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Development of European Standards for Concrete, Cements, Aggregates and Concrete Repair


concrete testing


cement testing

fly ash

silica fume


aggregate testing 

concrete protection & repair

concrete structures

mixing water



BRE represents Government on many BSI committees in the concrete and concrete materials fields and is contributing to the development of European standards within CEN, the European Committee for Standardisation. The following paragraphs detail the latest position with some of the key European standards already published and those currently in preparation and the effect on current British standards. For further information contact:-

Dr J D Matthews

Centre for Concrete Construction

Tel: +44 (0) 1923 664753

Fax: +44 (0) 1923 664786


1. Concrete

The European standard for concrete, EN 206-1 Concrete – Part 1: Specification, performance, production and conformity was approved by CEN on 12 May 2000 and published by BSI as the official English language version, BS EN 206-1, coming into effect on 15 February 2001.

A complementary British standard, BS 8500, to accompany BS EN 206-1 is currently in preparation and is expected to be completed and published early in 2002. This ‘package’ of BS EN 206-1 and BS 8500 will co-exist with the current British standard for concrete, BS 5328, until the latter is withdrawn on 1 December 2003.

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2. Concrete Testing

The following European standard test methods for concrete have already been published as BS ENs:-

BS EN 12350 Testing fresh concrete

Part 1 : Sampling

Part 2 : Slump test

Part 3 : Vebe test

Part 4 : Degree of compactability

Part 5 : Flow table test

Part 6 : Density

Part 7 : Air content – Pressure methods

BS EN 12390 Testing hardened concrete

Part 1 : Shape, dimensions and other requirements for specimens and moulds

Part 2 : Making and curing specimens for strength tests

Part 4 : Compressive strength – Specification for testing machines

Part 5 : Flexural strength of test specimens

Part 6 : Tensile splitting strength of test specimens

Part 7 : Density of hardened concrete

Part 8 : Depth of penetration of water under pressure

EN 12390 : Part 3 Compressive strength of test specimens has been approved at second formal vote and will be published by BSI in due course.

Those current British standards that conflict with the above will also be withdrawn on 1 December 2003.

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3. Cements

The European standard for common cements, EN 197, consists of two Parts:-

EN 197-1 Cement – Part 1 : Composition, specifications and conformity criteria for common cements

EN 197-2 Cement – Part 2 : Conformity evaluation

Part 1 was approved by CEN on 21 May 2000 and Part 2 on 26 May 2000. The two Parts were published by BSI as the official English language versions, BS EN 197-1 and BS EN 197-2, coming into effect on 15 September 2000. CE marking to EN 197 became possible on 1 April 2001 and conflicting British standards will be withdrawn on 1 April 2002. Those standards to be withdrawn will be BS 12 Portland cement, BS 4246 High slag blastfurnace cement, BS 6588 Portland pulverized-fuel ash cements and BS 7583 Portland limestone cement. In addition, BS 146 Portland blastfurnace cements is in the process of being revised with a self-explanatory new title of Blastfurnace cements with strength properties outside the scope of BS EN 197-1.

A number of other European standards for different cement and binder types are currently at various stages of preparation by the responsible CEN committee TC 51 Cements and building lime :-

Formal vote stage

prEN 459-1 Building lime

Part 1 : Definitions, specifications and conformity criteria

Part 2 : Test methods

Part 3 : Conformity evaluation

These will replace BS 890 Building limes and the 1995 version of BS EN 459-2

CEN enquiry stage

prEN 197-3 Cement – Part 3 : Composition, specifications and conformity criteria for low heat common cements

prEN 14216 Cement - Composition, specifications and conformity criteria for massive concrete low heat cements

prEN 14217 Cement - Composition, specifications and conformity criteria for low early strength low heat cements

These will eventually replace BS 1370 Low heat Portland cement

Second CEN enquiry

prEN 413-1 Masonry cement – Part 1 : Specification

This will replace BS 5224 Masonry cement

In preparation for CEN enquiry

prEN XXXXX (number not yet allocated) Calcium aluminate cement : Composition, specifications and conformity criteria

This will eventually replace BS 915 High alumina cement

prENV 13282 Hydraulic road binders : Composition, specifications and conformity criteria

There is no corresponding British standard

In preparation

prEN 197-4 Cement – Part 4 : Composition, specifications and conformity criteria for sulfate resisting common cements

Difficulties have been encountered in achieving agreement on the contents of this potential CEN standard. At present, it is proposed to prepare a CEN report listing national prescriptive well-tried and proven provisions for sulfate and sea water resistance as an intermediate step towards a final standard.

