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Engineering Structures

journal homepage: www.elsevier.com/locate/engstruct

beams under low cyclic and monotonic lateral loadings

⁎ ⁎

Liu Jin, Wenxuan Yu, Xiao Su, Shuai Zhang, Xiuli Du , Junyan Han , Dong Li

Key Laboratory of Urban Security and Disaster Engineering of Ministry of Education, Beijing University of Technology, Beijing 100124, China

A R T I C L E I N F O A B S T R A C T

Keywords: The objectives of this study are, on one hand, to present an experimental campaign on the ﬂexural failure

RC beam behavior of RC beams under both low cyclic and monotonic lateral loadings, and on the other hand, to discover

Monotonic load the eﬀect of cross-section size on the global mechanical properties of RC beams. Five groups of geometrically

Cyclic load similar RC cantilever beams, with cross-section sizes range from 200 mm to 1000 mm and a shear-span ratio of 4

Flexural failure

(length to shear span) were experimentally tested. Moreover, a 3D meso-scale numerical method, which could

Size eﬀect

Meso-scale simulation

consider both the heterogeneity of concrete material and the nonlinear interaction between reinforcing bars and

surrounding concretes, for the simulation of failure of RC members was developed, and some numerical tests

were established based on the experimental campaign. The tested results demonstrate the presence of size eﬀect

in ﬂexural failure of RC beams under both low cyclic and monotonic lateral loadings. Speciﬁcally, the eﬀects of

structural size on the seismic performances of the RC beams, involving the failure pattern, the ductility, the

stiﬀness degradation and the load carrying capacity, were extensively investigated based on the combined ex-

perimental and numerical tests. Under cyclic loading, due to the low cyclic fatigue damage behavior and for the

fact that failure always takes place in concrete which is a quasi-brittle engineering material, all the tested beams

could exhibit a more quasi-brittle failure pattern, and consequently the ﬂexural failure of the beams presents a

stronger size eﬀect compared with that under monotonic loading.

randomness of the local material strength. A combination of the de-

The size eﬀect is understood as any dependence of nominal strength terministic size eﬀect law with the statistical size eﬀect law led to a

and brittleness on structural size. Generally, the nominal strength de- general energetic-statistical theory. The deterministic size eﬀect occurs

creases with increasing structural size, while the brittleness increases for not too large structures and the statistical size eﬀect is obtained as

with increasing structural size. Theoretically, based on the fracture the asymptotic limit for very large structures. The deterministic size

mechanics, several researchers have demonstrated that, concrete be- eﬀect can also occur in RC members wherein the failure always takes

comes ductile on a small scale and it becomes brittle on a large scale place in concrete which is a quasi-brittle engineering material. For re-

[1], and numerous test observations [3–5] have proved that, the size inforced concrete (RC) structures, the interaction between concrete and

eﬀect behavior of concrete is mainly due to its inherent quasi-brittle reinforcement has a signiﬁcant inﬂuence on the development of cracks

feature which is originally caused by the inhomogeneity of the material. in concrete. Therefore, the size eﬀect in RC members is rather a

From a mesoscopic point of view, concrete is full of micro-cracks, and structural mechanics problem, which includes not only the material size

these micro-cracks become active and begin to propagate upon loading. eﬀect in concrete, but also the size eﬀect contributed by the nonlinear

A strong stress concentration would develop around the crack tip and interaction between concrete and rebar, than a material science pro-

the micro-cracks propagate to major macro-cracks that lead to the blem [6]. Generally, for the fact that failure always takes place in

eventual failure of the structure. Two size eﬀects are of a major im- concrete which is a quasi-brittle engineering material, many experi-

portance: deterministic size eﬀect and statistical size eﬀect [2]. A de- mental results on RC columns [6–8], RC beams [9–12] and RC beam-to-

terministic (or energetic) size eﬀect is caused by the formation of a column connections [13] have demonstrated the existence of size eﬀect

region of intense strain localization with a certain volume (also called in RC elements. The present research works mainly concern geome-

fracture process zone, FPZ) which always precedes discrete macro- trically similar RC beams that are designed to fail in ﬂexure.

⁎

Corresponding authors.

E-mail addresses: duxiuli2015@163.com (X. Du), junyanhan@bjut.edu.cn (J. Han).

https://doi.org/10.1016/j.engstruct.2017.11.069

Received 5 May 2017; Received in revised form 29 November 2017; Accepted 30 November 2017

0141-0296/ © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

1.1. Available test eﬀorts on ﬂexural failure of RC beams Recently, Barbhuiya and Choudhury’s [13] test eﬀorts on RC beam-

column connections have indicated that, under cyclic loading, the three

The shear failure, the ﬂexural failure and the ﬂexural-shear failure categories of beam-column connections (i.e. beam weak in ﬂexure,

are three main failure patterns for RC beams under loads. Generally, the beam weak in shear and column weak in shear) exhibit an obvious size

shear behavior of concrete components exhibits a brittle failure mode, eﬀect. In our previous eﬀorts [12,27], the test observations have also

and then a size eﬀect may be expected for the fact that the size eﬀect indicated that, under low-cyclic fatigue loadings, even for balanced-

always occurs in RC elements if failure takes place in concrete that is a reinforced RC specimens, because of that the failure always takes place

quasi-brittle engineering material [14]. In our previous work of Jin in concrete which is a quasi-brittle engineering material, the failure of

et al. [12], ﬁve groups of geometrically similar RC beams, with cross- the RC beams or columns is still brittle, and the nominal shear strength

section sizes range from 200 mm to 1000 mm and a shear-span ratio of exhibits a pronounced size eﬀect.

2 (length to depth), were tested under cyclic lateral loading. The test

results have demonstrated the existence of size eﬀect in shear strength 1.3. Scope of the present research work

of RC beams.

For the ﬂexural failure in RC beams, many test eﬀorts have been The objectives of the present study are, on one hand, to present an

conducted to explore the possibility of existence of size eﬀect. For in- experimental campaign on the ﬂexural failure behavior of RC beams

stance, in the work of Weiss et al. [15], sixteen groups of RC beams under both low cyclic and monotonic lateral loadings, and on the other

having diﬀerent concrete strengths and percentages of longitudinal hand, to discover the eﬀect of cross-section size on the global seismic

steel bars were tested. They found that, the nominal moment-carrying performances of RC beams. With respect to the previous work [12] in

capacity of all beams was relatively constant, while the overall ductility which the size eﬀect of shear failure of RC beams was experimentally

was dependent on the constant-moment zone length with larger spe- explored, the innovative points of the present study are to examine the

cimens demonstrating a more brittle response. The test results pre- size eﬀect of ﬂexural failure of RC beams by experimental and nu-

sented by Alca et al. [16] also indicated that there was no obvious size merical approaches.

eﬀect in the ﬂexural compressive strength of RC beams. However, some Five groups of geometrically similar RC cantilever beams with cross-

other test eﬀorts [17–23] have shown the presence of size eﬀect in section heights ranging from 200 mm to 1000 mm and a shear-span

ﬂexural strength. For instance, in the experiment of Rao et al. [19], ratio of 4 (depth to shear span) were experimentally tested. Moreover, a

three groups of RC beams with cross-sectional depths of 100 mm, 3D meso-scale numerical method, which could consider both the het-

200 mm and 400 mm were tested, which were designed with varying erogeneity of concrete and the nonlinear interaction between reinfor-

percentages of ﬂexural reinforcement, i.e. 0.15%, 0.30%, 0.60% and cing bars and surrounding concretes, for the simulation of failure of RC

1.0%. The RC beams were tested under four-point loading to study the members was developed, and some numerical tests were conducted

ﬂexural behavior under uniform bending moment. Their test results based on the experimental campaign. Finally, the 3D meso-scale si-

indicated that the ﬂexural strength of RC beams decreased as the depth mulation method was extended to examine the size eﬀect in larger-sized

increases. Bosco et al. [20] also performed tests on RC beams with RC beams with a maximum cross-sectional height of 2000 mm.

various beam depths and longitudinal steel percentages. The test results

indicated that, the brittleness of the structural member increases by 2. Test results

increasing the structural size and decreasing the longitudinal steel

percentages. Yi et al. [21] tested a series of RC beams with same per- 2.1. Specimen description and materials properties

centages of ﬂexural reinforcement subjected to four-point loading. The

test observations illustrated that, the ﬂexural compressive strength at Five groups of geometrically similar RC cantilever beams with dif-

failure exhibited an obvious size eﬀect, and the corresponding peak ferent structural sizes, subjected to monotonic and cyclic loading were

strain and the ultimate strain decrease as the structural size increases. tested. The dimensions, shape, loading point locations, specimen label,

Furthermore, Kim et al. [22] and Yi et al. [23] also demonstrated the and reinforcement details of specimens used in the experiment are

presence of size eﬀect in ﬂexural compressive strength of RC beams. shown in Fig. 1 and Table 1. The cross-sectional depth of the beams

The contradictories in the test results for the investigation of size tested ranged from 200 mm to 1000 mm. The tested RC beams pre-

eﬀect in ﬂexural failure of RC beams indicate that, the presence of size sented in Fig. 1 were designed to fail as ﬂexural failure, and a shear-

eﬀect may strongly depend on how the failure takes place. In general, span ratio (length to depth) of 4 was utilized. There were three speci-

for over-reinforced or less-reinforced beams, the failure is mainly due to mens designed for every group of tested specimens having the same

the fracture of concrete, which exhibits brittleness and leads to an ob- structural sizes, in which one of them was subjected to monotonic

vious size eﬀect. While for appropriate reinforced beams, the failure is loading, and the other two were designed to bear cyclic loading. The

usually less brittle or ductile, and the nominal strength would show no specimens under monotonic loading were named as MB, and the other

obvious size eﬀect. two specimens under cyclic loading were named as CB. Herein, the

letter “M” means the “Monotonic loading”, “C” means the “Cyclic

1.2. Eﬀect of seismic loading on the failure behavior of RC beams loading”, and “B” denotes “Beam”. A total of 15 RC beams were thus

tested.

