mass of silica fume.
(d) Increasing the content of C3A.
(e) (a) and (d).

8. Sulphate resisting cement is made by

(a) Grinding the cement finer.
(b) Reducing the C4AF content.
(c) Reducing the C3A content.
(d) Increasing the C3A content while reducing the C4AF content.
(e) None of the above.

9. The aggregate grading is important as it determines

(a) The suitability of the aggregate for concrete, since only a small number of gradings can be
(b) The amount of cement required in the mix for a given weight of aggregate.
(c) The amount of water required to produce a workable concrete.
(d) The strength of the concrete, as this relates directly to the strength of the aggregate.
(e) (a) and (b).

10. The aggregate cement ratio depends on

(a) The maximum aggregate size.
(b) The desired slump.
(c) The aggregate grading.
(d) (a) and (c).
(e) (a) and (b) and (c).

11. During mix development, saturated surface dry coarse aggregate is used and the moisture content
of fine aggregate is measured. In commercial production of concrete, the aggregates may be wet to
varying degrees, depending on where they have been stored. This problem is overcome by
(a) Ensuring that additional cement (around 10 %) is used to maintain the water cement ratio at
the correct value.
(b) Drying the aggregates prior to mixing.
(c) Providing concrete of the next highest strength grade to ensure the specified strength is
(d) Controlling the slump of the concrete to equal the specified value.
(e) Ensuring the weights of the mix ingredients, including the water, are in the design
proportions, as the total water content of wet aggregate is negligible.

12. Water reducing agents and superplasticisers act to increase fluidity of the concrete mix by
(a) Reducing surface tension.
(b) Replacing an equal volume of water with chemical lubricants that do not create voids in the
(c) Creating like surface charges on cement particles to make them mutually repulsive.
(d) Creating unlike charges on aggregate and cement, thereby causing the cement to completely
coat the aggregate.
(e) (a) and (c).
13. During steam curing, there is a delay period followed by controlled temperature rise. Which of the
following procedures is acceptable for concrete that is at 20oC when it is placed in the forms.
(a) Delay of 1 hour, followed by temperature rise to 85oC over the next 2 hours.
(b) Delay of 1 hour followed by temperature rise to 85oC over the next 3 hours
(c) Delay of 3 hours followed by temperature rise to 75oC over the next 2.5 hours.
(d) Delay of 2 hours followed by temperature rise to 85oC over the next 3 hours.
(e) Delay of 1.25 hours followed by temperature rise to 75oC over the next 2 hours.

14. A spray of aliphatic alcohol is used to control plastic shrinkage cracking. This spray is applied to
the concrete
(a) Immediately after the surface is screeded.
(b) Immediately after the surface is finished.
(c) In order to prevent drying in the medium term (i.e. during the first few weeks).
(d) In situations when the temperature of the concrete is low.
(e) In still weather conditions, as wind disperses the spray.

15. Concrete slabs sometimes have dusty surfaces. This is often due to
(a) Using concrete with a low compressive strength.
(b) Too much cement in the concrete, creating a layer of fine material at the surface.
(c) Insufficient working of the surface during finishing.
(d) Removal of the bleed water.
(e) Finishing of the concrete before it is ready.

16. The compressive stress vs compressive strain curve for concrete in uniaxial compression is more
non-linear than either that of the aggregate or the hardened cement paste of which the concrete is
made. This is because
(a) The aggregate material is typically much stronger than concrete.
(b) Hardened cement paste is strong, as it is the paste that gives concrete its strength.
(c) Concrete test specimens have one or more end caps of different material and this affects the
stress-strain behaviour of the concrete.
(d) Concrete contains voids that affect the stress-strain behaviour.
(e) All of the above.

17. A concrete cylinder under uniaxial compression exhibits the following behaviour:
(a) Its strength reduces as the loading rate reduces.
(b) Its strength reduces if high enough stress is maintained.
(c) Failure is initiated by local crushing of the material.
(d) (a) and (b).
(e) (a) and (b) and (c)

18. The tensile strength of concrete is usually measured either by a flexure test or a cylinder splitting
test. The result depends on the test chosen. Which of the following statements is true.
(a) The flexure test indicates the higher strength because the linear stress distribution means
that only a small part of the cross-section is highly stressed.
(b) The flexure test gives the lower strength because the linear stress distribution means that the
highly stressed part of the cross-section takes almost all of the stress.
(c) The splitting test gives a higher result because the stress across the failure plane is uniform.
(d) The splitting test gives the higher result because the failure plane is predetermined by the
test arrangement, whereas the flexure test locates the weakest plane.
(e) Both tests give about the same result and this is why either one can be used.
19. Fatigue of concrete is a term that relates to failure under repetitions of stress. An S N curve
(a) The fatigue life, N, of specimens subjected to cyclic stresses of variable stress range, S, but
with fixed minimum stress.
(b) The fatigue life of specimens subjected to cyclic stresses of fixed stress range but with
different minimum stresses.
(c) The fatigue life of specimens subjected to cyclic stresses of variable stress range and
different minimum stresses.
(d) The stress ranges, S, to produce failure for a given fatigue life, N, and for variable minimum
(e) The stress ranges to produce failure for variable fatigue lives under conditions of variable
minimum stress.

