Assessment of long-term performance of foam glass as an insulating sub-base in varying humidity and temperature conditions
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Warsaw University of Technology, Faculty of Civil Engineering, Al. Armii Ludowej 16, 00-637 Warsaw, Poland
Submission date: 2021-10-21
Final revision date: 2022-02-17
Acceptance date: 2022-02-24
Publication date: 2022-09-30
Archives of Civil Engineering 2022;68(3):155-175
The research focuses on the properties of foam glass, popular insulation material used in various industries and applications, including construction, chemistry and defence, after several years of use under varying load, thermal and humidity conditions. The material used as an insulating sub-base underneath industrial steel tank, which had failed with a threat of leakage of the stored high-temperature medium (200°C), was tested. After macroscopic and material evaluation of the foam glass samples, their compressive strength, water absorption, and behaviour under complex conditions including loading, high temperature, and moisture were examined experimentally. Absorption of water considerably affects reducing the foam glass performance. Investigations show that the foam glass generally does not reach the declared compressive strength. If this surface is additionally heated to high temperature, the foam glass undergoes destruction by chipping or crushing just at stresses several times lower than the limits for this material, and even with no applied load. The test results show that foam glass exposed to simultaneous action of water and high temperature undergoes progressive deterioration, resulting in a decrease in declared parameters and losing its usability. Therefore, effective and durable protection from water is of critical importance to ensure reliability of foam glass exposed to high temperatures.
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