Under seismic loading, the development of cracks in RC beams The mixture proportions of the concrete utilized in the present tests

changes, the bonding between concrete and rebar could be deteriorated are given in Table 2. Medium sands are considered as the ﬁne aggregate

under low cyclic fatigue loading, and the failure always takes place in (i.e. the average diameter is less than 5 mm), and crushed pebble stones

concrete which is a quasi-brittle engineering material, consequently the as the coarse aggregate (i.e. the average diameter ranges from 5 mm to

beam becomes more brittle as compared to that under monotonic 30 mm). The compressive and tensile strengths of concrete, which are

loading. Fatigue failure happens as a concrete structure fails at less than measured by uniaxial compressive and splitting tensile tests based on

the design load after exposure to a large number of stress cycles, the currently utilized standard codes of China, are also presented in

causing the degradation of stiﬀness and strength. It is a process of Table 2. Moreover, the detailed information about the parameters of the

progressive and permanent internal damage in a material subjected to reinforcing steel bars are listed in Table 3, including the diameters, the

repeated loading. Lots of studies have been conducted to study the yield strength and the ultimate strength, etc. In the tests, the strength of

failure behavior of RC beams under repeated or cyclic loadings, e.g. in concrete, reinforcement ratio, stirrup ratio, and shear span ratio were

the work of Moretti and Tassios [24], Mahal et al. [25] and Dadi and kept the same for all RC beams.

Agarwal [26]. However, less work has been focused on size eﬀect. It is to be noted that, the aggregate sizes were not scaled to the

568

L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

characteristic structure size. This is because scaling the aggregate size actuator. The schematic diagram is presented in Fig. 2(b). In the tests,

would complicate evaluation of the test results and prevent isolating the the collected data involved the horizontal displacement at the loading

structural size eﬀect from other inﬂuences [6]. point measured by Linear Variable Diﬀerential Transformer (i.e. LVDT),

the reaction force at the loading point, concrete compressive strain, and

2.2. Experimental setup and loading arrangement the tensile strain of longitudinal reinforcement.

The force-displacement hybrid control method was utilized. The

Fig. 2(a) presents a typical failure photograph of the beam CB-3. The detailed loading scheme can be illustrated as follows:

specimen was mounted on a solid component vertically, and the top of

the cantilever beam was held by a servo hydraulic dynamic actuator. (1) Monotonic loading: ﬁrstly, the force control was used until the RC

Monotonic and cyclic loading were employed to the specimen in the beams yielded. The yielding displacement deﬁned as the displace-

horizontal direction with the aid of the servo hydraulic dynamic ment when the RC beams yielded was then adopted as the level

569

L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

Table 1

Physical parameters of the tested RC beams.

Total number 3 3 3 3 3

Cross-section size (b × h) (mm2) 80 × 200 160 × 400 240 × 600 320 × 800 400 × 1000

Longitudinal reinforcement ratio ρ 1.26% 1.23% 1.31% 1.22% 1.23%

Hoop reinforcement ratio ρsv 0.14% 0.14% 0.14% 0.14% 0.14%

Shear-span ratio λ 4.0 4.0 4.0 4.0 4.0

Eﬀective height of Beam h0 (mm) 170 345 540 735 930

Beam eﬀective length a = λ * h0 (mm) 6800 1380 2160 2940 3720

Total length of beam l (mm) 830 1630 2510 3390 4220

Concrete tensile/compressive strengths [MPa] 2.3/42.8 2.3/42.8 2.3/42.8 2.3/42.8 2.3/42.8

Table 2

Concrete mixture proportions.

Aggregate Aggregate Aggregate Cement Water Water-reducing Silica Sum w/c ratio Compressive Splitting tensile

0–5 mm (kg/m3) 5–15 mm (kg/ 15–30 mm (kg/ (kg/m3) (kg/m3) admixtures (kg/ fume (kg/ (kg/ strength (MPa) strength (MPa)

m3 ) m3) m3) m3) m3)

1090 185 436 460 184 4.0 75 2434 0.4 42.8 2.3

diﬀerence for the loading. It was utilized until the bearing capacity [21,11,17,18]. Fig. 4(b) shows the ﬁnal failure pattern of the ﬁve

of the beams dropped to 85% peak bearing capacity or signiﬁcant groups of RC cantilever beams under cyclic loading. On the whole, the

damage occurred in the beams. failure patterns of the ten beams are closely similar. The failure of all

(2) Cyclic fatigue loading: the typical force and displacement history beams occurred at the bottom part where the concrete crushing gen-

applied to specimen is shown in Fig. 3. The applied force at the erated. At this time, the bond lose eﬃcacy at the interface between the

horizontal direction was loaded and only one cycle was applied at longitudinal steel bars and the surrounding concretes. Moreover, it can

each level of loading. After the RC beams yielded, the multiple of be seen from Fig. 4(b) that much more cracks generated as the struc-

yielding displacement was take as the loading control, and three tural size (cross-sectional height) of the beams increases.

cycles were applied at each level. Similarly, the experiment was In addition, the detailed information regarding crack patterns (in-

stopped at the stage when the load came down in the range of 85% cluding crack inclination and crack spacing) are described in

of the ultimate load carrying capacity or signiﬁcant damage oc- Fig. 5(a) and (b) respectively for the beams under monotonic and cyclic

curred. It is to be noted that, it cost about 10 mins for each cyclic to loading. The concrete spalling areas (i.e. the grey region) can also be

ensure the pseudo-static loading. observed in Fig. 5.

Compared Fig. 4(b) with Fig. 4(a), it can be noted that the failure

It is to be noted that, fatigue loading is usually divided into two patterns of the beams under monotonic and cyclic loading are sig-

categories, including low-cyclic (e.g. structures subjected to earth- niﬁcantly distinct. Under low cyclic fatigue loading, both the tensile/

quakes with 1–102 loading cycles) and high cyclic loading [28]. compressive strengths of the concrete and the yield strength of re-

inforcing bars degrade. Moreover, the bearing capacity (or the shear

capacity) at the interface of steel bars and surrounding concretes would

2.3. Flexural failure patterns

also decrease due to the low cyclic fatigue behavior. That is to say, the

failure deﬁnitely takes place in concrete that is a quasi-brittle en-

Under the monotonic loading, the ﬁnal failure patterns of the ﬁve

gineering material. While for monotonically loaded RC beams, the re-

RC cantilever beams having diﬀerent structural sizes are presented in

inforcement could make the failure of the structure more ductile. This

Fig. 4(a). It can be found that, the failure patterns of the ﬁve groups of

ﬁnally leads to the fact that, the failure of the beams subjected to cyclic

beams are closely similar. For the smaller-sized specimens (e.g. MB-1),

loading is less ductile than the one subjected to monotonic loading.

the widths of the main tensile cracks were small, while for the larger-

sized specimens (e.g. MB-5), the corresponding crack widths were much

larger, as also observed in the work of Bažant and Kim [9], the most 2.4. Moment-displacement hysteretic behavior and envelopes

important consequence of wider cracks is diminished residual tensile

stress. In general, the larger the size of the RC beam is, the larger crack The recorded cyclic hysteretic load-displacement curves (i.e. the

width and more cracks the specimens possess when the beam failed solid black lines) and the corresponding skeleton curves (i.e. the blue1

dotted lines) of the ten RC beams under low cyclic horizontal loading

Table 3 are plotted in Fig. 6. Moreover, the moment-displacement curves (i.e.

Mechanical parameters of the reinforcing bars in the test. the solid red lines) for the ﬁve beams under monotonic loading are also

Diameter of Grade of Elastic Yield Ultimate

presented in Fig. 6 for comparison.

rebar [mm] steel bar modulus strength strength [MPa] In general, for the ten RC beams subjected to cyclic loading, the shapes

[GPa] [MPa] of the recorded hysteretic curves are all plump, as can be observed in

Fig. 6. As the applied loading continued, the RC beams under cyclic

4 HPB300 210 297.89 425.74

6 HRB335 196 405.97 529.55

loading gradually entered the elastic-plastic stage, and unrecoverable

10 HRB335 198 392.10 564.63 plastic deformation occurred. At this moment, the residual deformation of

16 HRB335 202 399.13 530.93

20 HRB335 193 402.00 542.51

1

25 HRB335 195 374.84 536.29 For interpretation of color in Fig. 6, the reader is referred to the web version of this

article.

