The defects in concrete in Japan were found to be mainly due to high water-cement ratio to increase workability. Poor compaction occurred mostly because of the need for speedy construction in the 1960s and 1970s. Hajime Okamura envisioned the need for concrete which is highly workable and does not rely on the mechanical force for compaction. During the 1980s, Okamura and his Ph.D. student Kazamasa Ozawa at the University of Tokyo developed self-compacting concrete (SCC) which was cohesive, but flowable and took the shape of the formwork without use of any mechanical compaction. SCC is known as self-consolidating concrete in the United States.
SCC is characterized by the following:
SCC can save up to 50% in labor costs due to 80% faster pouring and reduced wear and tear on formwork. In 2005, selfconsolidating concretes accounted for 10–15% of concrete sales in some European countries. In the precast concrete industry in the U.S., SCC represents over 75% of concrete production. 38 departments of transportation in the US accept the use of SCC for road and bridge projects. This emerging technology is made possible by the use of polycarboxylates plasticizer instead of older naphthalene-based polymers, and viscosity modifiers to address aggregate segregation.