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Magazine of Concrete Research, 2010, 62, No.

6, June, 405–414
doi: 10.1680/macr.2010.62.6.405

Flexural strength of corroded reinforced


concrete beams
A. K. Azad, S. Ahmad and B. H. A. Al-Gohi

King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals

The analytical prediction of residual flexural strength of corroded beams has been revisited in the context of
relatively larger size beams reinforced with larger diameter tension bars to exclude the size-effect of beams in the
proposed modelling and to improve further the accuracy of the analytical method. Most of the past research,
including that conducted by the authors, has used smaller size beam specimens to generate test data for modelling.
A new experimental programme was undertaken using 48 beams of width 200 mm and depth varying from 215 to
315 mm, reinforced with tension bars of 16 and 18 mm in diameter. The beams were subjected to a varying degree
of corrosion damage using accelerated corrosion and then they were tested in a four-point bending test to determine
their residual flexure capacity. When the two-step analytical procedure, proposed by the authors in an earlier work
to determine the residual flexural strength of corroded beams, was applied to the test beams used in this new
experimental work, it was found that the theoretical predictions were consistently lower than the actual flexural
strength of the beams. The search for a more compliant prediction method has been accomplished by proposing a
new correction factor that replaces the previous one by correctly taking into account the size-effect of the tension
bars. In order to show the accuracy of the proposed method, the test data published by other researchers have been
compared with the values predicted by the proposed method. The comparisons clearly show that the proposed
method yields values which are in good agreement with the test data from this and other experiments, lending
confidence to the proposed method to serve as a reliable analytical tool to predict the flexural capacity of a
corroded concrete beam.

affects the serviceability and ultimate strength of con-


Introduction
crete elements (Cabrera, 1996). A considerable amount
Reinforcement corrosion has been widely reported to of research related to reinforcement corrosion has been
be the main cause of deterioration of many reinforced carried out in the past, addressing various issues related
concrete structures, leading to premature failures before to corrosion process, its initiation and damaging effects.
the attainment of their design life. Research work con- Several models have been proposed for prediction of
ducted in the Arabian Gulf has revealed that the corro- time-to-corrosion cracking. Works of the researchers
sion-free service life of buildings in this region may be (Bazant, 1979; Dagher and Kulendran, 1992; Morinaga,
expected to be between 10 and 15 years and sometimes 1990; Wang and Zhao, 1993) can be cited as represen-
only 5 years (Middle East Construction, 1987). tative samples. However, the cracking of concrete cover
The effects of reinforcement corrosion include loss owing to reinforcement corrosion does not represent
of cross-section of rebars and loss of bond between the loss of structural strength to the point where a
steel and concrete owing to cracking of concrete caused member becomes unsafe.
by rust products. The weakening of the bond and The moment-carrying capacity of a reinforced con-
anchorage between concrete and reinforcement together crete beam depends to a large extent on the strength of
with the reduced cross-sectional area of rebars directly the reinforcing steel. The effect of loss of the reinfor-
cing steel area on the flexural strength has been studied
by various researchers (Cabrera, 1996; Huang and
Civil Engineering Department, King Fahd University of Petroleum Yang, 1997; Rodriguez et al., 1997; Ting and Nowak,
and Minerals, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia
1991; Uomoto and Misra, 1988; Yoon et al., 2000).
(MACR 900037) Paper received 24 February 2009; revised 12 July The effect of corrosion on the bond between steel and
2009; accepted 5 August 2009 concrete has been reported by many researchers
405

