COST Action TU1404 hosted a training school on ‘Service life of cement-based Materials and Structures’ during the week of 15-19 August 2016 at the Danish Technical University (DTU) in Denmark.

The program had intricate connections with the objectives of TU1404, with particular emphasis on subjects related to Workgroup 1 ‘Testing of cement based materials and RRT+’.

This course followed a general structure that is similar to the well-known doctoral courses on related subjects that have been carried out at DTU for more than 15 years. It was a quite interesting opportunity that is mainly targeted to young researchers (normally enrolled in PhD programmes) and allowing them to have a deep contact with several subjects related to cement-based materials.

The course was attended by ~30 people, with more than 20 grants being awarded by COST TU1404. Some of the lectures were shared with the doctoral course on ‘Supplementary Cementitious Materials’, raising the number of attendants to 60 (particularly during the shared laboratory hands-on sessions).


The course has covered important topics related to service life of cement-based materials and structures with a focus on advanced experimental testing methods in the framework of the RRT+ including:

  1. Hydration and microstructure of cement-based materials
  2. Calorimetry, heat release and setting
  3. Elastic properties (Ultrasonic wave transmission and vibration based methods)
  4. Free shrinkage in autogenous and drying conditions
  5. Creep and relaxation
  6. Evolution of mechanical properties since very early age
  7. Effect of the nature of the binder on the sensitivity to cracking in case of restrained shrinkage (Ring test)
  8. Thermo-mechanical and macroscopic modelling of concrete structures

The course consisted of lectures including also two hands-on laboratory sessions with the application of six advanced experimental testing techniques, two exercise sessions dedicated to numerical simulations and comparisons with experimental data. All the necessary notes will be provided before the course.


The total work load was approximately 140 hours corresponding to 5 ECTS credits, including the contact time at DTU, the preparatory reading assignments given before the course, the preparation of a poster presentation at the start of the course, and the oral presentation at the end of the course. Certificates were issued based on active participation in the entire course and the final evaluation.

Technical University of Denmark
Lyngby campus
Organizers: Ole M. Jensen (DK)
Konstantin Kovler (IL)
Stéphanie Staquet (BE)
Miguel Azenha (PT)

Apart from the organizers, the teaching staff further includes: Dirk Schlicke (AT)
José Granja (PT)
Brice Delsaute (BE)