570

L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

LVDT

Servo hydraulic LVDT

dynamic actuator

RC beam

Loading direction

Base

Loading apparatus

(a) (b)

Fig. 2. Loading apparatus and schematic diagram.

Displacement

and yield strength of the steel bars degrade, but also the bonding ca-

Three times pacity at the interface of concrete and steel bars weakens due to the

damage accumulation within the RC beams under cyclic loading.

members in the seismic design. Similar with that in the work of

Controlled by force Controlled by displacement Rodrigues et al. [29], the displacement ductility coeﬃcient μ deﬁned as

μ = Δu/Δy, was adopted to assess the seismic performance of the RC

Fig. 3. Scheme of cyclic loading.

beams with various cross-section sizes. Here, Δu means the displace-

ment corresponding to ultimate moment deﬁned as 85% bearing ca-

pacity in the decline period of moment-displacement curves [30], and

the beams after loading became larger and larger, the cracks developed the yielding displacement Δy characterizes the displacement corre-

quickly, making that the stiﬀness degraded quickly. In the last stage, larger sponding to yield moment. The detailed information is described in

plastic deformation generated, and concrete crushing and buckling of re- Fig. 8.

inforcing bars happened. The corresponding skeleton curves obtained The two points corresponding to yield moment and ultimate mo-

exhibit a reversed ‘S-shape’, as shown in Fig. 6. Under the low cyclic fa- ment are presented in Fig. 6, and they are marked by pink and green

tigue loadings, the cracks within the RC beams opened and closed con- circles, respectively. The obtained ductility coeﬃcients of the RC can-

tinually, resulting into the decrease in the ﬂexural capacity of the RC tilever beams under both monotonic and cyclic loading are plotted

beams. The larger the ﬂexural deformation is, the more seriously the against the cross-sectional height h in Fig. 9. One can see that the

ﬂexural stiﬀness degrades. In addition, one can note from Fig. 6 that, the ductility coeﬃcient increases obviously with increasing the cross-sec-

softening curve becomes steeper with increasing the beam size, indicating tional height of the specimens under monotonic loading, while in-

that the brittleness of the specimen increases with the increase of the creases slightly for the beams under cyclic loading. In addition, it can be

structural dimension. This can be clearly observed from the relationship clearly seen that the ductility coeﬃcients for the beams under cyclic

between the softening rate and structural size presented in Fig. 7. Herein, loading are much smaller than the one under monotonic loading. This

the slope k is utilized to describe the softening rate or the brittleness, as deﬁnitely is caused by the fact that under cyclic fatigue loading, the

shown in Fig. 7. One can note from Fig. 7 that, the slope k increases with failure of the beams becomes less ductile. In reality, under low cyclic

increasing the cross-sectional height h. fatigue loading, the bonding between the concrete and the reinforce-

By comparing with the skeleton curves of the beams under mono- ment would be deteriorated, and the crushing of concretes at the end of

tonic and cyclic loading, one can clearly ﬁnd that the bearing capacity the specimen becomes the main reason for the failure of the specimens.

of the large-sized beams under monotonic loading is obviously larger Under monotonic loading, for the present balanced-reinforced struc-

than that under cyclic loading. While for the small-sized beams (CB-1-i ture, after the beam yielded, many cracks generated at the ﬂexural-

and CB-1-ii), the bearing capacities are almost the same under mono- tensile side of the beam, and the longitudinal reinforcements would

tonic and cyclic loading. Moreover, from the skeleton curves, one can consume most energy. It is to be noted that, in the present tests, there

note that under monotonic loading the RC beams exhibit a long yield were almost no concrete crushing at failure for the ﬁve beams under

platform. That is to say, the deformation capacity of the RC beams monotonic loading, as can be observed from Fig. 4(a). Therefore, the

under cyclic loading is signiﬁcantly weaker than that under monotonic failure of the beams would be more ductile (or less brittle) as compared

loading. In reality, compared with that under monotonic loading, not to that of cyclically loaded RC beams.

571

L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

ȡ=1.26%,1.23%,1.31%,1.22%,1.23%

Concrete strength: fcu = 42.8 MPa

Shear-span ratio: Ȝ = 4

400×1000×4220

320×800×3390

240×600×2510

1000 mm

160×400×1630

80×200×830 800 mm

660 mm

Fig. 4. Typical failure patterns for the normal-strength RC beams, subjected to (a) monotonic loading, and (b) cyclic loading.

2.6. Stiﬀness degradation negative direction, +fi the displacement in the positive direction, and

-fi the displacement in the negative direction.

The stiﬀness degradation of the specimen plays an important role in Fig. 10 presents the relation for normalized stiﬀness K/K0 with the

the energy dissipation capacity [12]. The secant stiﬀness K declined number of cycle. Herein, K is the secant stiﬀness at diﬀerent cycles, and

with the increase of displacement of the RC beam under the cyclic K0 is the initial tangent stiﬀness. It can be noted from Fig. 10 that at the

loading can be calculated by early stage of the test, some micro-cracks should generate within the

concrete beam. However, the damage was not heavy since there was no

| + Pi | + |−Pi |

K= macro-cracks generated within the concrete beam, resulting into a

| + fi | + |−fi | (1) slight degradation of global stiﬀness at the early stage. As the cracks

developed quickly within the RC beams, some macro-cracks occurred

in which, +Pi is the load in the positive direction, -Pi the load in the

572

L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

Splitting crack

29 40 41

91

57 102

114

274

360

320

Spalling area

286

34

MB-1 MB-2 MB-3 MB-4 MB-5

Unit: (mm)

294 274 273

228 227 211

189

354

219

78

86

287

173

278

82

139 126

95

101

176

261 295

495

432

80

86

127 177

152

347

242 273

65

46

177

Splitting crack

Spalling area

59

42

41

45

41

46

39

32

21

Unit: (mm)

Fig. 5. Sketching of the crack distribution and the spalling area of diﬀerent sizes obtained from the test for the RC beams, subjected to (a) monotonic loading, and (b) cyclic loading.

due to the ﬂexural-tensile action, and therefore the stiﬀness of the ΣWpl versus the number of cycles n for the tested RC beams under cyclic

beams degraded quickly. One can see from Fig. 10 that the normalized loading are plotted in Fig. 10(a) and (b). From Fig. 12(a) it can be seen

stiﬀness degradations for the ten beams having diﬀerent structural sizes that the capacity of dissipated energy becomes larger with the increase

are similar, indicating that the specimen sizes have a negligible inﬂu- of the number of cycles n. This indicates that energy dissipation of the

ence on the stiﬀness degradation. RC beams occurred mostly at the elastic-plastic stage of specimens. At a

common level of displacement loading, with increasing the number of

2.7. Energy dissipation cycles, the capacity of dissipated energy becomes to be weaker. In ad-

dition, it can be found from Fig. 12(b) that with the increase of the

The energy dissipation capacity of the ﬁve groups of RC beams with beams size, the cumulated dissipated energy increases.

diﬀerent structural sizes was examined. The load versus deﬂection re- As mentioned previously, the larger the size of the RC beam is, the

lationship can be described in Fig. 11. The area of the hysteretic loop is larger crack width and more cracks the specimens possess when the

a very important factor for evaluating the elastoplastic energy dis- beam failed [21,11,17,18]. Simply to say, as the structural size of beam

sipation capacity. The larger the hysteretic loop is, the better the energy increases, the crack width turns to be larger and the crack length is also

dissipation capacity will be. The equivalent damping coeﬃcient ζe can longer when the beam fails, and therefore damage regions becomes to

be calculated by Wang et al. [31]. be larger. This ﬁnally leads to more energy dissipation of the beam. The

work of Jin et al. [12] also reported the similar test observations on the

1 (SABC + SCDA) shear failure of RC beams.

ζe =

2π (SOBE + SODF ) (2) The relationship between the hysteretic damping factor ζ for each of

the loop and the number of cycles n for the ten RC beams under cyclic

Eq. (2) can be utilized to calculate the equivalent damping coeﬃ-

loading is presented in Fig. 13. One can see from Fig. 13 that the

cient (ζe). Herein, SABC and SCDA are the areas under the curves of ABC

equivalent hysteretic damping factor for each loop gets to be larger

and CDA, as shown in Fig. 11, respectively. SOBE and SODF are the areas

ﬁrst, and then it becomes to be smaller as the number of cycles n in-

within triangles of OBE and ODF, as shown in Fig. 11, respectively.

creases. This is because the progressive damage generated and

The dissipated energy Wpl and the cumulative dissipated energy

573

L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

CB-1-i CB-1-ii sponding skeleton curves of the 15 RC canti-

lever beams subjected to monotonic and low

Yield point

cyclic loading.