20. Creep of concrete under conditions typically experienced in service can be described as
(a) The increase of strain at a reducing rate under conditions of sustained stress.
(b) Strain increases under sustained stress typically exhibiting three components during the
service life - primary, secondary and tertiary creep.
(c) The gradual increase of stress at a reducing rate under conditions of sustained strain.
(d) The gradual increase of structural deflections under conditions of gradually increasing load.
(e) (a) and (b).

21. Carbonation has an influence on the durability of concrete structures. This is because
(a) Carbonated concrete is weaker than uncarbonated concrete.
(b) Uncarbonated concrete protects reinforcement from corrosion in all environments.
(c) Carbonation of the concrete reduces its pH.
(d) Carbonated concrete leads to damaging corrosion, irrespective of the environment.
(e) All of the above.

22. The basic corrosion cell has an anode and a cathode. At the anode
(a) Water is required.
(b) Iron plus electrons from the cathode cause Fe ++ ions to form.
(c) Hydroxyl ions also form and migrate to the cathode, completing the cell.
(d) Rust forms by reaction between the iron ions and the available oxygen.
(e) All of the above

23. In the presence of chloride ions, the corrosion rate is typically much higher. An important factor is:
(a) Chloride ions remove iron as complex Fe-Cl ions from the reinforcement, once the pH of
the concrete is sufficiently reduced.
(b) Chloride ions are released in the reaction between the complex ions and the hydroxyl ions,
freeing the chloride ions to remove more iron.
(c) Hydrochloric acid, HCl, forms at the surface of the reinforcement, reducing the pH and
causing rapid chemical corrosion.
(d) More heavily ionised forms of iron such as Fe+++ and Fe++++ are produced, resulting in a
more active corrosion cell.
(e) The cell does not require electron or hydroxyl ion transfer between anode and cathode as
the negatively charged chloride ions complete the cell.
24. The concrete structures code attempts to ensure adequate durability for structures in various
exposure classifications by specifying, among other things, which of the following requirements:
(a) The minimum cement content of the concrete.
(b) The minimum curing time.
(c) The minimum strength of the concrete.
(d) (a) and (b) and (c)
(e) (b) and (c)

25. Which of the following statements is true:

(a) Cracks in exposed concrete have little influence on corrosion of reinforcement.
(b) Cracks are of more significance if the reinforcement is highly stressed.
(c) Cracks that cross reinforcement are more important with regard to corrosion than cracks
along the reinforcement.
(d) AS 3600 does not limit crack widths because they are unimportant with regard to corrosion.
(e) (a) and (d).

26. When designing a concrete mix for a marine environment, the following is recommended:
(a) Use sulphate resisting cement to combat the effect of the high concentration of sulphate ions
in sea water.
(b) Use a blended cement.
(c) Use a non-blended cement (i.e. a cement without fly ash or other material which consumes
calcium hydroxide) to keep the concrete pH at its maximum value.
(d) Use a high early strength cement to ensure rapid hydration and sealing of pores against
chloride ion intrusion.
(e) Choose any one of the above as they are all sound recommendations, for different reasons.

27. Concrete can be attacked by fresh water. This chemical attack is due to:
(a) Dissolved carbon dioxide and water combining to remove the calcium carbonate from the
(b) Dissolved carbon dioxide and water combining to produce a weak solution of carbonic acid
(c) Dissolved sulphates in hard water combing with hydrogen ions to form a weak solution of
sulphuric acid
(d) Dissolved nitrogen combining with water to create a weak solution of nitric acid.
(e) None of the above.

28. Acid attack occurs sometimes in sewerage pipes. This attack is characterised by:
(a) Anerobic bacteria in the slime layer creating sulphate ions which combine with water to
make sulphuric acid.
(b) Aerobic bacteria around the exposed pipe wall converting sulphate ions to sulphuric acid by
adding biological hydrogen.
(c) Aerobic bacteria around the exposed pipe wall producing hydrogen sulphide gas which
combines with oxygen from the air in the pipe to create sulphuric acid.
(d) Deterioration of the pipe above and below the waterline.
(e) None of the above.

29. The destructive effects of alkali silica reaction are usually avoided by adopting the following
(a) Ensuring that the concrete is not weak and porous.
(b) Using a blended cement containing at least 20 % fly ash.
(c) Selecting only non-reactive siliceous material for both the aggregate in the concrete and the
silica component of the kiln charge for cement manufacture.
(d) Ensuring that concrete that may be potentially reactive is regularly washed down to remove
the gel.
(e) All of the above.

30. Sulphate attack causes concrete to expand. It also causes chemical change. The principal effects
are due to:
(a) Conversion of calcium sulphate (gypsum) to calcium hydroxide.
(b) Replacement of calcium in calcium hydroxide by sodium or magnesium from the sulphate
(c) Alteration of the CSH phase to ettringite
(d) Alteration of the CAH phase to ettringite
(e) (a) and (d)