Reinforced Cement Concrete (RCC), commonly known as reinforced cement concrete, is a versatile and widely used construction material that combines the strength of concrete with the flexibility and tensile strength of steel reinforcement. It has revolutionized the way we build structures, offering a reliable and durable solution for a wide range of applications.

Whether you are a construction enthusiast, a student, or a professional in the industry, this guide will serve as your ultimate resource for understanding the ins and outs of reinforced cement concrete.

In this blog, we will delve into every aspect of Reinforced Cement Concrete, starting with its composition to factors to consider before purchasing them. Read on to know more!

What Is Reinforced Cement Concrete (RCC)?

Reinforced Cement Concrete is the combination of concrete and steel bars (reinforcement bars).

Concrete is a highly versatile construction material, known for its strength in compression. However, it has limited tensile strength and is prone to cracking under tension. To enhance its tensile resistance, steel reinforcement is incorporated.

The addition of steel reinforcement transforms the concrete into reinforced cement concrete, where the structure can effectively bear both compressive and tensile forces.

This results in reinforced cement concrete structures that are exceptionally strong, durable, and capable of withstanding various loads and environmental conditions.

Properties Of Reinforced Cement Concrete

Here are some of the finest properties of reinforced cement concrete:

  • Reinforced cement concrete is capable of withstanding compressive, bending and shear, and tensile forces.

  • It possesses adequate tensile and compressive strength.

  • It can resist fire and water

  • It provides complete insulation against sound and heat.

  • It makes the structure durable.

  • Reinforced cement concrete structures support any load.

  • Fresh reinforced cement concrete can moulded into desired shape and size.

  • It requires less skilled labour

  • The maintenance cost is low

Composition Of Reinforced Cement Concrete

The composition of reinforced cement concrete (RCC) involves the combination of cement, aggregates, water, and reinforcement bars or mesh. 

Here is a breakdown of the composition:

  1. Cement

Cement is a binding material that acts as a glue to hold the concrete mixture together. 

Portland cement is commonly used in reinforced cement concrete. It reacts with water to form a paste that binds the aggregates and hardens over time.

  1. Aggregates

Aggregates are inert materials mixed with cement to form the bulk of the concrete. They provide stability, strength, and durability to the mixture. Aggregates are classified into two types:

a. Coarse Aggregates 

A Complete Guide To Reinforced Cement Concrete

Coarse aggregates consist of crushed stone, gravel, or recycled concrete particles larger than 4.75 mm in size. They provide strength to the concrete and fill the voids between the reinforcement bars.

b. Fine Aggregates

A Complete Guide To Reinforced Cement Concrete

Fine aggregates consist of sand or crushed stone dust particles smaller than 4.75 mm in size. They help to fill the voids between the coarse aggregates and improve the workability of the concrete.

  1. Water

Water is a crucial component in the concrete mixture. It reacts with cement during hydration, causing the mixture to harden and gain strength. The amount of water used should be carefully controlled to achieve the desired consistency and strength while ensuring proper hydration.

  1. Reinforcement Bars/Mesh

Reinforcement bars, commonly known as rebars, are made of high-strength steel. They are embedded within the concrete to enhance its tensile strength and resist cracking.

We can find information about the reinforcement steel bars using the bar bending schedule.

A bar bending schedule (BBS) is a detailed document or report that provides information about the reinforcement steel bars required for a particular construction project. It includes detailed specifications about the size, shape, length, and number of steel bars to be used in various structural components, such as beams, columns, slabs, and footings.

Reinforcement mesh, made of interconnected steel wires, is also used in some applications. The size, spacing, and configuration of reinforcement bars or mesh depend on the design requirements and intended structural performance.

A Complete Guide To Reinforced Cement Concrete

The composition of reinforced cement concrete may also involve the use of additives or admixtures to modify the properties of the concrete. Admixtures such as plasticizers, superplasticizers, air entrainers, and accelerators are often used to improve workability, durability, setting time, and other specific characteristics of the concrete mix.