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Azad et al

(Al-Sulaimani et al., 1990; Almusallam et al., 1996; and therefore, from a reliability viewpoint, is appeal-
Amleh and Mirza, 1999; Auyeung et al., 2000; Berra et ing.
al., 2003; Coronelli 2002; Fu and Chung, 1997; Stanish
et al., 1999; Wang and Liu, 2006). The researchers
have correlated the degree of reinforcement corrosion
with the extent of the loss of bond between steel and
Additional experimental work
concrete. Samples of research work pertaining to the The thrust of the new experiment (Al-Gohi, 2008)
prediction of residual flexural strength of corroding was the engagement of relatively larger size reinforced
concrete beams include several studies (Aziz, 1994; concrete test beams to exclude the possible size effects
Cabrera and Ghoddoussi, 1992; Castel et al., 2000a, b; of test specimens in corrosion data. The test pro-
Jin and Zhao, 2001; Mangat and Elgarf, 1999; Nokhas- gramme of Azad et al. (2007) was duplicated using
okhasteh et al., 1992; Ravindrarajah and Ong, 1987; larger size beams with bigger diameter tension bars.
Tachibana et al., 1990; Uomoto and Misra, 1988; Xi et The experimental work consisted of
al., 1997; Zhang et al., 1995). More recently, the
authors (Azad et al., 2007) have proposed a two-step (a) casting a series of reinforced concrete beams of
procedure to predict the residual strength of corroding different cross-sections and reinforcements
beams on the basis of an experimental study in which (b) subjecting them to an accelerated corrosion
48 reinforced beams of 150 mm 3 150 mm cross-sec- through impressed current
tion, reinforced with 10 mm and 12 mm steel bars were (c) testing the corroded beams under four-point bend-
subjected to accelerated corrosion. ing tests to find the residual strength.
A review of the past work including that of the The design variables used in this experiment include
authors (Azad et al., 2007) highlights two common
intrinsic factors. First, virtually all experimental work (a) three different beam depths: 215 mm, 265 mm and
conducted by the researchers has utilised the technique 315 mm
of accelerated corrosion by impressed currents. There (b) two different diameters of tension bars (16 mm and
has been a debate on the applicability of a mathemati- 18 mm)
cal model, formulated from the data gathered from an (c) different durations of corrosion induced by apply-
accelerated corrosion, to the actual in situ corroding ing direct current at an average constant rate of
beams undergoing natural corrosion, as the two corro- 1.78 mA/cm2 .
sion processes are distinctly different. Despite this,
most researchers have opted for the accelerated corro- Test specimens and preparation
sion because it requires far less time and effort to A total of 48 reinforced concrete beams were cast to
gather the much needed test data. Second, the beam include all design variables. All tests were repeated
sizes used in the experimental work were small, varying twice, including the test of the control beams, which
from 100 3 150 mm to 150 3 200, owing to handling were not subjected to corrosion. The 48 beams were
and test constraints. Even if the technique of acceler- divided into six groups, B1 to B6, each group with
ated corrosion is deemed acceptable, the use of small- eight beams, as shown in Table 1. Out of the eight
sized beams raises concern about the possible size beams in a group, six were used in accelerated corro-
effect, if any, in the development of a strength predic- sion and the other two were used as ‘control beams’,
tion model. which were not subjected to corrosion. The control
The aim of this paper is two-fold: first, to verify if beams are designated as B1-C to B6-C.
the method of Azad et al. (2007) is capable of predict- The details of the beams are shown in Figure 1. All
ing the residual strength of corroded larger-sized beams beams had a length of 1100 mm, width of 200 mm and
and, if not, propose the necessary modification; second, a bottom clear cover of 40 mm. Three values of depth
to compare the modified strength prediction model with were used: 215 mm, 265 mm and 315 mm. For each
the available test data from other researches in order to
confirm its acceptability as a reliable method. It was Table 1. Beam groups
therefore necessary to revisit the experimental needs
and to undertake a new set of experiments on relatively Beam groups Beam dimensions Diameter of
larger size beams using accelerated corrosion. The tension
choice of accelerated corrosion stemmed from the fact
Width: mm Depth: mm Steel: mm
that most of the available corrosion data were generated
from the use of such test methods. The proposed meth- B1 200 215 2–16
od, similar to that of Azad et al. (2007) with the B2 200 265 2–16
exception of a new correction factor, Cf , appears to B3 200 315 2–16
predict results which agree well with the experimental B4 200 215 2–18
B5 200 265 2–18
data published by several researchers (Azad et al., B6 200 315 2–18
2007; Rodriguez et al., 1997; Tachibana et al., 1990)
406 Magazine of Concrete Research, 2010, 62, No. 6

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Flexural strength of corroded reinforced concrete beams
2-#8 Lead wire extended
#8 @ 80 c/c (epoxy coated) At least 1 m outside

40 40
1100

200

200

200

315
285
215

2-#16 2-#16 2-#16


Group B1 Group B2 Group B3

200

200

200

315
285
215

2-#18 2-#18 2-#18


Group B4 Group B5 Group B6

• All dimension are in mm.


