UConn Receives $768K for Study of Crumbling Foundations

August 27, 2020

The federal government has awarded the University of Connecticut $768,000 to fund ongoing research into the problem of crumbling home foundations in eastern Connecticut.

The goal of the research is to better understand of the scope of the crisis and determine when the weakened concrete causes a real danger to the integrity of a foundation.

U.S. Reps. Joe Courtney and John Larson, who represent most of the thousands of affected homeowners, worked with the state’s congressional delegation last year to secure $1.5 million for the National Institute of Standards and Technology to conduct researched into the effects of the mineral pyrrhotite on concrete aggregate. NIST awarded the $768,000 to UCONN, they announced.

“UCONN has already got valuable experience with this sort of work, and they’ve got research underway now,” Courtney said. “This new round of more than $760,000 in federal funding will help to support that work and see it towards completion.”

Pyrrhotite causes concrete to crack and break gradually as it becomes exposed to water and oxygen. The material containing the iron sulfide has been traced to a Willington quarry used between 1983 and 2015 by a now-defunct concrete company.

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