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V. 112, NO.




Board of Direction ACI Structural Journal
William E. Rushing Jr. March-April 2015, V. 112, No. 2
a journal of the american concrete institute
Vice Presidents an international technical society
Sharon L. Wood
Michael J. Schneider
123 Evaluation of Column Load for Generally Uniform Grid-Reinforced
Directors Pile Cap Failing in Punching, by Honglei Guo
Roger J. Becker
Dean A. Browning
Jeffrey W. Coleman 135 Design Implications of Large-Scale Shake-Table Test on Four-Story
Alejandro Durán-Herrera Reinforced Concrete Building, by T. Nagae, W. M. Ghannoum, J. Kwon,
Robert J. Frosch K. Tahara, K. Fukuyama, T. Matsumori, H. Shiohara, T. Kabeyasawa,
Augusto H. Holmberg
Cary S. Kopczynski S. Kono, M. Nishiyama, R. Sause, J. W. Wallace, and J. P. Moehle
Steven H. Kosmatka
Kevin A. MacDonald 147 Inverted-T Beams: Experiments and Strut-and-Tie Modeling, by
Fred Meyer
Michael M. Sprinkel N. L. Varney, E. Fernández-Gómez, D. B. Garber, W. M. Ghannoum, and
David M. Suchorski O. Bayrak

Past President Board Members 157 Energy-Based Hysteresis Model for Reinforced Concrete Beam-
Anne M. Ellis
James K. Wight Column Connections, by Tae-Sung Eom, Hyeon-Jong Hwang, and
Kenneth C. Hover Hong-Gun Park

Executive Vice President 167 Ductility Enhancement in Beam-Column Connections Using Hybrid
Ron Burg
Fiber-Reinforced Concrete, by Dhaval Kheni, Richard H. Scott,
Technical Activities Committee S. K. Deb, and Anjan Dutta
Ronald Janowiak, Chair
Daniel W. Falconer, Staff Liaison 179 Behavior and Simplified Modeling of Mechanical Reinforcing Bar
JoAnn P. Browning
Catherine E. French
Splices, by Zachary B. Haber, M. Saiid Saiidi, and David H. Sanders
Fred R. Goodwin
Trey Hamilton 189 Bond-Splitting Strength of Reinforced Strain-Hardening Cement
Neven Krstulovic-Opara Composite Elements with Small Bar Spacing, by Toshiyuki Kanakubo
Kimberly Kurtis
Kevin A. MacDonald and Hiroshi Hosoya
Jan Olek
Michael Stenko 199 Wide Beam Shear Behavior with Diverse Types of Reinforcement,
Pericles C. Stivaros
Andrew W. Taylor by S. E. Mohammadyan-Yasouj, A. K. Marsono, R. Abdullah, and
Eldon G. Tipping M. Moghadasi

Staff 209 Effect of Axial Compression on Shear Behavior of High-Strength

Executive Vice President
Ron Burg Reinforced Concrete Columns, by Yu-Chen Ou and Dimas P. Kurniawan

Engineering 221 Experimental Investigations on Prestressed Concrete Beams with

Managing Director Openings, by Martin Classen and Tobias Dressen
Daniel W. Falconer
Managing Editor 233 Discussion
Khaled Nahlawi
Staff Engineers 
Bond-Slip-Strain Relationship in Transfer Zone of Pretensioned Concrete
Matthew R. Senecal
Elements. Paper by Ho Park and Jae-Yeol Cho
Gregory M. Zeisler
Jerzy Z. Zemajtis
Contents cont. on next page
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122 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Title No. 112-S11

Evaluation of Column Load for Generally Uniform Grid-

Reinforced Pile Cap Failing in Punching
by Honglei Guo
Currently, the punching shear resistance of pile caps is frequently of the oblique sections of the punching cone, and the perim-
evaluated empirically, and although the strut-and-tie model (STM) eter of the critical sections is kept minimum but no closer to
may be used to calculate the issue, the two weaknesses of STM— the column edge than d/2 (the definition of d being given in
conservative nature and difficult configuration—hinder its rational Eq. (1) and Fig. 4); and
solution. To attempt to solve these issues, this paper presents a
2. Take the minimum of the three kinds of punching shear
generalized method of spatial STMs to evaluate punching shear
resistance in these sections as the ultimate.
resistance of general pile caps with uniform grid reinforcement
(TPM). Based on results of the spatial strut-and-tie bearing mech- Whereas the method in JGJ94-94 code2 is divided into
anism of pile cap punching failure, three-dimensional (3-D) rather three steps: 1) take the link line between the column side and
than two-dimensional (2-D) strut strength is derived. During this the nearest pile side to form the punching cone; 2) modify
process, nonlinear finite element analysis in conjunction with the the inclination of the punching cone to ensure it to vary from
derivation of a gradual least-square method for multiple variables 45 to 78.7 degrees; and 3) in the end, use a punching coef-
is adopted. TPM is verified by 98 specimens in the literature, whose ficient containing the punching-span ratio λ to correct the
parameters (reinforcement ratio of tension tie, punching-span ratio, punching shear resistance (the definition of λ being given
concrete strength, pile number, and pile arrangement) vary, respec- in Eq. (1)).
tively; the comparisons with the other four methods are made. It Type 2—The rational stress field is assumed according
is indicated that TPM is extensively applicable to the evaluation
to the load-transfer route so that the lower-bound solution
of the punching shear resistance of general pile caps with uniform
to punching shear resistance is obtained, called the “lower-
grid reinforcement.
bound method” for short. As far as the practical evaluation
Keywords: building code; pile cap; punching shear resistance; strut-and-tie of the reinforced concrete is concerned, it has often been the
model (STM). best choice for this method to have the structure likened to
a certain kind of structure or a combination of certain struc-
INTRODUCTION tures whose bearing mechanism is well known.
A pile cap is the load-transfer story between the super- In technical codes, the text and Appendix A of
structure and pile, while the evaluation of its punching shear ACI 318-08,1 the CRSI handbook,3 CAN/CSA A23.3-04,4
resistance is an important basis for determining its thickness BSEN 1992-1-1:2004,5 and AS 3600-20016 either adopt or
and arrangement of reinforcement. contain this method.
Generally speaking, the evaluation of punching shear Of the aforementioned, when the center of any one pile is
resistance of a pile cap can be classified into two types at or within twice the distance between the top of the pile cap
according to the theory of plasticity: and the top of the pile, Section 15.5 in ACI 318-081 states that
Type 1—The collapse mechanism is assumed so that punching of the pile cap can be likened to an idealized truss,
the upper-bound solution to punching shear resistance is and Appendix A of ACI 318-081 gives the basic components
obtained using the theory of plasticity, called the “upper- of the truss: strut, tie, and nodal zone, and there is a series
bound method” for short. This method is adopted in the of systematic provisions for the strength and dimensions
critical section stress method of the ACI 318-08 code (ACI of these components. In fact, a general strut-and-tie design
CSM)1 and the Chinese JGJ94-94 code.2 (Although an procedure for all discontinuity (D)-regions was introduced.
empirical method in appearance, ACI CSM is theoretically As a supplement to the ACI 318-08 code, the CRSI hand-
an upper-bound method in essence). book3 recommends another calculating method, separated
Of the aforementioned, as shown in the Appendix* of the by three steps: 1) the applicable condition is the horizontal
paper, ACI CSM,1 (also, the details of JGJ94-94, ACI STM, distance between the column side and the nearest axis of the
CRSI,3 and TPM at the back being given in the Appendix pile is no larger than d/2; 2) the critical section is taken at the
of the paper) similar to the calculating method used for perimeter of the column face; and 3) the additional contri-
punching shear resistance of slab in the ACI 318-08 code, is bution of concrete to the punching strength resulting from
divided into two steps: the small punching span is considered. This shows that the
1. For simplicity of evaluation, the critical sections CRSI handbook method effectively likens the evaluation of
perpendicular to the plane of the pile cap are used instead
ACI Structural Journal, V. 112, No. 2, March-April 2015.
MS No. S-2010-415.R3, doi: 10.14359/51687420, received July 29, 2014, and
The Appendix is available at in PDF format, reviewed under Institute publication policies. Copyright © 2015, American Concrete
Institute. All rights reserved, including the making of copies unless permission is
appended to the online version of the published paper. It is also available in hard copy obtained from the copyright proprietors. Pertinent discussion including author’s
from ACI headquarters for a fee equal to the cost of reproduction plus handling at the closure, if any, will be published ten months from this journal’s date if the discussion
time of the request. is received within four months of the paper’s print publication.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 123

Fig. 1—Load-transfer mechanism of SSTM for punching
failure of pile caps.

Fig. 3—Failure form of the strut by nonlinear finite element

analysis. (Note: Model is one-fourth of four-pile cap of
symmetrical and determinant pile arrangement, and crack
surfaces are represented by circles.)
bottom; Zone II, the splitting zone in the midpart of the strut;
and Zone I, the shear-compression zone intersecting the pile
top. The forming process of the punching cone is as follows:
when the principal tensile stress in Zone II reaches the
splitting strength, the first crack is generated and, with the
Fig. 2—Damage mechanism of SSTM for punching failure column load increased, the oblique crack develops toward
of pile caps. the two ends of the strut. Soon after, the strut is split into
two (Struts A and B) connected at its two ends (Zones I and
the two-way shear of the pile caps to the superposition of
III), the column load being jointly borne by Struts A and B.
the one-way shear of two mutually orthogonal deep beams
Part of the column load is transferred to the longitudinal
whose width is equal to the length of the column edges.
reinforcement and the uncracked concrete of Zone I by
In the theoretical study, Wen7 modeled the punching of pile
Strut A, and the other part is transferred to the pile by Strut B.
caps as the coupling between two orthogonal deep beams,
When punching failure occurs, Strut A is punched out rela-
while Kinnunen and Nylander8 regarded it as a spatial shell.
tive to Strut B to have the punching cone formed. It can be
However, recent studies and practice have proved that it
considered that the column load at this moment is jointly
is more rational to liken the bearing mechanism of punching
borne by Zones I and III, together with the dowel action of
failure of pile caps to a spatial STM (SSTM).9-12
the bottom longitudinal reinforcement. The two parts are
Herein, as the basis for the derivation of the column load
correlated, and the loss of the punching shear resistance is a
of pile cap failing in punching to be conducted later, a brief
result of the damages in the aforementioned parts occurring
introduction to the author’s research conclusions is given
one after another so that, with no additional external load, the
as follows.11,12
oblique section suddenly collapses. Therefore, the punching
Load-transfer mechanism of punching failure—As shown
failure of pile caps is either the strut failure, which begins
in Fig. 1, the load-transfer system of the punching failure of
with the splitting in the midpart of the strut (Zone II) and
pile caps is analogous to the SSTM, where the compression
ends with shear-compression failure at the two ends of the
struts are used to model the zones of concrete with primarily
strut (Zones I and III) or the yield failure of the tension tie
unidirectional compressive stresses, while the reinforce-
resulting from insufficient tension tie reinforcement amount.
ments within the range of primarily unidirectional tensile
But the tension tie failure is also accompanied by the strut
stresses are approximated by tension ties.11,12
failure, so the strut failure is an indication of the loss of the
The pile load distribution during the punching failure of
pile cap punching shear resistance.12
pile caps can approximately adopt the value of the pile caps
The two basic factors influencing the strut strength are the
in the elastic stage.11
punching-span ratio and concrete strength.12 The strengths at
Damage mechanism of punching failure—As shown in
the two ends of the strut are not appreciably different; their
Fig. 2 and 3, the strut is represented as three zones: namely,
average can be taken as the strut strength.12
Zone III, the shear-compression zone intersecting the column

124 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 4—Effective depth and location of SSTM upper node.
Fig. 5—Location of SSTM lower node.
Dimensions of SSTM—Construct the true rather than
imaginary stress field to achieve the dimensions as follows:
1. During the elastic stage, the cross-sectional area at the
strut end for the pile near the column is larger than that far
from the column. But when the pile cap fails, because the
plastic internal force redistributes, the strut for the pile near
the column unloads (except for the strut between the column
and the pile beneath the column), and the strut for the pile far
from the column increases its load; therefore, at the end, as
shown in Fig. 2, all the cross-sectional areas at the strut end
basically stabilize at the same value—0.6 times that of the pile
(except for the strut between the column and the pile beneath Fig. 6—Effective range of tension tie, punching-span,
the column)—whatever the distance of pile to column.12 and As.
2. As shown in Fig. 4, the upper node of the SSTM is
although no larger than the experimental ones, are signifi-
located at 0.1 times the effective depth vertically downwards
cantly variable. Hence, the hidden safety risks; and 2) the
from the column center on the top surface of the pile caps.12
theory of STM applied to solve the punching of pile caps
3. As shown in Fig. 5, for simplicity, take a two-pile cap
is significantly conservative. This paper focuses on the
as an example to illustrate the location of the SSTM lower
derivation of the three-dimensional (3-D) rather than two-
node, which is obtained in accordance with the three steps:
dimensional (2-D) strut strength, from which the calculating
1) link upper node A to pile center B to obtain line segment
method for the punching shear resistance of the pile caps—
AB; 2) project AB onto the plane where the longitudinal
that is, the column load of pile cap failing in punching—is
reinforcement centroid is located to obtain line segment CD,
developed. Careful verification, comparison, and analysis
while obtaining the projection line L of the pile periphery
show that the results obtained in this paper should contribute
onto the same plane; 3) intercept CD with L to obtain line
to improving the aforementioned situation, and the informa-
segment ED, and the midpoint of ED is just lower node F of
tion presented in this paper should prove useful to organiza-
the SSTM.12
tions that publish design aids for pile caps.
4. As shown in Fig. 6, the effective range of the tension tie
is twice the pile diameter that is concentric with the lower
node of the SSTM.11
It should be noted that compared with the currently avail-
First, two variables are defined as follows:
able extensive literature on the bearing mechanism of the
1. Punching-span ratio λ
SSTM, investigation on the evaluation of the punching shear
resistance of pile caps with uniform grid reinforcement is as
λ = w/d (1)
of yet inadequate. So, based on the previously mentioned
research conclusions about the punching bearing mecha-
where, as shown in Fig. 4, the effective depth d is the depth
nism, further studies will be made along these lines.
to the centroid of the bottom longitudinal reinforcement. As
shown in Fig. 6, the punching span w is the distance GB1,
where line segment AB1 is obtained by linking column
Many punching shear resistances of pile caps are eval-
center A to pile center B1, and point G is obtained through
uated by design aids with the rule-of-thumb procedures,
the interception of AB1 by the periphery of column. If not a
which have at least two drawbacks: 1) the theoretical calcu-
round column, convert its cross section to a circular one of
lation values either far exceed the experimental ones or,
equal perimeter.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 125

Table 1—Relationship between g and l, fc' for l ≥ 0.95 It is known from the foregoing conclusion that the two
6.7 MPa (971.5 psi) ≤ fc′ ≤ 35 MPa (5075 psi) ≤ fc′ ≤
basic factors influencing the strut strength are the punching-
λ 35 MPa (5075 psi) 50 MPa (7252 psi) span ratio and concrete strength; thus, γ = γ(λ,fc′). To find
the specific expression for γ, the ADINA nonlinear finite
0.95 γ = 2.89255 – 0.31042√fc′* γ = 1.059
element (NFE) program, which has successfully evaluated
1.0 γ = 2.89255 – 0.31042√fc′ γ = 1.056 the punching shear resistance of pier deck13 (pier deck is
1.2 γ = 2.8618 – 0.30712√fc′ γ = 1.04775 similar to pile cap), is adopted. Analysis and derivation of
1.4 γ = 2.8782 – 0.30888√fc′ γ = 1.05225 the expression for γ are made by referring to mathematical
deduction of the gradual least-square method for multiple
1.6 γ = 2.8659 – 0.30756√fc′ γ = 1.04775
variables (GLSMV).
1.8 γ = 2.8618 – 0.30712√fc′ γ = 1.04925 In selecting the model for computerization, as the purpose
2.0 γ = 2.88025 – 0.3091√fc′ γ = 1.0545 of computerization is simply to derive the strut strength,
Unit of fc′ is MPa; γ is nondimensional. Similarly hereinafter. there is no need for consideration of the pile number or pile
arrangement other than the choice of the strut. Therefore, a
Table 2—Relationship between g and l, fc' for quarter of the four-pile cap of symmetrical and determinant
0.15 ≤ l ≤ 0.95 pile arrangement is selected, as shown in Fig. 3.
6.7 MPa (971.5 psi) ≤ fc′ ≤ 35 MPa (5075 psi) ≤ fc′ ≤
In developing the numerical model, the concrete of pile
λ 35 MPa (5075 psi) 50 MPa (7252 psi) caps is divided into four layers, the greater part of which
are 3-D isoparametric elements with eight nodes and three
γ = 2.05 × (2.341 – 0.9751λ)
0.75 ≤ λ
– 0.22 × (2.398 –1.057λ) γ = 0.75 × (2.32 – 0.96λ) degrees-of-freedom per node, a few triangular prism-shaped
≤ 0.95 degenerate elements being taken as transition ones. Where
× √fc′
0.35 ≤ λ γ = 2.05 × (1.972 – 0.521λ) –
the pile cap is near the column and pile, the 3 × 3 × 3 inte-
γ = 0.75 × (1.9789 – 0.493λ) gration order is adopted, while the 2 × 2 × 2 integration
≤ 0.75 0.22 × (1.9738 –0.488λ)×√fc′
order is used elsewhere. The column and pile are linked to
γ = 2.05 × (2.125 – 0.973λ)
0.15 ≤ λ
– 0.22 × (2.14258 –0.945λ) γ = 0.75 × (2.18292 – 1.085λ) the pile cap also in the form of 3-D isoparametric elements.
≤ 0.35 The concrete material model adopted is a nonlinear one
× √fc′
with compression crushing, tensile cutoff with strain soft-
2. Reinforcement ratio of tension tie ρ ening, and shear stress transferring across the cracks taken
into account.13 The reinforcing bars are represented by truss
As elements with two nodes, the constitutive law for which is an
ρ= (2) elastic-plastic material model.
2Dp d
As shown in Fig. 3, for the strut between the column
bottom and the pile top in question, take λ and fc′ as 0.15
where, as shown in Fig. 6, As is the sum of the cross- to 2.0 and 6.7 to 50 MPa (971.7 to 7252 psi), respectively.
sectional areas of the longitudinal reinforcements within the Thus, a total of 102 cases of combination is investigated.
effective range of the tension tie; and Dp is the pile diameter. In the process of analysis, as ρ of the pile caps with uniform
As pointed out earlier, the strut failure is an indication grid reinforcement is in general rather small, no larger than
of the loss of the pile cap punching shear resistance. So 1.2% at most and has little influence on the strut strength,14,15
the evaluation of punching shear resistance of pile caps is it can be maintained at 0.6% throughout.
exactly an evaluation of the strut bearing load, while strut The relationships between γ and λ, fc′ for λ ≥ 0.95 are
bearing load F is the cross-sectional area at the strut end S × shown in Table 1 as an example.
strut strength fce. It is known from the earlier statement that S The expressions in Table 1 are summed up as follows:
is 0.6 times the cross-sectional area of the pile, and fce is the 1. γ = a – b√fc′, for 6.7 MPa (971.5 psi) ≤ fc′≤ 35 MPa
average of the strengths at the two ends of the strut. So F can (5075 psi)
be expressed as follows 2. γ = c, for 35 MPa (5075 psi) ≤ fc′≤ 50 MPa (7252 psi)
Obviously, a, b, c are the functions of λ. Use the least-
f ce1 + f ce 2 square method once again to obtain
F = S × f ce = 0.6πR 2 × (3)
a = 2.90045 – 0.0170961λ ≈ 2.05 × 1.41485
where R is the radius of the pile; fce1 is the strength at one end
of the strut; and fce2 is that at the other end.
Thus, if only the specific expression of fce is found, F
b = 0.30668 – 0.00183469λ ≈ 0.22 × 1.394
will be obtained. Then, depending on static equilibrium at
the upper node of the SSTM, the column load of pile caps
failing in punching will be readily solved.
c = 1.05888 – 0.00459047λ ≈ 0.75 × 1.41184
In conclusion, for λ ≥ 0.95:
Define γ = fce/fc′, where fc′ is the cylinder compressive
strength of the strut concrete.

