Four Ways to Specify Rapid Set® Cement

Because you can't use ASTM C150.

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Rapid Set® Cement is the primary component of dozens of cements, concrete, mortars, and grouts developed for specific applications. Since we (CTS Cement Manufacturing Corp.) introduced the product in the mid-1970s, state transportation departments have consumed more than 2 million tons for bridge and highway panel replacement, partial- and full-depth pavement rehabilitation, and emergency repairs. All but four allow Rapid Set® products.

Rapid Set® isn’t portland cement, though, so you can’t use ASTM C150 (Standard Specification for Portland Cement) to write a specification. That’s why ASTM C1600 (Standard Specification for Rapid Hardening Hydraulic Cement) was introduced in 2009. We recommend a prescriptive rapid-strength concrete specification based on ASTM C1600 cement and adding maximum allowed shrinkage to your other concrete performance requirements (e.g., freeze-thaw, permeability, etc.). Click here for assistance from our engineering sales team.

1. Prescriptive Specification

The cement shall be Rapid Set® cement manufactured by CTS Cement Manufacturing Corp.

2. Mineralogical Specification
  • The cement shall be a calcium sulfoaluminate (CSA) cement with at least 20% CSA and at least 40% belite.
  • The cement shall be a belitic calcium sulfoaluminate (BCSA) cement with no addition of portland cement.
3. ASTM Specification

The cement shall meet the requirements of ASTM C1600 – VRH (very rapid hardening).

4. Performance Specification (Early Strength)
  • Compressive Strength: The concrete shall achieve 3000 psi (27.58 MPa) compressive strength at 3 hours.
  • Flexural Strength (Highway Pavement): The concrete shall achieve 400 psi (2.76 MPa) flexural strength at 2 hours.
  • Flexural Strength (Airfield Pavement): The concrete shall achieve 550 psi (3.79 MPa) flexural strength at 4 hours.
BONUS: Recommended Shrinkage Addendums

Given how detrimental shrinkage is to concrete’s long-term durability, states have begun doing just that. Here's an example:

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