A New Method to Quantitatively Characterize the Porosity of Fiber/Matrix Interfacial Transition Zone (ITZ) via Longitudinal Cross-Sections

Shan He*, Minfei Liang, En-hua Yang, Erik Schlangen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeChapterScientificpeer-review

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The properties of the interfacial transition zone (ITZ) between microfiber and cement-based matrix are of primary significance for the overall behavior of strain hardening cementitious composites (SHCCs). However, due to the relatively small diameter of polymeric microfibers (e.g., PVA fiber), it is technically difficult to obtain quantitative and representative information of the properties of the ITZ. In the current study, a new method that is able to quantitatively characterize the microstructural features of the ITZ surrounding a well-aligned microfiber was reported. With the method, the porosity gradients within the ITZs between PVA fiber and cement paste matrices with different water to cement (w/c) ratios were determined. The results show that the matrix surrounding a microfiber were more porous than the bulk matrix. The thickness of this porous region can extend up to 100 microns away from the fiber surface even at a relatively low water to cement ratio (w/c = 0.3). It is thus believed that the method could facilitate the investigation and modification of fiber/matrix bond properties and also contribute to the development of SHCC with superior properties.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationStrain Hardening Cementitious Composites
Subtitle of host publicationSHCC5
Place of PublicationSwitzerland
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-031-15805-6
ISBN (Print)978-3-031-15804-9, 978-3-031-15807-0
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Publication series

NameRILEM Bookseries
ISSN (Print)2211-0844
ISSN (Electronic)2211-0852

Bibliographical note

Green Open Access added to TU Delft Institutional Repository ‘You share, we take care!’ – Taverne project https://www.openaccess.nl/en/you-share-we-take-care
Otherwise as indicated in the copyright section: the publisher is the copyright holder of this work and the author uses the Dutch legislation to make this work public.


  • Fiber
  • Image analysis
  • ITZ
  • Porosity


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