Ted Sibbick
GCP Applied Technologies
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Vice President
Daniela Mauro
Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc.
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Anol Mukhopadhyay
Texas A&M Transportation Institute
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Jacki Atienza
BASF Corporation
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Associated Organizations


SCP Meeting Minutes - Toronto, June 24, 2014

The meeting was well attended with a total of 21 members or guests.

Attendees: Derek Cong, Patrick Miller, Bob O’Neill, Laura Powers, Nick Scaglione, Mauro Scali, Ted Sibbick, John Taylor, Fred Shrimer, Carole Anne MacDonald, Ron Sturm, Daniela Mauro, Rachael Barbour, Mengesha Beyene, Karl Peterson, Robert Jenkins, David Rothstein, Gerard Moulzolf, Bill Rebel, Dale Miller, Mark Bury, Jacki Atienza

Review of Membership: Currently 92 members

Review of Log-in procedures for the SCP website

Bob O’Niell and Ted Sibbick gave a brief review of the ICMA Meeting in Milan, Italy
- 125 people in attendance
- Lots of good papers on petrogragraphic topics
- Field trip to the Mapei Facility R & D and tech center

Laura Powers spoke about Masonry Symposium.

Jacki Atienza gave a presentation on the new Microsphere technology that BASF has developed for the replacement of air entraining admixtures for freeze/thaw durability. The product is identified as Mastershpere FT300. The presentation was very interesting and Jacki did a great job of presenting the information from a petrographer’s perspective. Mark Bury, a Product Manager from BASF was also on hand to answer production/marketing questions.


Euroseminar on Microscopy Applied to Building Materials

The 15th Euroseminar on Microscopy Applied to Building Materials (EMABM) which will be held on June 16-19, 2015 in Delft, The Netherlands.

EMABM is one of the most important meeting series which brings academicians, students, engineers, geoscientists and industry professionals together in order to share the latest developments and results in the field of building materials characterization. EMABM covers all traditional and modern materials characterization techniques while special emphasis is given on microscopy.

One of the highlights of EMABM 2015 will be the 1st EMABM Photomicrography Competition.Euroseminar participants are invited to submit their best optical and/or electron photomicrographs to the competition. Our aim with this competition is to promote the importance of high quality photomicrography in building materials characterization.

Deadline for submission of abstracts is September 1, 2014.  Please see the following link for more information:




SCP Meeting, June 24, 2014, Toronto

Please join us for our SCP meeting in Toronto during the ASTM meeting.  The meeting will be held at the Sheraton Centre Hotel - Kent Room (second floor) on Tuesday at 6:30. 

We will have a presentation by Jacki Atienza of BASF Construction Chemicals on a new concrete admixture being produced by BASF that would be used as an alternative to air entraining admixtures for the production of freeze/thaw durable concrete.  The liquid admixture uses millions of tough but flexible polymeric microspheres. The microsphere voids provide internal cushioning during freeze-thaw cycles for greater durability.  The recommended dosage rate of the microspheres is 1% by volume to provide the equivalent freeze/thaw durability of typical air-entrained concrete.  Due to this low volume, the concrete can be up to 30% stronger relative to typical air entrained concrete.  Laboratory testing including ASTM C666 freeze/thaw testing and full-scale field trials have been performed.  Pilot road projects are being planned in Minnesota, Virginia and Ohio to seek the approval of standards boards.

Jacki is a concrete petrographer at BASF and has been involved with the testing of this new admixture.  She will discuss the use and implications of this new admixture from a petrographer’s perspective.


36TH International Conference on Cement Microscopy

The International Cement Microscopy Association (ICMA) is proud to announce its Thirty Sixth (36th) International Conference on Cement Microscopy to be held in the famous City of Milan, Italy on April 14-17, 2014. A call for papers has been released requesting Abstracts related to microscopy of cement, clincker, concrete and related materials. Abstract submission deadline is December 15, 2013.  See more information on their website (soon):


SCP Meeting June 11, 2013 Indianapolis, Indiana

Please join us for our SCP meeting in Indianapolis during the ASTM meeting.  The meeting will be held at the JW Marriott - Room 201 on Tuesday from 6:30 to 8:00.  

We will have a presentation by Karl Peterson of the University of Toronto.  The presentation title and description follows. 
"Combined vacuum/high-pressure fluorescent epoxy impregnation and microscopy of geo-materials after mechanical testing"

Fluorescent microscopy techniques are widely used in the assessment of concrete materials, but seldom used in the field of rock fracture. For the observation of fractures, many researchers have turned to x-ray computed tomography (CT). X-ray CT provides excellent three-dimensional information, but often with poor resolution, due to limitations imposed by the dimensions of the tested materials. The high resolution of a petrographic microscope allows for a more detailed examination of fractures.   After mechanical testing, test specimens may easily break apart, so it is necessary to stabilize the material with epoxy prior to production of thin sections. Combined vacuum/high-pressure impregnation is a versatile technique popularized by a private materials testing firm, and implemented here with standard equipment common to most universities or testing laboratories. After impregnation with fluorescent epoxy, the samples are prepared in thin section, and images recorded with a petrographic microscope equipped with a excitation/barrier filters, a low power objective, and a manual xy stage. Results are compared with slices from x-ray CT reconstructions from the same sample.

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