Fourier Transform Infrared Characterization of Construction Joint Sealants

Document Type: Original Article


1 Department of Mechanical, Civil Engineering and Construction Management; Alabama A&M University

2 Department of Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics; Alabama A&M University



This paper presents the results of the FTIR (Fourier-Transform Infrared) spectroscopy study of commercially available silicone-based sealant materials commonly used for sealing voids, cracks, and joints in non-structural building components of commercial and residential buildings. The sealants prevent moisture leakage through the parts, making the building envelope air and water-tight, sustainable, and energy-efficient.  FTIR spectroscopy is a widely used technique in characterizing pharmaceutical products, mineralogical compositions, forensic analysis, food, chemical, semiconductor, petroleum, and agro-industries. This work demonstrates the application of FTIR analysis in the study of construction materials. It reports the IR (Infrared) spectral signatures of the selected building joint sealants used in the construction industry. It is found that several IR bands are common to most of the samples, suggesting that there is a reasonable similarity in the molecular composition of the three different manufacturer brands, including DAP (Dicks-Armstrong-Pontius), GE (General Electric), and HDX (Home Depot Product). Despite the multiple similarities in the IR bands of the samples studied, the FTIR techniques provided enough evidence to distinguish the samples and suggest that the composition and molecular structures of most of the silicone brands possess unique IR signatures.


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