126 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

1) γ = 2.05 × 1.41485 – 0.22 × 1.394√fc′, for 6.7 MPa f ce = γ × f c′ = α ( f c′)β(λ ) f c′ (7)
(971.5 psi) ≤ fc′ ≤ 35 MPa (5075 psi); and
which, substituted back into Eq. (3), gives the ultimate
2) γ = 0.75 × 1.41184, for 35 MPa (5075 psi) ≤ fc′ ≤ 50 bearing load expression of the strut
MPa (7252 psi).
F = 0.6πR 2 f ce = 1.885 R 2 α ( f c′) β ( λ ) f c′ (8)
Similarly, the relationships between γ and λ, fc′ for other
ranges of λ are obtained in Table 2. Observing the situation where α(fc′) and β(λ) are found in Eq. (6a) and (6c), respec-
of λ in each of its ranges shown in Tables 1 and 2 to know: tively. As shown in Eq. (7), fce is a constantly increasing
1. Whatever the range λ is in, for 6.7 MPa (971.5 psi) ≤ fc′ ≤ function of fc′, whatever the range fc′ is in; for 0.15 ≤ λ ≤
35 MPa (5075 psi) 0.95, fce is a decreasing function of λ, while for λ ≥ 0.95, fce
is a constant function of λ.
γ = 2.05f1(λ) – 0.22f2(λ)√fc′ (4)
2. Whatever the range λ is in, for 35 MPa (5075 psi) ≤ fc′ ≤ Table 3 lists the published test data of 98 specimens on
50 MPa (7252 psi) the punching failure of the pile caps with uniform grid rein-
forcement in literature, whose pile number, pile arrange-
γ = 0.75f3(λ) (5) ment, punching-span ratio, concrete strength, and reinforce-
ment ratio of tension tie vary, respectively, while Table 4
3. In the same range of λ, the expressions for f1(λ), f2(λ), gives the Pe/Pp (experimental column load/predicted column
and f3(λ) are almost identical, so a unified expression can load) of five theoretical methods, as compared with: 1)
be taken the method proposed in this paper (TPM); 2) the critical
section stress method of the ACI 318-08 code (ACI CSM)1;
f1 ( λ ) + f 2 ( λ ) + f 3 ( λ ) 3) the strut-and-tie model method in Appendix A of the
β( λ ) =
3 ACI 318-08 code1 (ACI STM); 4) the American CRSI hand-
Take β(λ) out of Eq. (4) and (5), then book method3 (CRSI); and 5) the method of the Chinese
JGJ94-94 code2 (JGJ94-94). For illustrating the calculating
γ = α(fc′) × β(λ) process of the five aforementioned methods, as an example,
in the Appendix of the paper, give the detailed calculations
where, for α(fc′): of specimen TDS3-1 in Table 3.
It is necessary to point out that: 1) in Table 4, the punching
1) α(fc′) = 2.05 – 0.22√fc′, for 6.7 MPa (971.5 psi) ≤ fc′ ≤ shear resistance is represented by the column load of pile cap
35 MPa (5075 psi) failing in punching; 2) the bending failure and the failure of
(6a) one-way shear are not included in Tables 3 and 4 because
2) α(fc′) = 0.75, for 35 MPa (5075 psi) ≤ fc′ ≤ 50 MPa their failure types are not consistent with the failure of the
(7252 psi) two-way shear studied in this paper; and 3) as the bottom
reinforcement layout concentrated in the vicinity of the pile
whereas, for β(λ): top and the diagonal on the plane of the pile caps have a
larger punching shear resistance than the uniform grid rein-
1) β(λ) = 1.4, for λ ≥ 0.95 forcement,9,11,12,16 they will be studied elsewhere.
Table 5 summarizes the statistical appraisal of the Pe/Pp
2) β(λ) = 2.35 – λ, for 0.75 ≤ λ ≤ 0.95 obtained by all the theoretical methods in Table 4.
3) β(λ) = 1.975 – 0.5λ, for 0.35 ≤ λ ≤ 0.75 Accuracy
It is known from Table 5 that, when all the calculable
4) β(λ) = 2.15 – λ, for 0.15 ≤ λ ≤ 0.35 specimens are taken, or after the asterisked specimens (the
asterisk implies that the specimens may fail in bending;
Observation of Eq. (6b) shows, for 0.15 ≤ λ ≤ 0.95, that more details will be given later) in Table 4 are removed,
the slopes of all the fold line segments making up β(λ) are although TPM has the largest number of specimens, it has
almost identical. So the straight line linked by point λ = 0.15 the highest accuracy. As for evaluations with the remaining
and point λ = 0.95 can be used to represent β(λ) in this range four methods, despite their fewer specimens, they agree well
(0.15 ≤ λ ≤ 0.95) in a unified manner; that is, ultimately only for certain of them.
It is known from Table 4 after further analysis that, as far
1) β(λ) = 2.1125 – 0.75λ, for 0.15 ≤ λ ≤ 0.95 as individual Pe/Pp calculated by TPM is concerned, except
(6c) for the two asterisked specimens, PC454 and T441, which
2) β(λ) = 1.4, for λ ≥ 0.95 have rather large calculating deviation (Pe/Pp of T441* is
the minimum in all 98 specimens, while Pe/Pp of PC454*
Thus, the ultimate expression of the strut strength fce is is the maximum in all 98 specimens), the accuracy of the
remaining specimens is basically good, whereas for PC454,

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 127

Table 3—Summary of pile cap test results
Column size, mm Reinforcement layout, Test column load
Specimen (diameter or side length) d, mm fc′, MPa No. of bar × bar diameter, mm Bar yield stress fy, MPa at failure, kN
Sabnis and Gogate14 (No. of pile: 4; pile arrangement: determinant; pile diameter, 76.2 mm)
SS01 111.44 31.3 3 × 5.715 each way 499.4 250.4
SS02 111.62 31.3 3 × 3.429 + 4 × 2.68 each way :886.0; :410.1 244.6
SS03 110.87 31.3 7 × 3.429 each way 886 248.0
SS04 111.62 31.3 3 × 5.715 + 3 × 2.68 each way :499.4; :410.1 225.7
76.2 round
SS05 108.59 41.0 7 × 5.715 + 4 × 2.032 each way :499.4; :480.2 263.5
SS06 108.59 41.0 11 × 5.715 each way 499.4 280.2
SG02 117.48 17.9 3 × 9.525 each way 251.2 173.5
SG03 117.48 17.9 4 × 9.525 each way 251.2 176.8
Jimenez-Perez et al. (No. of pile: 4; pile arrangement: determinant; pile diameter, 76.2 mm)

MS01 114.30 28.7 275.5

MS02 114.30 28.7 275.5
MS03 114.30 28.7 306.6
MS04 120.65 28.7 291.1
MS05 120.65 31.5 231.1
MS06 107.95 28.7 261.1
MS07 107.95 28.7 287.7
MS15 117.48 31.5 300.0
MS16 76.2 round 117.50 31.5 ♂ ♂ 288.9
MS17 114.30 31.5 310.0
MS19 114.30 31.5 320.0
MS20 107.95 31.5 310.0
MS23 107.95 31.5 313.3
MS24 107.95 31.5 331.1
MS28 101.60 28.7 318.9
MS29 101.60 28.7 293.3
MS30 101.60 31.5 313.3
Taylor and Clarke (No. of pile: 4; pile arrangement: determinant; pile diameter, 200 mm)

A001 20.9 10 × 10 each way 410 1110

200 square 400
A009 26.8 10 × 10 each way 410 1450
Adebar et al. (No. of pile: 4; pile arrangement: diamond; pile diameter, 200 mm)

A 300 square 445 24.8 9 × 11.3 one way; 15 × 11.3 other way 479 1781
Shen (No. of pile: 4; pile arrangement: determinant; pile diameter, 50 mm)

T415 96 16.3 23 × 2.2 each way 233 73.5

T417 79 16.3 12 × 2.2 each way 233 67.6
T420 104 8.4 18 × 1.57 each way 285.5 51.0
T421 102 8.4 23 × 1.57 each way 285.5 52.5
T422 95 10.7 18 × 2.2 each way 249.9 50.7
60 square
T423 92 8.4 20 × 2.2 each way 249.9 57.1
T424 93 8.4 23 × 2.2 each way 249.9 55.9
T425 100 8.4 25 × 2.2 each way 249.9 61.3
T426 100 10.7 17 × 2.8 each way 276.9 59.3
T427 95 10.7 18 × 2.8 each way 276.9 60.5
Notes: ♂ is no reinforcement data provided in the literature; 1 mm = 0.0394 in; 1 MPa = 0.145 ksi; 1 kN = 0.225 kip.

128 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Table 3 (cont.)—Summary of pile cap test results
Column size, mm Reinforcement layout, Test column load
Specimen (diameter or side length) d, mm fc′, MPa No. of bar × bar diameter, mm Bar yield stress fy, MPa at failure, kN
T428 103 10.7 20 × 2.8 each way 276.9 66.6
T429 97 10.8 22 × 2.8 each way 276.9 78.9
T430 97 10.8 24 × 2.8 each way 276.9 69.1
T432 95 12.5 18 × 2.2 each way 249.9 65.2
T433 96 12.5 18 × 2.8 each way 276.9 78.6
60 square
T435 93 9.8 18 × 2.2 each way 249.9 55.9
T436 98 9.8 18 × 2.8 each way 276.9 52.9
T439 105 9.8 24 × 1.57 each way 285.5 50.0
T441* 104 10.7 24 × 2.2 each way 249.9 41.2
T442 92 12.5 24 × 2.8 each way 276.9 72.8
Shen (No. of pile: 4; pile arrangement: determinant; pile diameter, 100 mm)

T452 150 square 225 9.4 11 × 8 each way 276.5 364.6

Shen (No. of pile: 6; pile arrangement: determinant; pile diameter, 100 mm)

T601 225 13.5 12 × 10+20 × 6 each way :272.0;:276.3 460.6

150 square
T602 225 9.4 12 × 8+20 × 8 each way , :276.5 441.0
Zhuang18 (No. of pile: 4; pile arrangement: determinant; pile diameter, 100 mm)
PC453 215 12.2 7 × 12 each way 280.2 370
150 square
PC454* 185 17.2 6 × 12 each way 283.5 500
Guo et al.11 (No. of pile: 6; pile arrangement: determinant; pile diameter, 180 mm)
20 × 12 one way;
S1 220 square 259 15.4 318.6 1250
18 × 12 other way
Wu et al.19 (No. of pile: 3; pile arrangement: equilateral triangle; pile diameter, 110 mm)
PC1-1 200 square 400.0 25.4 3 × 10 each way 304.8 910
PC1-2 150 square 399.2 25.5 3 × 10 each way 304.8 790
PC1-3 150 square 399.2 26.9 3 × 8 each way 285.6 790
PC1-4 150 square 400.0 32.8 3 × 10 each way 304.8 880
PC2-1 200 square 330.9 30.1 3 × 10 each way 304.8 780
PC2-2 150 square 329.9 25.0 3 × 10 each way 304.8 720
PC2-3 150 square 329.9 28.7 3 × 8 each way 285.6 680
PC2-4 150 square 331.3 25.5 3 × 10 each way 304.8 650
PC3-1 180 square 260.0 27.1 3 × 10 each way 304.8 670
PC3-2 150 square 260.4 26.4 3 × 10 each way 304.8 620
PC3-3 150 square 260.4 29.1 3 × 8 each way 285.6 550
PC3-4 150 square 261.5 26.9 3 × 10 each way 304.8 630
PC4-1 180 square 179.9 24.1 3 × 10 each way 304.8 530
PC4-2 150 square 180.0 24.0 3 × 10 each way 304.8 490
PC4-3 150 square 180.0 25.0 3 × 8 each way 285.6 426
PC4-4 150 square 180.8 25.4 3 × 10 each way 304.8 610
Wu and Fang20 (No. of pile: 4; pile arrangement: determinant; pile side length, 100 mm)
C2-1 150 square 520 7.54 5 × 8 each way 289.3 559
C2-2 150 square 320 13.4 7 × 8 each way 289.3 630
Yang (No. of pile: 3; pile arrangement: equilateral triangle; pile diameter, 100 mm)

YZ1 100 square 210 13.2 3 × 12 each way 310 441

Notes: ♂ is no reinforcement data provided in the literature; 1 mm = 0.0394 in; 1 MPa = 0.145 ksi; 1 kN = 0.225 kip.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 129

Table 3 (cont.)—Summary of pile cap test results
Column size, mm Reinforcement layout, Test column load
Specimen (diameter or side length) d, mm fc′, MPa No. of bar × bar diameter, mm Bar yield stress fy, MPa at failure, kN
Ma22 (No. of pile: 3; pile arrangement: isosceles triangle; pile diameter, 90 mm)
P5 100(one side) × 222.5
180 20.1 4 × 6 each way 340
P6 140(other side) rectangle 226.4
Suzuki et al. (No. of pile: 4; pile arrangement: determinant; pile diameter, 150 mm)

TDS3-1 300 28.0 11 × 9.53 each way 356 1299

250 square
TDM3-1 250 27.0 10 × 12.72 each way 370 1245
Suzuki et al. (No. of pile: 4; pile arrangement: determinant; pile diameter, 150 mm)

200 square 250 24.6 6 × 9.53 each way 549
250 square 350 25.9 8 × 9.53 each way 1019
Suzuki and Otsuki25 (No. of pile: 4; pile arrangement: determinant; pile diameter, 150 mm)
200 square 290 20.4 9 × 9.53 each way 353 755
Chan et al.26 (No. of pile: 4; pile arrangement: determinant; pile side length, 150 mm)
C(Chan) 200 square 200 30.74 12 × 10 each way 480.7 870
Ahmad et al. (No. of pile: 4; pile arrangement: determinant; pile diameter, 150 mm)

A(Saeed) 150 round 230 20.68 10 × 12.8 + 6 × 6.5 each way 480
, :413
F(Saeed) 150 round 230 27.6 12 × 12.8 + 6 × 6.5 each way 560
Blévot and Frémy28 (No. of pile: 4; pile arrangement: determinant; pile side length, mm: except that 9A3 is 140, others are 350)
4N1 500 square 670 37.3 8 × 32 + 7 × 16 each way :276.2; :279.3 7000
4N1b 500 square 680 40.8 8 × 25 + 7 × 12 each way :440.3; :516.7 6700
:250.6; :281.2;
4N3 500 square 920 34.15 4 × 32 + 4 × 25 + 8 × 12 each way 6500
:484.5; :446;
4N3b 500 square 920 49.3 4 × 25 + 4 × 20 + 8 × 10 each way 9000
9A3 150 square 470 34.4 16 × 12 450.25 1700
Blévot and Frémy (No. of pile: 3; pile arrangement: equilateral triangle; pile side length, 350 mm)

3N2 450 square 462.5 37.7 3 × 32 each way 255 3800

3N2b 450 square 480 43.7 4 × 25 each way 442 4500
3NH 450 square 715 32.65 3 × 32 + 1 × 25 each way :261; :333 5200
3NHb 450 square 730 42.45 4 × 25 439 7200
Miguel et al. (No. of pile: 3; pile arrangement: equilateral triangle; pile diameter, mm: except that B30A4 is 300, others are 200)

B20A1/1 350 square 500 27.4 3 × 12.5 each way 591 1512
B20A1/2 350 square 500 33.0 3 × 12.5 each way 591 1648
B20A3 350 square 500 37.9 3 × 12.5 each way 591 1945
B20A4 350 square 500 35.6 3 × 12.5 each way 591 2375
B30A4 350 square 500 24.6 3 × 12.5 each way 591 2283
Chao and Bo (No. of pile: 9; pile arrangement: determinant; pile diameter, 150 mm)

CTA 300 square 314 24.88 6 × 16 + 5 × 14 each way :374; :369 1900

Notes: ♂ is no reinforcement data provided in the literature; 1 mm = 0.0394 in.; 1 MPa = 0.145 ksi; 1 kN = 0.225 kip.

there is a statement in Reference 18 that says, “As there’s With respect to T441, no description of the test phenomenon
no law about the crack distribution of PC454 in the limit is provided in literature. But, be it TPM or ACI CSM, CRSI
state, it’s hard to say whether the pile cap failure is caused and JGJ94-94, or the evaluation in Reference 31, whose
by bending or punching from the final crack shape.” So this author and test conductor of T441 are in the same project
calculating deviation is probably due to a bending failure. group,31 Pe/Pp values all tend to be small. Furthermore,

130 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Table 4—Pe/Pp of five theoretical methods
SS01 1.1205 2.0694 3.1300 — 1.5493 T439 0.6900 0.2450 2.3697 0.5952 0.8139
SS02 1.0934 2.0049 2.4757 — 1.5087 T441 *
0.5349 0.2013 1.5907 0.4791 0.6873
SS03 1.1094 2.0667 2.5101 — 1.5471 T442 0.9434 0.5352 2.3560 1.0866 1.5390
SS04 1.0093 1.8500 2.2844 — 1.3916 T452 1.3847 0.4005 2.7189 0.9421 0.7880
SS05 0.9955 1.9812 2.0332 — 1.4482 T601 1.0280 0.9343 3.3474 0.9948 0.6984
SS06 1.0580 2.1068 2.1620 — 1.5431 T602 1.2746 1.0730 2.6018 1.1395 0.8579
SG02 1.0580 1.7350 3.0654 — 1.2674 PC453 1.2084 0.4344 1.8974 0.9439 1.1550
SG03 1.0580 1.7680 3.1237 — 1.2929 PC454* 1.5010 0.8463 2.0610 — 1.3163
MS01 1.1140 2.2769 ♂ — 1.7386 S1 0.9789 1.8629 2.8090 — 1.6480
MS02 1.1140 2.2769 ♂ — 1.7386 PC1-1 1.2248 ↑ 2.6157 0.2124 0.9141
MS03 1.2400 2.5339 ♂ — 1.9347 PC1-2 1.0957 ↑ 2.2526 0.2458 0.7544
MS04 1.1120 2.2053 ♂ — 1.6814 PC1-3 1.0719 ↑ 2.2443 0.2393 0.7279
MS05 0.8593 1.6746 ♂ — 1.2528 PC1-4 1.0602 ↑ 1.9336 0.2412 0.7533
MS06 1.1080 2.3736 ♂ — 1.8099 PC2-1 1.0414 ↑ 1.9593 0.2395 0.8462
MS07 1.2220 2.6155 ♂ — 1.9948 PC2-2 1.0651 ↑ 2.1635 0.3734 0.8422
MS15 1.1470 2.2727 ♂ — 1.6986 PC2-3 0.9564 ↑ 1.9501 0.3296 0.7267
MS16 1.1042 2.1722 ♂ — 1.6357 PC2-4 0.8808 ↑ 1.8705 0.2436 0.7949
MS17 1.2199 2.4409 ♂ — 1.8354 PC3-1 1.0276 ↑ 1.9911 0.4880 0.9706
MS19 1.2590 2.5197 ♂ — 1.8952 PC3-2 0.9888 0.1786 1.8937 0.5871 0.8863
MS20 1.2807 2.6724 ♂ — 2.0164 PC3-3 0.8475 0.1510 1.9978 0.4964 0.7370
MS23 1.2940 2.7009 ♂ — 2.0385 PC3-4 0.8936 ↑ 1.7954 0.4062 0.9418
MS24 1.3680 2.8543 ♂ — 2.1543 PC4-1 1.0474 0.5268 2.1388 1.0454 1.2011
MS28 1.4070 3.1890 ♂ — 2.4443 PC4-2 1.0145 0.7891 1.9862 1.2694 1.2316
MS29 1.2940 2.9330 ♂ — 2.2487 PC4-3 0.8659 0.6709 2.2386 1.0785 1.0406
MS30 1.3450 2.9838 ♂ — 2.2544 PC4-4 1.0357 0.4404 2.1085 1.0535 1.3710
A001 0.6257 0.3833 2.5850 0.7613 0.7056 C2-1 1.1768 0.4381 3.8819 0.2455 0.8534
A009 0.7302 0.4421 3.3768 0.8783 0.7809 C2-2 0.9722 0.8005 2.3684 0.3652 1.0096
A 1.0730 0.7713 5.9605 —  YZ1 1.2250 0.4244 3.9305 1.0023 1.3823
T415 0.7691 0.4047 2.3786 0.8547 0.8762 P5 1.0183 0.7986 2.0488 — 1.1502
T417 0.8524 0.7042 3.3137 — 1.099 P6 1.0362 0.8130 2.0847 — 1.1705
T420 0.7971 0.2818 3.0539 0.6711 0.9508 TDS3-1 1.0384 0.1860 3.5395 0.7466 0.8620
T421 0.8346 0.3165 2.7202 0.7292 1.0100 TDM3-1 1.4596 0.7188 2.5305 1.4426 1.0854
T422 0.7110 0.3587 2.0199 0.7456 0.9741 BDA-30-20-70-2 0.6175 0.3690 1.7825 0.7409 0.6046
T423 0.9918 0.5134 2.9133 1.0382 1.2900 BDA-40-25-70-1 0.7998 ↑ 2.3643 0.4101 0.6105
T424 0.9612 0.4834 2.8376 0.9982 1.2410 BPB-35-20-1 0.9107 0.4704 2.4754 — 0.8224
T425 0.9894 0.4012 3.0049 0.9015 1.2140 C(Chan) 1.1545 1.4711 2.5285 — 1.3894
T426 0.7955 0.3433 2.2548 0.7701 1.052 A(Saeed) 0.9878 2.5236 1.2171 — 2.8267
T427 0.8484 0.4283 2.2000 0.8897 1.1630 F(Saeed) 1.0145 2.7488 1.6577 — 2.9343
T428 0.8721 0.3401 2.4667 0.7929 1.1300 4N1 0.9685 0.5856 1.9958 — 0.7903
T429 1.0787 0.5135 2.8901 1.0958 1.4250 4N1b 0.8333 0.5122 2.2440 — 0.6955
T430 0.9447 0.4497 2.5311 0.9597 1.2480 4N3 0.7217 0.1617 1.1856 0.4876 0.4911
T432 0.8167 0.4245 2.4791 0.8932 1.3100 4N3b 0.7054 0.1864 1.4860 0.5619 0.5324
T433 0.9760 0.4944 2.4952 1.0480 1.5540 9A3 0.9433 ↑ 1.1479 0.4301 0.7856
T435 0.8548 0.4477 2.4735 0.9164 1.0990 3N2 0.9521 1.1006 2.3088 — \
Notes: Pe/Pp is experimental column load/predicted column load; ↑ is infinite bearing load because piles are totally within critical section; ♂ is evaluation cannot be conducted because no
reinforcement data provided; — is calculating condition not applicable;  is not easy to evaluate; and \ is evaluation cannot be conducted because no free end dimensions of pile cap provided.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 131

Table 4 (cont.)—Pe/Pp of five theoretical methods
T436 0.7733 0.3483 2.1331 0.7557 0.9592 3N2b 0.9436 1.1437 1.8692 — \
3NH 0.9345 0.6902 1.5854 — \ B20A3 1.1254 0.4720 2.1248 — \
3NHb 1.0314 0.2116 1.9773 — \ B20A4 1.4631 0.5947 2.5946 — \
B20A1/1 1.0100 0.4315 1.9508 — \ B30A4 0.6881 0.1063 2.4941 — \
B20A1/2 1.0448 0.4286 1.8004 — \ CTA 1.0270 1.3172 1.7544 — 0.9895
Notes: Pe/Pp is experimental column load/predicted column load; ↑ is infinite bearing load because piles are totally within critical section; ♂ is evaluation cannot be conducted because
no reinforcement data provided; — is calculating condition not applicable;  is not easy to evaluate; and \ is evaluation cannot be conducted because no free end dimensions of pile
cap provided.