Types Of Reinforced Concrete

Here are some of the different types of reinforced concrete:

  1. Reinforced Concrete with Steel Bars

One of the most common types of reinforced concrete is composed of steel bars, also known as rebar. These bars are strategically placed within the concrete to bear tensile forces and prevent cracking or structural failure. 

The steel bars provide the necessary strength to withstand heavy loads and improve the overall durability of the structure.

  1. Fiber-Reinforced Concrete (FRC)

Fiber-reinforced concrete utilizes small, discrete fibers made of materials such as glass, steel, synthetic fibers, or natural fibers. These fibers act as reinforcement and enhance the concrete’s resistance to cracking and impact. 

FRC is often preferred in applications that require increased toughness and durability, such as industrial flooring, tunnel linings, and earthquake-resistant structures.

  1. Prestressed Concrete

Prestressed concrete is a type of reinforced concrete that undergoes a unique manufacturing process. Construction professionals place steel tendons or cables within the concrete and tension them before applying external loads.

This process compresses the concrete, effectively countering the tensile stresses that occur under load. The construction industry commonly uses prestressed concrete in bridges, high-rise buildings, and large infrastructure projects due to its high efficiency in spanning long distances.

  1. Glass Fiber-Reinforced Concrete (GFRC)

Glass fiber-reinforced concrete is a composite material that combines concrete with fine glass fibers. GFRC exhibits excellent strength, durability, and aesthetic appeal, making it popular for architectural and decorative applications. 

It allows molding into intricate shapes, enabling the creation of ornamental facades, decorative panels, and unique architectural elements.

  1. Reinforced Shotcrete

Shotcrete, also known as sprayed concrete, involves pneumatically projecting concrete onto a surface, making it a versatile construction method. Reinforced shotcrete involves the addition of reinforcement, typically steel fibers, to enhance its structural properties. 

Various construction applications commonly employ this technique in tunnels, retaining walls, swimming pools, and repair work due to its flexibility, rapid application, and high strength.

Applications Of Reinforced Cement Concrete

Various construction applications widely use reinforced cement concrete (RCC) due to its strength, durability, and versatility.

Here are some common applications of reinforced cement concrete:

  1. Buildings and Structures

The construction industry extensively uses reinforced cement concrete in residential, commercial, and industrial buildings. It employs it for constructing beams, columns, slabs, walls, and foundations, providing structural stability and load-bearing capacity.

  1. Bridges and Flyovers

The construction industry primarily uses reinforced cement concrete as the material for constructing bridges and flyovers. It offers excellent strength and durability to withstand heavy loads, traffic vibrations, and environmental conditions.

  1. Dams and Reservoirs

The construction industry employs reinforced cement concrete in the construction of large-scale hydraulic structures such as dams and reservoirs. Its ability to withstand water pressure and its durability makes it suitable for these applications.

  1. Retaining Walls

The construction industry commonly uses reinforced cement concrete to construct retaining walls, which provide stability and support to earth embankments or slopes. The reinforcement within the concrete helps resist lateral soil pressure and prevent wall failure.

  1. Water Tanks and Swimming Pools

The construction industry uses reinforced cement concrete to build water tanks and swimming pools due to its water-tightness and durability. Reinforcement within the concrete helps resist the hydrostatic pressure exerted by the stored water.

  1. Tunnels and Underground Structures

Additionally, the construction industry uses reinforced cement concrete in the construction of tunnels, underground chambers, and subway systems. This material provides the required structural integrity and durability for these underground structures, ensuring their long-term stability and functionality.

  1. Road Pavements

Furthermore, the construction industry utilizes reinforced cement concrete in the construction of rigid road pavements, enabling them to withstand heavy traffic loads. The presence of reinforcement within the concrete helps distribute the load and minimize cracking, ensuring the longevity and structural integrity of the road infrastructure.

  1. Precast Elements

Manufacturers use reinforced cement concrete to produce precast elements such as beams, columns, panels, and slabs. These precast components offer faster construction, improved quality control, and ease of installation.

