Authors: Jeb M. Stefan, Luz M. Calle, Sven E. Eklund, Mark R. Kolody,
Kunal Kupwade-Patil, Eliza L. Montgomery, Henry E. Cardenas
The purpose of this study was to develop an analytical model to predict the time required for cracking of concrete due to corrosion of the iron reinforcement. The concrete and cement specimens used for this study were batched with cover material ranging from 0.75 to 1.3 in (1.91 to 3.30 cm). The extent of cover material was not formulated into the model under the assumption that crack initiation would tend to produce visible cracking within a relatively short time period. The model was derived using both Hooke’s Law and the volume expansion induced by the corrosion oxides. Correlation achieved with specimen cracking data from the literature was relatively good with a 95% level of confidence. This model presents a key benefit to facility and infrastructure managers by enabling them to plan the time when corrosion mitigating actions are required. It also provides a significant convenience as the condition of the concrete structure or its environment changes over time. The only parameter that needs to be updated over time is the corrosion rate measurement. This single parameter captures the most influential impact that stems from several other parameters which tend to be required in models that are more mechanistically definitive.
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