• Clear concrete cover at bottom and two sides is 40 mm and at top is 25 mm

Figure 1. Details of test specimens

depth, one set of beams was reinforced with 2–16 mm retained) – 1/2 in., 35%; 3/8 in., 35%; 3/16 in., 20%;
diameter tension bars and the other set was reinforced 3/32 in., 10%; (c) coarse/fine aggregate ratio ¼ 1.65
with 2–18 mm diameter bars as shown in Figure 1. All (by mass). Mix design parameters of concrete were
beams had shear reinforcements in the form of double- kept unchanged for all of the specimens.
legged 8 mm diameter stirrups spaced uniformly at
80 mm centres throughout the length of the beams. The Test set-up
stirrups provided sufficient shear reinforcement to pre- Six beam specimens from each group were subjected
vent premature shear failure prior to the attainment of to accelerated corrosion by applying anodic current at
the ultimate flexural load. The top two holding bars for an average rate of 1.78 mA/cm2 for different durations.
stirrups were epoxy-coated to prevent corrosion. The This value of applied current density was close to the
clear concrete cover to reinforcements at the bottom maximum possible current density that could be ap-
and the sides was 40 mm and that at the top was plied to the large-sized beam specimens through the
25 mm. A lead wire was connected to the bottom set-up used. This was achieved through a DC power
tension bars in each beam for electrical connection to supply with a built-in ammeter to monitor the current
supply current. and a potentiometer to control the current intensity.
The following mix proportions were used: (a) water/ The concrete specimens were partially immersed up to
cement ratio ¼ 0.45 (by mass); (b) cement content a depth of about 120 mm in 5% sodium chloride solu-
(ASTM C150 type I Portland cement) ¼ 350 kg/m3 ; tion in a tank. The direction of the current was adjusted
particle size distribution of coarse aggregate (% weight so that the reinforcing steel became an anode and a
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Azad et al

stainless steel plate placed on the concrete specimen Table 2. Values of experimental moment capacity of corroded
served as a cathode. The stainless steel plate was beams and R
placed in the tank in such a manner that it covered both
Beam Mexc : kN m Mexu : kN m M exc
the sides of the specimen throughout the length. This R ¼ 3 100
M exu
arrangement ensured a uniform distribution of the cor-
rosion current along the whole length of the bar. All B1-1 31.50 32.20 97.8
beams, corroded and the control beams, were tested in B1-2 28.18 87.5
a four-point bend to find their load-carrying capacity B1-3 18.38 57.1
using a simple span of 900 mm and a spacing of B1-4 22.40 69.6
B1-5 30.98 96.2
200 mm between the two central loads. B1-6 17.33 53.8
B2-1 36.58 42.26 86.6
B2-2 40.95 96.9
Gravimetric testing of corroded rebars
B2-3 24.33 57.6
After conducting a flexure test of corroded beams, B2-4 26.95 63.8
the tension bars were extracted from the beams by B2-5 26.60 62.9
breaking the concrete for measurement of the average B2-6 20.48 48.5
B3-1 37.63 58.10 64.8
loss of steel owing to induced corrosion, using the B3-2 36.05 62.0
gravimetric test. The bars were cleaned to remove all B3-3 52.50 90.4
rust products using Clarke’s solution and then they were B3-4 55.30 95.2
weighed to find the net weight of steel. Preparation, B3-5 35.70 61.4
cleaning and evaluation of corrosion test specimens B3-6 57.58 99.1
B4-1 33.60 41.12 81.7
were carried out in accordance with ASTM G-1-90 B4-2 22.23 54.1
(ASTM, 1990). B4-3 22.75 55.3
B4-4 23.10 56.2
B4-5 18.73 45.5
B4-6 16.10 39.2
B5-1 31.15 50.84 61.3
Test results B5-2 38.15 75.0
Experimental flexural capacity of beams B5-3 29.75 58.5
B5-4 40.95 80.5
Experimental values of ultimate moment capacity, B5-5 25.55 50.3
Mexu for each control beam (B1-C to B6-C) and Mexc B5-6 25.20 49.6
for corroded beams were calculated as 350P kN mm, B6-1 58.98 67.21 87.8
B6-2 65.98 98.2
where P is the load applied to the beam at failure in
B6-3 57.40 85.4
kN and 350 mm is the distance between the centre of B6-4 36.93 54.9
support and the load P. The experimentally determined B6-5 48.48 72.1
values of flexural strength of the control and corroded B6-6 35.00 52.1
beams, Mexu and Mexc , are shown collectively for all
beams in Table 2. The ratio of Mexc /Mexu multiplied by
100, designated as R, is indicative of the percentage Theoretical flexural capacity of control beams
residual strength, after loss due to reinforcement corro-
sion. The values of R for all corroded beams are also For calculation of flexure strengths of beams, the
shown in Table 2. average value of the 28-day cylinder strength of con-
crete, f c9 , was taken as 28 MPa. The values of yield
strength, fy , for 16 mm and 18 mm bars were measured
Weight loss of bars and equivalent corrosion current as 593 MPa and 575 MPa respectively.
density The theoretical values of ultimate moment capacity
The measured weight loss values were used to calcu- of the control beams, Mthu , were calculated using con-
late the instantaneous corrosion rate, Jr, using the pro- ventional flexural formulae for doubly reinforced rec-
cedure described by Azad et al. (2007). The calculated tangular beams considering the measured values of f c9
values of equivalent Icorr are shown collectively for all and f y (Wang et al., 2007). Table 4 lists the values of
corroded beams in Table 3. It is observed that the Mthu as calculated together with the experimentally
equivalent Icorr values established from gravimetric determined moment capacities, Mexu for the six control
analysis are not exactly equal to the applied corrosion beams and the ratio of Mexu /Mthu , designated as Cc .
current density, Iapp , but are reasonably close. The dif- The results show that the accuracy of the theoretical
ference between Icorr and Iapp is attributed primarily to prediction of the flexural capacity of the beams was in
the resistivity of concrete provided by the concrete the range  10%. In view of this, for all comparison
cover around the bars, the quality of concrete and to purposes, the experimentally obtained moment capacity
the size of rebars relative to concrete cover (Auyeung was taken as the actual strength of an uncorroded
et al., 2000). beam.
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Flexural strength of corroded reinforced concrete beams

