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Re: Concrete - Cube Strength vs. Cylinder Strength

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There is no exact mathematical relationship between a concrete cylinder and a cube test.  In addition to size effects of the two tests, the aggregate size to test size also has an influence.  The only way this can be done is by testing the two with the same concrete mix then working the numbers.  I have been down this road several times with some of our foreign projects.  The other issue to be aware of is that in the U.S. we have a concrete phi factor that we use on the design side which includes possible variations in construction.  With this, our acceptance criteria for concrete design strength is the same as being tested (assuming you have the required number of tests, standard deviation, etc.).  That is, if we design for 4000 psi all we need is 4000 psi from the tests.  Some foreign codes effectively put the phi factor on the construction testing side and for the same situation you may design for 4000 psi but the acceptance criteria for testing may be 4500 psi.  This is one reason you should never use one code for design and another for construction/testing.

Thomas Hunt, S.E.

Harold Sprague <spraguehope(--nospam--at)>
01/05/2010 08:27 AM
Please respond to seaint
Concrete - Cube Strength vs. Cylinder Strength

I have found some studies from the internet that link cylinder strength tests to 6" (British std.) cube strengths.

I have a couple of questions:
1.  Is there anything more definitive from ACI or ASTM that help us in international work?
2.  What are some other standard specimen sizes for determining concrete strength for other countries?

Regards, Harold Sprague


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