Table 5—Statistical appraisal of Pe/Pp obtained by all theoretical formulas in Table 4

Predicting method Total number of specimens Average Standard deviation Coefficient of variation Minimum Maximum
All calculable specimens 98 1.0179 0.1940 0.1906 0.5349 (T441*) 1.501 (PC454*)
TPM Asterisked specimens in
96 1.0179 0.1832 0.1800 0.6175 1.4631
Table 3 removed
All calculable specimens 86 1.1177 0.9079 0.8123 0.1063 3.1890
CSM Asterisked specimens in
84 1.1318 0.9126 0.8063 0.1063 3.1890
Table 3 removed
All calculable specimens 81 2.3789 0.6796 0.2857 1.1479 5.9605
STM Asterisked specimens in
79 2.3929 0.6813 0.2847 1.1479 5.9605
Table 3 removed
All calculable specimens 51 0.7228 0.3126 0.4325 0.2124 1.4426
CRSI Asterisked specimens in
50 0.7277 0.3138 0.4313 0.2124 1.4426
Table 3 removed
All calculable specimens 88 1.2526 0.5066 0.4044 0.4911 2.9343
94-94 Asterisked specimens in
86 1.2585 0.5087 0.4042 0.4911 2.9343
Table 3 removed

although Pe/Pp of T441 calculated by ACI STM has reached Applicability

1.5907, it is the relatively small value of all the calculable TPM is capable of evaluating all the specimens in Table 3,
specimens by ACI STM. Therefore, it can be inferred just so its calculating mode is comparatively unified and not
as well that the rather large calculating deviation of T441 is restricted by the number of piles and the form of pile arrange-
also attributable to it being probably a bending failure. ment. ACI CSM is incapable of evaluation when all the
In other words, of the five methods, TPM is always capable piles are within the critical section, while ACI STM can not
of maintaining good accuracy whatever the situation. perform evaluation unless it meets certain restrictions on the
punching span and all the specimen parameters, including
Variability reinforcement, have to be provided at the same time. Like-
It is known from Table 5 that, when all the calculable wise, CRSI is not applicable unless it is confined to a certain
specimens are selected, or after the asterisked specimens in small punching-span condition. Constrained by the form of
Table 4 are removed, the variation coefficient of Pe/Pp with pile arrangement, such as the diamond pile arrangement, as
TPM is always smaller than the other four methods. Hence, shown in Table 4, it is not easy to perform evaluation using
TPM is best in terms of calculating stability. JGJ94-94; furthermore, regarding triangle pile arrangement,
After further analysis, it is known from Tables 4 and 5 that: JGJ94-94 cannot carry out evaluation unless the free-end
1) the average of Pe/Pp with TPM is only slightly larger than dimensions of the pile cap are provided. Thus, the applica-
1.0. With the theoretical essence of lower-bound solution of bility of TPM is recommendable.
the SSTM method taken into account, this value should be Further analysis is as follows:
rational, while that with the other four methods makes some 1. As mentioned earlier, it has been anticipated during
deviation from 1.0. In addition, the degree of variability of computerization that the ρ of pile caps with uniform grid
the other four methods is also larger, and there is a tendency reinforcement has little influence on its punching shear resis-
that the smaller the punching span is, the larger the column tance, which is confirmed by test verification in Tables  3
load calculated will be; and 2) when the asterisked speci- through 5. It should be noted that none of most of the codes
mens in Table 4 are removed, the minimum or maximum of in the world has considered the impact of the longitudinal
Pe/Pp value with TPM is still comparatively rational. reinforcement ratio on the punching shear resistance of
In a word, TPM is safe and reliable, and the potential of pile caps with uniform grid reinforcement. For instance, it
bearing load is also appropriate. is not considered in ACI CSM,1 JGJ94-94,2 CRSI3 and the

132 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

critical section stress method of the British code,5 nor is it arrangement form variable, and the definite advantages in
mentioned in the formulae of punching shear resistance of terms of accuracy, variability, and applicability as compared
the German32 and Japanese codes.33 This, of course, may with the other four methods, TPM can be widely applicable
involve considerations of the strength reserve, but there to the evaluation of the punching shear resistance of the
is also a factor that should not be ruled out—namely, the general pile cap with uniform grid reinforcement.
punching shear resistance of pile caps with uniform grid
reinforcement is not sensitive to its longitudinal reinforce- AUTHOR BIOS
ment ratio, as demonstrated in References 14 and 15. The Honglei Guo is a Professor in the Department of Civil Engineering at
Wuhan Polytechnic University, Wuhan, China. He received his BS and
aforementioned discussion shows that if longitudinal rein- MS from Wuhan University in 1988 and 1993, respectively, and his PhD
forcement is arranged according to a uniform grid, it is not from Southeast University, Nanjing, China, in 1997. His research interests
necessary to impose restrictions on the reinforcement ratio include shear strength and optimal design of reinforced concrete structures.
of tension tie ρ for TPM.
2. As previously mentioned, during derivation of fce, under 1. ACI Committee 318, “Building Code Requirements for Structural
the prerequisite for punching failure, the punching-span Concrete (ACI 318-08) and Commentary,” American Concrete Institute,
ratio λ is given a large range of variation—namely, 0.15 to Farmington Hills, MI, 2008, 473 pp.
2. China Academy of Building Research, Technical Code for Building
2.0—and concrete strength fc′ basically contains the whole Pile Foundations, China Architecture and Building Press, China, 1995,
range of ordinary concrete strength as well—namely, 6.7 to pp. 64-66. (in Chinese)
50 MPa (971.5 to 7252 psi). Likewise, a large range of vari- 3. Concrete Reinforcing Steel Institute, CRSI Handbook, seventh edition,
Schaumburg, IL, 1992, 840 pp.
ation of λ and fc′ is also embodied in Table 4. But it can 4. CAN/CSA A23.3-04(R2010), “Design of Concrete Structures,” Cana-
be seen that for all ascertained punching failure specimens, dian Standards Association, Toronto, ON, Canada, 2010, pp. 63-65.
their theoretical values calculated by TPM just agree well 5. BSEN 1992-1-1:2004, “Eurocode 2: Design of Concrete Struc-
tures-Part 1-1: General Rules and Rules for Buildings,” British Standards
with the test values. Therefore, it can be asserted that, if only Institution, London, UK, 2004, pp. 107-110.
what has happened is a punching failure, on the one hand, 6. AS3600-2001, “Concrete Structures,” Council of Standards Australia,
there is no need to restrict the punching-span ratio for TPM; Sydney, Australia, 2001, pp. 124-125.
7. Wen, B. S., “Strut-and-Tie Model for Shear Behavior in Deep Beams
on the other hand, TPM is also applicable to all the pile caps and Pile Caps Failing in Diagonal Splitting,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 90,
with ordinary concrete strength. No. 4, July-Aug. 1993, pp. 356-363.
3. As previously mentioned, the model in computerization 8. Kinnunen, S., and Nylander, H., “Punching of Concrete Slabs without
Shear Reinforcement,” Transactions No. 158, Royal Institute of Tech-
is not exclusively developed for a certain pile number or a nology, Stockholm, Sweden, 1960, 112 pp.
certain form of pile arrangement. What it selects is the strut 9. Adebar, P.; Kuchma, D.; and Collins, M. P., “Strut-and-Tie Models for
model, so, as a result, the obtained results should be generally the Design of Pile Caps: An Experimental Study,” ACI Structural Journal,
V. 87, No. 1, Jan.-Feb. 1990, pp. 81-92.
applicable to an arbitrary pile number and an arbitrary form 10. Breña, S. F., and Morrison, M. C., “Factors Affecting Strength of
of pile arrangement as can be seen from Tables 3 through 5. Elements Designed Using Strut-and-Tie Models,” ACI Structural Journal,
It is necessary to point out that, for pile caps with the pile V. 104, No. 3, May-June 2007, pp. 267-277.
11. Guo, H. L.; Ding, D. J.; and Jiang, Y. S., “Study for Load Transfer
beneath the column, as frequently seen in engineering prac- Mechanism of Space Truss Model Simulating Thick Pile Caps (1),” Indus-
tice, it can be imagined that the bearing mechanism of the trial Construction, China, V. 27, No. 8, Aug. 1997, pp. 30-35. (in Chinese)
SSTM is still tenable. But as the punching failure of the pile 12. Guo, H. L.; Ding, D. J.; and Jiang, Y. S., “Study for Load Transfer
Mechanism of Space Truss Model Simulating Thick Pile Caps (2),” Indus-
caps is a result of extension and development of diagonally trial Construction, China, V. 27, No. 9, Sept. 1997, pp. 36-40. (in Chinese)
splitting crack, it is unlikely for punching failure to occur in 13. Malvar, L. J., “Punching Shear Failure of a Reinforced Concrete
the strut located between the column and the pile beneath the Pier Deck Model,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 89, No. 5, Sept.-Oct. 1992,
pp. 569-576.
column. Consequently, the column load of punching failure 14. Sabnis, G. M., and Gogate, A. B., “Investigation of Thick Slab (Pile
of this kind of pile caps should be the sum of the following Cap) Behavior,” ACI Journal Proceedings, V. 81, No. 1, Jan.-Feb. 1984,
two parts: the first part, the column load of punching failure pp. 35-39.
15. Jimenez-Perez, R.; Sabnis, G. M.; and Gogate, A. B., Experimental
with no pile beneath the column; and the second part, the Behavior of Thick Pile Caps Design of Concrete Structures—The Use of
actual load borne by the pile beneath the column. Of the Model Analysis, Elsevier Applied Science Publishers, 1985, pp. 221-229.
two parts, the evaluation of the first part can be carried out 16. Taylor, H. P. J., and Clarke, J. L., “Some Detailing Problems in
Concrete Frame Structures,” The Structural Engineer, V. 54, No. 1,
with TPM, while that of the second part, as can be seen from Jan. 1976, pp. 19-29.
the previously mentioned load-transfer mechanism, can be 17. Shen, J. H., “Elastic and Plastic Analysis of Pile Caps,” MASc thesis,
performed reversely with pile load distribution at the elastic Tong Ji University, Shanghai, China, 1985, pp. 102-103. (in Chinese)
18. Zhuang, G. M., “Analysis of Three-Dimensional Nonlinear Finite
stage, thus bypassing quite a lot of inconvenience in the Element of Pile Caps,” MASc thesis, Tong Ji University, Shanghai, China,
evaluation of the statically indeterminate spatial truss at the 1988, pp. 75-82. (in Chinese)
plastic stage. Therefore, TPM has extensive applicability. 19. Wu, R. P.; You, H. M.; and Ji, J., “Study on the Bearing Capacity of
Thick Pile Cap with Three Piles,” Journal of Building Structures, China,
V. 14, No. 1, Jan.-Feb. 1993, pp. 63-71. (in Chinese)
CONCLUSIONS 20. Wu, R. P., and Fang, X. D., “Bearing Capacity Study and Test of Four-
In this paper, through the NFE analysis and the derivation Pile Deep Pile Cap,” Proceedings of High-Rise Buildings and Bridge Foun-
dation Engineering Academic Conference, Guang Zhou, Rock Mechanics
of GLSMV, a new method, TPM, for evaluating punching and Engineering Institute of Guang Dong Province, 1989, pp. 32-51.
shear resistance of pile cap with uniform grid reinforcement (in Chinese)
is presented. In view of the good agreement between TPM 21. Yang, Z., “Analysis of Elastic Stress and Internal Force Atlas of Pile
Caps,” MASc thesis, Tong Ji University, Shanghai, China, 1986, pp. 9-74.
and experimental data, with ρ, λ, fc′, pile number, and pile (in Chinese)

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 133

22. Ma, X. Q., “Analysis of Ultimate Strength of Pile Cap with Three 28. Blévot, J. L., and Frémy, R., “Semelles sur Pieux,” Institute Technique
Piles,” MASc thesis, Tong Ji University, Shanghai, China, 1989, pp. 55-59. du Bâtiment et des Travaux Publics, V. 20, No. 230, 1967, pp. 223-295.
(in Chinese) 29. Miguel, M. G.; Takeya, T.; and Giongo, J. S., “Structural Behaviour of
23. Suzuki, K.; Otsuki, K.; and Tsubata, T., “Experimental Study on Three-Pile Caps Subjected to Axial Compressive Loading,” Materials and
Four-Pile Caps with Taper,” Transactions of the Japan Concrete Institute, Structures, V. 41, No. 1, 2007, pp. 85-98. doi: 10.1617/s11527-007-9221-5
V. 21, 1999, pp. 327-334. 30. Guo, C., and Lu, B., “Experimental Study on the Load-Carrying
24. Suzuki, K.; Otsuki, K.; and Tsuhiya, T., “Influence of Edge Distance Properties of Nine-Pile Thick Caps under a Column,” China Civil Engi-
on Failure Mechanism of Pile Caps,” Transactions of the Japan Concrete neering Journal, V. 43, No. 1, 2010, pp. 95-102. (in Chinese)
Institute, V. 22, 2000, pp. 361-368. 31. Zhou, K. R., “Study of the Whole Process, Mechanism and Bearing
25. Suzuki, K., and Otsuki, K., “Experimental Study on Corner Shear Capacity of Punching,” PhD thesis, Tong Ji University, Shanghai, China,
Failure of Pile Caps,” Transactions of the Japan Concrete Institute, V. 23, 2002. 1990, 74 pp. (in Chinese)
26. Chan, T. K., and Poh, C. K., “Behaviour of Precast Reinforced 32. “Tragwerke aus Beton, Stahlbeton und Spannbeton Teil 1:
Concrete Pile Caps,” Construction and Building Materials, V. 14, No. 2, Bemessung und Konstruktion,” Normenausschuss Bauwesen (NABau) im
2000, pp. 73-78. doi: 10.1016/S0950-0618(00)00006-4 DIN Deutsches Institut für Normung e. V., Berlin, Germany, 2001.
27. Ahmad, S.; Shah, A.; and Zaman, S., “Evaluation of the Shear 33. Japan Road Association, “Specifications for Highway Bridges IV;
Strength of Four Pile Cap Using Strut and Tie Model (STM),” Journal of Substructures,” Tokyo, Japan, 2002.
the Chinese Institute of Engineers, V. 32, No. 2, 2009, pp. 243-249. doi:

134 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Title No. 112-S12

Design Implications of Large-Scale Shake-Table Test on

Four-Story Reinforced Concrete Building
by T. Nagae, W. M. Ghannoum, J. Kwon, K. Tahara, K. Fukuyama, T. Matsumori, H. Shiohara,
T. Kabeyasawa, S. Kono, M. Nishiyama, R. Sause, J. W. Wallace, and J. P. Moehle
A full-scale, four-story, reinforced concrete building designed in capacity, and failure mode; 2) to identify suitable compu-
accordance with the current Japanese seismic design code was tational methods to reproduce the seismic responses of the
tested under multi-directional shaking on the E-Defense shake building; and 3) to develop a practical method for assessing
table. A two-bay moment frame system was adopted in the longer damage states regarding reparability.
plan direction and a pair of multi-story walls was incorporated
Design and instrumentation of the test structure were
in the exterior frames in the shorter plan direction. Minor adjust-
performed with input from U.S. co-authors. Wherever
ments to the designs were made to bring the final structure closer to
U.S. practice and thereby benefit a broader audience. The resulting possible, minor adjustments to the designs were made to
details of the test building reflected most current U.S. seismic bring the final structure closer to U.S. practice and thereby
design provisions. The structure remained stable throughout the benefit a broader audience. The resulting details of the test
series of severe shaking tests, even though lateral story drift ratios building reflected the most current U.S. seismic design
exceeded 0.04. The structure did, however, sustain severe damage provisions (Nagae et al. 2011b).
in the walls and beam-column joints. Beams and columns showed Summaries of the global behavior of the test building
limited damage and maintained core integrity throughout the series and key local damage and deformation observations are
of tests. Implications of test results for the seismic design provi- presented. A comparison between the details of the test
sions of ACI 318-11 are discussed. structure and U.S. seismic design practices is also provided.
Keywords: collapse; damage; design; full-scale; moment frame; multi-
Implications of test results for the seismic design provi-
story; shake table; shear wall. sions of ASCE 7-10 (ASCE/SEI Committee 7 2010) and
ACI 318-11 (ACI Committee 318 2011) are discussed. In a
INTRODUCTION related publication (Nagae et al. 2011a), the seismic design
Code requirements for reinforced concrete have evolved provisions of the Architectural Institute of Japan (AIJ 1999)
significantly around the world in the past decades. In the were evaluated in light of test results.
United States, the 1971 San Fernando, CA, earthquake was
a watershed event leading to the introduction of require- RESEARCH SIGNIFICANCE
ments for ductile reinforced concrete buildings, which Current Japanese and U.S. seismic design provisions are
have evolved incrementally since that time based on field based on pseudo-dynamic component tests, sub-assembly
and laboratory experiences. In Japan, following a history of tests, and limited dynamic tests of partial structural systems.
several damaging earthquakes and many laboratory tests, the The test presented is a first-of-its-kind, multi-directional,
Japanese seismic design code was substantially revised in dynamic test of a complete, full-scale reinforced concrete
1981. In the 1995 Hyogoken-Nanbu earthquake, many rein- building system to near collapse damage states. The test
forced concrete buildings designed before 1981 experienced provides unique data on component and system performance
major failures, especially in the first-story columns and walls. that are used to evaluate current seismic design provisions
Although newer reinforced concrete buildings designed in and highlight potential code changes.
accordance with the revised 1981 code showed improved
resistance against collapse, several sustained severe damage SPECIMEN DETAILS
due to their large deformations. Such damage made it diffi- Figure 1 shows the plans and framing elevations of the
cult to continue using them after the earthquake and resulted reinforced concrete test building. Figure 2 shows a photo-
in high repair costs. This experience demonstrates that graph of the test building on the E-Defense shake table. The
further improvements in seismic design of concrete build- height of each story is 3 m (118.1 in.). The building footprint
ings might be desirable for the future. measures 14.4 m (47 ft 3 in.) in the longer (X) direction, and
It was in light of the aforementioned experiences that a 7.2 m (23 ft 7.5 in.) in the shorter (Y) direction. A two-bay
large-scale shake-table testing program was conducted in moment frame system was adopted in the longer (X) plan
2010. Within the program, a full-scale, four-story, rein- direction and a pair of multi-story walls were incorporated
forced concrete building designed in accordance with the
present Japanese seismic design code was tested by using ACI Structural Journal, V. 112, No. 2, March-April 2015.
MS No. S-2013-022.R2, doi: 10.14359/51687421, received May 21, 2014, and
the E-Defense shake table. The main objectives of the study reviewed under Institute publication policies. Copyright © 2015, American Concrete
related to the concrete building were: 1) to verify methods Institute. All rights reserved, including the making of copies unless permission is
obtained from the copyright proprietors. Pertinent discussion including author’s
for assessing performance such as strength, deformation closure, if any, will be published ten months from this journal’s date if the discussion
is received within four months of the paper’s print publication.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 135

Fig. 1—Framing and reinforcing details. (Note: Dimensions are in mm; 1 mm = 0.039 in.)
was incorporated to assess potential damage during strong
seismic motions. Table 1 lists the various weights of the test
specimen. The weight was estimated based on the reinforced
concrete members, the fixed steel frames, and the equip-
ment. Figure 1 shows dimensions and reinforcement details
of typical members. The test building was designed in accor-
dance with current Japanese seismic design practice.
When constructing the test building, columns, walls,
beams, and the floor slab were cast monolithically. The
longitudinal reinforcement of columns, beams, and the wall
boundaries were connected by gas pressure welding. Lap
splices were used for the reinforcement of other parts of
the walls and the floor slabs. The frames in the test building
were nominally identical in design and detailing. The shear
walls at axes A and C contained the same amount of longitu-
dinal reinforcement but differed in the spacing of transverse
Fig. 2—Reinforced concrete (left) and prestressed concrete reinforcement (Fig. 1). A complete set of drawings and spec-
(right) specimens on the E-Defense shake table. imen details can be found in Nagae et al. (2011b). Additional
test data can be found on the NEEShub website (NEEShub
in the exterior frames in the shorter (Y) plan direction. The 2011) and in Tuna (2012).
thickness of the top slab was 130 mm (5.1 in.). Rigid steel
frames were set within the open stories of the test specimen SPECIMEN DESIGN
for collapse prevention and measurement of story defor- The extent to which the test structure satisfies the seismic
mations. Representative building mechanical equipment design provisions of ASCE 7-10 and ACI 318-11 is explored

136 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Table 1—Weight and design forces Table 2—Material properties of concrete
Fourth Third Second Fc, σB, Ec,
(A) Structural elements, kN Roof floor floor floor N/mm2 N/mm2 N/mm2
Column 53 106 106 106 Cast of fourth story and roof floor slab 27 41.0 30.5
Beam 240 240 240 240 Cast of third story and fourth floor slab 27 30.2 30.3
Wall 40 79 79 79 Cast of second story and third floor slab 27 39.2 32.8
Slab 484 428 424 420 Cast of first story and second floor slab 27 39.6 32.9
Sum 816 853 849 845 Notes: Fc is specified concrete compressive strength; σB is measured concrete compres-
sive strength; and Ec is measured secant modulus of concrete; 1 N/mm2 = 0.145 ksi.
(B) Non-structural Fourth Third Second
elements, kN Roof floor floor floor Table 3—Material properties of steel
Stair and handrail 6 6 6 6
Steel Grade Anominal, mm2 σy, N/mm2 σt, N/mm2 Es, kN/mm2
Measurement frame 0 3 17 17
D22 SD345 387 370 555 209
Equipment 112 5 0 0
D19 SD345 287 380 563 195
Sum 118 14 23 23
D13 SD295 127 372 522 199
Total of (A) and (B), kN 934 867 872 867
D10 SD295 71 388 513 191
Fourth Third Second First
D10 SD295 71 448 545 188
story story story story
D10 KSS785 71 952 1055 203
ΣWi, kN 934 1801 2673 3541
Notes: Anominal is nominal area of reinforcing bars; σy is measured yield strength of
Ci = 0.2 × Ai 0.29 0.25 0.22 0.20 steel reinforcement; σt is measured ultimate strength of steel reinforcement; and Es
Qi, kN 273 450 593 708 is measured elastic modulus of steel reinforcement; 1 mm2 = 0.0016 in.2; 1 N/mm2 =
0.145 ksi.
Notes: Wi is weight of floor i; Ai is shape factor for vertical distribution of lateral forces
for floor i; Ci is lateral force at floor i as a fraction of ƩWi; and Qi is shear at story i; 1 relationship. The secant stiffness corresponding to the flex-
kN = 0.225 kip.
ural strength was calculated in accordance with provisions
in this section. The building specimen was designed to with- of the MLIT standard (2007). Beyond flexural yielding, the
stand the seismic lateral forces presented in Table 1 (MLIT stiffness was reduced to 0.01 times the initial effective stiff-
2007) without members exceeding their elastic limits. These ness. The pushover analysis indicates that the ultimate base-
forces, which sum to 20% of the weight of the structure, are shear strength of the building specimen is approximately
higher than those that would be specified by ASCE 7-10 0.42W (1500 kN [337 kip]) in the frame direction and 0.51W
(Section, which caps seismic lateral forces for (1800 kN [405 kip]) in the wall direction.
a low-rise building to 1/R times the structure weight for a Figure 4 shows the column-beam moment strength ratios.
design basis earthquake, where R is the response modifica- Reinforcement of the top slab was reflected in the moment
tion coefficient (8 for special reinforced concrete moment strength of beams in negative bending (top in tension). Effec-
frames and 6 for special reinforced concrete shear walls). tive flange widths of beams were adopted in accordance
The vertical distribution of the design forces, given by the with the recommendations of the 2007 MLIT Standard or
parameter Ai in Table 1, is similar to the ASCE 7-10 specifi- ACI 318-11, which produced roughly similar flange widths.
cation (approximate inverted triangular distribution). Variations of column axial forces due to lateral forces were
Results of material tests are given in Tables 2 and 3. In estimated from pushover analysis in the Japanese calcu-
subsequent evaluations, the moment and shear strengths lations. In the U.S. calculations, a plastic mechanism was
of each member were calculated adopting the compressive assumed in which hinging of the columns occurs at the foun-
strength of concrete and the yield strength of steel reinforce- dation and just below the roof, and beam hinging occurs at
ment obtained by averaging material test results. column faces at intermediate floors in the frame direction. In
To aid in the design of the test specimen, pushover the wall direction, the assumed plastic mechanism considered
(nonlinear static) analyses were conducted on line-element hinging of the columns and walls at the foundation, and beam
models of the structure. Figure 3 presents pushover results hinging at column and wall faces. Discrepancies in column-
for the final test specimen details. The analytical model used beam moment strength ratios evaluated using ACI and MLIT
for pushover analyses was built following work by Kabeya- procedures (Fig. 4) can mostly be attributed to differences in
sawa et al. (1984). The effective flange width of a top slab the estimates of axial forces on columns. From the second to
was adopted in accordance with the recommendations of fourth floors, the column-beam moment strength ratios were
the 2007 MLIT Standard. A vertical distribution defined by slightly below 1.0 for interior columns, while those of exte-
the parameter Ai (Table 1) was adopted for the lateral force rior columns ranged from approximately 1.0 to 1.87.
distribution. In the analytical model, inelastic deformations
of beam elements were represented by rotational springs Assessment of specimen design in accordance
at the ends of elements. The first and second break points with U.S. seismic design practice
corresponding to member cracking strength and flexural The structure was assessed in both the x- and y-direc-
strength were assigned in the tri-linear moment-rotation tions using ACI 318-11 and ASCE 7-10 provisions. The

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 137

Fig. 3—Pushover analysis results. (Note: 1 kN = 0.225 kip.)