Table 3. Gravimetric test results and conversion of weight loss into Icorr

Beam Conversion of weight loss into Icorr

Gravimetric test results Jr : Icorr : mA/cm2


g/cm2 /year
D: mm Iapp : T: d Av. length of Av. wt loss: g r: % wt loss
mA/cm2 sample: cm

B1-1 16 1.77 6 155.32 83.38 3.50 6.49 0.71


B1-2 16 10 156.41 143.88 6.00 6.68 0.73
B1-3 16 4 154.75 98.04 4.13 11.50 1.26
B1-4 16 14 156.30 379.60 15.85 12.59 1.38
B1-5 16 10 156.46 70.85 2.95 3.29 0.36
B1-6 16 14 156.25 379.13 15.83 12.58 1.38
B2-1 16 1.78 10 189.08 342.47 11.82 13.15 1.44
B2-2 16 8 190.12 287.21 9.86 13.71 1.50
B2-3 16 15 188.70 541.95 18.74 13.90 1.52
B2-4 16 15 190.54 511.95 17.53 13.00 1.42
B2-5 16 20 189.69 742.32 25.53 14.20 1.56
B2-6 16 20 189.85 750.97 25.81 14.36 1.57
B3-1 16 1.86 10 189.85 388.27 13.34 14.84 1.63
B3-2 16 15 189.7 518.88 17.85 13.24 1.45
B3-3 16 5 183.93 169.65 6.02 13.39 1.47
B3-4 16 4 185.41 166.03 5.84 16.25 1.78
B3-5 16 20 188.45 759.32 26.29 14.62 1.60
B3-6 16 3 184.36 130.94 4.63 17.18 1.88
B4-1 18 1.74 6 158.02 161.27 5.28 10.97 1.20
B4-2 18 10 158.15 287.58 9.40 11.73 1.29
B4-3 18 12 158.50 345.45 11.27 11.72 1.28
B4-4 18 13 188.65 447.42 12.26 11.77 1.29
B4-5 18 20 189.62 736.88 20.09 12.54 1.37
B4-6 18 20 190.25 774.77 21.06 13.14 1.44
B5-1 18 1.75 10 189.54 333.53 9.10 11.35 1.24
B5-2 18 10 188.97 348.11 9.53 11.89 1.30
B5-3 18 15 184.29 339.60 9.53 7.93 0.87
B5-4 18 10 184.77 205.79 5.76 7.19 0.79
B5-5 18 20 183.93 504.44 14.18 8.85 0.97
B5-6 18 20 185.20 637.60 17.80 11.11 1.22
B6-1 18 1.82 6 183.55 201.39 5.67 11.80 1.29
B6-2 18 2 183.55 49.29 1.39 8.66 0.95
B6-3 18 5 183.90 166.76 4.69 11.70 1.28
B6-4 18 15 187.40 365.15 10.08 8.38 0.92
B6-5 18 4 183.80 119.63 3.37 10.50 1.15
B6-6 18 20 189.35 733.16 20.02 12.49 1.37

Table 4. Mexu , Mthu and Cc for six control beams


(a) the loss of metal owing to corrosion, which results
in reduced moment capacity of a beam
Beam Mthu : kN m Mexu : kN m M exu (b) degradation of bond between reinforcement and
Cc ¼
M thu concrete due to corrosion, which also impairs the
moment capacity of a corroded beam.
B1-C 31.93 32.20 1.01
B2-C 43.85 42.26 0.96
B3-C 55.78 58.10 1.04 The two-step procedure described by Azad et al.
B4-C 37.24 41.12 1.10 (2007) is used to calculate the residual flexural capacity
B5-C 51.88 50.84 0.98 of corroded beams. First, the flexural capacity of a
B6-C 66.53 67.21 1.01
corroded beam is calculated using the reduced diameter
of tension bars, D9, which is calculated from the well-
known formula for metal loss rate or corrosion penetra-
tion rate, Pr , given as (Ijsseling, 1986)
Theoretical prediction of the flexural strength of the
W Jr
corroded beams Pr ¼ I corr ¼
Fªst ªst
The factors affecting the flexural strength of a cor-
roded beam at a given value of Icorr T can be broadly where W is the equivalent weight of the steel (27.9 g),
captured by two phenomena F represents Faraday’s constant (96 487 A-s) and ªst is
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Azad et al

