Recycled concrete aggregates and mixed recycled aggregates are specified as types of aggregates with lower densities, higher water absorption capacities, and lower mechanical strength than natural aggregates. In this paper, the mechanical behaviour and microstructural properties of natural aggregates, recycled concrete aggregates and mixed recycled aggregates were compared. Different specimens of unbound recycled mixtures demonstrated increased resistance properties. The formation of new cement hydrated particles was observed, and pozzolanic reactions were discovered by electronon microscopy in these novel materials. The properties of recycled concrete aggregates and mixed recycled aggregates suggest that these recycled materials can be used in unbound road layers to improve their mechanical behaviour in the long term.
Keywords: electronic microscopy; mechanical properties; pozzolanic reactions; recycled aggregates; self-cementing.