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Numerical Simulation of the Freeze-Thaw Behavior of Mortar Containing Deicing Salt Solution



Hadi S. Esmaeeli, Yaghoob Farnam, Dale P. Bentz, Pablo Zavattieri, Jason Weiss


This paper presents a one-dimensional finite difference model that was developed to describe the freeze-thaw behavior of mortar containing deicing salt solution. The model is used to predict the temperature and the heat flow for mortar samples during cooling and heating. Phase transformations associated with the freezing/melting of water/ice or transition of the eutectic solution from liquid to solid are included in this model. The lever rule is used to calculate the quantity of solution that undergoes the phase transformation, thereby simulating the energy released/absorbed during phase transformation. During solidification, undercooling phenomenon is considered in the numerical model. Data from experiments performed using a low-temperature longitudinal guarded comparative calorimeter (LGCC) on mortar samples is compared with results from the numerical model. Two types of experimental data are used for the comparison. First, data from mortar samples that were fully saturated (i.e., 100 % degree of saturation) using varying concentrations of sodium chloride (NaCl) solutions (0 %, 5 %, 10 %, and 23.3 % concentrations by mass) were considered. Second, in addition to fully saturated samples containing sodium chloride solution, partially saturated samples (i.e., partially saturated samples made using water with degrees of saturation equal to 75 %, 85 %, 95 %, and 100 %) are also considered.
Materials and Structures


Degree of saturation, deicing salt, finite difference method, freeze and thaw, mortar, undercooling


Esmaeeli, H. , Farnam, Y. , Bentz, D. , Zavattieri, P. and Weiss, J. (2016), Numerical Simulation of the Freeze-Thaw Behavior of Mortar Containing Deicing Salt Solution, Materials and Structures, [online],, (Accessed April 19, 2024)
Created November 3, 2016, Updated October 12, 2021