Concrete is everywhere—a ubiquity owed to its strength as a building material. Despite its strength, however, it has a pernicious but inescapable tendency to "creep," or deform progressively under mechanical stress, which leads to crumbling bridges and cracked roads. Now, researchers have found a nano-scale cause which will ultimately help them develop mechanistic models for predicting creep behavior, and identification of cementation agents with reduced sensitivity to creep.

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