Concrete is a major construction material, which is usually made by mixing cement, water, fine and coarse aggregate and sometimes admixtures in their right proportions. The use of waste materials with pozzolanic properties in concrete production is a becoming a worldwide practice. The assessment of the pozzolanic activity of cement replacement materials is becoming increasingly important because of the need for more sustainable cementing products. In this bamboo leaf Ash is used as partial replacement for cement in ranges of 5%, 10% 15%. Strength and durability tests were carried out to assess the feasibility of using bamboo leaf ash as partial replacement of cement in concrete. 

This showed that BLAsh has no significant effect on the density of the concrete comparatively. The strength values at different ages for BLAsh replacements compare to be a bit favorable with the control of 0% BLAsh replacement. The optimum compressive strength of 20.00N/mm2 was obtained at 5% replacement at 28 days of age compared to the control of 20.00N/mm2. It is therefore advisable to use 5% replacement of BLAsh with cement paste when it is to be used as supplement to cement.

Table of contents

Contents Page

Title page

Certification i

Dedication ii

Acknowledgment iii

Table of contents iv

List of Tables viii

List of Plates ix

List of figure x

Abstract xi


1.0 Introduction 1

1.1 Statement  of the problem 3

1.2 Aim and objectives 4

1.3 Justification of the study 5

1.4 Scope and limitation of the work 5

1.5 Methodology 6


2.0 Review of literature 7

2.1 Ingredient of concrete 9

2.1.1 Water 9

2.1.2 Aggregates 10

2.1.3 Cement 11

2.1.4 Admixtures 12

2.2 Bamboo leaf ash 14

2.3 Properties of concrete 15

2.3.1 Fresh concrete 15

2.3.2 Hardened concrete 16  

2.4 Factors affecting strength of concrete 18


3.0 Materials and methods 21

3.1 Material selection 21

3.1.1 Coir Ash 21

3.1.2 Coarse aggregate 23

3.1.3 Fine aggregate 23

3.1.4 Cement 23

3.2 Test of the constituent materials 23

3.2.1 Proportioning 24

3.2.2 Batching 24

3.2.3 Composition of the constituent materials 

for the production of concrete 25

3.2.3 Mixing 27

3.2.4 Casting 28

3.2.5 Compaction 29

3.2.6 Curing 29

3.2.7 Crushing 30

3.3 Experimental Investigation 31

3.3.1 Laboratory Test 31  Sieves Analysis 31  Slump Test 33  Compressive strength of concrete 34


4.0 Results and Discussion  36

4.1 Result of the Sieve analysis 

(Particle Size Distribution) 36

4.2 Workability (Slump) Test 40

4.3 Density Test 40

4.4 Compressive Strength of the Hardened 

Concrete Cubes 44

4.5 Discussion of Result 45


5.0 Conclusion and Recommendation 50

5.1 Conclusion 50

5.2 Recommendation 51



Plate: 3.1 Bamboo Leaf in it Natural Habitat 21

Plate:3.2 Burning of Bamboo Leaf (BLAsh) 22

Plate 3.3 Sieve Analysis Test on BLAsh 22

Plate 3.4 Mixing of Bamboo Leaf Ash with 

Varying % of Cement, Fine Aggregate 

and Coarse Aggregate 27

Plate: 3.5 Casting of Concrete Cubes with 

BLAsh Replacements 28

Plate 3.6 Curing of Concrete Cubes 29

Plate 3.7 Compressive Strength Test on the Concrete Cubes 30

Plate 3.8 Slump of Test of BLAsh Concrete    33



material for BLAsh concrete 

at 0%,5%,10%,15% and 20% case 27

Table 4.1 The particle size distribution of sharp sand 36

Table 4.2 The Particle Size Distribution of Granite 39

Table 4.3 The Slump Value of The Fresh Concrete 40

Table 4.4 the Density of the Hardened Concrete 

after 7 Days of Curing41

Table 4.5 the Density of the Hardened Concrete 

after 14 Days of Curing 41

Table 4.6 The Density of the Hardened Concrete 

after 21 Days of Curing 22

Table 4.7 The Density of the Hardened Concrete 

after 28 Days of Curing 43

Table 4.8 The Average Density of the Hardened Concrete 43

Table 4.9 Compressive Strength of the Hardened 

Concrete after 7 Days 44

Table 4.10 Compressive Strength of the Hardened 

Concrete after 14 Days 45

Table 4.11 Compressive Strength of the Hardened 

Concrete after 21 Days 46

Table 4.12 Compressive Strength of the Hardened 

Concrete after 28 Days 47

Table 4.13 Average Compressive Strength of 

BLAsh Concrete at different Ages 28


Figure 4.1 Particle Size Distribution Curve of Sharp Sand 37

Figure 4.2 Particle Size Distribution Curve of Granite 39

Figure 4.3 Effects of BLAsh Replacement on 

Concrete with respect to Days Curing 48



Concrete is a composite element consisting of aggregates enclosed in a matrix of cement paste including possible pozzolanic, has two major components-cement paste and aggregates. As a construction material, concrete can be in almost any shape desired, and once hardened, can become a structural (load bearing) element. The strength of concrete depends upon the strength of these components, their deformation properties, and the adhesion between the paste and aggregate surface. With most natural aggregates, it is possible to make concrete up to 120KN/mm2 a compressive strength by improving the strength of the cement paste, which can be controlled through the choice of water-cement ratio, and type and dosage of admixtures (Dwivedi 2006). 

