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Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296

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Flexural behavior of reinforced concrete beams strengthened with

ultra-high performance fiber reinforced concrete
M.A. Al-Osta a,, M.N. Isa a, M.H. Baluch a, M.K. Rahman b
Department of Civil Engineering, King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals, Dhahran 31261, Saudi Arabia
Center for Engineering Research, Research Institute KFUPM, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia

h i g h l i g h t s

 Strengthening of RC beams by UHPFRC jacketing using different configurations.

 Jacketing using precast panels attached by epoxy or fresh cast in a mold.
 Three sided jacketing resulted in high capacity enhancement but reduced ductility.
 Two-sided and bottom jacketing yielded strength enhancement with high ductility.
 FE modeling of jacketed beams captured the experimental response reasonably well.

a r t i c l e i n f o a b s t r a c t

Article history: In this study, the effectiveness and efficiency of two different techniques for strengthening of reinforced
Received 23 September 2016 concrete (RC) beams using ultra-high performance fiber reinforced concrete (UHPFRC) was investigated
Received in revised form 18 December 2016 i.e.; (i) by sand blasting RC beams surfaces and casting UHPFRC in-situ around the beams inside a mold
Accepted 19 December 2016
and (ii) by bonding prefabricated UHPFRC strips to the RC beams using epoxy adhesive. Beams under each
technique were strengthened in three different strengthening configurations; (i) bottom side strengthen-
ing (ii) two longitudinal sides strengthening (iii) three sides strengthening. Bond strength tests were car-
ried out to ascertain the bond between normal concrete and the UHPFRC, for both sand blasting and
Strengthening and retrofit
Ultra-high performance fiber reinforced
epoxy adhesive techniques. Test results for retrofitted beams under flexure regarding various behavioral
concrete attributes such as crack propagation, stiffness and failure load indicated significant positive develop-
Sand blasting ments resulting from the two strengthening techniques. Beams strengthened on three sides showed
Epoxy adhesive the highest capacity enhancement, while beams strengthened only at the bottom side showed the least
Enhancement of capacity enhancement. However, there were some concerns regarding loss of ductility with increased use of
Loss of ductility UHPFRC as part of the tensile retrofit. Finite element (FE) and analytical models were developed to pre-
Bond strength dict the behavior of the beam specimens. The result of the models showed good agreement with exper-
Crack pattern
imental results, as they were able to predict the behavior of the beams with high accuracy.
Finite element model
2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Analytical model

1. Introduction service life. Strengthening of concrete structure has become very

important not only for deteriorating concrete structures, but also
Reinforced concrete (RC) is the most commonly used material for strengthening new concrete structural members so that they
for construction. Its versatility, economy, and ability to be molded perform much better under service.
and finished into different shapes make it a very suitable construc- Strengthening of concrete structures find more application, par-
tion material. Concrete structures are designed to perform their ticularly in important structures such as power stations, nuclear
functions efficiently over a design service life. However, due to plants, and marine structures etc., which are economically and
human errors (e.g. design error, change of usage, and lack of main- technically unfeasible for demolition except if the rehabilitation
tenance), material defect or change in environmental conditions, and strengthening techniques have failed to secure the needed
most structures need repairs and strengthening over their design performance.
In the last two decades, researchers have developed various
materials and techniques for strengthening of existing structures
Corresponding author. as well as new RC members. Amongst the most widely used is
E-mail address: (M.A. Al-Osta). the Carbon Fiber Reinforced Polymer (CFRP) laminates wraps that
0950-0618/ 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
280 M.A. Al-Osta et al. / Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296


au reduction factor for width of UHPFRC equivalent rectan- fc compressive strength of concrete
gular stress block f uc compressive strength of UHPFRC
bc reduction factor for depth of concrete equivalent rectan- f ut cracking stress of UHPFRC
gular stress block f ut;n tensile strength of UHPFRC corresponding to a strain eut,n
bu reduction factor for depth of UHPFRC equivalent rectan- hc height of RC beam
gular stress block hu height of UHPFRC bottom jacket
ec strain in the uppermost compressive layer of the beam x neutral axis position
eut strain at the bottom tensile layer of the beam y depth of cracking strain from neutral axis on strain dis-
eut;crack cracking strain of UHPFRC in tension tribution diagram
ey yield strain in steel reinforcing bars Cc compressive force in concrete
ac depth of concrete equivalent rectangular stress block Cu compressive force in UHPFRC
au depth of UHPFRC equivalent rectangular stress block Tu tensile force in UHPFRC
bc width of RC beam Ts tensile force in steel reinforcing bars
bu overall width of sides (longitudinal) UHPFRC jackets
bu;b width of bottom UHPFRC jacket