At the national level, the following standard has recently been published :-

BS 7979 limestone fines for use with Portland cement

The following British standard is is currently out for public comment :-

8402 Expansive hydraulic cement

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4. Cement Testing

The following CEN standards have been in existence for a number of years :-

BS EN 196 Methods of testing cement

Part 1 : Determination of strength

Part 2 : Chemical analysis of cement

Part 3 : Determination of setting time and soundness

Part 5 : Pozzolanicity test for pozzolanic cements

Part 6 : Determination of fineness

Part 7 : Methods of taking and preparing samples of cement

Part 21 : Determination of the chloride, carbon dioxide and alkali content of cement

Revisions of Parts 1, 2, 3, 5 and 21 have been approved to go for CEN enquiry. A test method for chemical analysis of cement by X-ray fluorescence is in preparation and will eventually become integrated into Part 2.

A further CEN standard, prEN 13639 Determination of total organic carbon in limestone is currently out for formal vote.

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5. Fly Ash

The existing CEN standard for fly ash, EN 450 Fly ash for concrete – Definitions, requirements and quality control is currently under revision to prepare a fully harmonised standard. The draft revised standard consists of two Parts :-

prEN 450 Fly ash for concrete

Part 1 : Definition, specifications and conformity criteria

Part 2 : Conformity evaluation

Completion of these standards is not expected before 2002.

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6. Silica Fume

The following draft CEN standards have been approved to go for CEN enquiry :-

prEN 13263-1 Silica fume for concrete

Part 1 : Definitions, requirements and conformity criteria

Part 2 : Conformity evaluation

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7. Aggregates

The following series of draft standards is currently awaiting formal vote:-

prEN 12620 Aggregates for concrete

prEN 13043 Aggregates for bituminous mixtures and surface treatment for roads and other trafficked areas

prEN 13055-1 Lightweight aggregates

Part 1: Lightweight aggregates for concrete and mortar

prEN 13139 Aggregates for mortar

prEN 13242 Aggregates for unbound materials for use in civil engineering work and road construction

prEN 13383 Armourstone

Part 1 : Specification

Part 2 : Methods of test

prEN 13450 Aggregates for railway ballast

prEN 12620 and prEN 13055-1 are part of the package of standards required for EN 206-1 to be able to operate and the date of withdrawal of conflicting British standards is the same as for EN 206-1, i.e. 1 December 2003. The standards to be withdrawn will be BS 882 Aggregates from natural sources for concrete, BS 1047 Air-cooled blastfurnace slag aggregate for use in construction and BS 3797 Lightweight aggregates for masonry units and structural concrete.

Also in preparation is prEN 13055-2 Lightweight aggregates - Part 2 : Lightweight aggregates for bituminous mixtures and surface treatments and for bound and unbound applications, excluding concrete, mortar and grout

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8. Aggregate Testing

Those test methods already published as BS ENs are as follows:-

BS EN 932 Tests for general properties of aggregates

Part 1 : Methods for sampling

Part 2 : Methods for reducing laboratory samples

Part 3 : Procedure and terminology for simplified petrographic description

Part 5 : Common equipment and calibration

Part 6 : Definitions of repeatability and reproducibility

BS EN 933 Tests for geometrical properties of aggregates

Part 1 : Determination of particle size distribution - Sieving method

Part 2 : Determination of particle size distribution - Test sieves, nominal size of apertures

Part 3 : Determination of particle shape - Flakiness index

Part 4 : Determination of particle shape - Shape index

Part 5 : Determination of percentage of crushed and broken surfaces in coarse aggregate particles

Part 7 : Determination of shell content - Percentage of shells in coarse aggregates

Part 8 : Assessment of fines - Sand equivalent test

Part 9 : Assessment of fines - Methylene blue test

Part 10 : Assessment of fines - Grading of fillers (air-jet sieving)

BS EN 1097 Tests for mechanical and physical properties of aggregates

Part 1 : Determination of the resistance to wear (micro-Deval)

Part 2 : Methods for the determination of resistance to fragmentation

Part 3 : Determination of loose bulk density and voids

Part 4 : Determination of the voids of dry compacted filler

Part 5 : Determination of the water content by drying in a ventilated oven

Part 6 : Determination of particle density and water absorption

Part 7 : Determination of the particle density of filler - Pyknometer method

Part 8 : Determination of the polished stone value

Part 9 : Determination of the resistance to wear by abrasion from studded tyres - Nordic test

BS EN 1367 Tests for thermal and weathering properties of aggregates

Part 1 : Determination of resistance to freezing and thawing

Part 2 : Magnesium sulfate test

Part 3 : Boiling test for Sonnenbrand basalt

Part 4 : Determination of drying shrinkage

BS EN 1744 Tests for chemical properties of aggregates

Part 1 : Chemical analysis

BS EN 13179 Tests for filler aggregate used in bituminous mixtures

Part 1: Delta ring and ball test

Part 2: Bitumen number

The following link to the web page Testing of industrial products: Aggregates for Construction provides access to the results of a programme of cross-testing experiments, carried out as part of the EC DG XII Measurement and Testing programme over the period 1993 to 1997, on some of the above test methods. 

