Concrete structures cannot be constructed and subjected to full-scale tests for durability in a manner analogous to load tests. It therefore is necessary to estimate the durability of concrete structures by combining information gained from a study of service yielded by existing structures, controlled exposure tests of specimens, laboratory simulated-service tests, and tests and analyses of concrete and concrete materials. None of these sources of information provide a basis for adequately evaluating the effect on durability of workmanship, honesty, and intelligence that may or may not be employed in all stages of the operation from production of concrete materials to maintenance of the completed structure.
Durability of concrete structures is determined by materials, workmanship, design, and exposure. Petrographic examination of aggregates, X-ray diffraction studies of cement, freezing-and-thawing tests of concrete both in the laboratory and at field exposure stations, ultrasonic pulse velocity tests of specimens and structures, are recommended means of improving knowledge of durability of concrete and concrete structures.
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