Superhydrophobic Engineered Cementitious Composites for Highway Bridge Applications: Phase I

Quarterly Reports Other Documents Final Report
December 2010
March 2011
June 2011
September 2011
June 2012
Advanced Concrete Could Last More Than a Century Without Maintenance
Concrete Mix Adds Flexibility, Durability
Advanced Concrete Means Little Maintenance For A Century
High-Tech Concrete Will Ensure Stronger and Longer Lasting Roads and Bridges
Final Report

Primary Investigator

Konstantin Sobolev
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
3200 N. Cramer St.
Milwaukee, WI 53211


The strength and durability of highway bridges are two of the key components in maintaining a high level of freight transportation capacity on the nation’s highways. The research proposed here will focus on developing new hybrid engineered cementitious composites (ECCs), highly engineered cement based concrete materials combined with polyvinyl alcohol fibers and hydrophobic compounds, to create a substitute concrete which can provide the strength and durability demanded in key regions of highway bridges.


This research project aims to develop superhydrophobic engineered cementitious composite (ECC) material to replace normal concrete and achieve a service life of 120+ years. The proposed concept will produce a new generation of concrete with significantly improved ductility, durability, and sustainability through a longer life and less maintenance. This approach includes the use of significant amounts of by-products or supplementary cementitious materials (SCMs) to reduce the detrimental impact of cement production on the environment.


  1. Develop the ECC with improved ductility and strain-hardening response.
  2. Produce and test ECC with superhydrophobic admixtures and SCMs
  3. Investigate the durability of developed ECC (Phase II)

Project Information

  • Duration: 12 months
  • Dates: October 1, 2010 – September 30, 2011
  • Budget: $75,786
  • Student Involvement: One graduate student and two undergraduates
  • Modal Orientation: Highway, Air
  • Project ID: CFIRE 04-09
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