The point of 85% capacity

Cyclic load Cyclic load

(b)

CB-2-i CB-2-ii

Cyclic load Cyclic load

(c)

CB-3-i CB-3-ii

Cyclic load Cyclic load

(d)

CB-4-i CB-4-ii

Cyclic load Cyclic load

(e)

CB-5-i CB-5-ii

Cyclic load Cyclic load

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L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

6 1.2

Mu: Peak moment CB-1-i

5 1

CB-1-ii

Slope: CB-2-i

0.8 CB-2-ii

4

CB-3-i

0.6

Slope k

CB-3-ii

3 Mu

CB-4-i

0.4 CB-4-ii

2 CB-5-i

0.85Mu

0.2 CB-5-ii

Cyclic loading-i

1 Cyclic loading-ii

0

Monotonic loading u f

0 6 12 18 24

0

0 500 1000 1500 Number of cycles n

Cross-setional height h [mm] Fig. 10. Stiﬀness degradation curves of the RC cantilever beams subjected to cyclic

loading.

Fig. 7. Eﬀect of size on softening rate.

P

Pu

0.85Pu

0.75Pu

ǻy ǻp ǻu ǻ

ȝ=ǻu/ǻy

ȝ: Displacement ductility

ǻu: Displacement at 15% strength degradation from peak

ǻy: Displacement at yield load

Pu: Peak load

ǻp: Displacement at peak load

Fig. 11. Deﬁnition of the dissipated energy Wpl and the equivalent hysteretic damping

factor ζ.

30

Monotonic loading

behavior. In this Section, the existence of size eﬀect in the ﬂexural

25 Cyclic loading

strength was examined.

Ductility coefficient ȝ

design of ﬂexural capacity from several codes, e.g. EN 1992-1-1, ACI

15 318-2011 and GB50010-2010 of China. The comparison of the present

tested data and design values calculated by these codes is made and

10 plotted in Fig. 14. It can be clearly seen from Fig. 14 that all design

values are lower than the test values, and the ﬂexural capacity M in-

5 creases with increasing the structural size (i.e. cross-sectional height h).

In addition, one can note that the calculation results obtained from the

0 three diﬀerent codes are closely similar.For pure ﬂexural specimens, the

0 200 400 600 800 1000 1200 normal stress can be calculated by σ = M / W . W can be evaluated by

Cross-section height h [mm] W = Iz/y, where y is the distance between the calculated point and

Fig. 9. Displacement ductility coeﬃcients of the RC beams having diﬀerent structural neutral axis, and Iz is the inertial moment of cross-section to the neutral

sizes. axis. For rectangular cross-section, W has the form as W = bh02/6. The

maximum nominal ﬂexural stress (i.e. nominal ﬂexural strength) σNu

can be easily determined by

developed gradually in the beams as the loading turns out to be larger.

Moreover, it can be noted from Fig. 13 that the variations of the hys- 6Mmax 6P l

teretic damping factor for all tested beams are similar. σNu = = max2

bh02 bh0 (3)

3. Size eﬀect on the tested nominal ﬂexural strength in which Mmax is the maximum moment generated at the ﬁxed end,

Mmax = Pmax l. The length l is the distance from the loading point to the

As stated and discussed earlier, the cyclic loading can make the RC ﬁxed end, Pmax is the maximum applied loading, b is the beam width

beams exhibit brittle failure behavior because of the low cycle fatigue and h0 is the eﬀective cross-sectional height h0 of the beam. The

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L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

CB-1-i

Dissipated energy

CB-1-i

Wpl[KN*mm] CB-1-ii

CB-1-ii

Wpl [kN*mm]

CB-2-i

CB-2-i

CB-2-ii

CB-2-ii

CB-3-i

CB-3-i

CB-3-ii CB-3-ii

CB-4-i CB-4-i

CB-4-ii CB-4-ii

CB-5-i CB-5-i

CB-5-ii CB-5-ii

0 5 10 15 20 25 30 0 5 10 15 20 25 30

Number of cycles n Number of cycles n

(a) Dissipated energy of every cyclic (b) Cumulated dissipated energy

Fig. 12. The energy consumption of the RC beams subjected to cyclic loading.

0.43 eﬀect, as shown in Fig. 15(b). It is to be noted in Fig. 15(b) that the

0.41 nominal strengths for the cross-sectional heights of 200 mm and

Hysteretic damping factor ȗ

0.39 CB-1-i

600 mm are slight larger than those of others due to the larger long-

CB-1-ii itudinal reinforcement ratio.

0.37

CB-2-i For the purpose of statistical regression of data, the Size Eﬀect Law

0.35 CB-2-ii (SEL) proposed by Bažant and Planas [4] was used. This law can be

0.33 CB-3-i

expressed as

CB-3-ii

0.31 CB-4-i Bft

0.29 CB-4-ii σNu =

CB-5-i 1 + D / D0 (4)

0.27

CB-5-ii

0.25 in which, the unknown constants B and D0 can be determined by sta-

0 5 10 15 20 25 30 tistical regression analysis, and D is the structural size (i.e. the cross-

Number of cycles n sectional height h). Herein, the value of tensile strength ft of the con-

crete utilized was taken as 2.3 MPa. The SEL in Eq. (4) was derived by

Fig. 13. The hysteretic damping factor ζ of the RC beams subjected to cyclic loading.

simple energy release analysis and later by several other ways, espe-

cially by asymptotic matching based on the asymptotic power scaling

laws for very large and very small D [32]. Herein the study, a linear

2000 regression was conducted by Eq. (4). By squaring Eq. (4) and rearran-

GB50010-2010 ging, one can get

1600 EN1992-1-1 2

ACI 318-2011 ⎛ ft ⎞ = D + 1

⎜ ⎟

⎝ σNu ⎠ D0 B2 B2 (5)

1200 Test-Monotonic

M [kN*m]

800 Y = AX + C (6)

2 2 2

where, Y = (ft/σNu) , X = D, A = 1/D0B and C = 1/B . Therefore, one

400 can see that D0 should be equal to C/A, and B equals to 1/ C .

The value of stress and other parameters necessary to perform the

regression analysis and to draw bi-logarithmic plot for various types of

0

0 200 400 600 800 1000 1200 RC specimens under monotonic and cyclic loading were calculated.

Cross-sectional height h [mm] According to the tested data, the results of regression analysis for the

tested nominal ﬂexural strength of RC beams with diﬀerent structural

Fig. 14. Relationship between the peak moment M and cross-sectional height h.

sizes, under monotonic and cyclic loadings, are respectively presented

in Fig. 14(a) and (b). Then A and C can be calculated from Fig. 16. The

parameters of the ﬁve groups of RC beams with diﬀerent structural two parameters of B and D0 can be ﬁxed. Using these magnitudes, the

sizes, under both monotonic and cyclic loadings are provided in bi-logarithmic plot was drawn with log (D/D0) in the X-axis and log (σNu

Table 4. /Bft’) in the Y-axis, as shown in Fig. 17. Moreover, the size eﬀect law

The tested nominal ﬂexural strengths of the tested RC beams sub- (SEL) proposed by Bazant [3], the strength criterion without con-

jected to monotonic and cyclic loading are plotted in Fig. 15(a), and the sidering the inﬂuence of size eﬀect (for plastic materials) and the classic

calculated nominal strengths corresponding to the calculated ﬂexural linear elastic fracture mechanics (i.e., the LEFM) for pure brittle ma-

moments plotted in Fig. 14 are presented in Fig. 15(b). One can clearly terials are also plotted in Fig. 17 for comparison.

note from Fig. 15(a) that the obtained ﬂexural strength of the RC beams Furthermore, the correlation coeﬃcient R2 for the present tested

under cyclic loading is smaller than that under monotonic loading. data and Bazant’s SEL [3] was also calculated. The correlation coeﬃ-

Moreover, the ﬂexural strength of the RC beams under cyclic loading cient R2 under monotonic and cyclic loading are respectively 0.92 and

decreases much faster as the structural size increases. That is to say, the 0.93. This means that Bažant’s SEL curve ﬁts the present tested data

RC beams under cyclic loading presents a stronger size eﬀect than the satisfactorily. According to the above analyses, it can be concluded that

beams under monotonic loading. However, the utilized formulae in EN the plot shows the presence of size eﬀect on the ﬂexural strength of RC

1992-1-1, GB 50010-2010 and ACI 318-2011 could not reveal any size beams in accordance with Bazant’s SEL.

576

L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

Table 4

Ultimate load carrying capacity and corresponding nominal ﬂexural strength.

