For concrete applications with an elevated risk of cracking – like floors, screed, and precast panels with large surface-to-volume ratios – CHRYSO Serenis brings peace of mind.

Contractors and manufacturers alike need to be confident that they can prevent their concrete structure from cracking or curling, to ensure the success of their applications. Cracks can weaken concrete, compromise its durability, and allow ingress of corrosive elements like water, chlorides, and ice. They can also spoil the appearance of concrete.

Floors and screed applications have an elevated risk of cracking. Image credit: Chryso

Floors and screed applications have an elevated risk of cracking. Image credit: Chryso

These outcomes are the result of shrinkage, which happens at all ages in the life of concrete; a length of concrete cast can shrink by as much as 0,08 %. While concrete has excellent plasticity when fresh and high mechanical strength once set, it can only withstand minor deformation. When shrinkage comes up against a mechanical constraint, the concrete may crack.

As a ready-to-use shrinkage-reducing admixture for concrete and mortars, Serenis can reduce shrinkage by up to 80% depending on the conditions and concrete mix design. This makes it ideal for all applications requiring minimal shrinkage, including injection grouting, high and ultra-high-performance concrete, and special structures.

The phenomenon of curling or bending in fine concrete parts or elements can also be addressed by the product. As evaporation takes place mainly from the surface of concrete, there is always more shrinkage in the surface. As the concrete shrinks, therefore, the edges rise.

This action is more or less pronounced depending on the surface-to-volume ratio, but even the slightest curling is a risk. It can endanger an element’s integrity, leading to breakage during transport, unloading or even under its own weight. By reducing the amount of shrinkage, Serenis is able to reduce the possibility of curling.

Another important benefit of Serenis is that it can allow users to increase the distance between shrinkage joints. Industrial floors made from concrete, for instance, are normally divided into areas of 5 metres by 5 metres, bordered by shrinkage joints sawn into the surface of the concrete. More distance between shrinkage joints means time saved on laying floors, reduced maintenance costs, and improved overall appearance.

Serenis works by reducing the capillary tensions, therefore impacting the most important mechanism at the origin of shrinkage. It does not have a spreading effect and does not modify the water demand of concrete nor impact the water-to-cement ratio. It is compatible with new generation superplasticisers as well as traditional plasticisers and superplasticisers.