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9. Concrete Protection & Repair

The key series of CEN standards, at various stages of preparation, is the EN 1504 series:-

EN 1504 Products and systems for the protection and repair of concrete structures - Definitions, requirements, quality control and evaluation of conformity

EN 1504 Part 1 : Definitions (approved by CEN on 20 December 1997, published by BSI as BS EN coming into effect on 15 June 1998)

prEN 1504 Part 2 : Surface protection systems (CEN enquiry 2000)

prEN 1504 Part 3 : Structural and non-structural repair (CEN enquiry 2001)

prEN 1504 Part 4 : Structural bonding (CEN enquiry 2000)

prEN 1504 Part 5 : Concrete injection

prEN 1504 Part 6 : Grouting to anchor reinforcement or to fill external voids

prEN 1504 Part 7 : Reinforcement corrosion protection

prEN 1504 Part 8 : Quality control and evaluation of conformity (approved for CEN enquiry 2001)

ENV 1504 Part 9 : General principles for the use of products and systems (approved by CEN on 22 November 1996 and published by BSI as DD ENV, coming into effect on 15 December 1997)

prEN 1504 Part 10 : Site application of products and systems and quality control of the works (CEN enquiry 1999)

Other related standards:-

BS EN 12696 Cathodic protection of steel in concrete

prEN YYY (number not yet allocated) Sprayed concrete for repair and upgrading of structures

prEN 14038-1 Electrochemical re-alkalisation and chloride extraction treatments for reinforced concrete

Part 1 : Re-alkalisation

Part 2 : Chloride extraction

There are, in addition, over sixty methods of test associated with these standards. Those already published as BS ENs are as follows:-

BS EN 1542 Measurement of bond strength by pull-off

BS EN 1543 Determination of tensile strength development for polymers

BS EN 1766 Reference concretes for testing

BS EN 1767 Infrared analysis

BS EN 1770 Determination of the coefficient of thermal expansion

BS EN 1799 Tests to measure the suitability of structural bonding agents for application to concrete surface

BS EN 1877 Reactive functions related to epoxy resins

Part 1 : Determination of epoxy equivalent

Part 2 : Determination of amine functions using the total basicity number

BS EN 12188 Determination of adhesion steel-to-steel for characterisation of structural bonding agents

BS EN 12189 Determination of open time

BS EN 12190 Determination of compressive strength of repair mortar

BS EN 12192-2 Granulometry analysis – Part 2 : Test method for fillers for polymer bonding agents

BS EN 12615 Determination of slant shear strength

BS EN 12636 Determination of adhesion concrete to concrete

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10. Other standards


10.1 Concrete Structures

Already published:-

BS EN 12504 Testing concrete in structures

Part 1 : Cored specimens – Taking, examining and testing in compression

Part 2 : Non-destructive testing – Determination of rebound number

In preparation:-

Part 3 : Determination of pull-out force

Part 4 : Determination of ultrasonic pulse velocity

Other standards in preparation:-

prEN 13791 Assessment of concrete compressive strength in structures or in structural elements

prENV 13670 Execution of concrete structures – Part 1 : Common rules

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10.2 Mixing Water

prEN 1008 Mixing water for concrete – Specification for sampling, testing and assessing the suitability of water, including water recovered from processes in the concrete industry, as mixing water for concrete

This will eventually replace BS 3148 Methods of test for water for making concrete (including notes on the suitability of the water)

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10.3 Admixtures

Already published:-

BS EN 934 Admixtures for concrete, mortar and grout

Part 2 : Concrete admixtures - Definitions and requirements

Part 4 : Admixtures for grout for prestressing tendons - Definitions, requirements and conformity

Part 6 : Sampling, conformity control, evaluation of conformity, marking and labelling

In preparation:-

Part 3. Admixtures for masonry mortar - Definitions, requirements and conformity

Part 5. Admixtures for sprayed concrete. Definitions, specifications and conformity criteria

Test methods for admixtures already published:-

BS EN 480 Admixtures for concrete, mortar and grout - Test methods

Part 1 : Reference concrete and reference mortar for testing

Part 2 : Determination of setting time

Part 4 : Determination of bleeding of concrete

Part 5 : Determination of capillary absorption

Part 6 : Infrared analysis

Part 8 : Determination of the conventional dry material content

Part 10 : Determination of water soluble chloride content

Part 11 : Determination of air void characteristics in hardened concrete

Part 12 : Determination of the alkali content of admixtures

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10.4 Pigments

BS EN 12878 Pigments for the colouring of building materials based on cement and/or lime - Specifications and methods of test

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