Specimen Name Cross-sectional width b Eﬀective cross-sectional Tested pmax [kN] (Positive/ Tested Mmax [kN*m] Nominal ﬂexural strength σNu [MPa]

[mm] height h0 [mm] negative) (Positive/negative) (Positive/Negative)

MB-2 160 365 94.75 130.75 41.18

MB-3 240 540 217.71 470.25 40.31

MB-4 320 735 350.49 1030.44 35.76

MB-5 400 930 505.45 1880.26 32.61

CB-1-i 80 170 33.26/34.62 22.62/23.54 58.70/61.09

CB-1-ii 80 170 35.29/31.56 22.62/23.54 62.28/55.69

CB-2-i 160 365 83.63/80.30 115.41/110.81 36.36/34.91

CB-2-ii 160 365 84.47/83.64 116.57/115.43 36.73/36.36

CB-3-i 240 540 170.94/179.84 369.23/388.46 31.66/33.30

CB-3-ii 240 540 179.84/160.16 388.46/365.38 33.31/31.33

CB-4-i 320 735 305.82/303.87 894.13/893.39 31.21/31.01

CB-4-ii 320 735 305.63/305.17 898.56/897.20 31.19/31.14

CB-5-i 400 930 402.98/399.11 1487.58/1484.68 26.00/25.75

CB-5-ii 400 930 410.73/400.68 1492.63/1490.53 26.50/25.85

It can be seen from Fig. 17 that compared with the one under size eﬀect could be reliably accounted for in the numerical analysis of

monotonic loading, the test data for the RC beams under cyclic loading RC members [43,33,34].

lies much closer to the inclined asymptote of slope -1/2, which corre- In computational material science, concrete is characterized as a multi-

sponds to the LEFM. The cyclic loading makes the failure of beams more phase material with several diﬀerent representative scales. At macroscopic

brittle, which resulting into a stronger size eﬀect in the ﬂexural strength scale, concrete could be regarded as a homogeneous material, while at

of RC beams. mesoscopic scale it is treated as consisting of coarse aggregates and mortar

It should be noted that, the size eﬀect generates due to structural matrix [35]. Many concrete nonlinear fracture models, such as Jirasek and

geometry but not cyclic loading. However, compared with monotonic Zimmermann [36,37], Bažant and Jirasek [38], Pijaudier-Cabot et al.

loading, the low cyclic fatigue loading changes the failure features. [39], Majewski et al. [40], Skarżyński et al. [41], Syroka-Korol [42,43],

Namely, cyclic loading makes RC beams fail more brittle, resulting into based on the theory of fracture mechanics and the non-local theory, have

a more obvious size eﬀect. been established at macro-scale. The macroscopic computational models

in the literatures are able to describe the nonlinear mechanical properties

and the size eﬀect behavior of concrete by including a characteristic length

4. Supplementary tests by means of 3D meso-scale numerical

of micro-structure. However, the macroscopic mechanical properties and

method

the failure patterns of concrete are closely associated with the meso-

structure of concrete [44,45]. Mesoscopic models have been proven to be

Because of the limitation of testing equipment and economic cost, it

the most practicable and useful approach for studying the inﬂuence of the

is hard to do many tests to study the inﬂuencing factors on the size

concrete composition on the macroscopic properties, and also for gaining

eﬀect of RC members. The ﬁnite element method has become an ef-

insights into the origin and nature of the nonlinear behavior of concrete,

fective method to model the mechanical behavior of engineering

such as some advanced mesoscopic continuum models for concrete pre-

structures, and ﬁnite element analyses are essential for supplementing

sented by Ren et al. [46], Wang et al. [47], Skarżyński et al. [48]. Fur-

experimental research in providing insights into structural behavior

thermore, the size eﬀect and the process of softening are all related to the

[32]. From a macroscopic of view, a deterministic size eﬀect is caused

heterogeneity of the material in the domain within the structural dimen-

by the formation of a region of intense strain localization with a certain

sion [47]. A mesoscopic mechanical model is composed by diverse meso-

area that is not negligible to the element cross-section dimensions and is

scale components with diﬀerent material properties, and therefore the

large enough to cause a signiﬁcant stress redistribution in the structure

heterogeneity of concrete can be explicitly described. Herein this section, a

[2]. From a mesoscopic point of view, the sources of size eﬀect in RC

3-D meso-scale numerical method would be developed to explore the

members are mainly attributed to the following two reasons [33,34]:

failure behavior of RC beams, in which the concrete heterogeneities and

(1) the heterogeneity and nonlinearity of concrete itself; (2) the com-

the steel/concrete interactions were explicitly taken into account.

plex nonlinear interaction between steel and concrete. Only when these

two aspects were correctly modeled in the numerical simulations, the

70

Cyclic loading GB50010-2010 tional height h for the RC beams, (a) tested strength,

Calculated strength ıNu [MPa]

Tested strength ıNu [MPa]

Monotonic loading

50 50 ACI 318-2011

40 40

30 30

20 20

10 10

Tested results

0 0

0 200 400 600 800 1000 1200 0 200 400 600 800 1000 1200

Cross-sectional height h [mm] Cross-sectional height h [mm]

577

L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

0.008 0.008 Fig. 16. Regression analysis of the test results of the

beams under diﬀerent loading.

0.007 0.007 y = 6E-06x + 0.0009

y = 3E-06x + 0.0012

0.006 0.006 R² = 0.885

R² = 0.867

0.005

Y=(ft/ıNu)2

0.005

Y=(ft/ıNu)2

0.004 0.004

0.003 0.003

0.002 0.002

0.001 0.001

0 0

0 200 400 600 800 1000 1200 0 200 400 600 800 1000 1200

X=D [mm] X=D [mm]

aggregate particles were put into the mortar matrix by using the “Take

and Place” method which was also utilized in other eﬀorts [35,50]. It is

based on a random sampling principle of Monte Carlo’s simulation

method applied by taking samples of aggregate particles from a source

whose size distribution follows a certain given grading curve and pla-

cing the aggregate particles one by one into the concrete in such a way

that there is no overlapping with particles already placed. Herein this

study, we adopted the algorithm for generating a realistic aggregate

structure proposed in [35,51]. The thin layers around the aggregate

particles were set as ITZs.

The steel reinforcement cage is set up individually after the gen-

eration of the concrete partition, and then it is simply inserted into the

concrete partition regardless of the meso components. Speciﬁcally, the

interactions between the aggregates and the rebar are not taken into

Fig. 17. The comparison of nominal ﬂexural strength ﬁtted by Bazant’s SEL. consideration during the numerical tests, but uniformly set a nonlinear

spring between the concrete partition and the rebar partition. This may

lead to an uncertain mutual eﬀect between the concrete and the re-

4.1. Generation of the RC beams at meso-scale

inforcement, which may be a drawback for this meso-scale method, and

it should be modiﬁed and revised in the future work.

Based on the test results of aforementioned experimental

A typical 3D mesoscopic numerical model of RC beam is shown in

campaign, three more groups of numerical specimens with some ex-

Fig. 18. As presented in Fig. 18, each phase has its own color and also its

tensive structural sizes, i.e. 480 mm × 1200 mm×4900 mm,

distinguished mechanical properties. The eight-node hexahedron ele-

640 mm × 1600 mm×6500 mm and 800 mm × 2000 mm×7700 mm,

ments were employed to divide the concrete meso-components, and the

are established for supplementing and extending the experimental

beam-elements were utilized for the discretization of the reinforcing

research. The seismic performances of cantilever RC beams with dif-

bars. The Newton-Raphson method was used to solve the nonlinear

ferent structural sizes could therefore be analyzed by a combined

equations.

experimental and numerical method.

At meso-scale, concrete is often regarded as a three-phase hetero-

geneous composite involving aggregate particles, mortar matrix and 4.2. Constitutive model

the interfacial transition zones (ITZ). The evaluation of the composite

behavior of concrete at mesoscopic level requires the generation of a In recent years, many coupled plasticity damage models have been

random aggregate structure in which the shape, size and distribution of proposed to describe the mechanical behavior of cementitious materials

the aggregate particles closely resemble real concrete in the statistical [44,32]. Among these eﬀorts, the concrete damage plasticity model was

sense [35]. Moreover, aggregates, including both ﬁne and coarse ag- ﬁrst proposed by Lubliner et al. [52] for monotonic loading, and it was

gregates, generally occupy 60–80% of the volume of concrete and developed later by Lee and Fenves [53] to consider the dynamic and

greatly inﬂuence the properties, mix proportions and economy. Herein cyclic loadings. This model, which has been included in the ABAQUS

this study, for the sake of simplicity, the ﬁne aggregates (corresponding package, has been widely used for the description of the static and

to the aggregates sized range from 0 to 5 mm) and the cement paste are dynamic mechanical behaviors of concrete-like materials.

both merged into the mortar matrix, and the coarse aggregates were

modeled as spheres with random distribution. Similar with that in the 4.2.1. Isotropic damage model

experiments, the coarse aggregate represents around 40–50% of con- The stress-strain relation for the general three-dimensional multi-

crete volume. The classic Fuller’s curve was utilized to describe the axial condition is given by the scalar damage elasticity equation

aggregate size distribution, and all RC beams were deﬁned as two-

σ = (1−d ) D0el : (ε−ε pl ) (7)

graded concrete specimen according to the Chinese code [49]. The sizes

of aggregates were therefore equivalent to two speciﬁc values. All small in which D0el is the initial elasticity matrix, d means the damage variable

aggregates have the diameter of 10 mm, and all large aggregates have and ε pl is the plastic strain tensor. Tensile damage and compressive

the diameter of 25 mm. A total of 8 groups of cantilever beams were damage are characterized independently by two hardening parameters,

built for the numerical tests. Additionally, a group of ε tpl̃ and ε cpl̃ (subscripts ‘t’ and ‘c’ stand for tension and compression,

150 mm × 150 mm×150 mm cubic specimen was set up for the de- respectively), which are referred to as equivalent plastic strains in

termination of the mechanical properties of the meso components. The tension and compression. The evolution equations of the hardening

578

L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

cantilever beams.

