25 May 2012
The Construction Materials Group held its Young Researchers' Forum at SCI on 17 May 2012, at which papers were presented by university researchers and new industrial appointees.
The meeting was convened as an opportunity for people working in this field to meet each other and learn about recent developments across a wide range of materials. In addition to traditional construction materials, such as cement and concrete and asphaltic compounds, innovative ideas were presented on the use of structural timber, compacted straw bale construction and lime-stabilisation of soils.
Two papers have been selected for full publication: Ian Lancaster (University of Liverpool) reported 'A rapid quantitative determination of polymer-modified bitumen storage stability by FTIR' which will be published in Asphalt Professional. Ian's work has significant commercial implications for the assessment of these materials in storage, offering a clean, quantitative and rapid means for effective quality control.
The day's final paper, from Jun Ren (University College, London, and pictured with group chair Prof Mark Tyrer) described the effect of surface-charge modifying additives in complex mixtures of alkali-activated slag and this paper will appear in Advances in Cements Research later in the year.
Jun Ren was also awarded the Group's Sir Joseph Bazalgette Award, which recognises a significant contribution to the field by a young researcher at SCI. In addition, congratulations are extended to Mir Ali Shams, also of University College London (pictured), who was awarded the Institute of Concrete Technology prize for his paper describing the use of ternary binders in self-compacting concrete.
Thanks are extended to the Institute of Concrete Technology for offering this prize in support of this SCI meeting and to the Mineralogical Society, Institute of Asphalt Technology and the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining, each of which promoted this event.