Fig. 4—Moment strength ratios of columns to beams.

goal was to determine how well the structure compares forced concrete shear walls. Equivalent lateral forces were
with U.S. seismic design practices. Rather than presume distributed over the height of the structure in accordance with
that the building was to be constructed at a particular site provisions of ASCE 7-10. An effective moment of inertia
with corresponding site seismic hazard, the assessments of equal to 50% of the gross moment of inertia was used over
seismic design requirements are based on a seismic hazard the full wall height: an intermediate value between the effec-
represented by the linear response spectrum for the 100% tive moments of inertia provided in ACI 318-11 for cracked
JMA-Kobe ground motion to which the test structure was and uncracked walls. Selected wall effective moments of
subjected. inertia are also consistent with values recommended by
Shear wall direction (y-direction)—The approximate ASCE 41-06 (ASCE/SEI Committee 41 2007a) for cracked
natural period in the shear wall direction is 0.31 seconds walls. An effective moment of inertia equal to 30% of the
based on Eq. 12.8-7 in ASCE 7-10. The spectral acceleration gross moment of inertia was used for beams and columns as
corresponding to this period is approximately 2.5g for the per ASCE 41-06 – supplement 1 (ASCE/SEI Committee 41
100% JMA-Kobe ground motion imparted to the structure 2007b) provisions for beams and columns with low axial
(Fig. 5, y-direction). Elastic analysis was performed using loads. Beams were considered T-beams with an effective
equivalent (static) lateral forces corresponding to the spec- flange width evaluated in accordance with provisions of
tral acceleration divided by an R factor of 6, as specified in ACI 318-11. Joints were taken as rigid. Elastic analysis of
ASCE 7-10 for a building frame system with special rein- the walls decoupled from frames at Axes A and C indicates

138 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

(83 mm [3.26 in.]). In the wall at Axis A, hoops were spaced
at 80 mm (3.15 in.) in the first story and this spacing satis-
fies all ACI 318 hoop spacing requirements for the boundary
element. In the upper stories of the wall at Axis A, hoops
in the boundary regions were spaced at 100 mm (3.93 in.)
and therefore did not satisfy the ACI 318-required spacing
of 83 mm (3.26 in.).
If wall-frame interaction was considered, beams spanning
between shear walls and corner columns were found to have
sufficient moment strength to resist moments from elastic
analysis based on the 100% JMA-Kobe motion hazard level.
Shear strengths of the beams were sufficient to develop
Fig. 5—Acceleration response spectra of input waves. (Note: beam probable moment strengths.
Damping ratio = 0.05; 1 m/s2 = 39.37 in./s2.) Because demands on corner columns in the shear wall
direction were significantly lower than demands on the same
that the walls would develop their design moment strength columns in the frame direction, capacity and detailing of
(0.9 × nominal moment strength) at approximately 0.37/R corner columns will be described in the section discussing
of the JMA-Kobe 100% motion. If wall-frame interaction is the frame direction (x-direction).
taken into account, however, the wall-frame system would Frame direction (x-direction)—The approximate natural
develop its design moment strength at approximately 0.55/R period in the moment frame direction is 0.44 secomds based
of the 100% JMA-Kobe motion. Thus, the building in the on ASCE 7-10 Eq. 12.8-7. The spectral acceleration corre-
wall direction has only 55% of the strength that would be sponding to this period is approximately 1.45g for the 100%
required for the JMA-Kobe motion if that motion is consid- JMA-Kobe ground motion imparted to the structure (Fig. 5,
ered as the design earthquake shaking level. In subsequent x-direction). Elastic analysis was performed using equivalent
discussion, wall-frame interaction is taken into account. (static) lateral forces corresponding to the spectral accelera-
When applying the equivalent lateral-force distribution in tion divided by an R factor of 8, as specified in ASCE 7-10
accordance with ASCE 7-10, wall flexural yielding occurs for special reinforced concrete moment frames. Equivalent
at a lower load than that generating the wall’s factored shear lateral forces were distributed over the height of the structure
strength. Distributed vertical and horizontal steel satisfied all in accordance with ASCE 7-10. Elastic analysis of the frames
shear reinforcement requirements of ACI 318-11. indicates that the first-story corner columns reach design
The wall-foundation interface was not intentionally flexural strength at a shaking level corresponding to approx-
roughened prior to casting the walls. Given the amount imately 1.4/R of the JMA-Kobe 100% motion. All frame
of longitudinal steel crossing the interface, the axial force member strengths therefore exceeded the required design
on the walls, and a friction coefficient of 0.6, nominal strength corresponding to a 100% JMA-Kobe hazard level.
shear-friction strength in accordance with ACI 318-11 of Factored shear strengths of all beams were not sufficient
both wall bases was approximately 2140 kN (482 kip). That to develop probable moment strengths due to the require-
shear-friction strength exceeded estimated shear demands by ment that concrete shear contribution be taken as zero
approximately 55% based on the 100% JMA-Kobe ground (ACI 318-11, Section Maximum beam shear
motion. Nominal shear-friction strength was, however, only stresses corresponding to the development of probable
20% higher than maximum base shear demand estimated moment strengths ranged from 2.0 to 2.7 times the square
from pushover analysis (approximately 1800 kN [405 kip]), root of the concrete compressive strength in psi (0.17 to
which accounts to some extent for member over-strength. 0.22 MPa). The spacing of beam transverse reinforcement
ACI 318-11 allows the use of two methods to determine was 200 mm (7.87 in.) in the critical plastic hinge regions,
if boundary elements are required in walls. If the drift-based which exceeds the maximum allowable spacing of 120 mm
method is considered (ACI 318-11, Section, no (4.72 in.) as required by ACI 318-11.
boundary elements are required in the walls for the 100% Factored shear strengths of the third- and fourth-story
JMA-Kobe motion, whether drift estimates are obtained columns were not sufficient to develop probable moment
considering wall-frame interaction or not. If the stress- strengths. Column shear stresses corresponding to the devel-
based method is considered (ACI 318-11, Section, opment of column probable moment strengths ranged from
however, boundary elements are required in the walls up to 1.4 to 3.8 times the square root of the concrete compressive
a height of 7550 mm (297 in.) from the base of the wall if strength in psi (0.114 to 0.315 MPa). Column-end trans-
walls are considered decoupled from the frames, and a height verse reinforcement met spacing and layout requirements of
of 5060 mm (199 in.) if wall-frame interaction is accounted. ACI 318-11 in the first two stories but not the top two stories.
If one considers that boundary elements are not required in No columns met the requirement for minimum volumetric
the walls, minimum boundary detailing in both walls satis- reinforcement ratio in the critical end regions; columns had
fies ACI 318-11 provisions. If one considers that boundary 20 to 50% of the hoop volumes required by ACI 318-11
elements are required, however, the provided spacing in the critical end regions. Transverse reinforcement ratios
of hoops in the boundary elements of the wall at Axis C varied substantially between columns in different stories due
(100 mm [3.94 in.]) marginally exceeds the required spacing to differences in numbers of crossties.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 139

Table 4—Key response values at roof
Test No. Maximum roof acceleration Maximum roof drift* Residual roof drift
Input wave x-direction, m/s 2
y-direction, m/s 2
x-direction, mm y-direction, mm x-direction, mm y-direction, mm
1 JMA-Kobe 25% 3.12 6.37 16.9 24.2 0.5 0.4
2 JMA-Kobe 50% 7.03 11.01 122.4 106.9 1.1 5.4
3 JMA-Kobe 100% 9.65 14.01 242.7 323.9 6.2 22.5
4 JR-Takatori 40% 6.46 8.13 240.4 240.8 1.3 7.9
5 JR-Takatori 60% 8.09 9.99 278.1 414.0 8.0 11.6
Maximum roof drifts do not include residual drifts accrued from previous tests.
Notes: 1 m2/s = 39.37 in./s2; 1 mm = 0.039 in.

satisfied the 6/5 minimum requirement of ACI 318-11. That

requirement was not satisfied at interior joints.


The E-Defense shake-table facility has been operated
by the National Research Institute for Earth Science and
Disaster Prevention of Japan since 2005. The table is 20 x
15 m (65 ft 7 in. x 49 ft 3 in.) in plan dimension and can
produce a velocity of 2.0 m/s (78.7 in./s) and a displace-
ment of 1.0 m (39.4 in.) in two horizontal directions simul-
taneously. It can accommodate a specimen weighing up to
1200 tonnes (1323 tons). In this series of tests, the consid-
ered reinforced concrete building was tested side-by-side
with a prestressed concrete building having almost the same
configuration and overall dimensions (Fig. 2). More detail
about the test structure, including detailed drawings, can be
found in Nagae et al. (2011b).

Fig. 6—Maximum interstory drift distribution. Ground motions designated as JMA-Kobe and JR-Taka-
tori, recorded in the 1995 Hyogoken-Nanbu earthquake,
Joint shear demands for both interior and exterior joints were adopted as the input base motions. The North-South-
were calculated considering force equilibrium on a hori- direction wave, East-West-direction wave, and vertical-
zontal plane at the midheight of the joints, in accordance direction wave were input to the y-direction, x-direction, and
with ACI 318-11. Joint shear demands calculated including vertical direction of the specimen, respectively. The inten-
the contribution of slab flexural tension reinforcement within sity of input motions was gradually increased to observe
the ACI 318 effective flange width were found to be approx- damage progression. The adopted amplitude scaling factors
imately 20 to 40% higher than demands computed ignoring for JMA-Kobe were 10, 25, 50, and 100%. Following the
the slab contribution. Note that ACI 318 does not require JMA-Kobe motions, the JR-Takatori motion scaled to
consideration of the slab reinforcement in calculations of 40 and 60% was applied to impart large cyclic deformations.
joint shear demand. Regardless of whether slab contribution Figure 5 presents the acceleration response spectra for the
was taken into account, all joint design shear strengths, based input motions. JMA-Kobe 100% has a strong intensity in the
on ACI 318-11, exceeded joint shear demands. Because short-period range corresponding to the natural period of the
joints were only confined by hoops without crossties, the specimen, as can be seen in Fig. 5. The JR-Takatori 60% has
maximum center-to-center horizontal spacing between hoop a strong intensity in the longer-period ranges corresponding
or crosstie legs was larger than the ACI 318-11 limit of to estimated damaged specimen periods.
350 mm (14 in.). The provided hoop spacing in the joints
of 140 mm (5.5 in.) was larger than the maximum spacing TEST RESULTS
allowed by ACI 318-11 of approximately 25 mm (1 in.) for Maximum recorded story drift and global behavior
the provided arrangement of hoops without crossties (limited White-noise inputs were applied prior to each main test.
by minimum volumetric reinforcement ratio requirements). From these, the initial natural periods of the test building
Other joint detailing satisfied ACI 318-11 requirements, were found to be 0.43 seconds in the frame direction and
including those for longitudinal bar anchorage. 0.31 seconds in the wall direction, which compare favor-
Figure 4 shows column-beam nominal moment strength ably with periods estimated using ASCE 7-10 Eq. 12.8-7
ratios. Below the roof, all strength ratios for exterior columns (0.44 seconds in the frame direction and 0.31 seconds in the

140 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 7—Damage state of moment frame with cracks highlighted.
wall direction). Figure 6 shows the distribution of maximum JMA-Kobe 100% test, and completely spalled to a height
story drift over the height of the specimen for the shaking of 200 to 400 mm (7.9 to 15.8 in.) in the JR-Takatori 60%
tests. In the frame direction, the story drift is larger in the test. The core concrete of column bases remained adequately
first and second stories than in the third and fourth stories. confined by transverse reinforcement even after the JR-Taka-
In the wall direction, the story drifts are relatively uniform, tori 60% test.
although the drifts become larger in the first story than drifts The corner portion of both wall bases suffered compressive
of other stories in the JMA-Kobe 100% test and JR-Takatori failure to a height of 300 mm (11.8 in.) and length of 600 mm
tests. The structure remained stable through all the severe (23.6 in.) in the JMA-Kobe 100% test. The longitudinal rein-
dynamic tests and thus satisfied the minimum collapse- forcement in that region had lateral offset due to inelastic
prevention performance objective. Table 4 lists the maximum buckling. Wall sliding at both wall bases was observed in the
recorded roof level accelerations, drifts, and residual drifts JMA-Kobe 100% and subsequent tests. Significant sliding
for all earthquake simulation tests. Residual drifts were was primarily observed following crushing of the wall
relatively low, with a maximum recorded value of 22.5 mm boundary zones (Wallace 2012), which may have weakened
(0.88 in.) in the wall direction at the end of the JMA-Kobe the wall-foundation interface shear friction resistance. The
100% motion. sliding mechanism affected the maximum drift and deforma-
tion demands in the test structure and may have accentuated
Damage states of members the damage observed in the wall boundary regions. Sliding
Figures 7 through 9 show images of damage in the lower of the walls at their base reached approximately 100 mm
parts of the specimen. After the JMA-Kobe 50% test, the (3.93 in.) during the JMA-Kobe 100% test and accounted for
interior beam-column joints of the second floor and the up to 10% of the roof drifts during that motion.
column and wall bases of the first story showed minor
cracking. In the interior beam-column joints, the maximum Local deformations
measured inclined crack width of 0.5 mm (0.02 in.) after the The shear deformations of the second-floor interior
JMA-Kobe 50% test increased to 2.5 mm (0.1 in.) after the joints are highlighted first because these joints sustained
JMA-Kobe 100% test. Eventually, inclined cracks in the inte- severe damage and degradation. Shear deformations of the
rior beam-column joints at the second floor reached 5.3 mm second-floor interior beam-column joints were measured
(0.21 in.) after the JR-Takatori 60% test. Maximum inclined in the frame direction, as shown in Fig. 8(a). Figure 8(b)
crack widths at beam ends and exterior beam-column joints shows the history of the shear deformation angles as well
were limited to approximately 1.5 mm (0.06 in.), even after as the average story drift angles of the upper and lower
the JR-Takatori 60% test. Compressive failure of concrete stories during the JMA-Kobe 100% test. Peaks a to e in the
apparently due to large flexural deformations was observed response history (Fig. 8(b)) are identified for later reference.
in column and wall bases. The cover concrete of column Assuming that the shear deformation angle of the beam-
bases partially spalled to a height of 250 mm (9.8 in.) in the column joint contributes to the average story drift angle, as

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 141

Fig. 8—Deformation of interior beam-column joint in JMA-Kobe 100%.
shown in Fig. 8(c), the deformation ratio is defined as the the local buckling of bars occurred at the base of B-side in
ratio of the shear deformation angle to the average story drift the cycle when the story drift approached Peak d.
angle. Figure 8(d) shows the deformation ratio from Peaks a
to e. The deformation ratio was 0.35 at Peak a (when the Global hysteretic behavior and strength
average story drift ratio reached 0.009) and reached more The global drift angle is defined as the relative horizontal
than 0.6 at Peak d. Figure 8(e) shows the development of displacement of the fourth floor level (Fig. 1) divided by its
inclined cracks in the joint at Peaks b, c, and d. height above the base. The base shear force was calculated
The rotation and lateral slip deformations of the wall base based on the horizontal inertia forces given by the estimated
were measured in the y-direction using instrumentation weight of each floor and the corresponding floor accelerations.
shown schematically in Fig. 9(a). The histories of the base In shear force calculations, the weights of vertical elements
rotation angle, lateral slip, and first-story drift and drift angle were lumped with floor weights as presented in Table 1.
during the JMA-Kobe 100% test are shown in Fig. 9(b) and Figure 10 shows the relationship between the base shear
(f). Peaks of story drift are denoted a to g for cross reference force and global drift angle. In the relationships, the hyster-
with other figures. Figure 9(c) shows an overall photograph etic loops show inelastic behavior, while the stiffness is
of the wall at Peak c. A local compressive failure is seen at observed to decrease with an increase in the drift angle, as
the base corner of the A-side, and several tension cracks are evinced by the decrease in reloading stiffness with increasing
seen at the lower part of the B-side. Figure 9(d) shows the drift angles. The history of story shear force (Fig. 10) indi-
deformation ratio at the peak story drifts in the JMA-Kobe cates that the elongation of the first-mode period is more
100% test. The deformation ratio is defined as the ratio of significant in the frame direction than in the wall direction in
drift due to base rotation and lateral sliding to story drift. At the JMA-Kobe 50% test, while the period in the wall direc-
Peak c, the story drift was mostly derived from the rotation tion elongated noticeably in the JMA-Kobe 100% test due to
and lateral sliding of the wall base. Because the maximum the damage incurred by the shear walls. The apparent lowest
lateral sliding displacement becomes approximately constant periods of the structure estimated by the white-noise input
after the maximum deformation of Peak c, the deformation were 0.99 seconds in the frame direction and 0.88 seconds
ratio of lateral sliding increased at Peaks e and g. Figure 9(e) in the wall direction after the JMA-Kobe 100% test. It is
shows the damage of a wall base after the test. From video useful to note that measured base shear forces reached a
observations, lateral sliding became significant at Peak c and maximum of approximately 85% of the building weight

142 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 9—Deformation of wall base in JMA-Kobe 100%. (Note: 1 mm = 0.039 in.)
in the wall direction and 55% in the frame direction. Thus, ficients estimated using the ASCE 7-10 equivalent later-
actual strength was well in excess of the design lateral force al-force procedures are also shown in the figure. It is useful
level of 0.2W in each direction. to note that the distribution of the story shear coefficients
Figure 11 shows the distribution of the story shear coef- corresponds to a similar distribution of applied floor inertia
ficient over the height of the structure. The story shear forces; for example, an inverted triangular distribution of
coefficient is defined as the story shear force divided by story shear force coefficients implies an inverted triangular
the weight of the floors above that story, normalized by the distribution of floor inertia forces. Figure 11 indicates that
value of the coefficient at the first story. The figure presents floor inertia forces at peak base shear had a relatively uniform
values of the coefficient evaluated using the maximum story distribution over the height of the building, as opposed to
shear forces recorded during a given motion (“Max” in the an inverted triangular distribution often assumed in design,
figure), and values of the coefficient evaluated using story especially in the JMA-Kobe 100% and the JR-Takatori 60%
shear forces occurring at the same time instant when the tests. Such uniform vertical seismic force distributions have
base shear reaches its maximum (“Base Peak” in the figure). been observed in previous shake-table tests (for example,
Also presented in the figure are the design shear coefficients Kabeyasawa et al. 1984). Higher mode contributions and
prescribed in Japanese design practice (given by the factor localization of damage may have influenced the observed
Ai in the 2007 MLIT standard). Equivalent story shear coef- vertical distribution of lateral forces. Such observation

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 143

Overturning moment at the base of the first story is mostly
produced by the first-mode response of a structure and is
relatively insensitive to the distribution of the lateral forces
(Kabeyasawa et al. 1984). Roof drift is also relatively
insensitive to higher modes. Thus, the relation between
roof drift angle and base moment is a convenient measure
for comparing calculated and laboratory test strengths.
Figure 12 shows the measured relationships between roof
drift angle and overturning moment. Calculated overturning
moments, obtained by pushover analyses at maximum story
drift ratio of 0.02 (Fig. 4), are also shown in Fig. 12. In the
y-direction, the measured maximum overturning moment is
1.3 times the calculated value, while in the x-direction, the
measured maximum overturning moment is 1.5 times the
calculated value. Several factors may have contributed to
the measured overstrength, including underestimation of the
slab contribution to member strengths, other three-dimen-
sional effects, and strain-rate effects.


Although columns had 20 to 50% of the hoop volumes
required by ACI 318-11 in the critical end regions, they
performed adequately, maintaining core integrity through
the full series of severe dynamic tests. It is noted, however,
that column axial forces were relatively low, varying
from an estimated tensile force on corner columns due to
uplift, to a maximum compressive axial force of approx-
imately 0.1Ag fc′ at the first story (where Ag is the column
gross-section area and fc′ is the measured concrete compres-
sive strength). This observation suggests that the volume
of transverse reinforcement required by ACI 318-11 may
be reduced in the axial force ranges of the tested columns.
Several design codes (including the Japanese MLIT Stan-
dard [2007], CSA A23.3-04 [2004], and NZS 3101 2006
[2006a,b]) account for the effects of axial force on confine-
ment requirements of concrete columns. While these codes
treat the effects of axial forces in different ways, they
generally require less confinement reinforcement for lower
axial forces.
Similarly, the volume ratios of hoops in the critical
regions of the beams were 60% of the ratios required. Beams
performed adequately and suffered relatively minor damage
while maintaining core integrity throughout the dynamic
tests. It is important to note that the beams were under rela-
tively low shear stresses. Such observations indicate that
beams under low shear stresses and conforming to the prin-
ciples of ACI 318-11 but with somewhat lighter transverse
reinforcement can meet life-safety performance objectives.
Both shear walls sustained notable damage, including
cover spalling and bar buckling, during the first high-
Fig. 10—Hysteretic behavior and history of base shear
intensity ground motion (JMA-Kobe 100%). It is noteworthy
force. (Note: 1 kN = 0.225 kip.)
that confined boundary elements were not even required
can partly explain the higher than estimated base shear by the ACI 318 provisions (using the displacement-based
forces seen in Fig. 10. This is particularly the case in the approach). One of the reasons for the inconsistency here is
wall direction where observed base shear forces during the that the measured lateral displacements were approximately
JMA-Kobe 100% motions were more than 50% larger than twice the design values. Considering the measured displace-
those estimated from pushover analysis; which was based on ments, ACI 318 provisions would have required confined
an approximate inverted triangular lateral load distribution boundary elements.
(Fig. 3).

144 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 11—Distribution of floor lateral force coefficient.

Fig. 12—Hysteretic behavior based on overturning moment. (Note: 1 kN-m = 0.737 k-ft.)
Although confinement was not required by the ACI 318 SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS
provisions, the wall boundaries nonetheless contained A full-scale, four-story, reinforced concrete building struc-
confinement reinforcement satisfying the ACI 318 special ture was tested on the E-Defense shake table. The structure
boundary element requirements at Axis A and nearly satis- was designed in accordance with the present Japanese seismic
fying them at Axis C. The observed concrete spalling and design code. Minor adjustments to the design were made to
longitudinal reinforcement buckling exceeded expectations bring the final structure closer to U.S. practice and thereby
of some of the authors, and may suggest a need for improved benefit a broader audience. The structure was subjected to a
detailing requirements. series of multi-directional seismic base motions including
The nominal shear-friction strength at the wall-foundation three high-intensity motions. The following key observa-
interface, calculated in accordance with ACI 318-11, was tions were made:
2140 kN (482 kip) for both walls combined. Shear demands 1. The structure remained stable throughout the tests, even
on the first story were estimated to be 1400 kN (315 kip) though lateral drift ratios exceeded 0.04. Thus, the structure
based on the JMA-Kobe 100% ground motion being the satisfied a collapse-prevention performance objective. The
design motion, 1800 kN (405 kip) based on pushover anal- structure did, however, sustain severe damage in the walls
ysis, and 3000 kN (675 kip) based on recorded data. Measured and beam-column joints.
base shear demands were 40% larger than the calculated 2. At times of maximum base shear, the distribution of
shear-friction capacity of the wall-foundation interface. Test lateral inertia forces was approximately uniform over height,
data therefore indicate that improvements on methods for unlike the inverted triangular distribution used to design
estimating peak shear demands on wall systems should be the structure. The nearly uniform lateral force distribution,
sought. Notably, the effects of higher modes and localized along with other factors, resulted in a significant increase in
damage on the vertical distribution of lateral loads should be the maximum base shear during the tests. Test data therefore
considered when estimating peak story-shear demands. indicate that improvements on methods for estimating peak
The interior beam-column joints sustained significant shear demands on wall systems should be sought.
damage during the earthquake simulation tests. Impli- 3. Both walls suffered significant damage in their
cations for ACI 318 are not readily extracted, however, boundary regions, including wall boundary crushing, longi-
because the beam-column joint designs did not satisfy the tudinal reinforcement buckling, and lateral instability. Walls
ACI 318 requirements. Deficiencies included deficient ratios had tightly spaced hoop reinforcement at the boundaries that
of column-beam flexural strength ratios and deficient volu- satisfied all ACI confinement requirements at Axis A and
metric ratio of joint transverse reinforcement. nearly satisfied them at Axis C. ACI 318-11 provisions for
the transverse reinforcement of special structural walls may
need to be adjusted if more limited damage is desired, partic-
ularly for thin walls with relatively large cover.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 145

4. Significant sliding at the wall-foundation construction M. Nishiyama is a Professor at Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan.
joint was observed at the base of both walls. The sliding R. Sause is a Professor at Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA.
mechanism affected the maximum drift and deformation
demands in the test structure and may have accentuated J. W. Wallace is a Professor at the University of California, Los Angeles,
Los Angeles, CA.
the damage observed in the wall boundary regions. Three
factors may have contributed to the observed sliding. First, J. P. Moehle is the T.Y. and Margaret Lin Professor at the University of
although the construction joint between the walls and the California, Berkeley, Berkeley, CA.
foundation were cleaned, they were not intentionally rough-
ened as required by ACI 318-11. Second, although design ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
The authors acknowledge the generous support of the Ministry of Educa-
shear demands were less than the sliding shear strength tion, Culture, Sports, Science & Technology (MEXT) and of the National
calculated in accordance with ACI 318-11, the actual test Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Prevention of Japan for
shears were much higher than the design values. Third, carrying out the tests presented in this paper. Participation by the U.S.
co-authors was supported by the Pacific Earthquake Engineering Center
damage to the wall-boundary regions may have reduced the and by the Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation of the National
shear-friction strength at the wall-foundation joints. These Science Foundation under award CMMI-1000268. Additional instrumenta-
observations suggest two issues that may not be adequately tion of the test structure using NEES@UCLA sensors was provided under
Award CMMI-1110860, while analysis of the data was partly funded by
treated in current codes. First, that higher-mode contribu- the National Science Foundation under Award No. 1201168. Any opinions,
tions and effects of localized damage should be accounted findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are
for when estimating shear force demands on shear walls, and those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the sponsors.
second, that integrity and stability of the wall boundary zone
is an important component of wall sliding shear resistance. REFERENCES
ACI Committee 318, 2011, “Building Code Requirements for Structural
5. Columns performed adequately and maintained core Concrete (ACI 318-11) and Commentary,” American Concrete Institute,
integrity throughout the series of severe tests even though Farmington Hills, MI, 503 pp.
they did not satisfy the confinement volumetric reinforce- AIJ, 1999, “Design Guidelines for Earthquake Resistant Reinforced
Concrete Buildings Based on the Inelastic Displacement Concept,” Archi-
ment ratio requirements of ACI 318-11. Column axial force tectural Institute of Japan, Tokyo, Japan, 440 pp. (in Japanese)
ratios were relatively low and did not exceed 10% of the AIJ, 2010, “Standard for Structural Calculation of Reinforced Concrete
column gross-section axial capacity. Test results therefore Structures,” Architectural Institute of Japan, Tokyo, Japan, 526 pp. (in Japanese)
ASCE/SEI Committee 41, 2007a, “Seismic Rehabilitation of Existing
indicate that it might be possible to reduce the ACI 318-11 Structures (ASCE/SEI 41-06),” American Society of Civil Engineers,
minimum volumes of confining reinforcement for columns Reston, VA, 428 pp.
with low axial force ratios. ASCE/SEI Committee 41, 2007b, “Supplement to Seismic Rehabilita-
tion of Existing Buildings (ASCE/SEI 41-06),” American Society of Civil
6. Beams also performed adequately and maintained core Engineers, Reston, VA, 428 pp.
integrity even though they did not satisfy the confinement ASCE/SEI Committee 7, 2010, “Minimum Design Loads for Buildings
volumetric reinforcement ratio requirements of ACI 318-11. and Other Structures (ASCE/SEI 7-10),” American Society of Civil Engi-
neers, Reston, VA, 636 pp.
Beam shear stresses were, however, relatively low and did CSA A23.3-04, 2004, “Design of Concrete Structures,” Canadian Stan-
not exceed 2.7 times the square root of concrete compressive dards Association, Mississauga, ON, Canada, 258 pp.
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erative Research on R/C Full-Scale Building Test, Part 5: Discussion of
7. Joints performed poorly, exhibiting wide inclined cracks Dynamic Response System,” Proceedings of the 8th World Conference on
and deformations that accounted for up to 60% of floor drifts Earthquake Engineering, San Francisco, CA, pp. 627-634.
at the end of the test series. Interior joints performed worse MLIT, 2007, “Technological Standard Related to Structures of Buildings,”
Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport, and Tourism, Tokyo, Japan.
than exterior joints. It is noted that the joint designs satisfied Nagae, T.; Tahara, K.; Fukuyama, K.; Matsumori, T.; Shiohara, H.;
Japanese code requirements but did not satisfy ACI 318-11 Kabeyasawa, T.; Kono, S.; Nishiyama, M.; and Nishiyama, I., 2011a,
code requirements. “Large-Scale Shaking Table Tests on A Four-Story RC Building,” Journal
of Structural and Construction Engineering, V. 76, No. 669, pp. 1961-1970.
doi: (Transactions of AIJ)10.3130/aijs.76.1961
AUTHOR BIOS Nagae, T.; Tahara, K.; Taiso, M.; Shiohara, H.; Kabeyasawa, T.; Kono,
T. Nagae is a Senior Researcher at the National Research Institute for S.; Nishiyama, M.; Wallace, J. W.; Ghannoum, W. M.; Moehle, J. P.; Sause,
Earth Science and Disaster Prevention, Tsukuba, Japan. R.; Keller, W.; and Tuna, Z., 2011b, “Design and Instrumentation of the
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Austin, Austin, TX. neering Research Center (PEER), Berkeley, CA, 261 pp.
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for Earth Science and Disaster Prevention. Zealand, Wellington, New Zealand, 309 pp.
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S. Kono is a Professor at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, Tokyo, Japan. V. 6, No. 1, pp. 3-18. doi: 10.1007/s40069-012-0001-4

146 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Title No. 112-S13

Inverted-T Beams: Experiments and Strut-and-Tie Modeling

by N. L. Varney, E. Fernández-Gómez, D. B. Garber, W. M. Ghannoum, and O. Bayrak

Contrary to rectangular deep beams, inverted-T beams are loaded In the past two decades, many structural design codes
on a ledge at the bottom chord of the beam. This loading configura- have adopted strut-and-tie modeling (STM) as a more trans-
tion induces a tension field into the web and the resulting complex parent option for the design of deep beams and other struc-
strain distribution renders sectional design provisions inadequate. tures with discontinuities. The current STM provisions were
The applicability of strut-and-tie modeling (STM), developed for
developed for rectangular deep beams and simple structures
rectangular deep beams and simpler, two-dimensional designs, was
with two-dimensional strain distributions, but have not been
evaluated. An experimental study was conducted in which 33 tests
were performed on 22 large-scale reinforced concrete inverted-T experimentally investigated for more complex structural
beams and the effects of the following variables were investigated: elements such as inverted-T beams.
ledge geometry, quantity of web reinforcement, number of point Due to scarcity of experimental research on inverted-T
loads, member depth, and shear span-depth ratio. It was concluded beams, a comprehensive large-scale experimental program
that strut-and-tie modeling, although developed for much simpler was undertaken to examine the behavior of such structural
structural components, offers a simple and accurate design method elements and assess the validity of implementing STM
for the more complex strain distributions in inverted-T beams. design. Thirty-three specimens were tested as part of the
The STM provisions developed for rectangular beams accurately research program. Unlike those found in the literature,
captured both failure mode and ultimate capacity and are recom- the test specimens in this program were considered more
mended for use in inverted-T beam design, as a major conclusion
representative of inverted-T beams designed in practice in
of this research.
terms of their size, geometric and loading properties, and
Keywords: D-region; inverted-T beam; laboratory testing; large-scale; reinforcement details. This paper presents the STM design
nonlinear design; reinforced concrete; shear; shear span; strut-and-tie. provisions as applied to inverted-T beams, the laboratory
test results, and the corresponding design recommendations.
Inverted-T bent caps are often used in construction to RESEARCH SIGNIFICANCE
reduce the overall elevation of bridges and/or to improve Significant diagonal web shear cracking of inverted-T
available clearance beneath the beams, as shown in Fig. 1. bent caps may represent a risk both in terms of strength
The bent caps are beams that support bridge girders on and serviceability. Due to the nonlinear distributions of
ledges near the bottom of the beam, effectively loading the strains in inverted-T beams, STM offers a safe, lower-bound
cap along its tension chord. Within a given cross section design alternative to examine forces and predict the failure
(transverse direction), the loads are transferred from the mode in an element. Current strut-and-tie provisions were
ledges to the bottom of the web and then “hung” vertically developed for rectangular deep beams and have not been
to the compression chord, generating tension fields in the investigated for the three-dimensional state of stress present
web at the loading points. The loads are then transferred in these structures. The research presents an extensive large-
in the longitudinal direction to the supports, as in a typical scale experimental program aimed at assessing the accuracy
compression-chord-loaded beam. This three-dimensional and conservatism of strut-and-tie modeling for the design of
flow of forces, in addition to the deep beam loading condi- inverted-T bent caps. The unique experimental data presented
tions commonly encountered in bent caps, generate regions in this paper and the assessment of STM design provisions
of stress discontinuities that are traditionally designed using is considered to be significant contributions to the literature.
empirical equations and rules of thumb.
Significant web shear cracking of recently built inverted-T BACKGROUND AND STRUT-AND-TIE MODELING
straddle bent caps has been reported in Texas, according to Typically for reinforced concrete beams, a designer makes
the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), trig- the assumption that plane sections remain plane, referred
gering concerns about the current design procedures. Most to as the Bernoulli hypothesis or beam theory. Within this
inverted-T bent caps in Texas are designed using sectional theory, the strains in the beam are presumed to vary linearly
provisions for the web and a series of checks for the ledges through the depth of a section; thus, the beam is said to be
that closely follow the procedures found in the AASHTO dominated by sectional behavior. As shown in Fig. 2(a),
LRFD Bridge Design Specifications.1 Due to the load and
ACI Structural Journal, V. 112, No. 2, March-April 2015.
geometric discontinuities in inverted-T beams, this beam MS No. S-2013-064.R1, doi: 10.14359/51687403, received June 10, 2014, and
theory is not valid; thus, sectional design provisions cannot reviewed under Institute publication policies. Copyright © 2015, American Concrete
Institute. All rights reserved, including the making of copies unless permission is
be used to properly design such structures. obtained from the copyright proprietors. Pertinent discussion including author’s
closure, if any, will be published ten months from this journal’s date if the discussion
is received within four months of the paper’s print publication.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 147

Fig. 1—Typical inverted-T bent cap. Fig. 2—(a) B- and D-regions in a rectangular beam; and
(b) corresponding STM.
these regions of linear stress (or strain) are referred to as
B-regions (with the “B” for beam or Bernoulli). Strut-and-tie models consist of three components: struts,
A D-region (with “D” standing for discontinuity or ties, and nodes. These are assembled together to represent
disturbed) can typically be found on either side of a B-region, the flow of forces through a structure, as shown in Fig. 2(b).
as shown in Fig. 2. These regions cannot be designed After calculating the external reactions and defining the
using the sectional procedures as the strain distribution is geometry of the STM, the individual member forces of the
nonlinear and thus the assumptions used to derive the beam truss are determined through statics.
theory are no longer valid. These disturbances are caused Struts are compression elements that vary in shape
either by abrupt changes in geometry or loading. Frame depending on their location. Represented by dashed lines,
corners, dapped ends, openings, and ledges are examples of struts can be bottle-shaped if allowed to spread along their
geometric discontinuities. Point loads such as girder bear- length or prismatic in regions of uniform stresses, such as
ings or support reactions are examples of load discontinu- the compression zone of a beam’s B-region. It is important
ities. According to St. Venant’s Principle, an elastic stress to provide transverse reinforcement to control the tensile
analysis would indicate that the effects of a disturbance stresses caused by the spreading of compressive forces in
dissipate at approximately one member depth away from the bottle-shaped struts.4
discontinuity.2 In other words, a D-region extends approx- Tension elements, or ties, are generally made up of rein-
imately one effective member depth d from the load or forcing steel and denoted by solid lines, as seen in Fig. 2.
geometric change. Enough reinforcement must be provided to carry the tensile
A deep beam is one in which the entire span involves demand of the tie and should be distributed so that the
predominant nonlinear strain distributions through the depth centroid coincides with the tie location. Details such as bar
of the section. For this strain condition to exist, the shear spacing and anchorage are essential for proper STM.
span a must be less than approximately 2 to 2.5 times the Due to the concentration of forces from intersecting truss
effective member depth d. The right shear span in Fig. 2(a) is members, the nodes are the most highly stressed regions of a
entirely composed of D-regions and is thus considered a deep structural member. Three types of nodes can exist within an
beam. A beam with a greater shear span-depth ratio (a/d), STM and are denoted by the intersecting elements. Within
as shown in the left span, is assumed to behave according the nodal designations, “C” refers to a compression element,
to beam theory and can be designed using sectional proce- such as a strut, an externally applied load, or a support reac-
dures. The design of deep beams requires the use of STM or tion, and “T” stands for tension or tie. A CCC node is one
other non-linear procedures outside the scope of this paper. in which only struts intersect, a CCT node has tie(s) inter-
STM offers an approach for obtaining lower-bound solu- secting in only one direction, and a CTT node has ties inter-
tions for the strength design based on simple truss theory. secting in two different directions. The type of node governs
The resultants of complex states of stress are idealized as its behavior and thus its strength.
a system of uniaxial force elements, or a truss, within the The versatility of STM allows it to be used to design any
member as shown in Fig. 2(b). This system will yield a structure and accommodate various load transfer mechanisms.
conservative design if the resulting truss model is in equi- In theory, as long as the principles required to achieve a lower
librium with the external forces and the concrete has enough bound solution are met, any model can be considered a safe
deformation capacity to accommodate the assumed distri- design. A model should, to the furthest extent possible, follow
bution of forces.3 Proper anchorage of the reinforcement is the actual stress field as determined by an elastic stress anal-
crucial. The factored forces also must not exceed the factored ysis. If the model varies substantially from the stress field, the
strengths as shown in the following equation. structure will undergo substantial deformations leading to an
increased chance of cracking. Schlaich et al.3 provides addi-
ϕFn ≥ Fu (1) tional discussion on using STMs to design structural concrete
members. The applicability of STMs has been validated with
experimental testing on rectangular deep beams.5 However,

148 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

experimental testing on more complicated structures such as Table 1—ACI 318-116 and Birrcher et al.4 STM
inverted-T beams is limited. concrete efficiency factors
ACI 318-11
Recent advances in STM provisions
Strut, fce = Node, fce =
ACI 318-116 STM examines the strength of struts and
0.85βsfc′ βs 0.85βnfc′ βn
nodes separately. For the strut-node interface, the smaller
of the nominal compressive strength of the end of the strut, Prismatic 1.00 CCC 1.00
Fns, and of the face of the nodal zone at which the strut acts, Bottle-shaped* 0.75 CCT 0.80
Fnn, is used. These nominal compressive strengths are calcu- Tension flange 0.40 CTT 0.60
lated using their respective cross sectional areas, Acs and Anz,
Birrcher et al.
as shown in following equations. The concrete efficiency
factors, βs and βn, are summarized in Table 1. Node, fcu = Strut-node
mνfc′ Bearing face, ν Back face, ν interface†, ν

Fns = 0.85βs fc′Acs (2) CCC 0.85 f c′

0.45 ≤ 0.85 − ≤ 0.65
CCT 0.70 20
Fnn = 0.85βs fc′Acs (3) *
Without reinforcement satisfying ACI 318 Section A3.3.3, βs = 0.60λ.

Without reinforcement satisfying AASHTO Article, ν = 0.45.
Birrcher et al. conducted a thorough investigation of rect-

angular deep beam behavior to improve upon the current well these provisions captured the strength and behavior of
STM provisions and recommend modifications to both the inverted-T beams with their additional tension field.
the ACI 318-116 and AASHTO LRFD1 codes. Potentially, The effectiveness of the Birrcher et al.4 STM design provi-
the most significant modifications that affect the design sions were demonstrated by using an extensive database of
of inverted T-beams focused on the node strength. This rectangular deep beams. Improvements were made in the
procedure simplifies the design of struts by considering overall conservatism and accuracy as well as simplicity of
the strut-node interfaces, which implicitly accounts for the STM for deep beams as compared to current ACI 318-116 and
strut capacity and eliminates redundant stress checks at the AASHTO1 procedures. However, the application of STMs
same location. was not investigated experimentally for more complicated
In Birrcher et al.,4 the design strength of the node, Fn, is deter- three-dimensional structures such as inverted-T beams. Due
mined by the limiting compressive stress at the faces of the node to their unique geometry, certain assumptions not addressed
by the concrete efficiency factor ν in the following equation. in the current STM procedures had to be made in the design
of inverted-T beams.
Fs = 0.85νfc′Acn (4)
Strut-and-tie modeling of inverted-T beam specimens
The appropriate concrete efficiency factor, ν, is used to Inverted-T beams transfer load in three dimensions: from
reduce the compressive strength of the concrete in the node the ledges to the web, from the tension to the compression
depending on the type of node (CCC, CCT, or CTT) and chord, and from the loading points to the supports. To capture
face (bearing face, back face, strut-node interface) under this behavior, it is necessary to consider a three-dimensional
consideration. The factors developed by Birrcher et al.4 are strut-and-tie model. To simplify the analysis, the model is
summarized in Table 1 along with the existing factors in divided into two compatible two-dimensional models.
Appendix A of ACI 318-11.6 It should be noted that Birrcher The STM design of an inverted-T beam is often iterative,
et al.4 recommended removing reference to CTT nodal as many factors are interdependent. First, the overall geom-
regions as they are typically smeared nodes and emphasis etry was determined based on the experimental variables
for deep beam design should be placed on the more critical under consideration, and the preliminary loads and corre-
CCC and CCT nodal regions. The cross-sectional area of the sponding reactions were calculated. The STMs were then
node, Acn, such as the strut-node interface shown in Fig. 3, is detailed to carry the required loads. Diagonal shear cracking
limited in the perpendicular direction by either the width of was a primary concern in this study, thus the beams were
the bearing plate or web width bw. designed to ensure a shear failure.
For bearing areas smaller than the width of the struc- Defining geometry of longitudinal strut-and-tie model—
tural member, the concrete strength for all the faces in that An example of a simple longitudinal STM for an inverted-T
node was increased to account for triaxial confinement. The beam with two shear spans is shown in Fig. 4. Each tie was
triaxial confinement factor, m, is in Article 5.7.5 of AASHTO aligned with the centroid of the reinforcing bars. Vertical
LRFD1 and Section 10.14.1 of ACI 318-11.6 hanger bars were placed at each load point with the tie corre-
It can be noted from Table 1 that the efficiency factor for sponding to the center of the bearing pad. A 45-degree spread
a strut-node interface is given as the same for both CCC and on the ledge under the loading plates defined the width of
CCT nodes according to the recommendations put forth by hanger ties.7 For cut-off ledges, load spread was limited on
Birrcher et al.4 These provisions do not reduce the nodal one side, as shown in the STM.
strength due to the presence of a tension field in an inverted-T The horizontal tie along the bottom of the beam was
beam as the node below the applied load is a CCT node, aligned with the centroid of the flexural reinforcement. The
rather than a CCC node. It was of interest to observe how width of the tie was assumed to be twice the distance from

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 149

Fig. 3—Geometry of CCT Support Node A.

Fig. 4—Longitudinal strut-and-tie model.

the extreme tension fiber to the centroid of the steel as shown ensure they were greater than or equal to 25 degrees but
in the detail of Node A in Fig. 3. less than 65 degrees. This limit was enforced to prevent
All ties must be properly anchored to achieve the assumed an incompatibility of strains.4 A smaller angle would result
stress distribution. ACI requires that the yield strength of the in the tension tie overlapping more of the diagonal strut,
tie be developed at the critical point where the centroid of decreasing its effectiveness. The forces in each element were
the tie meets the end of the extended nodal zone or edge of calculated using statics and the element size and location
the diagonal strut as shown in Fig. 3. adjusted as needed.
The location of the intermediate (stirrup) Tie BC for the Defining geometry of cross-sectional strut-and-tie
two-panel mode in Fig. 4 was determined using the technique model—A cross-section STM was required to design the
proposed by Wight and Parra-Montesinos8 that any stirrup that ledge of the inverted-T beam. The external loads were
intersects an adjacent strut at an angle greater than 25 degrees applied equally to each ledge as shown in Fig. 5. The hanger
can be engaged as part of the vertical tie in the CCT node. ties in the longitudinal model corresponded to the vertical
A line projected at a 25 degree angle from the edge of the reinforcement. The top of the ledge reinforcement corre-
support plate at Node A to the top of the beam defined the sponded to the horizontal ledge tie. The centroid of the hori-
left limit of the tie. The right limit was defined by the edge of zontal strut shown was located at the depth of the flexural
the 45-degree load spread for hanger Tie DE and all stirrups reinforcement from the longitudinal model. A diagonal strut
that fell within the rectangular shaded region were considered transferred the load from the bearing plate to the bottom of
part of the vertical Tie BC, as shown in Fig. 4. The 45-degree the hanger bars.
load spread was an initial assumption validated with data from Shear spans under investigation—Once the forces in the
strain gauges applied to the hanger reinforcement. truss members were calculated and the nodes checked using
The horizontal strut along the top of the beam was the Birrcher et al.4 recommendations, the required steel
assumed to be prismatic with a depth equal to the depth area was determined to satisfy the tie tensile forces. Proper
of the equivalent rectangular compression stress block as anchorage of the ties was provided within the extended
defined from a typical flexural analysis. Although not tech- nodal regions.
nically valid in a D-region due to the nonlinear distribution Shear spans a equal to 2.50d and 1.85d were examined, as
of strains, defining the depth of the strut using a flexural shown in Fig. 4, with the two-panel model on the left end of
analysis is considered conservative and the assumption is well- the beam and the single diagonal strut on the right. The a/d
established in practice.9 is defined within the context of this paper as the ratio of the
Diagonal bottle-shaped struts, represented by dashed lines, distance from the center of the support to the center of the
complete the flow of forces in the longitudinal strut-and-tie nearest loading point a, with respect to the effective depth d.
model. The angles between struts and ties were checked to The specimens were designed to be shear critical with two

150 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

web shear failure modes, stirrup tie yielding for a/d of 2.50
and diagonal strut crushing for a/d of 1.85. The a/d of 2.50
was chosen to evaluate the limit of deep beam behavior and
compare with the Birrcher et al.4 studies. For this longer a/d,
the intermediate (stirrup) tie was designed to govern, thus
the capacity was determined by the quantity of stirrups in
the tie region. For specimens tested at an a/d of 1.85, the
strut-node interfaces of the diagonal strut were designed
to govern. Thus the capacity of the specimens tested at the
shorter a/d were determined by the size of the node (Fig. 3)
and the compressive strength of the concrete.
Resistance and load factors are required for STM design
but were taken as 1.0 for the purpose of this investigation as
nominal strengths were computed and compared with exper-
imental strengths. In general, no serviceability checks were
made before testing the specimens. Rather, the cracking Fig. 5—Cross-sectional strut-and-tie model.
data obtained from loading the beams were used to validate Fig. 7. Each beam was tested at an a/d of 1.85 or 2.5 to
current serviceability provisions and/or make recommen- observe the two web shear failure modes: diagonal strut
dations for application to inverted-T beams.7 For step-by- crushing or stirrup tie yielding.
step STM design examples for inverted-T bent caps, refer to Ledge length—The varying ledge lengths of inverted-T
Williams et al.9 bent caps were simplified to three types. A “cut-off” ledge
is one in which the ledge was interrupted just past the edge
DATABASE OF EXPERIMENTS CONDUCTED ON of the bearing pad of the outermost girder. If the ledge ran
INVERTED-T BEAMS continuously to the support, it was considered a “long”
A thorough literature review was conducted prior to ledge. In a bent cap with a “short” ledge, the ledge continued
establishing the experimental investigation. A total of 97 a distance approximately equal to the depth of the ledge past
tension chord-loaded specimens reported within 13 unique the outermost girder, as shown in Fig. 7.
sources10-22 were ultimately compiled in a collection data- As previously mentioned, inverted-T bent caps are
base.7 Two sets of filters were used to develop the final tension chord-loaded structures in which the bridge girders
inverted-T database to meet the purposes of this project. supported on the ledges induce a tension field in the web.
The first filter focused on data required to develop STMs. The size of this tension field is determined by the ledge
Specimens not loaded to failure10,11; with complicated length and, as in the case of short and long ledges, the
support conditions, geometry, or reinforcement details12-21; tension field can engage all the “hanger” bars within the
and with lack of information essential for the construction of 45-degree load spread. For the cut-off ledges, the force can
STMs12-18 were eliminated. only spread on one side of the bearing plate, concentrating
The majority of the specimens found in the literature the load in a smaller area and increasing the tensile stresses.
were unrepresentative of the bent caps in service in Texas, Furthermore, by extending the ledge to the entire length of
requiring additional filters. A scaled comparison a beam, the capacity of the support node can be increased.
of the cross sections of the specimens from the literature, the The additional cross-sectional area in a longer ledge length
inverted-T beams tested in the current project, and distressed can provide confinement in the nodal region and increase
in-service bent caps within Texas is presented in Fig. 6. the bearing width at the support as compared to beams with
The specimens are identified by their reference number. short and cut-off ledges.
A notable difference in size exists between the in-service Ledge depth—To fully capture the effect of ledge geom-
bent caps (hatched) and the majority of specimens found in etry, two ledge depths were investigated as shown in Fig. 7.
the literature (solid). A complete discussion of the filtering Shallow ledge specimens had depth equal to one-third and
process is provided in Larson et al.7 deep ledge specimens were one-half the total height of the
In summary, all of the 97 specimens from the 13 sources beam. The ledge depths were chosen to give an adequate
were filtered out due to the reasons stated above, reinforcing range of those seen in practice. As with the ledge length, the
the need for a large number of specimens to evaluate the ledge depth also has an effect on the width over which this
behavior of inverted-T beams and investigate the applica- tension field spreads, to a lesser extent. Deeper ledges allow
bility of STM design provisions. the forces to spread over a wider area, decreasing the tensile
stress in the web.
EXPERIMENTAL INVESTIGATION Reinforcement ratio—Two amounts of orthogonal web
Experimental variables reinforcement were chosen with areas of steel equal to 0.3%
The five variables investigated are as follows: the length and 0.6% of the effective web area, as shown in Fig. 7. In most
of the ledge beyond the bearing of the exterior stringer, the tests, the amount of vertical and horizontal web reinforce-
depth of the ledge, the amount of web reinforcement (trans- ment, ρv and ρh, was equal. Two specimens were designed
verse and longitudinal), the number of point loads (girders) with 0.3% in the horizontal direction (skin reinforcement) and
on the ledge, and the height of the member, as shown in 0.6% in the vertical direction (shear stirrups). The reinforce-

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 151

ment ratio of 0.003 (0.3%) corresponds to No. 4 (No. 13) bars total force to multiple locations and preventing local ledge
at 6.5 in. (165 mm) on center at each face of the beam. Like- failure. The spacing of the three point loads was representa-
wise, a 0.006 (0.6%) ratio corresponds to No. 5 (No. 16) bars tive of in-service girders. They were also used to help quan-
at 5 in. (127 mm) on center. The lower limit of 0.3% is the tify the effect of multiple girders on bridge bent caps. Due
AASHTO LRFD1 minimum required skin reinforcement for to limitations, laboratory testing is typically performed with
deep beams. The upper limit of 0.006 (0.6%) was selected to one loading point, but bent caps in service support multiple
encompass the maximum reinforcement ratio (0.57%) found girders on each side. By comparing beams tested at one and
in the in-service distressed bents. The size and spacing of the three points, the validity of beams tested at a single load
bars provides typical crack control. point could be assessed.
Number of point loads—The beams in this investiga- Web depth—A review of the literature revealed a signifi-
tion were loaded at either one or three points along their cant difference in the size of the in-service bent caps when
length, as shown in Fig. 7. The load at each point was compared to the specimens used to calibrate the shear provi-
equally divided and applied to the ledge on both sides of sions in the current design code.7 Full-scale specimens with
the web using a U-shaped frame. Specimens with multiple web depths of 42 and 75 in. (1067 and 1905 mm) were
point loads allowed for shallower ledges by distributing the constructed and tested for the experimental program to fill
in this gap and validate the STM design provisions for use in
larger inverted-T beams.

Specimen description
A large testing program was required to fully evaluate all
of the experimental variables. The width of the beams was
proportioned to maximize the cross-sectional area of the
specimen, while keeping it narrow enough to ease instal-
lation and removal from the test setup. Typical dimensions
and reinforcement layouts are shown in Fig. 8 and bearing
plate sizes are given in Table 2. Flexural reinforcement
was comprised of 12 No. 11 (No. 36) bars for the 42 in.
(1067 mm) specimens and 22 for the 75 in. (1905 mm)
specimens. Hanger reinforcement was comprised of No. 6
(No. 19) bars and was detailed based on the estimated
ultimate load. Ledge reinforcement was either No. 5 or 6
(No. 16 or 19) bars, depending on the depth of the ledge and
the resulting demand. The web width was kept constant at
21 in. (533 mm) for each beam in the experimental program,
including the 75 in. (1905 mm) beams. The width of the
ledge was also the same, 10.5 in. (267 mm), on each side. All
other dimensions varied. To distinguish between the speci-
mens in Table 2 and their respective variables, the following
Fig. 6—Scaled cross sections of literature specimens with corre- nomenclature was developed
sponding reference number, current specimens, and in-service
bent caps. (Note: Dimensions in inches; 1 in. = 25.4 mm.) Sample specimen designation: DC1-42-1.85-03

Fig. 7—Experimental variables.

152 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 8—Typical reinforcement layout and dimensions. (Note: Dimensions in inches; 1 in. = 25.4 mm.)
where the first term refers to the ledge depth, either deep (D) crack, then in 100 kip (445 kN) increments to failure. After
or shallow (S). The second term refers to the ledge length— each load increment, cracks were marked and diagonal crack
cut-off (C), short (S), or long (L). The third term refers to widths were measured and recorded as part of the service-
the number of point loads, either one (1) or three (3). The ability considerations of the experimental program.7
next number is the web depth in terms of inches, 42 or 75 Each beam was designed with two test regions. Speci-
(1067 or 1905 mm, respectively). Next is the a/d, either 1.85 mens with a single point load were loaded a distance from
or 2.5. The final term is the web reinforcement ratio, either one support corresponding to the desired a/d. After a shear
0.3% (03) or 0.6% (06). failure was achieved, the load was removed and post-
The specimens were constructed using conventional mate- tensioning clamps were installed to strengthen the first test
rials and methods. Steel formwork was used to expedite the region. Then the hydraulic ram and U-frame were moved
fabrication process and to ensure dimensional accuracy. and the test procedure was repeated. Specimens with three
Beams were tested approximately 28 days after concrete loading points were designed such that both ends were
placement. Domestic Grade 60 deformed bars satisfying the tested simultaneously and monitored until a shear failure
requirements of ASTM A61523 were used for all steel rein- was achieved at one end of the beam. The load was then
forcement. Cross-sectional dimensions of the bars complied removed, post-tensioned clamps were installed in the failed
with the nominal sizes given in ASTM A615.23 The tensile test region, and the load was reapplied at the same location
strength of the coupons was measured in accordance with until the opposite end of the beam failed in shear, as shown
ASTM A370.24 Material properties, including reinforcement in Fig. 9. Vtest, the maximum shear carried in the critical
and concrete strength, are provided in Table 2. section of the test region, including the self-weight of the
beam and test setup, is provided in Table 2.
Testing procedure
The specimens were tested at the University of Texas at COMPARISON OF STRUT-AND-TIE MODELS AND
Austin’s Phil M. Ferguson Structural Engineering Labora- EXPERIMENTAL RESULTS
tory. The upside-down simply supported beam test setup A summary of the experimental versus calculated shear
used for testing is shown in Fig. 9. The load was applied strengths (Vtest/Vcalc) is provided in Table 2, where Vcalc is the
via a 5 million pound (22,200 kN) capacity, double-acting shear capacity calculated using the measured material proper-
hydraulic ram for single point load tests, and three 2 million ties and the Birrcher et al.4 STMs as implemented for inverted-
pound (9000 kN) capacity rams for multiple point load spec- T beams. As shown in the table, all values of Vtest/Vcalc
imens. U-shaped frames applied load evenly to the ledges of are greater than 1.0, indicating that the STM provisions
the test specimens. At each support, six 3 in. (76 mm) diam- as implemented for inverted-T beams are conservative for
eter threaded rods reacted against a 7000 lb (31 kN) transfer all specimens tested. With the large number of specimens,
girder to resist the applied load. 500 kip (2200 kN) capacity direct comparisons investigated each variable independently
load cells were placed between the transfer beam and the while keeping all others constant as discussed extensively by
reaction nut at each of the 12 rods to measure the applied Larson et al.7 In these direct comparisons, the STMs showed
shear at each throughout the loading history. no bias to ledge depth, number of point loads, beam depth,
Test specimens were monotonically loaded in 50 kip or chord loading; that is, the effects of these variables were
(222 kN) increments to the appearance of the first diagonal adequately captured as no trends were observed. The STMs

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 153

Table 2—Summary of beam details
Reinforcement fy, ksi
Support plate, Load
Specimen in. plate, in. No. 11 No. 6 No. 5 No. 4 fc′, ksi Vcalc, kip Vtest, kip Vtest/Vcalc
DS1-42-1.85-03 16 x 20 26 x 9 69.24 63.38 64.69 63.14 5.27 463 712 1.54
DS1-42-2.50-03 16 x 20 26 x 9 69.24 63.38 64.69 63.14 5.39 202 406 2.01
DS1-42-1.85-06 16 x 20 26 x 9 64.13 63.38 60.68 N/A 5.02 479 621 1.30
DS1-42-2.50-06 16 x 20 26 x 9 64.13 63.38 60.68 N/A 5.09 339 503 1.49
DL1-42-1.85-06 16 x 20 26 x 9 67.90 63.38 64.69 N/A 4.83 464 741 1.60
DL1-42-2.50-06 16 x 20 26 x 9 67.90 63.38 64.69 N/A 4.99 353 622 1.76
SS3-42-1.85-03 16 x 20 18 x 9 68.60 64.68 62.75 67.25 5.89 456 523 1.15
SS3-42-2.50-03 16 x 20 18 x 9 68.60 64.68 62.75 67.25 5.89 215 447 2.08
SS3-42-2.50-06 16 x 20 18 x 9 69.50 61.83 60.90 N/A 6.26 415 516 1.24
SC3-42-2.50-03 16 x 20 18 x 9 66.20 63.50 60.25 64.27 5.87 257 329 1.28
SC3-42-1.85-03 16 x 20 18 x 9 66.20 63.50 60.25 64.27 5.87 427 483 1.13
DS3-42-2.50-03 16 x 20 18 x 9 63.60 62.63 60.22 64.58 5.69 236 430 1.82
DL1-42-1.85-03 16 x 20 26 x 9 71.01 61.90 64.29 64.43 4.93 468 626 1.34
DL1-42-2.50-03 16 x 20 26 x 9 71.01 61.90 64.29 64.43 4.93 235 510 2.17
SL3-42-1.85-03 16 x 20 18 x 9 75.18 60.62 63.58 65.57 5.04 409 571 1.39
SL3-42-1.85-06 16 x 20 18 x 9 70.38 63.26 64.80 62.62 5.25 424 744 1.76
DC1-42-1.85-06 30 x 20 30 x 10 73.30 63.98 60.81 N/A 3.73 428 519 1.21
SS1-75-1.85-03 16 x 20 30 x 10 66.10 61.97 64.69 65.08 3.13 389 745 1.92
DC3-42-1.85-03 16 x 20 18 x 9 63.63 66.00 63.09 63.16 4.57 370 395 1.07
DS3-42-1.85-03 16 x 20 18 x 9 63.63 66.00 63.09 63.16 4.57 370 454 1.23
SS1-42-2.50-03 16 x 20 26 x 9 65.44 69.57 77.76 66.58 5.70 205 398 1.94
SS1-42-1.85-03 16 x 20 26 x 9 65.44 69.57 77.76 66.58 5.72 501 583 1.16
DC1-42-2.50-03 16 x 20 18 x 9 70.06 64.13 69.77 62.44 4.04 259 365 1.46
DL3-42-1.85-03 16 x 20 18 x 9 70.06 64.13 69.77 62.44 4.20 359 629 1.75
SL1-42-2.50-03 16 x 20 26 x 9 68.70 71.41 N/A 64.47 4.28 261 498 1.91
SC1-42-2.50-03 16 x 20 26 x 9 68.70 71.41 N/A 64.47 4.28 259 319 1.24
DS1-42-1.85-06/03 16 x 20 26 x 9 65.80 70.92 64.94 65.18 4.17 416 739 1.78
DS1-42-2.50-06/03 16 x 20 26 x 9 65.80 70.92 64.94 65.18 4.17 362 539 1.49
SC1-42-1.85-03 30 x 20 26 x 9 66.36 64.04 N/A 67.28 4.33 443 451 1.05
DC1-42-1.85-03 30 x 20 26 x 9 66.36 64.04 N/A 67.28 4.30 474 517 1.09
SC1-42-1.85-03 *
30 x 20 30 x 10 70.47 63.12 N/A 68.56 3.01 362 456 1.26
DC1-42-1.85-03* 30 x 20 30 x 10 70.47 63.12 N/A 68.56 3.00 362 424 1.17
SS1-75-2.50-03 16 x 20 26 x 9 65.22 63.85 63.62 63.76 5.16 357 649 1.82
Ledge length set equal to load plate length.
Notes: Shaded values indicate failure modes other than web shear; 1 in. = 25.4 mm; 1 ksi = 6.89 MPa; N/A is not available.

did show limited bias to ledge length and reinforcement friction, ledge tie failure, and punching shear occurred. In
ratio, but produced conservative results in all cases with these few cases, the failure mode was related to the second
reasonable safety margins. weakest element in the STM, which changed depending
Overall, the STM procedures offer a more transparent of the experimental variables. Nonetheless, each of the 33
approach to designing inverted-T deep beams than sectional specimens carried loads well above the calculated web shear
design, as they inherently consider all failure modes for the capacity and thus, the strength estimates were conservative.
ledges, web, and bearing points. The web shear failure mode The statistical results for the strength ratios of the 33 test
predicted by the STMs, either crushing of the strut-node specimens in the experimental program are summarized in
interface or yielding of the intermediate tie, was observed in Table 3. As shown in the table, the design method yielded
all specimens except for the five shaded in Table 2, in which conservative and accurate estimates of strength with a
flexure (crushing of the compression stress block), shear

154 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Table 3—Summary of experimental/calculated
shear capacity
Rectangular deep beams,4
Inverted T-beams, 33 tests 179 tests
Birrcher Birrcher
Vtest/Vcalc et al.4 ACI 3186 et al.4 ACI 3186
Minimum 1.05 1.04 0.73 0.87
Maximum 2.17 2.17 4.14 9.80
Mean 1.50 1.57 1.54 1.80
Unconservative 0.0% 0.0% 0.6% 1.7%
Coefficient of
0.22 0.20 0.28 0.58
Fig. 9—Test setup: specimen at failure of second test region.
Coefficient of variation is standard deviation divided by mean.

minimum Vtest/Vcalc value of 1.05, a maximum of 2.17, and

an average of 1.51 for the inverted-T beams.
A comparison of STM procedures by Birrcher et al.4 and
ACI 318-116 revealed similar levels of accuracy for the
inverted-T beams as shown in Fig. 10. The average Vtest/Vcalc
values in Table 3 were equal to 1.50 and 1.57, respectively,
suggesting that ACI 318-116 is slightly more conservative.
The significant difference between the two STM procedures
is the treatment of the struts and nodes, thus most of the spec-
imens designed to fail due to yielding of the stirrup tie had the
same calculated capacity. However, ACI 318-116 predicted a
diagonal strut failure occurring in the cross-sectional model
before web shear in seven of the 33 specimens. This was due
to the low efficiency factor βs for struts in tension flanges of Fig. 10—Comparison of Vtest/Vcalc for Birrcher et al.4 and
beams, as shown in Table 1, which resulted in an increased ACI 318-116 STMs.
conservatism for several of the specimens shown in Fig. 10. The following variables were investigated to encompass the
The Birrcher et al.4 STMs do not account for this out-of- full behavior of inverted-T beams: the length and depth of
plane tension. If only web shear failure modes were consid- the ledge, the quantity of web reinforcement, the number of
ered using ACI 318-11,6 the mean Vtest/Vcalc would decrease point loads, member depth, and the shear span-depth ratio.
to 1.50. With these results, previously proposed strut-and-tie provi-
In comparison with the rectangular deep beams, it can be sions were assessed for their applicability to inverted-T
concluded that the Birrcher et al.4 STM provisions provided beams. Both ACI 318-116 STM and Birrcher et al.4 design
equal, if not slightly better, predictions of shear strength. provisions yield accurate and reasonably conservative results
The overall mean was similar with 1.50 for the inverted for tension chord-loaded beams. The following conclusions
T-beams and 1.54 for the rectangular bent caps evaluated summarize the views of the authors:
with the Birrcher et al.4 STMs. The scatter in the results was • Use of STM is recommended for the design of
also decreased for the inverted-T beams when the minimum inverted-T beams. A comparison between the ulti-
and maximum Vtest/Vcalc values were compared. The stan- mate shear capacity obtained from the test results and
dard deviation and coefficient of variation also decreased. the nominal shear capacity from the STM calculations4,6
Furthermore, no unconservative prediction of strength was revealed conservative strength estimates for every spec-
noted for the inverted-T beams, while a small number of imen. Furthermore, the Birrcher et al.4 STMs accurately
rectangular deep beams had Vcalc values greater than Vtest. predicted the web shear failure mode for 28 of the 33 spec-
The comparison of the rectangular deep beams as eval- imens. For the five that did not fail in shear, the calculated
uated using ACI 318-116 STMs is also provided in Table 3 shear capacity was exceeded and the actual failure mode
to demonstrate its effectiveness. A significant improvement was the second weakest element in the model. Within
was observed for minimum, maximum, and average Vtest/Vcalc these provisions, a minimum web reinforcement ratio is
values. It was for this reason that Birrcher et al.4 STMs were given as 0.3% in each orthogonal direction and is also
investigated for inverted-T beams. recommended for inverted-T beam design.7
• Valid assumptions were made in implementing the
SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS STM provisions for inverted-T beams. The geom-
In this investigation, the behavior of inverted-T beams etry of inverted-T beams requires the use of a three-
was studied through a comprehensive experimental program dimensional STM model or two equivalent and compat-
composed of 33 tests on 22 large-scale beams. Most of the ible two-dimensional models. Recommendations were
beams were designed with two test regions, one on each end.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 155

given to aid in developing these models. A 45-degree load 4. Birrcher, D.; Tuchscherer, R.; Huizinga, M.; Bayrak, O.; Wood, S.;
and Jirsa, J., “Strength and Serviceability Design of Reinforced Concrete
spread at each load point satisfactorily models the hanger Deep Beams,” Report No. 0-5253-1, Center for Transportation Research,
and ledge reinforcement that engaged during loading. the University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, 2009, 400 pp.
The Birrcher et al.4 STM provisions provided accurate predic- 5. Tuchscherer, R.; Birrcher, D.; and Bayrak, O., “Experimental Exam-
ination of ACI 318 Strut and Tie Modeling Provisions,” Symposium
tions of failure mode and capacity for the inverted-T beams Honoring James O. Jirsa’s Contributions in Structural Concrete: A Time to
but further investigation is recommended for struts in tension Reflect, SP-296, J. A. Pincheira and S. M. Alcocer, eds., American Concrete
members and tension flanges in other structural members. Institute, Farmington Hills, MI, 2014, 20 pp.
6. ACI Committee 318, “Building Code Requirements for Structural
Concrete (ACI 318-11) and Commentary,” American Concrete Institute,
AUTHOR BIOS Farmington Hills, MI, 2011, 503 pp.
ACI member Nancy Larson Varney is a Staff II Structural Engineer with 7. Larson, N.; Fernández-Gómez, E.; Garber, D.; Bayrak, O.; and Ghan-
Simpson Gumpertz & Heger, Inc. She received her BS from Lehigh Univer- noum, W., “Strength and Serviceability Design of Reinforced Concrete
sity, Bethlehem, PA, in 2008, and her MS and PhD from the University of Inverted T-Beams,” Report No. 0-6416, Center for Transportation Research,
Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, in 2010 and 2013, respectively. Her research University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, 2012, 234 pp.
interests include strut-and-tie modeling of reinforced concrete. 8. Wight, J. K., and Parra-Montesinos, G., “Use of Strut-and-Tie Model
for Deep Beam Design as per ACI 318 Code,” Concrete International,
ACI member Eulalio Fernández-Gómez is a structural engineer at V. 25, No. 5, May 2003, pp. 63-70.
Osseous Structural
Engineering, Ciudad Juárez, Mexico. He received his 9. Williams, C.; Deschenes, D.; and Bayrak, O., “Strut-and-Tie Model
BS from Universidad Autónoma de Chihuahua, Chihuahua, Mexico, in Design Examples for Bridges,” Report No. 5-5253-01-1, Center for Trans-
2004, and his MS and PhD from the University of Texas at Austin in 2009 portation Research, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, 2012, 276
and 2012, respectively. pp.
10. Furlong, R. W.; Ferguson, P. M.; and Ma, J. S., “Shear and Anchorage
ACI member David B. Garber is an Assistant Professor at Florida Inter- Study of Reinforcement in Inverted T-Beam Bent Cap Girders,” Report No.
national University, Miami, FL. He received his BS from Johns Hopkins 113-4, Center for Highway Research, University of Texas at Austin, Austin,
University, Baltimore, MD, in 2009, and his MS and PhD from the Univer- TX, 1971, 81 pp.
sity of Texas at Austin in 2011 and 2014, respectively. His research inter- 11. Cussens, A. R., and Besser, I. I., “Shear Strength of Reinforced
ests include plasticity in structural concrete and behavior of prestressed Concrete Wall-Beams under Combined Top and Bottom Loads,” The Struc-
concrete members. tural Engineer, V. 63, No. 15, Sept. 1985, pp. 50-56.
12. Graf, O.; Brenner, E.; and Bay, H., “Versuche mit einem wandartigen
Wassim M. Ghannoum is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Trager aus Stahlbeton,” Deutscher Ausschuss fur Stahlbeton, V. 99, 1943,
Civil, Environmental, and Architectural Engineering at the University of pp. 41-54.
Texas at Austin. He is Chair of ACI Committee 369, Seismic Repair and 13. Ferguson, P. M., “Some Implications of Recent Diagonal Tension
Rehabilitation, and a member of ACI Subcommittee 318-R, High-Strength Tests,” ACI Journal Proceedings, V. 53, No. 8, Aug. 1956, pp. 157-172.
Reinforcement (Structural Concrete Building Code), and Joint ACI-ASCE 14. Schütt, H., “Über das Tragvermögen wandartiger Stahlbetonträger,”
Committees 441, Reinforced Concrete Columns, and 447, Finite Element Beton und Stahlbetonbau, V. 10, Oct. 1956, pp. 220-224.
Analysis of Reinforced Concrete Structures. 15. Taylor, R., “Some Shear Tests on Reinforced Concrete Beams
without Shear Reinforcement,” Magazine of Concrete Research, V. 12, No.
Oguzhan Bayrak, FACI, is a Professor in the Department of Civil, Envi- 36, 1960, pp. 145-154. doi: 10.1680/macr.1960.12.36.145
ronmental, and Architectural Engineering and holds the Charles Elmer 16. Furlong, R. W., and Mirza, S. A., “Strength and Serviceability of
Rowe Fellowship in Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin, where Inverted T-Beam Bent Caps Subject to Combined Flexure, Shear, and
he serves as Director of the Phil M. Ferguson Structural Engineering Torsion,” Report No. 153-1F, Center for Highway Research, University of
Laboratory. He is a member of ACI Committees 341, Earthquake-Resistant Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, 1974, 156 pp.
Concrete Bridges, and S803, Faculty Network Coordinating Committee; 17. Smith, K. N., and Fereig, S. M., “Effect of Loading and Supporting
and Joint ACI-ASCE Committees 441, Reinforced Concrete Columns, and Condidtions on the Shear Strength of Deep Beams,” Shear in Reinforced
445, Shear and Torsion. Concrete, SP-42, American Concrete Institute, Farmington Hills, MI, 1974,
pp. 441-460.
18. Fereig, S. M., and Smith, K. N., “Indirect Loading on Beams with
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS Short Shear Spans,” ACI Journal Proceedings, V. 74, No. 5, May 1977,
The authors wish to thank the Texas Department of Transportation for
pp. 220-222.
providing the financial support for this investigation, and the contribu-
19. Leonhardt, F., and Walther, R., “Wandartige Träger,” Deutscher
tions of Project Director J. Farris and TxDOT Project Advisors including
Ausschuss für Stahlbeton, V. 178, 1966.
C. Holle, D. Van Landuyt, G. Yowell, M. Stroope, N. Nemec, and R. Lopez.
20. Galal, K., and Sekar, M., “Rehabilitation of RC Inverted-T Girders
The contribution of the students and the staff at the Ferguson Structural
Using Anchored CFRP Sheets,” Composites. Part B, Engineering, V. 39,
Engineering Laboratory is also greatly appreciated. Opinions, findings,
No. 4, 2008, pp. 604-617. doi: 10.1016/j.compositesb.2007.09.001
conclusions, and recommendations in this paper are those of the authors.
21. Zhu, R. R.-H.; Dhonde, H.; and Hsu, T. T., “Crack Control for Ledges
in Inverted ‘T’ Bent Caps,” TxDOT Project 0-1854, University of Houston,
REFERENCES Houston, TX, 2003, 4 pp.
1. AASHTO LRFD, Bridge Design Specifications, American Associa- 22. Tan, K. H.; Kong, F. K.; and Weng, L. W., “High Strength Concrete
tion of State Highway and Transportation Officials, Washington, DC, 2012, Deep Beams Subjected to Combined Top- and Bottom-Loading,” The
1960 pp. Structural Engineer, V. 75, No. 11, 1997, pp. 191-197.
2. Joint ACI-ASCE Committee 445, “Recent Approaches to Shear 23. ASTM A615/A615M-08, “Standard Specification for Deformed and
Design of Structural Concrete (ACI 445R-99),” American Concrete Insti- Plain Carbon-Steel Bars for Concrete Reinforcement,” ASTM Interna-
tute, Farmington Hills, MI, 1999, 56 pp. tional, West Conshohocken, PA, 2008, 5 pp.
3. Schlaich, J.; Schäfer, K.; and Jennewein, M., “Toward a Consis- 24. ASTM A370-08a, “Standard Test Methods for Mechanical Testing of
tent Design of Structural Concrete,” PCI Journal, V. 32, No. 3, 1987, Steel Products,” ASTM International, West Conshohocken, PA, 2008, 47 pp.
pp. 74-150. doi: 10.15554/pcij.05011987.74.150

156 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Title No. 112-S14

Energy-Based Hysteresis Model for Reinforced Concrete

Beam-Column Connections
by Tae-Sung Eom, Hyeon-Jong Hwang, and Hong-Gun Park
The cyclic response of reinforced concrete beam-column connec- To address the effects of the bond slip and joint shear
tions is significantly affected by the bond slip of beam flexural deformation, various elaborate component models have been
bars and joint shear deformations that occur at the joint panel. In developed.12-17 Lowes and Altoontash,12 Elmorsi et al.,13 and
this study, using existing test results of 69 interior and 63 exterior Fleury et al.14 used continuum-type elements combined with
connections, the variation of energy dissipation (per load cycle)
spring elements, maintaining compatibility with beam and
according to the bond-slip and joint shear strength was statisti-
column line elements. Altoontash and Deierlein15 and Mitra
cally investigated. The results showed that the energy dissipation
correlated with the parameters of the bar bond slip better than with and Lowes16 proposed the models that consist of a shear
the joint shear strength. On the basis of the result, the energy dissi- panel element and rotational spring elements. Uma and
pation of beam-column connections was defined as the function of Prasad17 proposed joint shear strength-deformation relation-
the bond parameters. By using the energy function and the existing ship for nonlinear dynamic analysis. These models consist of
backbone curve of ASCE/SEI 41-06, an energy-based hysteresis a shear-panel element for the joint, and vertical, horizontal,
model was developed such that the area enclosed by the cyclic and rotational spring elements. Although addressing all
curve is the same as the predicted energy dissipation. The proposed components affecting the connection behavior, these models
model was applied to existing test specimens. The predictions were require great time and effort in modeling and computations,
compared with the test results and showed good agreement. particularly when numerical analysis of the entire moment
Keywords: beam-column connection; cyclic loading; energy dissipation;
frame structures is required.
hysteresis model; reinforced concrete; seismic design. More conveniently for the numerical analysis of the
moment frame structures, lumped plasticity spring elements
INTRODUCTION representing the overall cyclic response of a beam-column
In reinforced concrete moment-resisting frames subjected connection can be used. El-Metwally and Chen18 and
to cyclic loading, the response, including stiffness degrada- Alath and Kunnath19 used zero-length rotational spring
tion, strength degradation, and energy dissipation, is signifi- elements between the joint and beams/columns, to decouple
cantly affected by the behavior of beam-column joints as well the inelastic response of the beams, columns, and joints.
as individual members.1-4 Figure 1 shows the cyclic response Kunnath20 used joint spring elements at the intersection
(Fig. 1(a)) and joint load-transfer mechanism (Fig. 1(b) and of beams and columns. Ghobarah and Biddah21 developed
(c)) of beam-column connections that are affected by bar a stress-strain relationship for beam-column joints with
bond slip and diagonal shear cracking. Under cyclic loading, transverse reinforcement, and Anderson et al.22 expanded
X-shaped diagonal cracks increase the shear deformation in the stress-strain relationship to joints without transverse
the joint. Furthermore, due to the plastic strains of the beam reinforcement. Birely et al.23 used dual hinge elements at
flexural bars, the bond resistance of the joint is significantly joint interfaces. Magliulo and Ramasco24 used a lumped
degraded. In the case of interior connections, the bar bond plasticity model to perform three-dimensional nonlinear
demand is increased by the compressive force, as well as dynamic analysis.
the tensile forces (bar bond demand = T1 + C2 or T2 + C1 In the lumped plasticity models, the hysteresis constitutive
in Fig. 1(b)). Thus, the beam-column joints are susceptible model of the spring elements should be able to address the
to bar bond slip. Once the bond slip of beam bars and the degradations of unloading/reloading stiffness, strength, and
shear deformation occur in the joint, the unloading/reloading energy dissipation under cyclic loading, which are signifi-
stiffness and energy dissipation are significantly degraded, cantly affected by the bond slip and shear cracking at the
which appears as pinching in the cyclic response of Fig. 1(a). joint. To describe the strength and stiffness degradations,
To mitigate bond and shear strength degradations in the various hysteresis models were developed by Clough,25
joint, current earthquake design codes specify the minimum Otani,26 Saatcioglu,27 Takeda et al.,28 Song and Pincheira,29
requirement of column depth-bar diameter ratio (hc/db): and Sivaselvan and Reinhorn.30 The majority of the existing
ACI 318-115 and ACI 352R-026 require hc/db > 20 and models are stiffness-based models in which the degrada-
hc/db > 20fy/420, respectively. However, previous test results tion of unloading/reloading stiffness and strength under
have shown that even when the minimum requirement cyclic loading was defined on the basis of existing test
was satisfied, significant bond slip and shear deformation
occurred at the beam-column joints.3,7-9 Thus, to secure ACI Structural Journal, V. 112, No. 2, March-April 2015.
MS No. S-2013-192.R4, doi: 10.14359/51687404, received June 9, 2014, and
the structural performance of beam-column joints, greater reviewed under Institute publication policies. Copyright © 2015, American Concrete
Institute. All rights reserved, including the making of copies unless permission is
development lengths are required for the beam flexural bars obtained from the copyright proprietors. Pertinent discussion including author’s
as specified in NZS 3101:200610 and Eurocode 8.11 closure, if any, will be published ten months from this journal’s date if the discussion
is received within four months of the paper’s print publication.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 157

Fig. 1—Cyclic response and joint load-transfer mechanism of beam-column connections affected by bar bond-slip and diag-
onal shear cracking.
results. However, it is very difficult to accurately define the displacement relationship of beam-column connections.
unloading/reloading stiffness considering the complicated Because the proposed model is defined as the function of the
joint behavior, such as the bar bond slip and diagonal shear energy dissipation capacity, it can be conveniently used for
cracking. More importantly, in actual design of new struc- the performance-based design/analysis of moment frames.
tures without test results, it may not be feasible to accurately
define the model parameters. Evaluation of energy dissipation capacity
As an alternative, energy-based models for beams and To quantitatively evaluate the energy dissipation capacity
columns were studied by Eom et al.,31 Eom and Park,32 of the beam-column connections, existing cyclic test results
Sucuoğlu and Acun,33 Sucuoğlu and Erberik,34 and Kwak of 69 cruciform and 63 T-shaped beam-column connections
and Kim.35 Ibarra et al.36 proposed the energy-based model were investigated.9,A1-A28* The material and geometric prop-
for beam-column connection. Particularly, in the energy- erties of the specimens are presented in Tables A1 and A2.*
based model proposed by Eom et al.31 and Eom and Park,32 The test specimens had conventional reinforcement details
the load-displacement relationship and the stiffness were at the joints, such as transverse hoops, and no lap splices of
defined such that the area enclosed by the cyclic curve is the beam flexural reinforcing bars. The concrete strengths were
same as the predicted energy dissipation. Thus, if the energy fc′ = 23.9 to 88.2 MPa (3.46 to 12.8 ksi). The yield strength
dissipation is accurately predicted considering the bar bond and diameter of the beam bars were fy = 276 to 710  MPa
slip and diagonal shear cracking, the load-displacement (40.0 to 103 ksi) and db = 9.5 to 35.8 mm (0.37 to 1.41 in.),
relationship with pinching can be reversely created from the respectively. The specimens exhibited various failure modes
energy dissipation. from the joint failure to the beam failure, depending on
In the present study, the concept of the energy-based the design parameters, such as the beam moment-column
model was applied to beam-column connections to define moment ratio, the joint shear capacity-demand ratio, and the
the load-displacement relationship under cyclic loading. For bar bond parameters. The limitations of the design parame-
this purpose, first, the energy dissipation of beam-column ters and the proposed method were given in the “Applica-
connections was estimated from existing test results, consid- tions” section.
ering the design parameters. Then, the energy-based hyster- For parametric study of the existing test results, the energy
esis model was defined using the predicted energy dissipa- dissipation ratio κ specified in ACI 374.1-0539 was used. As
tion; the unloading/reloading stiffness under cyclic loading shown in Fig. 2, κ is defined as the ratio of the actual energy
was determined to satisfy the predicted energy dissipation. dissipation EII per load cycle to the idealized elastic-per-
In the proposed model, the existing backbone curve of fectly plastic energy dissipation Eep: κ = EII/Eep. Generally,
ASCE/SEI 41-0637 was used, and the Pinching 4 model of the κ value increases with the deformation.40 However,
OpenSees38 was modified to implement the predicted energy energy dissipation capacity is important when large inelastic
dissipation. For verification, the proposed model was applied deformations occur, and at small deformations, the energy
to existing test specimens, and the results were compared dissipation does not significantly affect the shape of the load-
with the test results. Limitations on the application of the displacement relationship. Thus, in the present study,
proposed method were also discussed. according to ACI 374.1-05,39 κ was defined at the third load
cycle of a relatively large story drift ratio δ = 3.5%. However,
RESEARCH SIGNIFICANCE when the existing test conditions did not satisfy the require-
The present study focused on developing a beam-column ment of ACI 374.1-05,39 the κ was defined differently: when
connection model which can be conveniently used for prac- the number of load cycles at δ = 3.5% was less than three, κ
tical design/analysis of reinforced concrete moment frames. was calculated for the second load cycle. When a specimen
A design equation was developed to accurately predict the failed before δ = 3.5%, or when the strength of the second
energy dissipation capacity using bar bond-slip parameters,
which are used in current design codes. Using the constraint *
The Appendix is available at in PDF format,
appended to the online version of the published paper. It is also available in hard copy
condition of energy dissipation, the proposed hysteresis from ACI headquarters for a fee equal to the cost of reproduction plus handling at the
model can directly and accurately define the cyclic load- time of the request.

158 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

where hc is column depth (or joint depth); db is the greatest
bar diameter of the beam flexural bars; and ldh is develop-
ment length of the beam flexural bars anchored inside the
joint in exterior connections. In Eq. (1), αf and αd are coef-
ficients addressing the direction of the beam flexural bars
and the ductility of beam plastic hinges; and γ is the coef-
ficient addressing the story drift ratio demand δ of the joint
(=1.53 – 0.29δ, δ in %). In Eq. (2), α is the overstrength factor
of steel reinforcing bars addressing the strain-hardening
behavior (=1.25); and α1 and α2 are coefficients addressing
the details of hook anchorage and the joint confinement by
Fig. 2—Definition of energy dissipation ratio (ACI 374.1-05). transverse hoops.
The requirement for the joint shear strength is defined as
or third load cycle was less than 80% of that of the first load follows (refer to Fig. 1(b) and (c)).
cycle (this case can be regarded as the failure of the spec-
imen), κ was evaluated at a moderate drift ratio of less than V jn ≥ φV ju (3)
δ = 3.5%. In the calculation of Eep, the initial stiffness ki
was defined from the envelope curve (refer to Fig. 2).39 The where Vjn = γj√fc′Aj (nominal shear strength of the joint);
κ values of the interior and exterior connection specimens Vju = T1 + C2 – Vc for interior connections; Vju = C1 – Vc for
are presented in Tables A1 and A2, respectively. It should exterior connections (shear demand of the joint); ϕ is strength
be noted that for a specific beam-column connection, the reduction factor for shear; γj is coefficients addressing the
present study used a single value of the energy dissipation confinement provided by the beams framing into the joint;
ratio, evaluated at the third load cycle of 3.5% drift ratio. It is Aj is effective joint shear area; T1 is resultant tension force
implicitly assumed that the energy dissipation ratio does not at the beam critical section in the negative moment; C2 is
significantly vary according to the drift ratios. The evidence resultant compression force at the beam critical section in
for the assumption is given in Fig. B1. the positive moment; and Vc is shear demand of the column.
According to the previous studies,32,41-44 the energy dissi- For parametric study related to bond slip, from Eq. (1),
pation capacity of beam-column connections is affected by hc/db, (hc/db)(√fc′/fy), and (hc/db)(γ√fc′/fy) were chosen as
various design parameters, such as the geometry and rein- the bond parameters of the beam flexural bars for interior
forcement details of the beams and columns. However, as connections, and from Eq. (2), (ldh/db), (ldh/db)(√fc′/fy), and
discussed in the Introduction and Fig. 1, the energy dissi- (ldh/db)(√fc′/α1α2fy) were chosen for exterior connections. In
pation capacity of beam-column connections is degraded the majority of the existing specimens investigated in this
primarily by the bar bond-slip and diagonal cracking at the study, the number of the beam flexural bars placed at the top
joint. Thus, the joint shear strength and the bond resistance was greater than at the bottom. In this case, the bond slip of
of the beam flexural bars were considered as the primary the bottom bars is greater than that of the top bars because
design parameters for the evaluation of energy dissipation. the inelastic deformation of the bottom bars is greater than
In ACI 318-11,5 ACI 352R-02,6 and NZS 3101:2006,10 the that of the top bars due to the force-equilibrium in the cross
requirement for the bond resistance of the beam flexural bars section. Therefore, the bond parameters of the test speci-
is defined as follows (refer to Fig. 1(b) and (c)). mens summarized in Tables A1 and A2 were defined using
For interior connections the yield strength and maximum diameter of the bottom bars.
Figures 3 and 4 show the relationships between the bond
 parameters and the energy dissipation ratios κ for the inte-
 rior and exterior connections, respectively. In the figures, the
20 for ACI 318-11 vertical and horizontal axes indicate the κ values and bond
hc  fy
parameters, respectively. The trend lines and correlation
≥ 20 ≥ 20 for ACI 352R-02 (1)
db  420 coefficients R2 are presented in Fig. 3 and 4 (R2 close to 1.0
 1.25 f y indicates a strong correlation).
 for NZS 3101:2006
For both interior and exterior connections, the κ values
 3.3α f α d γ f c′
correlated better with the bond parameters (hc/db)(√fc′/fy) and
(ldh/db)(√fc′/fy). In Fig. 3(b) and 4(b), the correlation coeffi-
For exterior connections cients R2 = 0.926 for the interior connections and 0.880 for
the exterior connections were relatively high, which means
 fy good correlations between the energy dissipation capacity
 for ACI 318-11 and the bond parameters (hc/db)(√fc′/fy) and (ldh/db)(√fc′/fy).
 5.4 f c′
 On the other hand, in Fig. 3(c) and 4(c), the parameters,
ldh  αf y which include the effects of the story drift ratio (that is, γ)
≥ for ACI 352R-02 (2)
db  6.2 f c′ and the details of hook anchorage and transverse reinforce-
 0.24α α f ment (that is, α1α2), did not show good correlations with the
 1 2 y
for NZS 3101:2006 κ values.
 f c′

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 159

Fig. 3—Variation of energy dissipation ratio according to bond parameters: interior connections.9,A1-A19

Fig. 4—Variation of energy dissipation ratio according to bond parameters: exterior connections.A20-A28

Fig. 5—Variation of energy dissipation ratio according to joint shear parameters.

For parametric study for the joint shear strength, from ACI 352R-02,6 the cyclic responses were dominated by the
Eq. (3), Vjn/Vju was chosen as the parameter. The shear joint deformations rather than by the beams or columns.
parameters of the interior and exterior connection specimens On the basis of the results shown in Fig. 3(b) and 4(b),
are presented in Tables A1 and A2. Figures 5(a) and (b) show the energy dissipation ratios κ of the interior and exterior
the relationships between the energy dissipation ratios κ and connections were defined as the linear functions of the bond
the joint shear parameter Vjn/Vju for the interior and exterior parameters (hc/db)(√fc′/fy) and (ldh/db)(√fc′/fy), respectively,
connections, respectively. As presented in Tables A1 and using the method of least squares.
A2, in the majority of the connection specimens, the sum of For interior beam-column connections
column flexural capacities (that is, ΣMc) was greater than the
sum of beam flexural capacities (that is, ΣMb), which indi- hc f c′  h f c′ 
cates that the load-carrying capacity of the specimens was κ = 0.80 + 0.053  0.16 ≤ c ≤ 0.60 (4a)
db f y  db f y 
determined by the flexural capacities of the beams. Thus,
Vjn and Vju were calculated by using the beam plastic hinge
mechanism (refer to Tables A1 and A2). As shown in Fig. 5, For exterior beam-column connections
the R2 values were much less than those of Fig. 3(b) and
4(b), which indicates the correlation between the joint shear  
ldh f c′ l f c′
parameter and the energy dissipation capacity was signifi- κ = 1.56 − 0.058  0.13 ≤ dh ≤ 0.35 (4b)
cantly weaker than that of the bond parameters. db f y  db f y 
The effect of beam reinforcements on the energy dissi-
pation ratio κ was also investigated (refer to Appendix C). In Eq. (4a) and (4b), the upper and lower limits on the bond
The results showed that the correlation coefficients in the parameters (hc/db)(√fc′/fy) and (ldh/db)(√fc′/fy) were speci-
statistics were not improved but even worse. This is because, fied as the minimum and maximum values presented in
even for the connection specimens designed in accordance Tables A1 and A2, which represents the range of the design
with the bar bond requirements specified in ACI 318-115 and parameter of the existing tests.

