Volume 9, Issue 1 (January 2012)
Attempt at Quantification of Surface Degradation and Evaluation of Relationship between Outdoor and Accelerated Exposure of Construction Sealants
The weatherability of construction sealants is a highly important performance criterion for the prediction of their service lives. Currently, the evaluation of a sealant’s surface weatherability is carried out mainly via qualitative visual judgment. One objective of this paper is to establish a quantitative method for the assessment of surface degradation. A further objective is the evaluation of the relationship between outdoor and accelerated exposure with regard to surface degradation. The understanding of this relationship is important for the shortening of the development cycle and the prediction of a sealant’s service life. The paper presents information on the weatherability of construction sealants based on a recently developed test specimen design that allows simultaneous exposure of the sealant to forced compression and extension movement in a single specimen with cyclic movement and weathering carried out simultaneously. A quantitative method for the assessment of surface cracks is employed, and the relationship between outdoor and accelerated weathering exposure is evaluated by using metrics that indicate the degree of surface cracking as a new semi-quantitative criterion of surface degradation.