Research

Some of the exciting projects being overseen by the Chair, the goal of which is to meet the challenges inherent to the ecological transition, include formulating new concretes, especially through the integration of vegetable fibres or recycled waste, designing so-called smart materials with embedded sensors that allow them to adapt to climate and varying constraints, analyzing the properties of these new products and evaluating how they fit into the circular economy.

Our projects and achievements can be classified under three categories:

Formulation and characterization 

Formulation and characterization 

Ongoing projects

Image MEB EDX des brasques traitées

Recovery of treated spent-pot lining (SPL) from the primary aluminium production for use as as suplementary cementitious materials

Objectives:

  • Optimize the use of treated SPL in the three systems (cement pastes, mortars and concretes) by improving their properties;
  • Characterize the physico-mechanics of new hydrated phases (e.g.: C-A-S-H, calcium-aluminate-silicate-hydrate) that significantly impact the microstructure of cement paste;
  • Characterize the durability of new concretes with treated SPL;
  • Analyze the life-cycle of treated SPL sub-products to highlight the environmental benefits of new concretes with treated SPL.

Partners: Rio Tinto, Ciment Québec, Université Laval
Funding: NSERC, CRITM 
Team: Victor Brial, Thomas Duplessis, Niakalé Camara

 

echantillons de projet en bois et en argile

Wood and clay structures: Characterization, fire resistance, hygrothermal modelling and life-cycle analysis

Objectives:

  • Formulate a clay mixture with vegetable fibres for construction to measure the hygrometric properties;
  • Measure the migration ward clay for products used to treat wood for fire and insect resistance; 
  • Test the fire resistance of wood-clay materials on girders and on a small wall prototype; 
  • Carry out hygrothermal modelling of the wood-clay envelope;
  • Analyze the life-cycle to highlight the conditions that demonstrate that wood-clay houses are beneficial within a sustainability context;
  • Disseminate the results to partners and in Africa.

Partners: QWEB, American Structures, Technologies Boralife, ENERGIES 2050
Funding: NSERC Alliance, PRIMA Québec
Team: Auguerata Kaboré, Meriam Aouinti, Mathieu Bendouma

 

Test de captation de polluants avec ces géopolymères

GeoDetox

Objectives:

  • Develop a method for the synthesis of geopolymer absorbents with bauxite residue (granular and slurry);
  • Test the ability of these geopolymers to capture pollutants;
  • Analyze the formulated products from a sustainable and economic development perspective.

Partner: Rio Tinto
Funding: Mitacs Accelerate
Team: Michael DiMare, Rhea Guha, Pierre Bambier

 

Recovery of mining waste with cement additive containing treated SPL

Objectives:

  • Optimize the use of treated SPL in cement pastes and other types of mining waste;
  • Characterize the physico-mechanics and the effect of treated SPL on key properties of the microstructure of cemented paste backfill (CPB) using a multi-scaled approach;
  • Characterize the sulfate content and leaching of these materials;
  • Analyze the life-cycle of the production of CPB in order to compare the environmental impacts created by the use of two types of residues.

Partners: Université Laval (applicant), Rio Tinto, Ciment Québec
Funding: FRQNT
Team: to come

 

Prospective design for gas turbine packaging – free-form sustainable manufacturing using concrete-wood composite

Objective:

  • Assessment of new materials and manufacturing processes for large-scale packaging.

Partners: Lucas Hof (ÉTS)
Funding: Siemens Energy
Team: Silvia Castillo, Claudia Rega Sarasola

 

3D printing

Additive manufacturing and automation in civil engineering and construction engineering

Objective:

  • Accelerate the pace of innovation in 3D printing and automation for the civil engineering and construction engineering sectors.

Funding: Canada Foundation for Innovation
Team: Vasilis Sergis, François Duhaime


Formulation and modeling of innovating functionalized cementitious materials for 3D printing based on rheology, calorimetry and polymer adsorption

ObjectivesExperimental plan with ANN

  • Formulate concrete for 3D printing by measuring the rheological parameters of cementitious pastes with admixtures and supplementary cementing materials, hydration by calorimetry, adsorption of polymers to cement, compressive strength in the hardened state, and microstructure. 
  • Model rheology, flocculation and hydration mechanisms and construction processes for 3D printing programming. 
  • Construct concrete building components with a 3D printing process.

