Mechanical behavior of concrete prisms reinforced with steel and GFRP bar systems

Arvydas Rimkus, Joaquim A.O. Barros, Viktor Gribniak*, Mohammadali Rezazadeh

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Being immune to corrosion, and having a tensile strength up to three times higher than structural steel, glass fiber reinforced polymer (GFRP) bars are suitable for reinforcing concrete structures exposed to aggressive environmental conditions. However, a relatively low elasticity modulus of GFRP bars (in respect to the steel) favors the occurrence of relatively large deformability of cracked reinforced concrete. Lack of ductility and degradation of properties under high temperature can be also identified as debilities of GFRP bars over steel ones. Combining GFRP and steel bars can be a suitable solution to overcoming these concerns. Nevertheless, the application of such hybrid reinforcement systems requires reliable material models. The influence of the relative area of GFRP and steel bars on the tensile capacity of cracked concrete (generally known as tension-stiffening effect), was never investigated from the experimental point of view, mainly crossing results from different tools on the assessment of the cracking process. This paper experimentally investigates deformations and cracking behavior of concrete prisms reinforced with steel bars and GFRP bars in different combinations. The test results of 11 elements are reported. A tensile stress-strain diagram is conceptually proposed for modelling the tension-stiffening effect in elements with such hybrid combination of the reinforcement. The cracking process in terms of crack width and crack spacing is analyzed considering the hybrid reinforcement particularities and a preliminary approach is proposed for the prediction of the crack width for this type of reinforced concrete elements.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)273-288
Number of pages16
JournalComposite Structures
Early online date1 Apr 2019
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jul 2019
Externally publishedYes


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