Loading

RC specimen

Reinforcement

ITZ

Mortar matrix

Aggregate

Reinforcement

Fixed bottom

ft main features of concrete behavior. Sometimes, in order to avoid un-

reasonable mesh sensitive results, the tensile post-failure behavior is

E0 given in terms of a fracture energy cracking criterion by specifying a

E0 (1 − d c )(1 − d t ) stress-displacement curve instead of a stress-strain curve. Under multi-

E0 (1 − d t ) axial loading conditions, the evolution equation of the hardening

parameters for uniaxial loading should be extended.

ε According to Lee and Fenves’s work [53], tensile and compressive

E0 (1 − d c ) E0 crack closure

equivalent plastic strains have the following forms

ε tpl̃ = r (σ )̂ ε max

̂

pl

(10a)

fc

σc ε cpl̃ = ̂ ε min

−(1−r (σ )) ̂

pl

(10b)

Fig. 19. Unaxial loading path of the plasticity damage model. ̂ and

pl

in which ε max ̂

pl

are the maximum and minimum plastic strain

ε min

tensors, respectively; r (σ )̂ means a multi-axial stress weight factor and

variables, ε tpl̃ and ε cpl̃ , are conveniently formulated by considering is deﬁned as

uniaxial loading conditions ﬁrst and then extended to multi-axial con- 3

ditions. The model assumes that the uniaxial tensile and compressive ∑ 〈σi 〉̂

responses of concrete are characterized by damaged plasticity, as shown r (σ )̂ = i=1

3

0 ⩽ r (σ )̂ ⩽ 1

in Fig. 19. It is assumed that the stress-strain response follows a linear ∑ |σi |̂

elastic relationship under uniaxial tension until the value of the failure i=1 (11)

stress, ft, is reached. The failure stress corresponds to the onset of micro-

in which σi ̂ are principal stress components (i = 1, 2 for 2-D problem

cracking in the concrete material. Beyond the failure stress the forma-

and i = 1, 2, 3 for 3-D problem), the Macauley bracket “〈·〉” is deﬁned

tion of micro-cracks is often represented macroscopically with a soft-

by 〈x 〉 = 0.5 × (|x| + x ) .

ening stress-strain response, which induces strain localization in the

concrete structure. The uniaxial stress-strain curves can be converted

4.2.2. Plasticity yield surface

into stress versus plastic strain curves of the form as

The model makes use of the yield function of Lubliner et al. [32],

σt = σt ( ε tpl̃ ,θ,fi ) (8a) with the modiﬁcations proposed by Lee and Fenves [53] to account for

diﬀerent evolution of strength under tension and compression. The

σc = σc ( ε cpl̃ ,θ,fi ) (8b) evolution of the yield surface is controlled by the two hardening vari-

ables, ε tpl̃ and ε cpl̃ . In terms of eﬀective stress, the yield function F used

where θ is the temperature and fi (i = 1,2,…) denotes other predeﬁned in the constitutive model takes the following form

ﬁeld variables.

1

As shown in Fig. 19, when the specimen is unloaded from any point F = F (σ , ε pl̃ ) = [q −3αp + β ( ε pl̃ ) 〈σmax 〉−γ〈−σmax 〉]−σc (εcpl ) = 0

1−α

on the strain softening branch of the stress-strain curves, the unloading

response is weakened: the elastic stiﬀness of the material appears to be (12)

1

degraded. Herein, the degradation of the elastic stiﬀness is character- in which p = − 3 σ : I is the eﬀective hydrostatic pressure stress; I is a

ized by two damage variables, tensile damage factor dt and compressive stress invariant; q =

3

S: S means the Mises equivalent eﬀective

2

damage factor dc, and the stress-strain relationships under tension and

stress, and S is the eﬀective stress deviator, deﬁned as S = p I + σ ; σmax

compression are respectively

is the maximum principal eﬀective stress; and α , β ( ε pl̃ ) and γ respec-

σt = (1−d t ) E0 (εt− ε tpl̃ ) (9a) tively has the following forms

σcc/ σc−1

σc = (1−d c ) E0 (εc− ε cpl̃ ) (9b) α=

2σcc/ σc−1 (13a)

579

L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

Mechanical parameters of the three meso-components of concrete and reinforcing bars

σt utilized.

uniaxial compression parameters matrix

biaxial tension

* ^

Compressive 45.3 37.2

strength σc/MPa

Tensile strength σt/ *

3.8 ^

3.3

MPa

* ^ * *

Elastic modulus E/ *70.1 30.8 24.7 196 210

GPa

Poisson’s ratio ν *0.2 *

0.2 ^

0.2 *

0.3 *

0.3

Fracture energy Gc 60 50 30

(σ cc , σ cc ) biaxial compression

σc [J/m2]

Shear - Dilative 18 15

angle ψ (°)

* *

Fig. 20. Yield surface for plane stress conditions. Yield strength fy/ 405 298

MPa

β ( ε pl̃ ) = (1−α )−(1 + α )

σt ( ε tpl̃ ) (13b) displacement diagrams only.

Moreover, aggregate particles were set as elastic due to their high

3(1−K c ) (er) tensile and compressive strengths. Similar with that in [58], the

γ=

2K c−1 (13c) mechanical behavior of steel bars was described by an ideal elastic-

plastic model.

in which σcc/ σc means the ratio of initial equivalent-biaxial compressive

yield stress to initial uniaxial compressive yield stress; Kc is the ratio of

the second stress invariant on the tensile meridian. Typical yield surface 4.3. Mechanical parameters

is shown in Fig. 20 for plane stress conditions.

The main mechanical parameters for the three meso-components

4.2.3. Plastic ﬂow rule and the reinforcing bars, including elastic modulus E, tensile/com-

The present damaged plasticity model assumes non-associated po- pressive strengths σt/σc, and fracture energy Gc, etc., are listed in

tential plastic ﬂow. The ﬂow potential G used for this model is the Table 5. The mechanical parameters of aggregate and mortar matrix are

Drucker-Prager hyperbolic function real test ones (labeled by “∗”), and the magnitudes of the fracture en-

G= (ησt tanψ)2 + q 2 −p tanψ ergy for the three meso-components are quoted from Yılmaz and Mo-

(14)

linari’s [45] work. The mechanical parameters of ITZs (labeled by “^”)

where ψ is the dilation angle measured in the p-q plane at high con- are determined by repeated trials, because it is uneasy to measure by

ﬁning pressure; σt is the uniaxial tensile stress at failure; η is a para- test. In reality, the ITZs are composed by cement mortar with relatively

meter, referred to as the eccentricity, that deﬁnes the rate at which the a larger amount of initial defects (i.e. voids and micro-cracks). The

function approaches the asymptote (the ﬂow potential tends to a mechanical properties of the ITZs (especially the strength and modulus

straight line as the eccentricity tends to zero). of elasticity) were chosen to be less than that of the mortar matrix by a

For more details about the constitutive model, refers to the eﬀorts constant factor. Similar with that of Jin et al. [33], some repeated

[33,54]. It is understandable that damaged plasticity model was uti- uniaxial compressive tests on square concrete specimens sized of

lized to describe the mechanical responses of concrete. As for the ITZ 150 mm × 150 mm × 150 mm were conducted to obtain reasonable

and the mortar matrix, they both can be regarded as cementitious parameters for ITZs (see Fig. 21). That is to say, diﬀerent groups of

materials. The only diﬀerences between these two meso components mechanical parameters for the ITZ were ﬁrst assumed, and then the

and a concrete is the particle size distribution and the porosity of the assumed parameters were utilized to evaluate the macro-mechanical

material. Actually, both Grote et al. [55] and Park et al. [56] have properties of concrete. The assumed parameters that could obtain ac-

found that the dynamic mechanical behavior of mortar matrix is similar curate mechanical properties (especially for strength and elastic mod-

to that of concrete, and the plastic damage model can be used to de- ulus) of concrete were set as the right parameters. It is to be noted that,

scribe the dynamic mechanical behavior of mortar. The ITZ, in fact, is a the value of this constant is related to the selected thickness of the ITZs.

kind of mortar matrix material with high porosity [57], thus the me- The actual thickness of the ITZs is about 20–50 μm [59,60]. However, it

chanical parameters of the ITZ can be characterized by weakening the is almost impossible to use this tiny thickness for the consideration of

ones of mortar matrix [50]. Therefore, herein this study, for the mortar computational amount [61]. Herein this study, similar with that in Jin

matrix and the ITZ phases, the damaged plasticity model was utilized to et al.’s work [33], the selected ITZs thickness was set as 1 mm. With the

describe their mechanical behavior. These treatments are similar with parameters listed in Table 5, one can obtain that the simulated uniaxial

those in [44,32,54]. compressive strength of concrete is 42.6 MPa (close to the tested one,

According to Majewski et al. [58], to preserve the well-posedness of i.e. 42.8 MPa). Therefore, the selected parameters for the ITZs are re-

the boundary value problem, to obtain mesh-independent results and to garded to be reasonable. Moreover, on the eﬀects of ITZ thickness and

include a characteristic length of micro-structure for simulations of a ITZ mechanical parameters on the global mechanical properties of

deterministic size eﬀect, a non-local theory should be used as a reg- concrete one can refer to Kim and Al-Rub’s [50] and the previous si-

ularization technique. Herein the utilized constitutive model, it has to mulation eﬀorts [61].

be stressed that a characteristic length is lacking. To avoid or relax Additionally, a series of numerical tests for the evaluation of mesh

unreasonable mesh sensitive results, the tensile post-failure behavior is sensitivity are conducted by setting diﬀerent mesh sizes in the cubic

given in terms of a fracture energy cracking criterion by specifying a concrete specimen sized by 150 mm × 150 mm × 150 mm. A total of

stress-displacement curve instead of a stress-strain curve, e.g. in the four groups of mesh sizes, i.e. 2 mm, 5 mm, 8 mm and 12 mm, were

eﬀorts [44,32,54]. Nevertheless, it is to be noted that, the use of a adopted. Fig. 21(a) presents the generation of the four mesh sized

580

L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

2.4

54

Compressive stress ı [MPa]

48 2mm 2.0

5mm

Tensile stress ı [MPa]

42

8mm

36 12mm 1.6

30

1.2

24

18 0.8

12

0.4

6

0 0

0 0.002 0.0030

0.0015 0.004 0.0045

0.006 0.0060

0.008 0.0075

0.01 0 0.00005 0.0001 0.00015

Nominal compressive strain Nominal tensile strain

Fig. 21. Evaluation of the mesh sensitivity, (a) the cube concrete model having diﬀerent mesh sizes; (b) typical uniaxial compressive and tensile failure patterns; and (c) stress-strain

curves under uniaxial compression and tension

specimen, Fig. 21(b) shows the typical failure patterns of concrete, and of China [49]. In order to describe the bond-slip behavior between steel

Fig. 21(c) plots the comparison of tested and numerical stress-strain and concrete, a nonlinear spring element was set between concrete

curves of concrete under uniaxial compression and tension. One can see elements and steel elements, as shown in Fig. 22 (a). The tangential

from Fig. 21(c) that the numerical results are consistent with the tested bond stress τ and slip s between reinforcement and concrete were de-

ones. Moreover, it can be seen from Fig. 21(c) that, when the mesh size scribed by the shear stress and slip (τ-s) curve that recommended by the

is smaller than about 5 mm, the numerical results are almost identical concrete structure design code of China [49], as presented in Fig. 22(b).

and more stable. Therefore, considering of both accuracy and eﬃciency The related parameters between steel/concrete is shown in Table 6.

of the numerical tests, the average size of the ﬁnite elements in calcu-

lations was set to be 5 mm for all RC beams. 4.4. Eﬀects of related parameters on concrete behavior

Due to the complexity of the interaction between steel bars and the

surrounding concrete, there is no universal bond-slip law for now. The macro-mechanical properties of concrete are closely related to

However, the bond between concrete and the steel bars plays a crucial the meso-/micro-structure of concrete [35,44,47,50,51]. Therefore, the

role for the structural behavior. Accordingly, it embraces three major parameters involving the volume fraction of aggregate particles, ag-

mechanisms: adhesion and friction between concrete and steel surface, gregate size, aggregate shape, aggregate distribution, ITZ thickness and

as well as the bearing of reinforcement ribs against concrete [58]. ITZ strength should have signiﬁcant inﬂuences on the mechanical be-

Herein this study, the numerical calculations were carried out with a havior of concrete.

bond-slip law (assuming a relative displacement between concrete and Actually, the eﬀects of the aforementioned meso-scale parameters

reinforcement) adopted by the “Code for design of concrete structures” on the macroscopic mechanical properties of concrete have been

581

L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

steel bars and surrounding concrete.

Ĳ u

i

u

Ĳ cr

cr

r

Ĳ

r

o s

s s s

cr u r

(a) Spring element (b) Relation between shear stress Ĳ and slip s

Table 6 value of the material. As for the inﬂuences of the aggregate shape, size

Parameters utilized in the bond-slip model. and volume fraction, the same values of the parameters concerning of

these inﬂuencing factors were utilized and therefore the inﬂuences in-

Inﬂection point Splitting (cr) Peak (u) Remnant (r)

troduced by these materials-level parameters are approximately elimi-

Stress τ (MPa) τcr = 2.5ft τu = 3ft τr = ft nated at components-level. For more details on the inﬂuences of other

Slip s (mm) scr,l = 0.025d su,l = 0.04d sr,l = 0.55d parameters on the mechanical behavior of concrete, refer to the pre-

vious work [59,60].

Note: “d” means the diameter of steel; “ft” means the cracking strength of concrete.

In addition, according to the simulations, it is found that the

minimum aggregate size has a negligible inﬂuence on the macroscopic

studied systemically in our previous work [61,62]. Generally, the

mechanical properties of concrete. Therefore, all the ﬁne aggregates

macroscopic elastic modulus and the strength of concrete under tension

with size ranging from 0 to 5 mm and the cement paste are merged into

decrease as aggregate size increases, and at a ﬁxed value of total ag-

the mortar matrix in the study for the sake of computational eﬃciency.

gregate fraction, a larger average size of aggregate particles corre-

Certainly, the bond between concrete and reinforcement has a sig-

sponds to a larger size of fracture process zone; aggregate shape has

niﬁcant inﬂuence on the failure of RC beams. For more details on the

little eﬀect on the macroscopic modulus of elasticity and the averaged

inﬂuences, refer to the eﬀorts in [42].

tensile strength as well as the failure patterns of concrete; the spatial

distribution of aggregate has a negligible inﬂuence on the overall me-

chanical properties of concrete; the ITZ thickness and ITZ strength have 4.5. Validation of the numerical method

a great inﬂuence on both the fracture process and the global mechanical

properties of concrete. The eﬀects of these parameters listed above have The ﬁnal simulated failure patterns of the RC cantilever beams

also been discussed in the work of Kim and Al-Rub [50]. To avoid re- having diﬀerent structural sizes under both monotonic and cyclic

peated simulations, the eﬀects of the parameters were not presented in loadings are presented in Fig. 24. It can be found clearly from Fig. 24

some detail. Herein this study, a brief investigation on the eﬀect of that the simulated failure patterns have good agreement with the actual

aggregate distribution was conducted by presenting 40 groups of uni- tested ones. Nevertheless, one can clearly note from Fig. 24 that there

axial compression tests with randomly generated square specimens, as are still some diﬀerences from the numerical outcomes and the ex-

shown previously in Fig. 23. The numerical results indicate that, the perimental observations, e.g. the crack inclinations and the crack spa-

aggregate distribution could only aﬀect the post-peak softening beha- cing, especially for the RC beams subjected to monotonic loading. This

vior of concrete and merely change the elastic response and the peak should be caused by the following reasons: (1) the adopted bond-slip

relations and the related parameters should be diﬀerent from the real

on the global mechanical properties of concrete.

Experimental

42

Nominal compressive stress [MPa]

Numerical

36

30

24

18

12

0

0 0.5 1 1.5 2 2.5 3 3.5 4

Nominal compressive strain (x10-3)

582

L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

1000mm 1000mm

800mm 800mm

600mm 600mm

400mm 400mm

200mm 200mm

Plastic strain

0 0.0033

Fig. 24. Comparison of simulated and tested failure patterns of the RC beams, (a) under cyclic loading and (b) under monotonic loading.

30 500 2000

M [kN*m]

M [kN*m]

M [kN*m]

1500

20 300

1000

10

100 500

¨ [mm] ¨ [mm] ¨ [mm]

0 0

-50 -30 -10 10 30 50 -120 -80 -40-100 0 40 80 120 -200 -100 0 100 200

-500

-10 CB-2-T CB-4-T

CB-2-S -1000 CB-4-S

-300

-20 CB-1-T CB-3-T -1500 CB-5-T

CB-1-S CB-3-S CB-5-S

-30 -500 -2000

30

500 2000

25

400

1500

20

M [kN*m]

M [kN*m]

M [kN*m]

300

15 1000

200 MB-4-T

10 MB-2-T

MB-2-S 500 MB-4-S

5 MB-1-T 100

MB-3-T MB-5-T

MB-1-S MB-5-S

MB-3-S

0 0 0

0 15 30 45 60 0 50 100 150 200 250 300 0 100 200 300 400 500

¨ [mm] ¨ [mm] ¨ [mm]

Fig. 25. Comparison of the skeleton curves obtained by numerical and experimental results, (a) under cyclic loading, and (b) under monotonic loading.