The high cost of conventional construction material is a dominating factor affecting housing system around the world. This has necessitated research work into alternative materials in the construction field. Since the cost of cement is many times more than the cost of other ingredients in concrete making. Recently, attention is mainly directed to use of as little cement as possible constituent with adequate strength and durability. Little research has been carried out to study the bamboo leaf waste as a pozzolanic material. Dwivedi (2006) reported the reaction between calcium hydroxide (CH) and bamboo leaf ash for four hours of reaction using the differential scanning calorimetric (Dsc) technique. Singh et al (2000) discussed that eco friendly composite cements may be obtained by partial replacement of Portland cement (PPC) with low cost materials. They studied the hydration of bamboo leaf ash in a blended Portland cement. It was concluded that bamboo leaf ash is an effective pozzolanic materials. When 20 weight (wt) % of bamboo ash was mixed with PPC the compressive strength values of mortars at 28 day of hydration were found to be quiet comparable to those of PPC. Villar-cocina et al (2010) conducted a study on sugarcane leaf ash (SCLA). Hydration of 10 wt % SCLA composite Portland cement was studied by using powder x-ray diffraction, FTIR spectroscopy, and differential scanning calorimetric and other techniques. The result have show that the pozzolanic reaction of sugarcane leaf ash increases with time. They have been used to produce concrete having almost the same behavior as normal concrete.

In general, a pozzolanic material has little or no cementing properties. However, when it has a fine particle size, in the presence of moisture it can react with calcium hydroxide at ordinary temperatures to provide the cementing property. Bamboo leaf ash (BLAsh) is one of the agro waste ashes whose chemical composition contains a large amount of silica and has high potential to be used as a cement replacement (Okere 2013). Most of the concrete produced today are a multi component product containing one or more admixtures in addition to the four basic components which is cement, fine aggregate, coarse aggregate and water. For every component, one usually as several choices that could influence the cost of the end product and its behavior in service. Among the constituent components, however, cement or cementitious materials as a whole, play a vital role in producing strong and durable concrete. Utilization of these waste materials is a partial solution to environmental and ecological problems. Use of these also helps in reducing the cost of concrete production by reducing the quantity of cement used. Consequently, this study presents the suitability of using bamboo leaf ash (BLAsh) as a supplementary cementitious material. This work then investigates the effect of bamboo leaf Ash on the workability of fresh concrete and the compressive strength of added concrete. 


Concrete plays an important role in the beneficial use of the material in construction industry. Many modifications and developments have been made to place material like Bamboo Leaf Ash (BLAsh), wood wool, rice husk and marble powder as a cement replacement constituent, but it as an alternative to reveal that the replacement of Bamboo Leaf Ash (BLAsh), in Portland cement affect the compressive strength of concrete. One of the main goal of sustainable waste management is to maximize recycling and reuse. With increasing environmental pressure to reduce waste and pollution and to recycle as much as possible, the concrete industry has begun adopting a number of methods to achieve these goals.

One of the suggestions in the forefront has been the sourcing, development and use of alternative, non-conventional local construction materials including the possibility of using some agricultural wastes and residues as partial or full replacement of conventional constructional materials. In countries where abundant agricultural wastes are discharged, these wastes can be used as potential material or replacement material in construction industries.

This has a significant impact by reducing the amount of quarrying and landfill space required, and  acts as a cement replacement, reduces the amount of cement of required to produce a solid concrete. As cement production creates massive quantities of carbon dioxide, cement replacement technology such as this will play an important role in future attempts to cut carbon dioxide emissions and production of economical optimum strength concrete, so as to encourage the use of this ‘impressive’ waste product as construction material in low-cost housing. 


The aim of this project is to study the compressive strength of concrete with cement partially replaced with bamboo leaf ash and the suitability of the material to be used as cement substitute

The objectives of the projects are:

⦁ To determine the percentage of BLAsh as a replacement for cement of 5%,10%,15%,20%.

⦁ To replace cement with known percentage of bamboo leaf ash and cast with it.

⦁ To examine the workability of the fresh BLAsh concrete by slump test.

⦁ To compare the strength of cubes cast at 100% of cement with cubes replaced with the known percentage of bamboo leaf.

⦁ To suggest the use of bamboo leaf ash as alternative supplement to cement so as to reduce cost of construction.


In Nigeria today, an appreciable percentage of the entire population cannot afford to build their own houses especially modern types due to high cost of cement and the average percentage of the country’s population find it difficult or almost impossible to afford the cost. In order to curb this act, this project is targeting whether bamboo leaf ash can be used as a partial replacement for cement in order to achieve optimum strength and economic concrete and the corresponding quantity of coir ash required.


This study concentrated on investigation of compressive strength of bamboo leaf (BLAsh) concrete and pure cement (100% of cement) as a control sample. The Laboratory Tests include sieve Analysis, specific gravity natural moisture content and water absorption of each aggregate sample. Each samples of concrete were design for grade 20 (as mix ratio 1:2:4) and water cement ratio (w/c) of 0.55.  The control sample composed of 100% cement, fine Aggregate, coarse aggregate and water. Then, other four samples were of the same mix design with bamboo leaf ash as cement replacement that serves as an 

Unconventional mixes which comprises of 5%, 10%,15% and 20% of the total weigh of ordinary Portland cement. These specimens (samples) were the comprehensive strength test with the use of Universal Testing Machine in accordance with BS1881:Part1:1983.


In carrying out of the research work, the method adopted is in this sequence.

⦁ Procurement of materials.

⦁ Preparation of the bamboo leaf Ash.

⦁ Testing of the materials.

⦁ Casting of the cubes.

⦁ Curing of the cubes.

⦁ Testing for the compressive strength of the specimen.



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