the density of steel, which is 7.85 g/cm3 . The reduction moment capacities of corroded beams, Mexc /Mthc . The
in bar diameter in active corrosion with steady-state values of Cf and Icorr T in Table 5 indicate that Cf is
corrosion current density Icorr for corrosion period T is close to 1.0 for smaller values of Icorr T. Thus, it can be
2Pr T and the percentage reduction in diameter of bar is stated that the moment capacity of a corroded beam
(2Pr T/D) 3 100. The reduced net diameter of a cor- can be calculated simply on the basis of A9s alone at a
roded bar, D9, is then written as lower corrosion activity index, Icorr T, at which bond
  strength is not appreciably degraded. However, the
2Pr T
D9 ¼ D 1  same is not true for beams having higher values of
D Icorr T, as Cf values decline progressively at higher va-
lues of Icorr T. This observation implies that a provision
In terms of cross-sectional areas, the equation for D9
must be made to account for bond degradation and
can be recast for calculating the reduced cross-sectional
other application factors for corrosion damage. It is
area A9s as
therefore necessary to develop a mathematical expres-
A9s ¼ (1  Æ)2 As (1) sion for Cf , which can be used to predict residual
flexural strength.
where As is the original cross-sectional area of the bar
and Æ ¼ 2Pr T/D, which has been termed as the ‘metal
loss factor’ (Azad et al., 2007). Comparison of the experimental values of residual
Using A9s in place of As the theoretical values of flexural capacity of corroded beams with the values
moment capacity, Mthc , for all corroded beams were predicted by the previous model
calculated as shown in Table 5 along with the values of The previous model presented in Azad et al. (2007)
Cf , which is the ratio of the experimental to theoretical proposes the following value of Cf , which can be used

Table 5. Mexc , Mthc and Cf for 36 corroded beams

Beam Icorr T: mA-d/cm2 As : mm2 A9s : mm2 Mthc : kNm Mexc : kN m M exc
Cf ¼
M thc

B1-1 4.27 402.1 388.55 31.09 31.50 1.01


B1-2 7.32 402.1 379.01 30.49 28.18 0.92
B1-3 5.04 402.1 386.12 30.94 29.40 0.95
B1-4 19.32 402.1 342.64 28.10 22.40 0.80
B1-5 3.60 402.1 390.64 31.23 30.98 0.99
B1-6 19.30 402.1 342.68 28.10 17.33 0.62
B2-1 14.41 402.1 357.29 39.67 36.58 0.92
B2-2 12.02 402.1 364.54 40.36 40.95 1.01
B2-3 22.85 402.1 332.28 37.25 24.33 0.65
B2-4 21.37 402.1 336.60 37.67 26.95 0.72
B2-5 31.13 402.1 308.63 34.92 26.60 0.76
B2-6 31.47 402.1 307.65 34.82 20.48 0.59
B3-1 16.27 402.1 351.72 49.57 37.63 0.76
B3-2 21.76 402.1 335.44 47.51 37.05 0.78
B3-3 7.34 402.1 378.95 52.96 52.50 0.99
B3-4 7.12 402.1 379.62 53.04 55.30 1.04
B3-5 32.05 402.1 306.06 43.74 35.7 0.82
B3-6 5.65 402.1 384.22 53.61 57.58 1.07
B4-1 7.22 508.9 483.25 35.88 33.60 0.94
B4-2 12.86 508.9 463.66 34.79 22.23 0.64
B4-3 15.41 508.9 454.90 34.29 22.75 0.66
B4-4 16.77 508.9 450.30 34.03 23.10 0.68
B4-5 27.48 508.9 414.73 31.94 18.73 0.59
B4-6 28.80 508.9 410.46 31.68 16.10 0.51
B5-1 12.44 508.9 465.09 48.25 31.15 0.65
B5-2 13.03 508.9 463.05 48.08 38.15 0.79
B5-3 13.03 508.9 463.03 48.08 29.75 0.62
B5-4 7.88 508.9 480.92 49.59 40.95 0.83
B5-5 19.39 508.9 441.44 46.22 25.55 0.55
B5-6 24.35 508.9 424.98 44.78 25.20 0.56
B6-1 7.76 508.9 481.34 63.48 58.98 0.93
B6-2 1.90 508.9 502.09 65.80 65.98 1.00
B6-3 6.41 508.9 486.07 64.01 57.40 0.90
B6-4 13.78 508.9 460.50 61.11 36.93 0.60
B6-5 4.60 508.9 492.46 64.73 48.48 0.75
B6-6 27.38 508.9 415.08 55.85 35.00 0.63

