Construction Glossary and Terms

Fine aggregate and coarse aggregate

Fine aggregate is natural sand which has been washed and sieved to remove particles larger than 5 mm and coarse aggregate is gravel which has been crushed, washed and sieved so that the particles vary from 5 up to 50 mm in size. The fine and coarse aggregate are delivered separately. Because they have to be sieved, a prepared mixture of fine and coarse aggregate is more expensive than natural all-in aggregate. The reason for using a mixture of fine and coarse aggregate is that by combining them in the correct proportions, a concrete with very few voids or spaces in it can be made and this reduces the quantity of comparatively expensive cement required to produce a strong concrete.

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