583

L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

1800 Table 8

Physical parameters of the larger sized RC beams simulated.

1500

Specimen name CB-6/MB-6 CB-7/MB-7 CB-8/MB-8

1200 T

M [kN*m]

Longitudinal reinforcement ratio ρ 1.26% 1.24% 1.24%

900 Hoop reinforcement ratio ρsv 0.14% 0.14% 0.14%

S Eﬀective height of Beam h0 (mm) 1120 1510 1900

600 Beam eﬀective length a = λ * h0 (mm) 4480 6040 7200

Total length of beam l (mm) 4900 6500 7700

300

0 1 2 3 4 5 6 in Table 8.

İ/10-3

Fig. 26. Simulated and tested tensile strains of the longitudinal bars at the ﬁxed bottom. 5.1. Simulated failure of larger sized beams

section heights are 1200 mm, 1600 mm and 2000 mm) and the Mises

tested ones; (2) in the simulations, the constitutive models for the

stresses distribution within the steel reinforcements are presented in

concrete meso components cannot avoid the mesh sensitivity totally.

Fig. 27. It can be clearly found that the failure patterns of the three

The above existed problems should be solved in the future work.

larger-sized RC beams are closely similar with those of RC beams

Fig. 25 shows the comparison between the simulated and tested

having smaller sizes, under both monotonic and cyclic loadings. It can

bearing capacity under diﬀerent loading. In Fig. 25, “T” means the

also be noticed from Fig. 27 that, for larger-sized beams, the horizontal

tested results, and “S” means the simulated results. One can see that in

cracks propagate towards the bottom of the specimens, and oblique

the elastic stage, the simulated results agree well with the experimental

cracks generate, resulting to the ﬂexural-shear failure pattern.

results. In the yield stage and the softening stage, the bearing capacity

Moreover, from Fig. 27 one can note that the Mises stresses contour

between simulated result and the test result has somewhat diﬀerent, but

of the beams with cross-sectional height of 2000 mm that, the long-

the errors can be accepted excepted for the beam of CB-1.

itudinal steel bars yielded (reached the average yield strength of

Fig. 26 plots the comparison of the simulated results and the tested

400 MPa) at the end of the specimen under both monotonic and cyclic

results on the strain ε of the longitudinal steel bars at the end of the

loadings.

beams under monotonic load. One can note that the simulation results

Fig. 28(a) and (b) plot the skeleton curves (moment M versus de-

are consistent with the tested ones. At the initial stage, the beams were

ﬂection Δ) of the three larger-sized RC beams subjected to cyclic and

all in elastic stage. As the loading continued, the steel strains increased

monotonic loadings, respectively. Again, one can note from the com-

linearly, and the strains increased signiﬁcantly after the longitudinal

parison of Fig. 28(a) and (b) that, (1) the peak moments M of the beams

steel bars reached their yield strength.

under cyclic loading are obviously smaller than those under monotonic

Table 7 presents the comparison of the tested and simulated results

loading; (2) the deformation capacity or the ductility capacity of the

on the nominal strength of the RC beams. One can clearly note that, for

beams under cyclic loading are weaker than those under monotonic

both series CB and MB, the simulated nominal strengths are closely

loading. In summary, the mechanical behavior of the larger-sized RC

similar with the tested nominal strengths. This demonstrates the rea-

beams is basically similar with that of the smaller-sized RC beams

sonability of the meso-scale simulation method.

tested.

5. Numerical test results of larger sized beams 5.2. Size eﬀect in larger-sized beams

In this section, the above validated meso-scale simulation method The relationships between the simulated ﬂexural strengths and the

was extended to explore the failure behavior of larger-sized geome- structural size D (i.e. cross-sectional height h) of the RC beams under

trically similar RC beams. The cross-sectional heights of the simulated both monotonic and cyclic loadings are all plotted in Fig. 29. It can be

beams were 1200 mm (CB-6/MB-6), 1600 mm (CB-7/MB-7) and seen that the simulated ﬂexural strengths of the geometrically similar

RC beams decrease as the cross-sectional height increases, indicating a

size eﬀect. Moreover, it can be noted from Fig. 29 that as the structural

Table 7 size increases, the decrease trend of the obtained ﬂexural strengths

Comparison of nominal strength obtained from tests and simulations.

slows down. It is believed that as the structural size becomes larger and

Specimen label Tested strength (MPa) Simulated strength (MPa) Error (%) larger the ﬂexural strength should be close to a constant.

Similarly, the bi-logarithmic plot was also drawn with log (D/D0) in

CB-1-i 58.70 51.45 12.35 the X-axis and log (σNu /Bft’) in the Y-axis, as shown in Fig. 30. The

CB-1-ii 62.28 17.39

correlation coeﬃcient R2 for the simulated data and Bažant’s SEL was

CB-2-i 36.36 37.35 2.72

CB-2-ii 36.73 1.69 evaluated to be 0.975. This means that, for the simulated larger-sized

CB-3-i 31.66 33.27 5.10 RC beams, the nominal ﬂexural strength is also in accordance with

CB-3-ii 33.31 0.12 Bažant’s SEL. Moreover, compared with that for monotonic loading, the

CB-4-i 31.21 32.17 3.01 simulated data for cyclic loading lies closer to the LEFM. This indicates

CB-4-ii 31.19 3.14

CB-5-i 26.00 26.24 0.92

a more pronounced size eﬀect for the beams under cyclic loading.

CB-5-ii 26.50 0.98

MB-1 60.45 54.58 9.71 6. Conclusions

MB-2 41.18 45.86 11.37

MB-3 40.31 43.07 6.85

A series of experimental tests on the ﬂexural failure behavior of

MB-4 35.76 34.76 2.80

MB-5 32.61 32.72 0.34 geometrically similar RC cantilever beams subjected to both monotonic

and cyclic loadings were conducted. The eﬀects of structural size and

584

L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

Fig. 27. Failure patterns of larger-sized RC beams subjected to (a) cyclic loading, and (b) monotonic loading.

M [kN*m]

12000 monotonic loading.

8000

10000

M [kN*m]

4000 8000

¨ [mm]

6000

0

-300 -200 -100 0 100 200 300 4000 MB-6-S

-4000 MB-7-S

2000

MB-8-S

CB-6-S 0

-8000

CB-7-S 0 200 400 600 800 1000

CB-8-S

-12000 ¨ [mm]

Simulation results tematically explored. In particular, the size eﬀect in the nominal ﬂex-

Simulated strength ıNu [MPa]

50

ural strength was studied. Moreover, a 3D meso-scale numerical

40 method considering concrete heterogeneities and the nonlinear bond-

slip relations was established to model the failure of RC cantilever

30 beams, and good agreement between the simulation results and the

tested results proved the eﬃciency of the meso-scale approach. Finally,

20 the failure behavior and the size eﬀect of larger-sized RC beams were

investigated based on the meso-scale method.

10

Monotonic Cyclic According to the analyses, the following conclusions can be drawn:

0

0 500 1000 1500 2000 2500 (1) Under both monotonic and cyclic loadings, all RC beams tested in

Cross-sectional height h [mm] this work exhibit a quasi-brittle failure pattern, and the measured

nominal ﬂexural strength decreases as the structural size increases.

Fig. 29. Relationship between the simulated nominal ﬂexural strength and structure size.

(2) The nominal ﬂexural strength of the RC beams follows closely the

size eﬀect law proposed by Bažant in all cases tested.

(3) Under low cyclic fatigue loading, the strength of concrete and steel

0.1

bars degrades, and the bonding capacity between steel bars and

Strength criterion

0 surrounding concrete weakens due the accumulation of damage.

(4) As the structural size of the beams increases, the ductility capacity

-0.1

R2 = 0.975 improves for the beams under monotonic load, while it does not

log(ıNu/Bft´)

-0.2 Simulation results change obviously for the beams under cyclic loading. In addition,

the stiﬀness degradation capacity does not have an obvious change

-0.3 Bazant's SEL

with increasing the structural size of RC beams.

Strength criterion

-0.4 (5) Compared to monotonic loading, cyclic loading makes the failure of

LEFM

-0.5 Cyclic RC beams less ductile. This leads to the fact that the size eﬀect in

Monotonic the ﬂexural strength of the RC beams under cyclic loading is much

-0.6 more obvious than that under monotonic loading.

-2.0 -1.6 -1.2 -0.8 -0.4 0.0 0.4 0.8 1.2

(6) Size eﬀects in the ﬂexural failure of RC beams are closely associated

log(D/D0)

with loading mode, namely they are a function of loading in ad-

Fig. 30. Logarithmic curve of the simulated nominal ﬂexural strength vs. structure size. dition to geometry.

585

L. Jin et al. Engineering Structures 156 (2018) 567–586

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