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The Effect of Soluble Mineral Salts in Ceramic Brick Masonry

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This work discusses the effects of soluble mineral salts on ceramic brick masonry walls at Petrolina, Pernambuco, Brazil, located 780 km from the ocean. To understand this phenomenon, a mapping of the pathologies originating from the effects of soluble mineral salts in Petrolina was carried out and wells were implemented to monitor the underground water supply in five points considered to be where the most frequent occurrence of the phenomenon takes place. Samples of soil, groundwater, bricks affected by the phenomenon and the level of chloride in the atmosphere of these localities were collected and analysed in the laboratory in order to characterize their properties. The results obtained indicate that the building pathological manifestations present in ceramic block walls, located in the study areas, are strongly correlated with the high content of soluble salts observed in the soil and groundwater samples collected than by the amount of chloride content in the atmosphere soluble salt levels. Clay sands are a type of soil more prone to underground water runoff and, because of this feature, provide a more favourable environment for rising moisture that transports soluble mineral salts to the masonry walls accelerating their degradation process.

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This work was financially supported by: UID/ECI/04708/2019- CONSTRUCT—Instituto de I&D em Estruturas e Construções funded by national funds through the FCT/MCTES (PIDDAC).

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Correspondence to J. M. P. Q. Delgado.

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Ribeiro, A.G., Silva, F.A.N., Azevedo, A.C. et al. The Effect of Soluble Mineral Salts in Ceramic Brick Masonry. Int J Civ Eng (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40999-020-00502-x

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  • Soluble salts
  • Moisture in buildings
  • Chloride in the atmosphere
  • Pathologies in masonry