Bond Durability of Carbon Fiber-Reinforced Polymer Tendons Embedded in High-Strength Concrete

Eleni Toumpanaki, Janet Lees, Giovanni Terrasi

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The structural performance of carbon fiber–reinforced polymer (CFRP) pretensioned structures is controlled by the bond between the CFRP tendons and concrete. The bond strength of CFRP sand-coated tendons can be affected by humid environments due to the porous epoxy matrix structure or by defects in the external sand coating layer of CFRP tendons, e.g., due to storage conditions. Pullout tests were carried out to assess the bond strength performance of sand-coated tendons embedded in high-strength concrete and immersed in water at either 23 or 40°C. Sand-coated CFRP tendons with two different core diameters of either 4.2 or 5.4 mm were studied. To assess the effect of the sand coating coverage on the bond, half sand-coated and uncoated tendons were also tested. An image processing technique was developed
to help correlate bond strength variations with variations in the sand coating. An average difference of 24% between the bond strengths of the half sand-coated and full sand-coated tendons was recorded. A large scatter in the pullout results for the sand-coated tendons of diameter 5.4 mm was observed and this was attributed to the manufacturing process. There was no clear trend of bond strength degradation
in the sand-coated tendons even after roughly 1.5 years of full immersion in water irrespective of the exposure temperature. However, an increase in the bond strength of the uncoated tendons and in the bond stiffness of all CFRP tendons was observed. This was felt to be the result of concrete autogenous shrinkage in high-strength concrete and the potential swelling effects of the tendons in a humid concrete
environment. Analytical models are used to describe the bond stress-slip behavior, and their suitability for sand-coated CFRP tendons is studied.
Original languageEnglish
Article number04018032
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Composites for Construction
Issue number5
Early online date9 Jul 2018
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2018


  • CFRP
  • Durability

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