Funding:  Fonds de Recherche du Québec Nature et technologies
Team: Malo Charrier, Vasilis Sergis 
Publications
D-optimal design of experiments applied to 3D high-performance concrete printing mix design
Artificial neural network for the prediction of the fresh properties of cementitious materials
How Admixtures Affect Yield Stresses of Cement
Testing procedures on materials to formulate the ink for 3D printing

 

Modelling

Modelling

Ongoing projects

SiO2-seifertite

Advanced characterization and modelling of the degradation of materials for nuclear waste containers

Objective:

  • Develop atomic and course-grain bentonite modelling, including its interaction with copper linings.


Collaborator: Queen’s University
Funding: NSERC, Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO)
Team: Karim Zongo

 

Computational materials science for nuclear power applications

Objective:

  • Develop nanoscale modelling.

Parter: Laurent Béland (Queen’s University)
Funding: Calcul Canada
Team: Karim Zongo

 

Achievements

Roadmap: Opportunities for the large-scale use of bauxite residue in cement

Objective:

  • Develop an spreadsheet-based tool for assessing the energy benefits of using bauxite residue (BR) in the cement and concrete industry to demonstrate the environmental advantages associated with the use of BR.

Partner: International Aluminium Institute
Funding: International Aluminium Institute
Team: Valérie Nattrodt Monteiro, Victor Brial, Michael DiMare
Reporting:

Environmental assessment

Environmental assessment

Ongoing projects

entretien des systèmes de traitement de l'air dans les espaces confinés exposés à la COVID-19

Procedure for auditing and maintaining air-treatment systems in confined spaces exposed to COVID-19

Objective:

  • Develop and validate a technical protocol for testing air contamination using ATPmetry and disinfecting air-treatment systems in confined spaces to reduce the risks of contamination and transmission of the virus that causes COVID-19.

Partner: Tecnea Canada
Funding: Mitacs 
Team: Mathieu Bendouma

 

béton de fibres végétales

Innovation in vegetable fibre concrete for optimizing formulation and implementation

Objective:

  •  Improve vegetable fibre concrete to accelerate drying times and enhance hygrothermal properties.

Partner: Isofib Éco Construction Inc.
Funding: Mitacs Accelerate, Isofib
Team: Philippe Fortin, Daniel Perraton

 

Achievements

Quality control for controlled low-strengh materials

Objectives:

  • Propose technical specifications for this material;
  • Improve the technical specifications for this material;
  • Define usage criteria and onsite controls;
  • Compare the hardening of controlled low-strengh materials with that of conventional aggregate.

Partner: CERIU
Funding: CERIU, Mitacs
Team: Michel Vaillancourt, Samuel Pothier
Reporting: Remblai sans retrait - projet finalisé (in French)

 

Assessment of discrepancies in the results of life-cycle analysis (LCA) for buildings

Objective:

  • Study the differences between the results obtained using various LCA software applications and formulate recommendations for their use.

Partner: Groupe Ageco
Funding: Mitacs Accelerate
Team: Vincent Roy
Reporting: Annex 72

Multidisciplinary

Multidisciplinary

Ongoing projects

Prisme

Quantum mediation experiment integrating augmented concrete: A multidisciplinary approach to the sustainable amalgamation of the material and the digital

Objectives:

  • Participate in the creation of a collective space for exploring radical new concepts evolving from the meshing of media arts with engineering expertise;
  • Develop artistic processes and art works that incorporate advanced functionalities;
  • Introduce the general public to the creative process for the new augmented concrete & quantum link art installation, along with the corresponding NFT, with a view to sparking dialogue concerning the viability of these technologies.

Partners: Jean-Ambroise Vesac (UQAT), Bora Ung and Kaiwen Zhang (ÉTS)
Funding: FRQNT

 

Achievements

grand groupe de personnes vu d'en haut réuni

Living Within the Earth’s Carrying Capacity: Knowledge Synthesis

Objective:

  • Measure and manage living within the Earth’s carrying capacity on an urban scale.

Partners: British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT)
Funding: CRSH
Team: Marie Vigier
Reporting: to come