Effect of Sustained Load and Environment on Long-Term Tensile Properties of Glass Fiber-Reinforced Polymer Reinforcing Bars

Glass fiber-reinforced polymer (GFRP) bars are gaining popularity as reinforcement for concrete bridge deck slabs and other concrete structures. This article reports on a study of the creep behavior of GFRP bars in different environments under sustained load. Twenty GFRP bars (E-glass in vinylester matrix) 9.5 mm in diameter in four series were tested for over 417 days (10,000 h) under combinations of different sustained load levels and surrounding mediums in ambient temperature. The bars were subjected to two levels of sustained tensile stress at 25% and 38% of guaranteed tensile strength while being surrounded by either alkaline solution (pH 12.8) or de-ionized water (pH 7.0). Axial strain in the central conditioned part of the bars was monitored with time to evaluate the creep behavior. Following the extended creep test, the GFRP bars were tested in axial tension until failure for residual tensile strength, elastic modulus, and axial strain. Results showed that the tested GFRP bar performed very well under these extreme loading and environmental conditions. Creep strain in the GFRP bars is less than 5% of the initial value after 10,000 h of sustained tensile loading. The average residual tensile strength was found to be 139% and 144% of the design tensile strength for bars conditioned in de-ionized water at 25% and 38% stress level, respectively. Alkaline solution tends to have more harmful effects on the bars than de-ionized water at higher stress levels. In alkaline solution, this range was 126% and 97% at 25% and 38% stress level, respectively. More importantly, the modulus of elasticity of the bars is very stable and almost unaffected by the conditions and sustained stress levels used. The authors note that this finding is critical in the design of concrete elements reinforced with FRP bars because the modulus is directly related to the crack width, deflection, and other serviceability concerns.

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  • Authors:
    • Nkurunziza, Gilbert
    • Benmokrane, Brahim
    • Debaiky, Ahmed S
    • Masmoudi, Radhouane
  • Publication Date: 2005-7


  • English

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  • Accession Number: 01003051
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Aug 3 2005 7:29AM