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Flexural strength of corroded reinforced concrete beams

to calculate the residual flexural capacity from the Table 6. Mexc and Mres (predicted using previous model (Azad
theoretical flexural strength determined on the basis of et al., 2007) for corroded beams
a reduced cross-sectional area, A9s as
Beam Mexc : kN m Mres (predicted using the % deviation
14:7 : previous model): kN m
Cf ¼ : < 10 (2)
Dð I corr T Þ0 15
B1-1 31.50 22.98 27
B1-2 28.18 20.78 26
where D is diameter of rebar in mm, Icorr represents B1-3 18.38 22.30 21
B1-4 22.40 16.56 26
corrosion current density in mA/cm2 and T is duration
B1-5 30.98 23.67 24
of corrosion in days. The predicted values of residual B1-6 17.33 16.56 4
flexural capacity of corroded beams, Mres , were calcu- B2-1 36.58 24.43 33
lated as B2-2 40.95 25.54 38
B2-3 24.33 21.41 12
M res ¼ Cf M thc (3) B2-4 26.95 21.86 19
B2-5 26.60 19.15 28
where Mthc is theoretical values of the flexural capacity B2-6 20.48 19.07 7
of corroded beam, calculated using the reduced cross- B3-1 37.63 29.97 20
sectional area of tension reinforcement, A9s . B3-2 36.05 27.50 24
B3-3 52.50 36.08 31
The two sets of values, Mexc , which is the experi-
B3-4 55.30 36.30 34
mental value of the flexural capacity of corroded beam, B3-5 35.70 23.89 33
and Mres , which is the predicted value of the flexural B3-6 57.58 37.99 34
capacity of corroded beam (obtained from Equation 3), B4-1 33.60 21.79 35
are presented in Table 6 along with the percentage B4-2 22.23 19.37 13
B4-3 22.75 18.58 18
deviations of the predicted values from the experimen-
B4-4 23.10 18.21 21
tal values of the flexural strength of all 36 corroded B4-5 18.73 15.87 15
beams. It appears that the predicted strength values are B4-6 16.10 15.63 3
consistently lower than the actual bending strength, B5-1 31.15 27.00 13
affirming that the previously suggested method is safe B5-2 38.15 26.72 30
B5-3 29.75 26.72 10
and conservative. However, the predicted values for
B5-4 40.95 29.72 27
some beams appear to be unacceptably too low, the B5-5 25.55 24.19 5
maximum difference from the experimental value being B5-6 25.20 22.65 10
of the order of 38%. It seems that the equation of Cf B6-1 58.98 38.12 35
(Equation 2), which proved to be sufficiently accurate B6-2 65.98 48.81 26
B6-3 57.40 39.56 31
for smaller-sized test beams, fails correctly to capture
B6-4 36.93 33.67 9
the effect of the two key variables D and Icorr T for B6-5 48.48 42.04 13
larger size beams, tacitly implying that the size-effect B6-6 35.00 27.76 21
of beams has to be addressed. It was necessary to
revisit the formulation of Cf to propose a new value
which would yield satisfactory results for large-sized the experimental values by more than 10% of the
rectangular beams. experimental values.

The first condition is imposed to lend confidence in


Proposed new model the predicted values by ensuring that a majority of data
The proposed new model adopts the same two-step (over 80%) will show values higher than the predicted
approach but proposes a new correction factor Cf . It values. For those few cases, where the experimental
has been noted that the size of the corroding bars has values exceed the predicted values, the difference is
an influence on the residual strength as the larger limited to less than or equal to 10% of the experimental
diameter bars would have smaller value of Cf than bars values by imposing the second condition. It should be
with smaller diameter at the same value of Icorr T. Like- noted that the first condition does not explicitly limit
wise, corrosion activity index, Icorr T, also affects Cf . the amount of conservativeness associated with the pre-
diction but the regression-based equation of Cf seeks
New correction factor, Cf closer fit with the data.
In seeking a formulation of Cf , the following two Using a multilevel regression of the data presented
conditions were imposed. in Table 5, a new formulation of the correction factor,
Cf , is proposed as (Al-Gohi, 2008)
(a) The predicted values will be less than the actual
5: 0
values for over 80% of the data. Cf ¼ : : < 1:0 (4)
(b) The predicted values in any case should not exceed D ð I corr T Þ0 19
0 54

