Engineers have developed a new type of cement that does not crack, which allows it to be used to effectively seal damaged gas wells and wells.
Over time, imperceptible cracks can form in the gas pipes, through which leakage occurs. Since between wells or boreholes can to run kilometers of pipes located underground, it is very difficult to detect small leaks. In parallel, the cement surrounding them, which was originally intended for fixing and sealing, deforms, due to which millimeter gaps are formed, which cannot be repaired with ordinary mortar. As a result, gas can seep for years, poisoning the soil and air..
Scientists at the University of Pennsylvania have invented an extremely resilient cement that allows these problems to be solved quickly and easily. The new composition is based on crushed thin sheets of graphite treated with special chemicals. This coating changes the properties of their surface so that the granules can dissolve in the water and not repel it..
In the finished solution, such fine particles of graphite tend to be evenly distributed and stick together, forming a conglomerate. This makes it elastic and, after curing, prevents cracking of the cement, which allows it to be used for sealing areas less than a millimeter.
Earlier, we also reported on the invention by Russian scientists of a new additive for concrete, which allows it to be poured at temperatures below zero without loss of quality..
text: Ilya Bauer, photo: Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection