Microstructural changes and mass transport in cement-based materials: A modeling approach

A. Michel*, V. Marcos-Meson, W. Kunther, M.R. Geiker

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


A generic modeling framework is presented to relate microstructural changes, i.e. changes in the pore volume distribution and phase assemblage, and mass transport in cement-based materials. The modeling framework accounts for mass transport and chemical equilibrium between ions in the pore solution and solid hydrates by means of an extended version of the Poisson-Nernst-Planck equation, in which the chemical equilibrium is solved by the external geochemical code IPHREEQC. Results of numerical studies concerning carbonation and leaching of a cement-based material indicate significant changes in mass transport properties due to chemical reactions leading to alterations in the microstructure. The resulting highly non-linear (both spatial and temporal) microstructural changes are thereby depending on the exposure and indicate that interactions between chemical reactions, pore structure changes, and mass transport have to be accounted for as a whole.
Original languageEnglish
Article number106285
JournalCement and Concrete Research
Number of pages13
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • B. Microstructure
  • B. Pore size distribution
  • B. Thermodynamic calculations
  • C. Transport Properties
  • E. Modeling


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