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Azad et al
1·6
where D is diameter of rebar in mm, Icorr is corrosion
current density in mA/cm2 and T is duration of corro- 1·4

sion in days. The predicted residual bending strength of 1·2


a rectangular beam is determined by using Equation 3 1·0

Mres /Mexc
with the value of Cf calculated from Equation 4.
0·8

0·6

0·4
Comparison of predicted values with 0·2
experimental data 0
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35
Data from this work
IcorrT: mA-d/cm2
The comparison of the experimental residual flexur-
al strength, Mexc , and the predicted residual flexural Figure 2. Comparison of measured Mexc and the predicted
strength, Mres , computed as M res ¼ Cf M thc , using Cf Mres
values from Equation 4 are shown in Figure 2 for all
test beams. As seen from Figure 2, almost 75% of the Test data from Azad et al. (2007)
data points for the ratios Mres /Mexc are less than 1.0, In order to verify the accuracy of the predicted resi-
and 75% of these points are between 0.8 to 1.0. Only dual flexural strength values of the test beams used in
ten beams showed values of Mres /Mexc falling below earlier work (Azad et al., 2007), Table 7 is presented
80%, the lowest value being 0.68 for the beam B2-2. listing the values of Mres and Mexc . Figure 3 shows the
Eight beams have values greater than 1.0. However, plot of the ratios of Mres /Mexc , when Mres values were
the difference in the values of Mres and Mexc is less calculated using new proposed model for Cf (Equation
than 10% of Mexc values. While Figure 2 shows the 4) and Mexc are the experimental data of the past re-
scatter of data around the desired line of Mres / search by the investigators (Azad et al., 2007). As seen,
Mexc ¼ 1.0, such variability is not uncommon for such most of the predicted values are less than the experi-
tests. It should be noted that while uniform corrosion mental values. The revised model for Cf (Equation 4)
of a rebar along its length is assumed in theoretical appears to predict the residual flexural strength in a
calculation, in reality non-uniform or pitting corrosion better way. This is an encouraging finding that lends
exists. This is one of the several other factors that confidence to the proposed two-step theoretical ap-
contribute to variability. proach using the new correction factor Cf (Equation 4).

Table 7. Mexc and Mres values of test beams used in earlier work (Azad et al., 2007)

Beam Icorr T: D: mm Cf (Equation 4) Mthc : kN m Mexc : kN m Mres : kN m % error


mA-d/cm2 (Equation 3) (M exc  M res )
M exc

BT1-2-4 4.12 10 1.10 9.69 10.68 10.67 0.0%


BT1-3-4 10.88 10 0.92 8.95 10.15 8.20 19.2%
BT1-2-6 11.82 10 0.90 9.40 10.46 8.46 19.1%
BT1-3-6 16.44 10 0.85 9.00 9.15 7.62 16.7%
BT1-2-8 17.44 10 0.84 8.17 7.82 6.84 12.5%
BT1-3-8 23.92 10 0.79 8.35 6.48 6.59 1.7%
BT2-2-4 5.00 12 0.96 13.65 12.76 13.14 3.0%
BT2-3-4 7.84 12 0.88 13.04 11.97 11.52 3.7%
BT2-2-6 17.94 12 0.76 12.40 10.43 9.36 10.3%
BT2-3-6 12.54 12 0.81 13.02 10.55 10.52 0.3%
BT2-2-8 20.64 12 0.74 12.13 8.88 8.92 0.4%
BT2-3-8 20.96 12 0.73 11.69 8.49 8.57 0.9%
BT3-2-4 6.08 10 1.02 9.32 10.92 9.54 12.6%
BT3-3-4 6.92 10 1.00 8.83 10.19 8.81 13.5%
BT3-2-6 7.68 10 0.98 8.54 9.88 8.36 15.3%
BT3-3-6 13.26 10 0.88 8.96 9.28 7.91 14.8%
BT3-2-8 16.16 10 0.85 8.04 9.12 6.83 25.1%
BT3-3-8 25.04 10 0.78 7.55 6.60 5.90 10.5%
BT4-2-4 6.96 12 0.90 11.92 12.03 10.78 10.4%
BT4-3-4 9.96 12 0.84 12.54 10.93 10.59 3.1%
BT4-2-6 12.18 12 0.81 12.33 10.02 10.02 0.0%
BT4-3-6 16.80 12 0.76 11.46 8.98 8.76 2.4%
BT4-2-8 16.64 12 0.77 11.48 9.00 8.79 2.3%
BT4-3-8 18.96 12 0.75 10.98 7.57 8.20 8.4%

412 Magazine of Concrete Research, 2010, 62, No. 6

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Flexural strength of corroded reinforced concrete beams
1·2
ally with two 16 mm diameter bottom bars. All speci-
1·0 mens, except the control ones, were corroded by
applying an anodic current density of 0.5 mA/cm2 for
0·8 3, 6, 10 and 15 days while being fully immersed in a
3.3% sodium chloride solution. The beams were tested
Mres /Mexc

0·6
in a four-point bend test using a span of 1.5 m and a
0·4
spacing of 150 mm between the two central loads. The
type of failure observed included flexure, shear-
0·2 compression and bond-shear. The available four data
points corresponding to 3, 6, 10 and 15 days of corro-
0 sion are shown in Figure 5, which shows again that the
0 5 10 15 20 25 30
proposed method predicts residual capacity with an
IcorrT: mA-d/cm2
acceptable degree of accuracy.
Figure 3. Comparison of measured Mexc and the predicted
Mres (Azad et al., 2007)
1·4 Conclusions
1·2 Based on this study, several conclusions can be
1·0 made.
Mres /Mexc

0·8 (a) The percentage-wise loss of metal is smaller for a


large diameter bar compared with that for smaller
0·6
diameter bar at a constant Icorr T.
0·4 (b) The study reaffirms that, a lower value of Icorr T,
0·2
the residual flexural strength of a corroded beam
can be predicted with a reasonable accuracy by
0 considering only the reduced cross-sectional area
0 5 10 15 20
of tension reinforcement A9s . However, at a higher
IcorrT: mA-d/cm2
value of Icorr T, the increasing adverse effect of
Figure 4. Comparison of measured Mexc and the predicted bond cannot be ignored in determining the residual
Mres (Rodriguez et al., 1997) flexural capacity.
(c) This study affirms that the model for prediction of
Test data from Rodriguez et al. (1997) residual strength of corroded beams proposed by
Azad et al. (2007) is a safe model, which yields a
Rodriguez et al. (1997) carried out experiments on
lower-bound solution. However, the model appears
six different types of reinforced concrete beams of
to be undesirably conservative in its prediction in
150 3 200 3 2300 mm. A constant anodic current of
some cases.
0.1 mA/cm2 was applied for a period of time ranging
(d) For prediction of residual flexural strength of cor-
between 100 and 200 days. After the corrosion-
roded beams, the previous two-step analytical pro-
acceleration stage, the beams were tested under a four-
cedure is proposed with a new correction factor Cf
point bend test using 400 mm spacing between the
(Equation 4), which better reflects the size-effect
loads.
of the corroding tension bars in terms of the dia-
For a comparison of the residual flexural strength of
the corroded beams Mexc obtained experimentally by
1·2
Rodriguez et al. (1997) with the residual flexural
strength Mres of the same beams predicted by the 1·0
authors’ proposed model, the plot of Icorr T against Mres /
Mexc ratio is shown in Figure 4. It is noted that all the 0·8
Mres /Mexc

points except five are close to the value of 1.0 and only
0·6
two points have ratios exceeding 1.2. All the points
under the line of 1.0 are between 1.0 and 0.8. From an 0·4
overall assessment, it can be stated that the proposed
strength prediction method yields satisfactory correla- 0·2
tion with the test data.
0
0 5 10 15
Test data from Tachibana et al. (1990)
IcorrT: mA-d/cm2
Tachibana et al. (1990) carried out tests with cor-
roded beams of 150 3 200 3 2000 mm. The beams had Figure 5. Comparison of measured Mexc and the predicted
no shear reinforcement and were reinforced longitudin- Mres . (Tachibana et al., 1990)
Magazine of Concrete Research, 2010, 62, No. 6 413

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Azad et al

meter. The proposed model for Cf yields predicted damage in concrete structures. ACI Structural Journal 89(6): 699–
results that agree well with the experimental data 708.
Fu X and Chung DDL (1997) Effect of corrosion on the bond be-
published by other researchers, lending confidence
tween concrete and steel rebar. Cement and Concrete Research
to the proposed analytical method. 27(12): 1811–1815.
Huang R and Yang CC (1997) Condition assessment of reinforced
concrete beams relative to reinforcement corrosion. Cement and
Concrete Composites 19(2): 131–137.
Acknowledgements Ijsseling FP (1986) Application of electrochemical methods of corro-
sion rate determination to system involving corrosion product
The authors gratefully acknowledge the financial layers. British Corrosion Journal 21(2): 95–101.
support received to carry out this work under the re- Jin WL and Zhao YX (2001) Effect of corrosion on bond behavior
search grant SABIC-2005/03. The support of the De- and bending strength of reinforced concrete beams. Journal of
partment of Civil Engineering is also acknowledged. Zhejiang University (Science) 2(3): 298–308.
Mangat PS and Elgarf MS (1999) Flexural strength of concrete beams
with corroding reinforcement. ACI Structural Journal 96(1): 149–
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