Factors To Consider Before Purchasing Reinforced Cement Concrete

Before purchasing reinforced cement concrete for a construction project, you should consider these factors to ensure the desired quality, suitability, and cost-effectiveness.

Here are some important factors to consider:

  1. Strength Requirements

Determine the required strength of the concrete based on the design specifications and intended use of the structure. Consider factors such as load-bearing capacity, environmental conditions, and structural stability.

  1. Quality Standards

Moreover, ensure that the reinforced cement concrete meets the required quality standards and specifications. It is essential to check if the supplier or manufacturer has appropriate certifications and follows stringent quality control procedures. By doing so, construction professionals can ensure that the concrete meets the necessary strength, durability, and performance criteria, providing assurance of a reliable and high-quality construction material.

  1. Mix Design

Understand the concrete mix design, which includes the proportions of cement, aggregates, water, and additives. Verify if the mix design aligns with the project requirements and specifications. Consider factors such as workability, setting time, and desired strength.

  1. Source of Materials

Assess the source and quality of the constituent materials used in the reinforced cement concrete, including cement, aggregates, and reinforcement. Ensure that you obtain these materials from reputable sources and that they comply with relevant standards to maintain the overall quality of the concrete.

  1. Testing and Quality Assurance

Inquire about the testing and quality assurance procedures followed by the supplier or manufacturer. Ask for information about the testing methods used, such as compressive strength tests, slump tests, and reinforcement checks. This helps ensure the reliability and consistency of the reinforced cement concrete.

  1. Delivery and Transportation

Consider the logistics of transporting the reinforced cement concrete to the construction site. Evaluate the availability of transportation facilities, delivery timelines, and the supplier’s ability to deliver the required quantity on time. Efficient transportation helps maintain the workability and quality of the concrete.

  1. Cost and Budget

Furthermore, assess the cost of the reinforced cement concrete, including the price per unit volume or weight. It is important to compare quotes from different suppliers to determine the most cost-effective option without compromising on quality. By considering the cost factor in conjunction with other important factors, construction professionals can make financially prudent decisions while ensuring the desired quality for their construction projects. Consider any additional costs such as transportation, testing, or special requirements.

  1. Environmental Considerations

Evaluate the environmental impact of the reinforced cement concrete production process. Inquire about the supplier’s sustainability practices, such as using recycled materials or employing eco-friendly manufacturing techniques.

Additionally, consider the carbon footprint and environmental certifications associated with reinforced cement concrete. By taking into account the environmental impact of the material and ensuring it meets relevant certifications, construction professionals can make sustainable choices that align with their environmental goals and contribute to greener construction industry.

  1. Technical Support and Expertise

Ensure that the supplier or manufacturer can provide technical support and guidance during the project. Verify their expertise in concrete technology, construction practices, and troubleshooting potential issues related to reinforced cement concrete.

  1. Reputation and References

When researching the reputation of the supplier or manufacturer in the industry, it is important to seek references or feedback from previous customers to gauge their reliability, customer service, and adherence to delivery schedules. This information will provide valuable insights and help in making an informed decision when selecting a supplier or manufacturer for reinforced cement concrete.


In conclusion, this complete guide to reinforced cement concrete (RCC) provides a comprehensive understanding of its composition, types, applications, and factors to consider before purchasing.

Construction professionals widely use reinforced cement concrete in various structures and projects due to its strength, durability, and versatility.

Moreover, its adaptability makes it a preferred choice for a wide range of construction applications, ensuring its widespread use in the industry.

By understanding the fundamentals of reinforced cement concrete and carefully considering the relevant factors, construction professionals and stakeholders can make informed decisions about the selection, purchase, and use of reinforced cement concrete.

Consequently, they can ensure the desired quality, suitability, and cost-effectiveness in their construction projects.

By implementing best practices in reinforced cement concrete construction, construction professionals can ensure the long-term durability, structural integrity, and overall success of construction projects.