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This chapter, which is concerned with aggregates for mortars, necessarily introduces some degree of overlap with Chapter 8. However, there are major differences between mortars and concretes, arising mainly from the manner of their use.

The term ‘mortar’ is used in the building industry to denote a mixture of natural sand or other fine aggregate and some binding agent, used as a jointing or a surface plastering and rendering material (Fig. 9.1). In the United Kingdom the demand for building sand grew steadily up to 1973 to reach a peak of 23.6 Mt, representing some 18% of the total sand and gravel production (HMSO 1989) for the country. Since then it has fluctuated considerably, falling to 15.7Mt in 1981 but rising again to 21.89 Mt in 1988 (Fig. 9.2). It should be noted that the output figures for building sands are far in excess of figures for mortar production.Until about 30 years ago the choice of binders in the UK was limited to lime or cement or cement-lime mixes. Mortars made with lime alone as binder are no longer used for building except for some specialist applications in the repair of historic buildings. The choice of cementbinders has been widened to include masonry cementS(specially blended mixtures of Portland cement with finely divided mineral plasticizers and air-entraining agent). Increasingly, air-entrainment in mortars, not only to confer frost resistant properties but also to aid workability, is being used even with cement/lime/ sand mortars. The use

FIG. 9.1.

Typical brick and mortar construction for joining.

FIG. 9.1.

Typical brick and mortar construction for joining.

FIG. 9.2.

Production of building sand for construction purposes (land-use and marine-dredged totals) (BACMI 1991).

FIG. 9.2.

Production of building sand for construction purposes (land-use and marine-dredged totals) (BACMI 1991).

Until about 30 years ago the choice of binders in the UK was limited to lime or cement or cement-lime mixes. Mortars made with lime alone as binder are no longer used for building except for some specialist applications in the repair of historic buildings. The choice of cement binders has been widened to include masonry cements (specially blended mixtures of Portland cement with finely divided mineral plasticizers and air-entraining agent).

Increasingly, air-entrainment in mortars, not only to confer frost resistant properties but also to aid workability, is being used even with cement/lime/sand mortars.

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