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Mass concrete is defined by the American Concrete Institute (ACI 207.1R) as: “any volume of concrete in which a combination of dimensions of the member being cast, the boundary conditions, the characteristics of the concrete mixture, and the ambient conditions can lead to undesirable thermal stresses, cracking, deleterious chemical reactions, or reduction in the long-term strength as a result of elevated concrete temperature due to heat from hydration”.
Mass concrete has been historically associated with large structures such as dams, bridge piers, raft slabs and other large volume placements. Understanding the causes of mass concrete issues related to the high internal temperatures generated and thermal cracking is the key to producing a durable structure.
The term mass concrete is sometimes associated with unreinforced (plain) concrete.
Acknowledgement: adapted from ACI