Comprehending the Structural Performance and Examining Potential Field Applications of Sileto, As A New Material

Project Information

Link to Latest Report: Coming Soon


Sileto is a new polymer based concrete that its properties does not change by temperature. It is a proprietary material developed by a company named Sileto.
FIU undertook a preliminary project with total funding of $10,000 to conduct a very limited work to evaluate the material. This constituted Phase I of the project. Now Sileto is interested in conducting additional study, this time to final application areas, in cooperation with ABC-UTC. Sileto will provide $120,000 cash to FIU, in addition to Sileto material that will be needed in conducted of the test. Sileto will also assist the research team where it is needed. ABC-UTC will provide $80,000 toward This Phase II of the project.

In Phase I of the Investigation, of a project funded by Sileto, at FIU, a series of activities were undertaken to develop preliminary assessment of Sileto and identify the feasible areas of application for Sileto in U.S.

Following the conclusion of the Phase I research the final report summarizing the activities within Phase I was submitted to Sileto.

In addition to FIU research, Sileto was also evaluated by Construction Technology Laboratories (CTL) in Skokie Illinois.

The main objective of the proposed study is to comprehend some fundamental structural performance of Sileto as a material to be used for

  1. Bridge deck overlay.
  2. Precast deck panel, to form deck system for Folded Plate Girder bridge system
  3. 3D printing in the form of layer by layer
  4. Retrofitting structural elements


The main objective of the proposed project is to explore application areas where Sileto could provide an alternative as a material, from engineering standpoint. This study could be viewed as proof-of-concept test and further tests could be needed, for complete investigation and better assessment of Sileto for specific application.

The four areas that has been identified are a) overlay for concrete bridge deck, b) precast deck panels, to be placed on top of folded plate girder, c) material for 3D printing and d) material for retrofitting deficient structural members.

At the conclusion of the project or near its conclusion, research team will seek opportunities from various agencies, such as FHWA to have a demonstration project, in case proof of concept tests, prove that material is worthy of field application.


The project activities will be to conduct proof of concept tests for the four areas identified above. The fact that FIU has conducted similar tests and has the necessary testing equipment, is the reason for relatively low budget for this project. Otherwise, the total cost of conducting the suggested proof of concept tests, for the four identified areas would be much higher.

Following is brief description of the proof of the concept tests envisioned for assessing each of fur application areas. It should be noted that these are tentative, and changes could be made based on the knowledge that are expected to be gained as project moves forward and tests are conducted. Nevertheless, following is tentative list of tests to be carried out.

  A) Proof of concept test for bridge deck overlay application.

This test will be in the form of a flat slab, representing portion of a bridge deck containing steel reinforcement and rough surface for better bonding. Tentatively the dimension of the flat plate will be 15 ft long, 4 ft. wide and total of 8 inches in thickness. The thickness of concrete deck will be about 6.5 inches. The thickness of the Sileto overlay will be 1.5 inches. Decision will be made later to include additional steel reinforcement within Sileto. The finished flat slab will be subjected to static test only. the test specimen that has been tested before at FIU includes T beam. However, in the proof of concept test only flat deck portion will be constructed. Test specimen, will be subjected to static test only. Specimen will be instrumented to comprehend the strain distribution across the depth and study the bond in between regular concrete and Sileto overlay. Before and after tests, durability tests will also be carried out. Test cylinders made of Sileto materials to be placed as overlay will be prepared and various material tests, including, compressive, tensile, Rapid Chloride Permeability test in accordance with governing ASTM will also be carried out.

If the proof of concept test, outlined above, demonstrate applicability of the Sileto for bridge deck overlay, the next phase of the work will be needed to conduct cyclic load to study the long term performance of the system.

B) Proof of Concept test for precast deck application

This proof of concept test involves investigating the use of Sileto as material to be used over folded plate girder bridge system. Sileto will prepare and deliver to laboratory precast panels for placement over Folded Plate bridge system. FIU will provide the details of the deck panels, which will allow development of composite action with folded steel plate girder. The test specimen will be subjected to static tests.  FIU also has similar test results with regular concrete as deck. This will allow to better comprehend the merits of Sileto as material for bridge deck precast panel.

C) 3D Printing Application

Sileto may be an ideal material for 3D printing by extrusion or layer by layer printing. Using the 3D printers FIU has, structural shapes will be printed using Sileto.

FIU also has major ongoing projects in the area of 3D printing and development of materials for 3D printing. Lessons learned from these ongoing projects will be used to better understand use of Sileto as a print materials. The nozzle will be placed within a frame that can allow movement in three different directions. Similar frames for 3D printing have been developed at FIU

D) Proof of concept for retrofit upgrade.

At FIU, test specimens has been used to develop provisions for retrofitting deficient structural elements using UHPC. Similar activities will be undertaken to develop proof of concept test to use Sileto as retrofit/Upgrade material.

At least two column test specimens will be made with induced damage. The damaged areas will be retrofitted using Sileto. Test columns will be subjected to constant axial load and cyclic loads. FIU has similar test results using UHPC as repair material. This will allow to make comparison and comprehend the merits of Sileto as repair material.

E) Attempts for Demonstration Project

Considering the results of proof-of-concept tests to be carried out, as outlined above, research team will seek available opportunities to conduct demonstration projects. Example of these opportunities are various Federal Highway programs that are geared to introduce innovative concepts into practice.

Research Team:
Principal Investigator: Atorod Azizinamini