The critical role of nanotube shape in cement composites Academic Article uri icon


  • The growing availability of nanotubes and the increased knowledge about their loading in polymers have prompted the incorporation of nanotubes in cementitious matrices. The effects of loading straight tungsten di-sulfide nanotubes (WS2NT) or waved carbon nanotubes (CNT) in cementitious matrices was explored. Their inclusion in these composites at exceptionally low concentrations (0.063 vol% and 0.15 vol% for WS2NT and CNT, respectively) enhanced the composite’s mechanical properties, including compressive and flexural strengths (25–38%). Thermal analysis and electron microscopy indicated that nanotube incorporation in cementitious matrices also accelerated hydration reaction kinetics. It was shown that straight WS2NTs bridged pores and cracks more effectively than the waved CNTs, which resist crack propagation via an anchoring mechanism. A comparison to representative cement nanocomposite systems shows that nanotubes (aspect ratio≫1), offer better reinforcement efficiencies than particulate nanomaterials, yielding high mechanical properties enhancement at low concentration.

publication date

  • August 1, 2016