Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

CEMHYD3D: A Three-Dimensional Cement Hydration and Microstructure Development Modelling Package. Version 2.0



Dale P. Bentz


This user's manual provides updated documentation and computer program listings for version 2.0 of the three-dimensional cement hydration and microstructure development model (CEMHYD3D) developed at the National Institute of Standards and Technology. Originally documented and distributed in 1997, several substantial enhancements and modifications have been included in the new release. The following topics are covered in this documentation, as they were in the original version: acquisition and processing of two-dimensional scanning electron microscope and x-ray images; creation of a starting three-dimensional microstructure based on a measured particle size distribution for the cement powder and information extracted from the two-dimensional composite image; and execution of the cement hydration and microstructure development program. Additional noteworthy features of the new version of the model include: direct modelling of the induction period during cement hydration; isothermal, adiabatic, or user-programmed temperature curing conditions; a calcium silicate hydrate gel (C-S-H) whose molar stoichiometry and specific gravity (molar volume) vary with temperature; improved pozzolanic reactions between cement and silica fume (fly ash); and the incorporation of various forms of calcium sulfate (dihydrate, hemihydrate, and anhydrite) into the hydration model. In addition, a prototype internet-accessible database containing two-dimensional composite SEM images, quantitative phase analysis results, and measured cement particle size distributions is now available to provide key input information for the three-dimensional modelling process. Documented example datafiles are provided along with the examples given in the guide. Complete program listings are provided in the appendices. This manual and all of the computer programs it describes are freely available for downloading via anonymous ftp from NIST.
NIST Interagency/Internal Report (NISTIR) - 6485
Report Number
Verison 2.0


building technology, cement hydration, compressive strength, computer modelling, correlation, heat of hydration, image processing, microstructure, simulation


Bentz, D. (2000), CEMHYD3D: A Three-Dimensional Cement Hydration and Microstructure Development Modelling Package. Version 2.0, NIST Interagency/Internal Report (NISTIR), National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD, [online], (Accessed June 17, 2024)


If you have any questions about this publication or are having problems accessing it, please contact

Created April 1, 2000, Updated February 19, 2017