are more flexible. Research works conducted on strengthening the damaged beams. Lampropoulos et al. [15] reported that
with CFRP have yielded many positive results. Flexural behavior strengthening RC beam specimens with UHPFRC at different loca-
of RC slab-column joint having CFRP at the tension side was inves- tions showed an increased yielding and ultimate moment capacity
tigated by El-Enein et al. [1]. Results showed a significant increase for all strengthened specimens. Alaee and Karihaloo [16] used a
in flexural strength and stiffness at the joint. Monti and Liotta [2] high-performance fiber reinforced concrete known as CARDIFRC
carried out an experimental and analytical study on the shear to retrofit damaged RC beams using various strengthening config-
strengthening of RC beams using CFRP and where it showed urations. Test results showed an increase in failure load of the ret-
promising shear enhancement. Furthermore, closed-form design rofitted beams for all strengthening configurations. Noshiravani
equations for strengthening with CFRP were formulated. A lot and Brhwiler [17] carried out investigations on the flexural-
more research work has been currently conducted on the effective- shear response of RC beams strengthened with either UHPFRC or
ness of using CFRP as a strengthening material. However, strength- reinforced-UHPFRC. Using a cantilever span, stirrup spacing and
ening with CFRP comes with its own shortcomings among which area of reinforcement in UHPFRC layer as design variables was con-
are; CFRP does not perform effectively in compression under cyclic ducted. The strengthened beams showed improved resistance to
loading, and also its behavior depends on the strength of the parent both tensile and bending stresses in contrast to the control speci-
concrete and CFRP-concrete bond as well as that the long-term men. Mohammed et al. [3] tested RC beam specimens having no
durability remains of great concern [3]. stirrups, strengthened with UHPFRC using three different strength-
A more recent material developed and used for both repair and ening patterns under torsional moment. Results showed a signifi-
strengthening of RC structures is the ultra-high performance fiber cant increase in torsional strength with beam specimen
reinforced concrete (UHPFRC). Research work conducted on both strengthened on all four sides showing the highest increase. A
its durability and structural performance has so far shown promis- two-layered composite concrete beam having normal concrete in
ing results in References [48]. The mechanical properties of the the compression zone and steel fiber reinforced concrete in the
UHPFRC showed high compressive strength up to 163 MPa, with tension zone tested under four-pint loading arrangement showed
elastic modulus up to 57 GPa as reported by Hakeem [9]. The an increase in failure load and a more ductile behavior up to failure
results also showed that the flexural strength increases with the compared to other strengthening techniques using the same mate-
increasing percentage volume of steel fibers. In addition, the com- rial has been reported by Iskhakov et al. [18].
pressive strength and flexural strength of Ultra-High Performance Despite these valuable research works on using UHPFRC in
Concrete (UHPC) could be 23 times and 26 times greater than repairing and strengthening of RC beams, it can be noted that none
high-performance concrete (HPC), respectively, as reported by Lub- of these consider the individual contribution of longitudinal sides
bers [10]. Investigation of the shear capacity of UHPFRC using strengthening on the flexural strength of beams. In addition, infor-
normal strength concrete and UHPFRC (high strength concrete) mation regarding a comparison of the various techniques for which
composite beams was conducted and reported by Hussein and UHPFRC can be used for strengthened RC beams is lacking in the
Amleh [11]. The beam specimens used UHPFRC in tension and nor- literature. The objective of this investigation is to evaluate the indi-
mal or high strength concrete layer in compression. Test results vidual (bottom side strengthening and two longitudinal sides
revealed that the performance of the proposed composite system strengthening) as well as the combined (both bottom side and
was successfully enhanced in both flexural and shear capacity. two longitudinal sides) effect of jacketing or retrofitting of RC
Habel et al. [12] investigated the structural response of full-scale beam with UHPFRC. Additionally, comparison of the two tech-
UHPFRC-reinforced concrete beams. The beams were cast with niques used to apply UHPFRC strengthening to the beams, using
UHPFRC layer in tension and were tested in flexure. It was either cast in place on sand blasted RC beams or by using epoxy
observed that the UHPFRC layer significantly improved the struc- adhesive to bond prefabricated UHPFRC strips, has been illustrated.
tural capacity of the beams. Martinola et al. [13] conducted an
experimental and numerical investigation on the effect of fiber 2. Experimental program
reinforced concrete in the repair and strengthening of full-scale
RC beams. Results showed the effectiveness of the proposed tech- Experimental investigations comprising of component material
nique both at ultimate and at serviceability limit state. Prem et al. strength tests, bond strength test and flexural strength test were
[14] studied the behavior of damaged RC beams repaired and ret- conducted. The material strength tests were carried out to
rofitted with UHPFRC strips as overlays on the tension side. The determine the uniaxial stress-strain behavior of both UHPFRC
results showed a significant increase in load carrying capacity of and normal concrete in compression as well as in tension. This data
M.A. Al-Osta et al. / Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296 281

was useful not only during the finite element modelling (FEM) of A mixture of two different sizes of steel fibers i.e. hooked end
the beams, but also the material behavior gave a clear idea of the and straight fibers were used in the ratio of 1:1. The hooked-end
likely response of the beam specimens under flexural testing. This steel fibers were 0.2 mm diameter, 25 mm long and with a tensile
behavioral data was used to develop the FEM and the analytical strength of 2500 MPa, while the straight steel fibers had a length of
model for the beam specimens. Bond strength tests, slant shear test 0.1 mm, 12.5 mm in diameter and a tensile strength of 2500 MPa.
and split cylinder tensile strength test, were conducted on compos- The mix used in the experimental program was a UHPFRC mix
ite UHPFRC-normal concrete composite cylinders to ascertain the without heat treatment. The UHPFRC elements were cast in Jan-
bond characteristics of the two strengthening techniques. The pre- uary/February at a temperature of about 14 C. The mix proportion
pared beams specimens were tested under four-point loading of UHPFRC is presented in Table 1. The uniaxial compression
arrangement after curing for 28 days. behavior of UHPFRC obtained from testing cylinder specimens
according to ASTM-C496 is shown in Fig. 3. The mean values of
2.1. Specimen preparation mechanical properties of UHPFRC after testing multiple cylinder
and prism samples at 28 days are illustrated in Table 2. Similarly,
Eight RC beams were prepared. The RC beams were reinforced the uniaxial tensile behavior of UHPFRC obtained from testing
with two 10 mm diameter bars at top and bottom and 8 mm diam- dog bone specimens having a square cross section of dimensions
eter stirrups spaced at 50 mm center to center as shown in Fig. 1. 40 x 40 mm is shown in Fig. 4. This behavior shows an essentially
To ensure quality control, fabrication of molds, reinforcement linear elastic response followed by gradual softening in the neigh-
bending and concreting works were all carried out in a precast con- borhood of 7 MPa, with a tensile rupture strain slightly in excess of
crete company. 0.005.

2.2. Material properties

2.3. Strengthening schemes
2.2.1. Concrete and steel reinforcing bars
Both 10 mm and 8 mm diameter bars were of high-grade  Beams of the same strengthening technique are distinguished
deformed bars having a test yield stress of f y 590 MPa and an ulti- from each other by the strengthening configurations. Three
mate tensile strength of f u 680 and 660 MPa, respectively. Both strengthening configurations were used for each group (one
diameter bars had the same elastic modulus Es 200; 000 MPa. configuration for each beam) namely as shown in Table 3. Bot-
Compressive strength and split tensile strength tests were con- tom (tension) side jacketing BOTSJ
ducted on a 75*150 mm cylinder of concrete in accordance with  Two sides Jacketing 2 SJ
ASTM C39 and ASTM C496, respectively. The 28-day average cylin-  Three sides jacketing 3 SJ
der compressive strength of the concrete was found to be
f c 54 MPa and the average split cylinder tensile strength The thickness of the jacket in each case was 30 mm.
f t;sp 3:16 MPa .The control beam specimens were designed to fail Two techniques were used to bond the UHPFRC jacket to the
in flexure i.e. the beams were under reinforced prior to any concrete beam:
strengthening using either of the two UHPFRC techniques.
1. By sandblasting the concrete beams surfaces to an average
2.2.2. UHPFRC depth of 2 mm and casting UHPFRC around it inside a mold
The constituent materials used to prepare the UHPFRC used in (Fig. 5).
this study comprised of Type I Portland cement, micro-silica, dune 2. By bonding prefabricated UHPFRC strips to the reinforced con-
sand, steel fibers, water and superplasticizer as shown in Fig. 2. crete beams using epoxy adhesive (Fig. 6).

Fig. 1. Geometry and details of concrete beam specimens (all dimensions in mm).
282 M.A. Al-Osta et al. / Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296

Fig. 2. Sand, cement, micro-silica and steel fibers in UHPFRC.

Table 1 Table 2
UHPFRC mix proportion.[9] Mechanical properties of UHPFRC at 28 days (average values).

Material Mix proportion kg=m3 Property Average value (MPa)

Cement 900 Compressive strength (cylinder) 128

Micro-silica 220 Modulus of Elasticity 46,000
Dune sand 1005 Split tensile strength (at peak stress) 17
Steel fibers 157 Flexural Strength 15
Superplasticizer 40.3
Water 162.4

Fig. 4. Uniaxial tensile behavior of UHPFRC.

Fig. 3. Uniaxial compression behavior of UHPFRC. where

The 1st item, i.e. RC = Reinforced concrete beam
The 2nd item represents a technique of strengthening:
The following nomenclature is used to distinguish between SB  Sandblasting
specimens. Example;
RC  SB  BOTSJ EP  Epoxyadhesiv e
M.A. Al-Osta et al. / Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296 283

Table 3 2.4. Bond strength test

Strengthening schemes of beams specimens.

Strengthening configurations (thickness of UHPFRC To ascertain the bond strength between UHPFRC and normal
Jacket = 30 mm) concrete substrates, split cylinder tensile strength test and slant
Strengthening pattern Specimen identification shear strength test, as shown in Figs. 7 and 8, were conducted on
composite UHPFRC-normal concrete cylinders in accordance with
ASTM C496 and ASTM C882, respectively.
The summary of the bond strength test is demonstrated in
RC-BOT SJ Table 4. The condition of the specimens after testing for both split
cylinder and slant shear strength test is shown in Figs. 9 and 10,
RC-2 SJ It was observed that the bond strength of the epoxy bonded (EP)
specimens was highly dependent on the property of the epoxy
material used. For the case under discussion, FOSROC NITOBOND
RC-3 SJ EP having a compressive strength of 50 MPa, tensile strength of
20 MPa and shear strength of 25 MPa was used. However, these
are design values that can be achieved under optimal conditions
(particularly under desirable curing temperature), as such the
epoxy used may have values less than the design values.
The sandblasting technique (SB) was found to have higher slant
The 3rd item represents configuration/positions of jacketing
shear strength as shown in Table 4 and failure was largely inside
BOTSJ  Bottomside the normal concrete substrate as shown in Fig. 10(b). The EP spec-
imens failed at lower strength than SB specimens with most of the
2 SJ  Two longitudinal sides failure along the interface along the epoxy layer as shown in Fig. 10
(c). This is because sandblasting the concrete substrate surface is
3 SJ  Three Bot Two longitudinal sides more effective in resisting transfer of shear and normal stresses

Fig. 5. Strengthening process using sandblasting and UHPFRC cast in-situ strengthening technique.

Fig. 6. Strengthened beams specimens prefabricated UHPFRC strips using epoxy adhesive bonding.
284 M.A. Al-Osta et al. / Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296

both UHPFRC and normal concrete. In conclusion, the strength of

EP specimens will vary greatly depending on the type and strength
of the epoxy used, unlike in SB technique where properties will rel-
atively be the same.
Results of split cylinder tensile strength test for both specimens
fall under the category of excellent bond quality (i.e. if tensile
bond strength P2.1 MPa) as quantified by Springkel and Ozy-
ildirim [19]. The slant shear strength for both specimens indicates
adequate bond strength as reported by Chynoweth et al. [20], a
slant shear strength of P20.7 MPa at 28 days. These results show
that the bond between UHPFRC and normal concrete surfaces is
excellent regardless of surface preparation.

2.5. Beam flexural strength tests

The beam specimens were tested in flexure under a four-

point loading arrangement as shown in Fig. 11. Linear variable
differential transducers were used to measure displacement at
midspan while concrete strain gauges were used for measuring
the longitudinal deformation of concrete around the midspan
Fig. 7. Split cylinder tensile strength (a) specimen (b) test.
region. Similarly, strain gauges attached to reinforcing bars in
the case of RC beams were used to monitor deformation in rein-
forcing steel.
RC  Control showed the traditional flexural crack pattern char-
acterized by vertical cracks starting from midspan and spreading
outwards towards the supports as the load increased. Inclined
flexural-shear cracks started to develop at the furthest locations
towards the supports up to failure load. The cracks were spread
over the middle 850 mm span of the beam specimen as shown in
Fig. 12(a). As for RC  SB  BOTSJ, the specimen also shows a com-
bination of flexural cracks and splitting flexural cracks which
developed at higher load as shown in Fig. 12(b). However, the crack
load was more than double that of the control and cracks were
concentrated in the middle 760 mm span of the beam as shown
in Fig. 12(b) and Table 5. This is because the UHPFRC jacket (at
the bottom) delays crack propagation and provides additional flex-
ural strength to the beam by resisting parts of the tensile stresses
even before the rebars in the normal RC beam became activated..
In the case ofRC  SB  2 SJ; the specimen showed fewer num-
ber of cracks compared to RC  Control and RC  SB  BOTSJ and
the cracks were spread over the middle 640 mm span of the beam
as shown in Fig. 12(c). A dominant flexural crack developed
directly at the mid-span of the beam and proceeded to become
the failure crack of the beam.RC  SB  3 SJ showed the least num-
Fig. 8. Slant shear strength (a) Specimen (b) Test Configuration. ber, spread and propagation of cracks when compared to the above
mentioned specimens. The cracks were concentrated within the
middle 350 mm span of the beam specimen as shown in Fig. 12
than the other two methods. It can be concluded that sand blasting (d). This is because RC  SB  3 SJ possessed the combined contri-
performed better under combined compression and shear as in the bution of bottom and longitudinal sides jacket as well as increased
slant shear test. While the EP specimens showed higher split ten- size compared to other specimens. This allowed RC  SB  3 SJ to
sile strength than the SB specimens as shown in Table 4 and that exhibit a better performance in ultimate load, stiffness and crack
the failure was completely inside normal concrete substrate as spread. There was one caveat, however, as the 3SJ specimens
shown in Fig. 9(c). It looks like the epoxy bonded is more efficient exhibited considerable loss of ductility.
at resisting peeling tension rather than sand blasting. This is For beams specimens for which prefab UHPFRC strips were
because the epoxy used has much higher tensile strength than attached by bonding with epoxy adhesive, RC  EP  BOTSJ showed

Table 4
Bond strength test results.

Substrate surface preparation Split cylinder tensile strength Slant shear strength
Average strength (MPa) Failure mode Average strength (MPa) Failure mode
Plain surface 2.58 A 21.56 A
Sand blasted 3.73 B 27.01 C
Epoxy bonded 5.89 C 23.15 B

Where: A = Interface failure; B = Interface + partial concrete substrate failure and C = Concrete substrate failure.
M.A. Al-Osta et al. / Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296 285

Fig. 9. Condition after split-cylinder test (a) Plain surface (b) SB technique (c) EP technique.

Fig. 10. Damaged cylinders after slant shear strength test (a) Plain surface (b) SB technique (c) EP technique.

Fig. 11. Instrumentation for the beam flexural test (all dimensions in mm).

a number of flexural cracks similar to those in RC  SB  BOTSJ and bonding the UHPFRC jacket to the beam has high tensile strength,
a dominant branching crack developed to become the failure crack thereby delaying the crack propagation through it, and making the
of the beam as observed in Fig. 13(b). However, the cracking load cracks invisible for a little longer period. RC  EP  2 SJ also
was higher than in the case of RC  SB  BOTSJ as shown in Table 5. showed similar crack pattern to RC  SB  2 SJ with a flexural fail-
This is because the cracks did not become visible early as the epoxy ure crack developing very close to the mid-span of the beam as
286 M.A. Al-Osta et al. / Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296

Fig. 12. Crack patterns for RC beam specimens (a) RC  Control (b) RC  SB  BOTSJ (c) RC  SB  2 SJ (d) RC  SB  3 SJ.

Table 5
Properties of tested beam specimens.

Specimen Residual crack width (mm) Cracking load (kN) Crack width at peak load (mm) Failure crack type

RC  Control 2.5 16 3.5 Pure flexural

RC  SB  BOTSJ 8.0 33 11.0 Branching flexural
RC  SB  2 SJ 5.0 41 6.5 Pure flexural
RC  SB  3 SJ 0.5 90 1.5 Pure flexural
RC  EP  BOTSJ 5.0 47 7.0 Branching Flexural
RC  EP  2 SJ 6.0 44 10.5 Pure flexural
RC  EP  3 SJ 1.3 95 3.5 Pure flexural

Fig. 13. Crack patterns for (a) RC-Control (b) RC  EP  BOTSJ (c) RC  EP  2 SJ (d) RC  EP  3 SJ.

shown in Fig. 13(c). Similarly, crack patterns for RC  EP  3 SJ strength of the beams. Beam specimens strengthened on their
resembled that of RC  SB  3 SJ as shown in Fig. 13(d). Interest- three sides i.e. RC  SB  3 SJ; RC  EP  3 SJ yielded the highest
ingly, the cracking load for the 3SJ specimens more than doubled load enhancement, whereas beams strengthened at the bottom
over the other retrofit configurations one probable cause being only i.e. RC  SB  BOTSJ; RC  EP  BOTSJ, the least load enhance-
the increased moment of inertia with the bottom layer retrofit ment as the tension active amount of UHPFRC was applied only to
together with the additional side jacketing provided on the two the bottom of the beam. It was also observed that beams strength-
sides of the beam. ened by bonding UHPFRC strips using epoxy adhesives EP
It was observed that both strengthening techniques increased showed relatively higher cracking loads than their counterparts
the cracking load of the beam specimens, decreased the number strengthened by casting UHPFRC on sand blasted surfaces (SB).
and spread of cracks along the span as well as reduced the crack This was as a result of the higher tensile strength of the epoxy
width openings. In addition, flexure-shear cracks that were adhesive which resisted the hairline cracks from going through
observed towards the supports in the case of RC  Control were to the main reinforcement until its tensile strength was exceeded
eliminated because the UHPFRC jacket increased the shear after which the cracks became visible.
M.A. Al-Osta et al. / Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296 287

2.6. Load deflection behavior as it moves lower with increasing amounts of tension effective
UHPFRC, the normal concrete or the UHPFRC compressive strain
Load-deflection behavior of RC  Control was a familiar one, will approach the crushing strain value prior to any significant
similar to most types of normal under reinforced RC beams with post-yielding of the steel and will lead to the undesirable brittle
substantial ductility. The load increased linearly, with a slight mode of failure .
reduction in stiffness upon cracking, up to yielding of the steel In the case of RC  SB  3 SJ, the beam showed higher load
reinforcement at a load level of equal to 51 kN. Thereafter, it increase and reduced deformation up to yielding of reinforcement,
showed more than expected hardening (consistent with the uniax- which occurs at a higher load equal to 124 kN. However, the load
ial tensile properties of the local steel) and with considerable increased after the yield up to 133 kN with a slight reduction in
reduction in stiffness and large deformations up to failure as stiffness, followed by a sudden fall in load in a softening mode,
shown in Fig. 14. Failure was eventually due to crushing of con- indicating a significantly less ductile failure as compared to
crete in compression. RC  Control, RC  SB  BOTSJ and RC  SB  2SJ and as can be
Beams RC  SB  BOTSJ and RC  SB  2 SJ exhibited similar visualized in Fig. 14a.
behavior as RC  Control except that load increased rapidly with The brittle nature of failure of RC  SB  3 SJ may be attributed
more improved stiffness up to yielding of reinforcement at 64 kN to the crushing of the UHPFRC at strain levels in the vicinity of
and 91 kN, respectively as shown in Fig. 14a. Maximum concrete 0.00150.002. Although all beams failed by crushing, the lack of
strains at instance of steel yielding increased as the load to yield ductility for this particular configuration can be attributed to the
increased. This indicates a lowering of the neutral axis at steel yield fact that at the time of steel yielding, the UHPFRC compressive
with the application of the jacketing. After yielding, the load strain was almost in the neighborhood of 0.0013. This was the
increase tapered off as the UHPFRC underwent softening, precipi- highest recorded concrete strain of all the beams tested indicat-
tated by gradual rupture of the UHPFRC in regions of tensile strain ing the lowering of the neutral axis as happens in classical over
in excess of 0.005. Peak compressive strains recorded also indicate reinforced concrete beams and an accompanying reduction in duc-
that actual failure was by crushing of concrete, normal concrete tility. This can be seen from the experimental data for steel and
(NC) for the case of the bottom jacketing, and either of UHPFRC compressive strains in the UHPFRC and NC for RC  EP  3 SJ spec-
or NC for the case of side jacketing. imen (Figs. 15 and 16b). Once crushing is initiated in the UHPFRC,
The UHPFRC provides tensile forces of a magnitude similar to compression cannot be transferred in a stable manner to the NC, as
that developed in the steel bars i.e. the rupture force for a bottom its crushing strain is in the vicinity of the UHPFRC and its peak
UHPFRC laminate of 30 mm thickness is of the order of 30 kN, compressive strength much lower.RC  EP  3 SJ shows exactly
assuming a UHPFRC tensile strength of 7 MPa. This compares well similar behavior to RC  SB  3 SJ (Fig. 14b). Both ultimate load
with the yield force in the two steel bars of 92 kN. The comparison and displacement are approximately equal. RC  EP
of these quantities indicates that addition of tension effective BOTSJ and RC  EP  2 SJ despite showing similar behavior to
UHPFRC essentially can transform the behavior of the originally RC  SB  BOTSJ and RC  SB  3 SJ; respectively, showed lower
under reinforced section to that of an over reinforced one. As the ultimate load and reduced stiffness as shown in Fig. 14 and Table 6.
strains on the tension side increase, the UHPFRC picks up tensile Looking at steel strains for RC  EP  BOTSJ, RC  EP  2  SJ
force, the beam steel yields at strain levels close to 0.003, and then and RC  EP  3 SJ, as shown in Fig. 15, it was observed that steel
continues to harden and increase its tensile force contribution. The has already yielded, although at different load levels for the three
beam steel and the UHPFRC continue to work in unison, until the cases. For RC  EP  BOTSJ, there is no load increase once the steel
strains start to reach the vicinity of 0.005 at which point the starts to yield, as the UHPFRC is significantly ruptured in tension at
UHPFRC begins to rupture and release its tensile contribution. strain levels higher than yield strain levels of the steel reinforce-
The ductility index depends on the location of the neutral axis ment. For RC  EP  2 SJ, there is an increase in load following

Fig. 14. Load-deflection behavior of beam specimens (a) SB (b) EP techniques.

288 M.A. Al-Osta et al. / Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296


(c) RC-EP-3SJ
Fig. 15. Load-strain of main beam steel reinforcement with EP techniques.

(a) RC-EP-BOT SJ (b) RC-EP-3SJ


Fig. 16. Load-compressive strain of beam specimens.

the yielding of the reinforcement, as there are portions of the the behavior becomes more brittle by virtue of sudden crushing of
UHPFRC on the sides with low strain levels that continue to carry the UHPFRC in compression at strain levels in the vicinity of
increasing amounts of tensile force prior to softening and eventual 0.00150.002 (Fig. 16b). The neutral axis position would be lower
rupture. Failure for both of these cases can be classified as being for this case as compared to the other cases, leading to higher con-
ductile. Behavior for RC  EP  3 SJ is a bit more complex, with crete compressive strains at instance of yielding of beam main
nominal increase in load following yielding of the steel reinforce- reinforcement, allowing them to reach the crushing values soon
ment, but with a significant reduction in the ductility. For this case, after yielding of the beam main tensile reinforcement.
M.A. Al-Osta et al. / Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296 289

Table 6
Load deflection properties of tested beam specimens.

Specimen Displacement at peak load (kN) Residual displacement (mm) Peak load (kN) Moment capacity enhancement (%) Failure type

RC  Control 19.10 12.79 70 Ductile

RC  SB  BOTSJ 15.31 10.44 81 16 Ductile
RC  SB  2 SJ 13.38 9.54 102 46 Ductile
RC  SB  3 SJ 4.55 2.51 132 89 Brittle
RC  EP  BOTSJ 12.13 7.55 75 8 Ductile
RC  EP  2 SJ 15.7 14.07 95 36 Ductile
RC  EP  3 SJ 4.35 4.29 129 85 Brittle

Table 7
Elastic properties of concrete and UHPFRC.

Property Concrete UHPFRC

Modulus of elasticity EGPa 34 46
Poissons ratio V 0.15 0.15

using the non-linear finite element package ABAQUS to predict

the behavior of these beams specimens in flexure. The elastic
behavior of the materials was modelled by specifying the modulus
of elasticity (E), and the Poissons ratio of each material as shown in
Table 7.
The Concrete Damage-Plasticity Model (CDPM) was used to
model the nonlinear behavior of both concrete and UHPFRC [21
23]. The nonlinear behavior of the materials was simulated by
directly inputting the CDPM model parameters shown in Table 8
and materials experimental results shown in Fig. 18 into the
selected model [24]. The behavior of the materials in compression
of both normal concrete (NC) and UHPFRC shown in Fig. 18
Fig. 17. Effect of strengthening configuration on failure load of beam specimens. (a) and (c), respectively, were obtained from uniaxial compression
test on cylindrical specimens having dimensions of
75 mm * 150 mm in a uniaxial compression testing machine. The
2.7. Effect of strengthening configuration
specimens were inserted into a metal ring set-up for measuring
the axial deformation of the specimen. The tensile behavior of NC
Results in Fig. 17 show that beams strengthened with UHPFRC
was obtained by conducing flexural strength test on prism speci-
jacket on 3-sides 3 SJ resulted in the highest load increment of
mens (Fig. 18(b)). However, the tensile behavior of UHPFRC was
about 89% and 85% for RC  SB  3 SJ and RC  EP  3 SJ beams,
determined by a direct uniaxial test on dog bone specimens
respectively. However, there was a significant compromise in the
(Fig. 18(d)).
ductility of the beams, with the failure mode for the 3-sided jack-
Concrete compression damage parameters that is used in the
eting being a non-desirable softening mode post peak. In contrast,
model are given as [25]:
strengthening on the bottom side only BOTSJ) resulted in load
increments of 16 and 7% for RC  SB and RC  EP beams, respec-

rc E1
tively, without any noticeable reduction in ductility. Beams dc 1  c
2pl 1
c bc  1 rc E1
strengthened on the two longitudinal sides showed promising
results of not only an appreciable increase in ultimate capacity,
where: dc Concrete tension damage parameter; rc Compressive
but also without an appreciable compromise on the ductility of
the structure. RC  SB  2 SJ and RC  EP  2 SJ (Fig. 17) showed Stress; Ec Concrete elastic modulus; 2plc Plastic strain corre-

load increments of 46 and 36%, respectively. Information on the sponding to compressive stress; bc constant with range 0 < bc < 1.
effect of this particular strengthening configuration has been lack- however, concrete tension damage parameter that is used in the
ing from the available literature. The reduction in ductility appears model is given as [25]:
to be a function of the amount of main steel reinforcement pro-

rt E1
vided in relation to the amount and configuration of UHPFRC pro- dt 1  c
vided. As this ratio is decreased, there is an increasing reduction in 2pl
 1 rt E1

overall ductility of the retrofitted beams, as the behavior of the ret-

rofitted beams starts to resemble more that of over reinforced con-
where: dt Concrete tension damage parameter; rt Tensile
crete beams. Stress; 2pl
t Plastic strain corresponding to tensile stress; bt con-
stant with range 0 < bt < 1.
Table 8
3. Numerical investigation Concrete damage plasticity model parameter for concrete and UHPFRC.

W() 2 rb0 K Viscosity parameter

The flexural behavior of the tested beam specimens was simu-
lated using nonlinear finite element analysis for better understand- Normal concrete (NC)
36 0.1 1.16 0.667 0
ing of the flexural response of the strengthened beams. The
behavior for both concrete and UHPFRC is non-linear and complex. UHPFRC
36 0.1 1.16 0.667 0
A 3D finite element model of the beam specimens was developed
290 M.A. Al-Osta et al. / Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296

Fig. 18. Nonlinear behavior of (a) concrete in compression (b) concrete in tension (c) UHPFRC in compression (d) UHPFRC in tension.

Steel is simulated by an elastic-perfectly plastic relationship This element type is suitable for both linear analysis and for com-
whose parameters were obtained by experimental testing plex non-linear analysis [26].
f y 590 MPa; E 200 GPa as shown in Fig. 19. A 2-noded linear 3 D truss element was used to model the
A 3 D stress 8 noded linear brick element (solid continuum) steel reinforcing bars and stirrups. This element is a long, slender
was used to model both the NC and UHPFRC as shown in Fig. 20. structural member that transmits only axial load. Assuming perfect
bond, a tie constraint was used to fuse together the UHPFRC jacket
and the concrete beam that was confirmed by bond test mentioned
Experimental and finite element model (FEM) load deflection
behavior shows that the FEM captures both load increase and stiff-
ness of RC  Control with high accuracy as shown in Fig. 21(a). Sim-
ilarly, in the case of RC  SB=EP  BOTSJ and RC  SB=EP  2 SJ, the
FEM was able to predict the experimental behavior with good
accuracy as seen in Fig. 21(b) and (c), respectively. RC-SB/EP-3 SJ
FEM showed similar behavior with the experiment. However, a
sudden reduction in stiffness of the FEM was observed just after
the elastic range as shown in Fig. 21(d). This resulted in failure load
to be lower in FE simulation as compared to the experimentally
observed failure load. This difference is likely because both exper-
imental failure load and stiffness of the beam were highly affected
by the orientation and concentration of steel fibers across the path
Fig. 19. Behavior of steel reinforcing bar in tension. of crack propagation. Fig. 22 shows experimental crack and FEM
M.A. Al-Osta et al. / Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296 291

Fig. 20. Meshed beam specimen.

Fig. 21. Experimental and finite element load deflection behavior (a) RC-Control (b) RC-BOT SJ (c) RC-2 SJ (d) RC-3 SJ.
292 M.A. Al-Osta et al. / Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296

(i) Crack Pattern for RC-Control (a) experiment (b) FEM

(ii) Crack Pattern for RC-BOT SJ (a) experiment (b) FEM

(iii) Crack Pattern for RC-2 SJ (a) experiment (b) FEM

(iv) RC-3 SJ (a) experiment (b) FEM

Fig. 22. Crack Pattern of Control beam specimen and specimens with SB techniques.

crack patterns for RC-Control, RC-SB-BOT SJ, RC-SB-2-SJ and RC-SB- based on the sectional stress-strain distribution to predict internal
3SJ, respectively. It was observed that there is a high resemblance forces. Failure moment was calculated from the internal forces at
between the experimental and FEM crack pattern. This further equilibrium of the member at that particular cross section. The
shows that how effective the FEM was in predicting the behavior model was developed based on the materials test results expressed
of the beams specimens. It can be concluded that the as material laws that serve as input data to the model. A bilinear
RC  Control having no UHPFRC was simulated more accurately stress-strain curve was used for modelling the steel reinforcing
by the FEM and the prediction accuracy of the FEM was found to bars in tension (i.e. elastic, perfectly plastic) as shown in Fig. 23
decrease with an increase in the volume of UHPFRC present in (a). UHPFRC behavior in tension was assumed as bilinear stress-
the beam specimen. This effect of steel fibers orientation and con- strain curve, resembling the experimental behavior as shown in
centration usually arises during mixing and due to the effect of Fig. 24. Concrete in compression was represented using the Whit-
vibration during compaction. ney stress block (i.e. equivalent rectangular stress distribution) in
accordance with ACI Code Section 10.2.7 as shown in Fig. 23(c).
4. Analytical investigation In addition, UHPFRC in compression was represented by an equiv-
alent rectangular stress block for high strength concrete proposed
The moment capacity of both control and UHPFRC strengthened by Mertol et al. [27]. With UHPFRC being a lot more ductile than
beam specimens were analyzed using an analytical/mechanistic NC, then it would be appropriate to use a rectangular stress block,
model of their cross section. The analysis used internal stresses similar to the stress block for ordinary steel.where
M.A. Al-Osta et al. / Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296 293

Fig. 23. Material laws (a) steel tensile behavior (b) UHPFRC tensile behavior (c) concrete compressive stress distribution (d) UHPFRC compressive stress distribution.

Fig. 24. Analytical model definition.

f c  28 0 T u1 0:5f ut bu y 9
bc 0:85  0:05 f c > 28 MPa 3
( T u2 0:5f ut  f ut;1  bu hc  x  y 10
0:85 f uc 6 69 MPa
au 0 0 27 4 T u3 bu hu  x  yf ut;1 11
0:85  0:0029f uc  69 P 0:75 f uc > 69 MPa
( 0 T u4 0:5hu f ut  f ut;2 bu;b 12
0:85 f uc 6 28 MPa
bu 0 0 27 5
0:85  0:00725f uc  28 P 0:65 f uc > 28 MPa T u5 hu bu;b f ut;2 13
Internal forces were expressed as the product of stress and the Strain at the bottom of the beam is selected eut and Eqs. (6)(10)
cross-sectional area covered by the stresses as given in Eqs. (6) are simplified and expressed in terms of the neutral axis depth x.
(14) The value of x at failure is obtained by iteration until equilibrium
C c 0:85f c bc xbc 6 of forces is attained.
RF C c C u  T s T u1 T u2 T u3 T u4 T u5 0 14
C u au f uc bu xbu 7
The predicted flexural moment capacity is computed by taking
moment of forces about the neutral axis location as given below.
T s As f y 8
294 M.A. Al-Osta et al. / Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296

Fig. 25. Flow Chart for Analytical Model.

ac   au  2y Table 9
M pred C c x  Cu x  T s d  x T u1 Analytical model results of tested beam specimens.
2 2 3
    Specimen MExp : (kN.m) M pred (kN.m) MExp
1 1 ratio
T u2 hc  x  y y T u3 hc  x  y y M pred

3 2 RC  Control 1 20.1 18.3 1.094

1 1 RC  Control 2 19.8 18.3 1.081
T u4 hc hu T u5 hc hu 15 RC  SB  BOTSJ 23.3 24.6 0.953
3 2
RC  SB  2 SJ 29.3 26.5 1.109
The procedure for computing the predicted moment capacities RC  SB  3 SJ 37.9 35.7 1.065
RC  EP  BOTSJ 21.6 24.6 0.878
of the beams is as given in Fig. 25.
RC  EP  2 SJ 27.3 26.5 1.030
Results of moment capacities predicted using the analytical RC  EP  3 SJ 37.1 35.7 1.039
model of the beam specimens were presented and compared with
the experimental test result in Table 9. The results showed good
agreement for both types of strengthening techniques. RC  SB  BOTSJ, RC  SB  2 SJ and RC  SB  3 SJ; respectively,
Difference between analytical and experimental failure load was noted; with the difference of 13.3%, 3.3% and 4% being
was 9.4% and 7.8% for RC  Control 1 and RC  Control 2; respec- obtained for RC  EP  BOTSJ, RC  EP  2 SJ and RC  EP  3 SJ;
tively. Furthermore, a difference of 4.9%, 10.8% and 6.4% for respectively as shown Fig. 26.
M.A. Al-Osta et al. / Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296 295

Fig. 26. Comparison between analytical model and experimental failure loads.

5. Conclusions 6) Beam specimens strengthened on its three sides showed the

highest capacity enhancement, whereas beams strength-
Experimental, numerical and analytical investigations of the ened only at the bottom side showed the least enhancement
flexural behavior of RC beams strengthened with UHPFRC have for UHPFRC strengthening techniques. However, higher
been carried out. Material and bond strength tests were conducted enhancement also resulted in significant compromise of
in order to ascertain material properties and the bond strength for beam ductility, resulting in a non-desirable softening mode
UHPFRC-normal concrete composite members. The following con- of failure for both RC-SB/EP-3SJ.
clusions may be drawn regarding the outcome of the study: 7) Design of such repair for a field situation should be based on
ensuring that the amount of tension effective UHPFRC pro-
1) Bond strength tests show that UHPFRC has good bonding vided should not compromise the ductility of the retrofitted
property, even without surface preparation of the concrete member. This can be ensured by guaranteeing that the yield-
substrate. However, concrete substrates whose surface is ing of main reinforcement occurs sufficiently prior to failure
roughened by sandblasting followed by casting of fresh of the flexural member by crushing of concrete in compres-
UHPFRC around it showed higher bond strength under slant sion, as in the design of under reinforced beams for rein-
shear stress test. Specimens for which concrete and UHPFRC forced concrete. This will ensure the required ductility of
substrates were bonded with epoxy adhesive showed higher the retrofitted member.
bond strength in peeling tension mode. 8) No evidence of any shear driven cracks was noted in any of
2) No significant difference in the results for flexural testing of the jacketed members some of the flexure shear cracks in
strengthened beams was observed based on variations in the control beam were damped out partially or totally in the
interface preparation technique. Both concepts proved effec- strengthened members. The shear strength of the beam sec-
tive, however, sandblasting/UHPFRC cast in-situ technique tion was enhanced, especially with the jacketing provided
showed an overall better performance. on the sides of the beam.
3) UHPFRC strengthening increased the stiffness of the con- 9) An important index, namely the ratio of main beam steel
crete beams under service condition i.e. deformations were reinforcement to the UHPFRC used as retrofit, was identified
reduced under applied loads when compared to the control as playing a significant role in defining the level of ductility
beam specimens. of the retrofitted member. The ductility was noted to reduce
4) UHPFRC strengthening helped to increase cracking load, as this ratio reduced, although the strength was noted to
delayed crack propagation and crack spread when compared increase. This trend is qualitatively similar to the behavior
to the control concrete beam specimens. This may be attrib- of over reinforced concrete beams. Increasing amounts of
uted to the high tensile strength and tensile plastic straining tension effective UHPFRC in the configurations adopted led
property of UHPFRC. Further, this can be also attributed to to a sudden and softening type of post-peak failure mode,
the increased moment of inertia effect with the addition of driven by compressive crushing of UHPFRC in the case of
UHPFRC on the bottom and the sides. Finally, this also the 3-sided jacketing.
reflects the enhancement in shear strength with the use of 10) The results of finite element modelling (FEM) showed good
UHPFRC jackets, as evidenced by reduced crack spread agreement with the experimental test results. The FEM pre-
towards the support region. dicted peak load and load-deflection behavior was close to
5) The strengthened beams showed monolithic behavior i.e. no the experimental test values.
debonding was observed for either of the two techniques of 11) The analytical model was able to predict the moment capac-
jacketing preparations. However, a flexural crack was ity of the strengthened beams with high accuracy for all
observed to branch out and propagate over a short distance strengthening configurations. The model provides an
along the interface in the case RC  EP  BOTSJ: effective tool to determine the moment capacity for
296 M.A. Al-Osta et al. / Construction and Building Materials 134 (2017) 279296

strengthened concrete beams strengthened with UHPFRC [11] L. Hussein, L. Amleh, Structural behavior of ultra-high performance fiber
reinforced concrete-normal strength concrete or high strength concrete
jacketing, irrespective of the material property of UHPFRC
composite members, Construction and Building Materials 93 (2015) 1105
mix used. 1116.
[12] K. Habel, E. Denari, E. Bruhwiler, Experimental investigation of composite
ultra-high performance fiber-reinforced concrete and conventional concrete
members, ACI Struct. J. 104 (2007) 1020.
Acknowledgements [13] G. Martinola, A. Meda, G.A. Plizzari, Z. Rinaldi, Strengthening and repair of RC
beams with fiber reinforced concrete, Cement Concrete Compos. 32 (2010)
This study was made possible with the support of Department 731739.
[14] P.R. Prem, A.R. Murthy, G. Ramesh, B.H. Bharatkumar, N.R. Iyer, Flexural
of Civil and Environmental Engineering and Research institute at behavior of damaged RC beams strengthened with ultra-high performance
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reinforced concrete beams using ultra-high performance fiber reinforced
Precast Concrete for their assistance in casting of the RC beams. concrete (UHPFRC), Engineering Structures 106 (2016) 370384.
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