160 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 6—Energy-based hysteresis model for beam-column connections.
Energy-based hysteresis model and area of the cyclic load-displacement relationship can be
Figure 6(a) shows the proposed lumped plasticity model predicted without big mistakes.
for the interior and exterior beam-column connections. The Figure 6(b) illustrates the envelope curve (that is, a
concept of the lumped plasticity model was proposed by moment-plastic deformation angle relationship by mono-
Birely at al.45 The proposed model comprises the elastic tonic loading) defined by modifying the backbone curve of
beam-column elements, rigid elements in the joint region, ASCE/SEI 41-06.37 When the responses of the positive and
and rotational spring elements at the joint interface. If plastic negative loadings are different (that is, when the number of
hinges are expected to develop in columns, additional rigid bars are different at the top and bottom of the beam cross
and rotational spring elements can be used in the columns. section), the positive and negative envelope curves can be
The elastic beam-column elements simulate elastic flexural defined differently. In Fig. 6(b), EY, EU, and ER indicate
responses of beams and columns. The rigid elements are characteristic points corresponding to yielding, ultimate,
used to address the offset effect corresponding to the joint and residual states of connection, respectively. To define the
depth or height. The rotational spring elements at the joint yield moment My at EY, the nominal yield moment Mny at
interface are used to simulate the combined responses of the the critical section of beams (that is, at the joint interface) is
beam plastic hinge and joint. The advantage of the proposed used as follows (refer to Fig. 6(b)).
model over the existing lumped plasticity approaches18-24 is
the simplicity: the rotational spring elements describe the M y ≈ M ny (5a)
combined cyclic responses of the beam-column connections
rather than the separate responses of the beams and the joint. The ultimate moment Mu at EU and the residual moment
Thus, the number of the spring elements can be reduced. Mr at ER are defined as functions of the nominal flexural
Although simple spring models are used, by using the capacity Mn.
constraint condition of energy dissipation (Eq. (4)), the effects
of the bar bond-slip and shear deformation can be directly M u = βu M n and M r = β r M n (5b)
addressed in the proposed load-displacement relationship.
The proposed load-displacement relationship of the rota- In Eq. (5b), βu can be theoretically determined from
tional spring element consists of an envelope curve and nonlinear section analysis addressing reinforcement details,
cyclic curves (refer to Fig. 6(b) and (c)). The envelope curve load conditions, and actual material strengths. When detailed
was developed modifying the backbone curve specified in analysis is not performed, βu can be approximated as 1.25,
ASCE/SEI 41-06.37 In the backbone curve, the parameters, considering the tensile stress 1.25fy of reinforcing bars
except peak strength, yield strength, and initial stiffness, increased by the cyclic strain-hardening behavior.5 For the
need to be determined empirically on the basis of available residual moment, βr = 0.2 was defined according to ASCE/
test results. Thus, in the present study, the parameters were SEI 41-06.37
determined on the basis of the existing test results reported The rotational spring element represents the shear defor-
in this paper. On the other hand, the cyclic curve was devel- mation of the joint and the rotation of the beam plastic
oped by modifying the Pinching 4 model of OpenSees.38 To hinges. Thus, the yield deformation angle θy at EY (the yield
determine the parameters for the cyclic curve, the proposed point) includes the elastic shear deformation of the joint
model used a very important constraint condition: the energy and the yield rotation of the beam plastic hinge. According
dissipation capacity, which indicates the area of the cyclic to Shin and LaFave,46 the elastic shear deformation of
curve. Thus, although the specific unloading/reloading stiff- beam-column joints varies within the ranges of γy = 0.002
ness is not exactly the same as each test result, the shape to 0.01 rad, depending on the design variables. The elastic

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 161

shear deformation of the joint can be predicted by using where kyp and kyn are secant stiffnesses connecting Point O
existing elaborate nonlinear analysis methods, such as the and the positive and negative yield points EY, respectively
compression field theory and the softened truss model.46-48 (Fig. 6(b)), and γk is the coefficient representing the degra-
Alternatively, the shear deformation of the joint at the yield dation of the unloading stiffness under cyclic loading. In
point can be approximately estimated by using an empirical the present study, the degradation of the unloading stiff-
method proposed by Kim and LaFave49 and LaFave and ness is defined as the function of the load cycle number, i
Kim.50 According to Priestley40 and Paulay and Priestley,44 (= 0, 1, 2, …), accumulated during the entire loading history.38
the yield rotation of a beam plastic hinge can be approxi-
mated as θby = ϕylp ≈ (1.7εy/hb)0.5hb = 0.85εy (ϕy is the yield γ k = 0.05 ⋅ i ≤ 0.8 (8)
curvature of the beam cross section, lp is the length of the
beam plastic hinge, εy is the yield strain of beam flexural The original definition of γk in the reference (OpenSees
bars, and hb is the overall depth of the beam cross section). manual) is K1 ∙ δmaxK2 + K3 ∙ iK4 ≤ γk,max, and the coefficients
Thus, the yield deformation angle θy at EY of the rotational are determined on the basis of test results, user’s experience,
spring element can be defined as the sum of the elastic shear or engineering judgment. In the present study, the coeffi-
deformation (γy) of the joint and the yield rotation (θby) of the cients K1, K2, K3, K4, and γk,max were defined as 0, 0, 0.05,
beam plastic hinge: θy = γy + θby = γy + 0.85εy. 1, and 0.8, respectively, from the comparison between the
The deformation angles θu at EU and θr at ER were deter- predicted hysteresis curves and the existing test results.
mined according to ASCE/SEI 41-06.37 However, ASCE/ As shown in Fig. 6(c), the hysteretic energy dissipation per
SEI 41-0637 separately defines the plastic rotation angle at load cycle EII of the connection is affected by the moments
the beam plastic hinges and the plastic shear angle at the and deformation angles at Points C1 and C3. Therefore,
joint, addressing the reinforcement detail and loading condi- the moments and plastic deformation angles (θc1, Mc1) at
tion. In the proposed method, on the other hand, the rota- Point C1 and (θc3, Mc3) at Point C3 are defined as the func-
tional spring elements (Fig. 6(a)) represent the overall plastic tions of the predicted energy dissipation ratio κ of Eq. (4a)
deformation angle of a beam-column connection. Therefore, and (4b), as follows.
θu at EU for the rotational spring elements can be defined as
the sum of the θy, θbu, and θju θc1 = λ θ θ mp and θc 3 = λ θ θ mn (9)

θu = θ y + θbu + θ ju (6)
M c1 = λ M M mp and M c 3 = λ M M mn (10)
where θbu is the maximum plastic rotation angle of the beam;
and θju is the maximum shear angle of the joint. The values where (θmp, Mmp) and (θmn, Mmn) are plastic deformation
of θbu and θju are specified in ASCE/SEI 41-06.37 By the defi- angles and moments at the peak points CP and CN, respec-
nition, θju excludes the yield rotation θy. tively, where the unloading behavior starts; and λθ and λM
For more accurate analysis, the maximum plastic deforma- are coefficients defined as the functions of the energy dissi-
tion angle θu at EU can be determined from other advanced pation ratio κ, as follows.
methods.51 The plastic deformation angle θr at ER, which
defines the post-peak descending slope of the envelope λ θ = −0.95κ + 0.5 (11)
curve, was determined from the existing test results. For
simplicity, θr was approximated as θr = 2.0θu.
Figure 6(c) shows the cyclic curve of the moment-plastic λ M = 1.5κ − 0.12 (12)
deformation angle relationship, connecting six characteristic
points CP, C1, C2, CN, C3, and C4, which are defined such The coefficients λθ and λM are defined such that the energy
that the area enclosed by the cyclic curve is the same as the dissipation per load cycle EII enclosed by the cyclic curve
predicted energy dissipation.31-36 CP (θmp, Mmp) and CN (θmm, (C1-CP-C2-C3-CN-C4) is the same as κ Eep, where Eep is the
Mmm) denote the positive and negative peak points, respec- energy dissipation by the elastic-perfectly plastic behavior
tively, where the unloading and reloading behaviors begin. between CP and CN (refer to Fig. 6(c)). Curve fitting
C2 (θc2, Mc2) and C4 (θc4, Mc4) denote the points where the between the cyclic curves of Fig. 6(c) and the test results was
unloading stiffness significantly decreases, causing pinching performed for various κ values and drift levels. On the basis
in the cyclic response. C1 (θc1, Mc1) and C3 (θc3, Mc3) denote of the results, λθ and λM were defined as the linear functions
the points where the reloading stiffness is recovered. To of κ, in Eq. (11) and (12). The validity of Eq. (11) and (12)
ease the use in practice, the cyclic curve including stiffness was verified in Appendix B. In the existing test results in
and strength degradations was proposed by modifying the Tables A1 and A2, as the κ value ranges 0.15 to 0.54, λθ and
Pinching 4 model of OpenSees.38 λM vary from 0.36 to –0.01 and from 0.11 to 0.69, respec-
The unloading behavior continues from points CP to C2 tively. The cyclic curve defined in Eq. (7) through (12) is
and from points CN to C4, where the moments are zero applicable to both interior and exterior connections.
(Mc2 = Mc4 = 0; refer to Fig. 6(c)). The unloading stiffness kup Strength degradation can occur during repeated load
and kun are defined as cycles between the peak points CP and CN, which is
defined as the cyclic strength degradation in FEMA 440.52
kup = (1 − γ k ) k yp and kun = (1 − γ k ) k yn (7) The cyclic strength degradation (that is, a delay in strength

162 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 7—Predicted cyclic responses versus test results for interior connections.9,A3,A4,A11,A19
development) is caused by the bond deterioration of beam dissipation capacity. Thus, the cyclic load-displacement
flexural bars, and the concrete crushing at the joint interface. relationship can be directly and accurately predicted without
Modifying the Pinching 4 model of OpenSees,38 the cyclic big mistakes.
strength degradation was addressed as follows. As shown 4. The proposed model defines the cyclic behavior of beam-
in Fig. 6(d), the cyclic curves after the first load cycle are column connections, as the function of the energy dissipa-
defined with the modified peak points CP′ and CN′ corre- tion capacity. Thus, the proposed model can be conveniently
sponding to θmp′ and θmn′, respectively. Because the plastic used for the performance-based design/analysis of structures;
deformation angles at CP′ and CN′ are greater than those at in actual performance design, if a target energy dissipation
CP and CN, the moments corresponding to θmp and θmn of the ratio κ is determined considering the design parameters, the
second and third load cycles are less than those of the first beam-column connection model for numerical analysis can
load cycle. Herein, the plastic rotation angles θmp′ and θmn′ at be directly determined according the target value.
the modified peak points CP′ and CN′ are defined as follows
(refer to Fig. 6(d)). Applications
The proposed lumped plasticity model (Fig. 6(a)), using
′ = (1 + γ s ) θ mp and θ mn
θ mp ′ = (1 + γ s ) θ mn (13) the energy-based hysteresis moment-rotation relationship,
was applied to existing interior and exterior connection spec-
The coefficient γs is defined by the number of load cycles, imens.9,A3,A4,A11,A19,A22-A24,A26,A28 In all specimens, the column
i(= 0, 1, 2, …) accumulated during the entire loading history.38 flexural capacities (that is, ΣMc) were greater than the beam
flexural capacities (that is, ΣMb). Thus, the rotational spring
γ s = 0.1⋅ i 0.2 ≤ 0.5 (14) elements were used only for the beams. The cross sections
of beams at the joint interface are shown in Fig. 7 and 8.
The original definition of γs in the reference (OpenSees The dimensions and modeling parameters of the specimens
manual) is S1 ∙ δmaxS2 + S3 ∙ iS44 ≤ γs,max, and the coefficients are presented in Table 1. To highlight the advantage of the
are determined on the basis of test results, user’s experience, proposed model, the specimens that exhibited various shapes
or engineering judgment. In the present study, the coeffi- in the cyclic responses from significant pinching (that is, low
cients S1, S2, S3, S4, and γs,max were defined as 0, 0, 0.1, energy dissipation ratio) to no-pinching (that is, high energy
0.2, and 0.5, respectively, from the comparison between the dissipation ratio) were used in these examples.
predictions and the existing test results. As shown in Fig. 6(a), the specimens were modeled
The advantages of the proposed model can be summarized with the elastic beam-column elements, rotational spring
as follows. elements, and rigid elements. In the elastic beam-column
1. For simplicity, beam-column connections were elements, 1.0EcIg (Ec is modulus of concrete [=4700√fc′]
modeled with rotational springs of limited numbers. Thus, and Ig is second-order moment of inertia of the gross cross
the proposed model can be conveniently used for the numer- section) was used for the flexural rigidity of the beams.
ical analysis of overall moment frames. Because the columns of the specimens were not subjected to
2. The proposed model is able to accurately predict axial compression load, the flexural rigidity of the columns
the energy dissipation capacity. In the present study, the was defined as 0.5EcIg according to ASCE/SEI 41-06,37 and
energy dissipation of beam-column connection was accu- Paulay and Priestley.44 To address the offset effects by the
rately defined by the bar bond-slip parameters, as shown in joint depths, infinite flexural rigidity was assigned to the
Fig. 3(b) and 4(b). rigid elements.
3. The proposed model defines the cyclic behavior of beam- For the rotational spring elements located at the joint
column connections, using a constraint condition of energy interface, the moments at the characteristic points of the

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 163

Fig. 8—Predicted cyclic responses versus test results for exterior connections.A22-A24,A26,A28
Table 1—Modeling parameters for existing test specimens
Bond resistance
parameter Modeling parameter

ldj f c′
db f y
Specimens *
k‡ lq lM qy, rad qbu, rad qju, rad qu, rad
Hwang S3A19 0.162 0.182 (0.174) 0.327 0.153 0.0079 0.025 0.015 0.0479
Durrani S3A4 0.292 0.287 (0.303) 0.227 0.311 0.0052 0.025 0.015 0.0452
Brooke 4B9 0.324 0.312 (0.333) 0.204 0.348 0.0063 0.025 0.015 0.0463
Xian U5A11 0.356 0.338 (0.358) 0.179 0.387 0.0048 0.025 0.015 0.0448
Xian U3A11 0.415 0.385 (0.391) 0.134 0.458 0.0054 0.025 0.015 0.0454
Dai U1A3 0.588 0.524 (0.500) 0.002 0.666 0.0034 0.025 0.015 0.0434
Tsonos S2A26 0.141 0.161 (0.184) 0.347 0.122 0.0040 0.025 0.010 0.0390
Shiohara L06A28 0.170 0.207 (0.212) 0.303 0.191 0.0035 0.025 0.010 0.0385
Ehsani 4A22 0.215 0.277 (0.281) 0.237 0.296 0.0041 0.025 0.010 0.0391
Kaku 2A23 0.251 0.333 (0.342) 0.184 0.380 0.0040 0.025 0.010 0.0390
Ehsani 2A22 0.291 0.397 (0.391) 0.123 0.476 0.0038 0.025 0.010 0.0388
Chutarat SAA24 0.341 0.474 (0.510) 0.050 0.591 0.0035 0.025 0.010 0.0385
Material and geometric properties are presented in Tables A1 and A2.

ldj = hc for interior connections and ldh for exterior connections.

Values are predictions estimated from Eq. (4a) and (4b) and values inside brackets are test results.

envelope curves, My, Mu, and Mr, were determined from reinforcement details and load conditions were determined
section analysis of the beam cross sections: the nominal from ASCE/SEI 41-06.37
flexural strength Mn was used for My; by using βu = 1.25 and The cyclic curves of the rotational spring elements were
βr = 0.2, Mu and Mr were determined as 1.25My and 0.2My, determined from the properties of Eq. (7) through (12),
respectively. As mentioned, the yield deformation angles θy which were defined as the functions of the energy dissipa-
at EY of the specimens were defined as the sum of the elastic tion ratio κ in Eq. (4a) and (4b). The κ values of the speci-
shear deformation γy of the joint and the yield rotation θby mens are presented in Table 1. Detailed calculations for the
(=0.85εy) of the beam plastic hinge: θy = γy + 0.85εy. The envelope curves and the cyclic curves are presented in the
γy values (0.0014 to 0.0049 rad) were determined by using Appendix D. In Table 1, for instance, the predicted κ of the
the empirical equation proposed by Kim and LaFave49,50 specimen Ehsani 2 was 0.397, which was very close to the
instead of using elaborate nonlinear analysis methods such test result 0.391. For the specimen Chutarat SA, the predicted
as the compression field theory and the softened truss model. κ was 0.474, which was very close to the test result 0.510.
Table 1 presents the θy values of the test specimens. The θy This result indicates that the proposed model predicted the
ranged from 0.0034 to 0.0079 rad, depending on the design test results with reasonable precision.
variables such as concrete strength, beam reinforcement Figures 7 and 8 compare the predicted cyclic responses
yield strength, beam reinforcement ratio, and joint hoop of the interior and exterior connection specimens with the
ratio. The maximum plastic deformation angles θu of the test results. As shown in the figures, the proposed lumped
connection specimens were determined by using Eq. (6): plasticity method using the proposed energy-based hyster-
θu = θbu + θju + θy. Table 1 presents the maximum beam plastic esis model predicted the cyclic responses of the specimens
rotation angles θbu, and the maximum joint shear angles θju with reasonable precision, including the energy dissipation,
of the connection specimens. θbu and θju corresponding to the pinching, and strength and stiffness degradations during

164 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

cyclic loading. In particular, the energy-based hysteresis correlated better with the bond resistance of beam flexural
model was applicable to various cyclic curves, from the bars at the joints, than the joint shear resistance. Thus, the
significantly-pinched cyclic curves with lower κ values energy dissipation ratios κ of interior and exterior connec-
to the less-pinched cyclic curves with higher κ values. In tions were defined as the linear functions of the bond param-
Appendix B, the energy dissipation ratios from the proposed eters of beam flexural bars, (hc/db)(√fc′/fy) and (ldh/db)(√fc′/fy),
cyclic curves and the test results were quantitatively respectively.
compared for the specimens Durrani S3,A4 Xian U5,A11 and 2. To simulate the cyclic responses of interior and exte-
Dai U1.A3 However, in the predictions shown in Fig. 8(d) rior beam-column connections, an energy-based hysteresis
through (f), strength degradation occurred earlier than the model was developed such that the area enclosed by the
test results. The difference between the prediction and the test overall cyclic curve of the connection was the same as the
result is attributed to the underestimation of the maximum energy dissipation predicted using the bond parameters. The
deformation by ASCE/SEI 41-06.37 As mentioned, the unloading/reloading stiffness, pinching, and strength and
present study focused on the energy dissipation ratio, while stiffness degradations under cyclic loading were defined as
the maximum deformation was predicted following ASCE/ the functions of the energy dissipation ratio κ and the loading
SEI 41-06.37 In Fig. 8(b) and (e), the initial stiffness of Shio- history. The predictions of the proposed method correlated
hara L06 and Ehsani 2 was significantly overestimated. This well with the test results of existing interior and exte-
is because Kim and LaFave’s method49,50 underestimated the rior connection specimens. By using the constraint condi-
yield deformation angles θy. In Fig. 7(a), the deformation tion of energy dissipation, the shape and area of the cyclic
of Hwang S3 under unloading was underestimated because load-displacement relationships were predicted without big
ASCE/SEI 41-0637overestimated the maximum deformation. mistakes, which is the advantage of the proposed method.
The application of the proposed model is limited to the
joints with transverse hoops and beam reinforcing bars AUTHOR BIOS
without lap splices at the joint. Further, it is assumed that Tae-Sung Eom is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Architec-
tural Engineering at Dankook University, Gyeonggi-do, South Korea. He
beams show stable flexural behavior without deficiency in received his BE, MS, and PhD in architectural engineering from Seoul
shear strength, and thus the overall cyclic response of the National University, Seoul, South Korea. His research interests include the
connections is affected by the bond-slip damage of the joint analysis and design of reinforced concrete structures.
region and the flexural damage of the beam end, rather than Hyeon-Jong Hwang is an Assistant Professor in the College of Civil Engi-
the shear damage of the beam. In addition, further research neering at Hunan University, Hunan, China. He received his BE, MS, and
is required for the connections with columns subjected to PhD in architectural engineering from Seoul National University.
moderate or high compressive load, because the specimens ACI member Hong-Gun Park is a Professor in the Department of Architec-
analyzed in the present study were mostly free from axial ture & Architectural Engineering at Seoul National University. He received
compressive load. The ranges of the design parameters are his BE and MS in architectural engineering from Seoul National University,
and his PhD in civil engineering from the University of Texas at Austin,
limited to those of existing test specimens that were used Austin, TX. His research interests include the analysis and design of rein-
to develop the proposed model: the column moment-beam forced concrete structures.
moment ratio ΣMnc/ΣMnb ≥ 1.0, the joint shear capacity-
demand ratios 0.5 ≤ Vn/Vu ≤ 4.25, the column depth-beam ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
This research was financially supported by the Basic Science
bar diameter ratios 14.5 ≤ hc/db ≤ 37.5 for interior connec- Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea
tion, and the embedment length-beam bar diameter ratios (NRF), funded by the Ministry of Education, Science, and Technology
9.5 ≤ ldh/db ≤ 28.6 for exterior connection. Regarding other (2012R1A1A1003282), and the Integrated Research Institute of Construc-
tion and Environmental Engineering Seoul National University Research
design parameters, including the reinforcement details of Program, funded by the Ministry of Education & Human Resources Devel-
joints, material and geometric properties of beams, and story opment. The authors are grateful to the authorities for their support.
drift ratio, further research is required.
SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS 1. Meinheit, D. F., and Jirsa, J. O., “Shear Strength of Reinforced
Concrete Beam-Column Joints,” Report No. 77-1, Department of Civil
In the present study, a simplified method to model the Engineering, Structures Research Laboratory, University of Texas at
beam-column connections subjected to cyclic loading was Austin, Austin, TX, 1977.
investigated. By analyzing the cyclic test results of 69 inte- 2. Ehsani, M. R., “Behavior of Exterior Reinforced Concrete Beam to
Column Connections Subjected to Earthquake Type Loading,” Report No.
rior and 63 exterior beam-column connections, the relation- UMEE 82R5, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Michigan,
ships between the bond resistance of beam flexural bars at Ann Arbor, MI, 1982, 275 pp.
the joints and the energy dissipation capacity were quanti- 3. Leon, R. T., “Interior Joints with Variable Anchorage Lengths,”
Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE, V. 115, No. 9, 1989, pp. 2261-
fied. On the basis of the results, an energy-based hysteresis 2275. doi: 10.1061/(ASCE)0733-9445(1989)115:9(2261)
model was proposed by modifying the backbone curves of 4. Soleimani, D.; Popov, E. P.; and Bertero, V. V., “Hysteretic Behavior
ASCE/SEI 41-0637 and the Pinching 4 model of OpenSees.38 of Reinforced Concrete Beam-Column Subassemblages,” ACI Journal
Proceedings, V. 76, No. 11, Nov. 1979, pp. 1179-1196.
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the test results. The major conclusions of the present study Farmington Hills, MI, 2011, 503 pp.
6. Joint ACI-ASCE Committee 352, “Recommendations for Design of Beam-
are summarized as follows. Column Connections in Monolithic Reinforced Concrete Structures (ACI 352R-
1. The energy dissipation capacity (or the energy dissi- 02),” American Concrete Institute, Farmington Hills, MI, 2002, 38 pp.
pation per load cycle) of interior and exterior connections

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 165

7. Kitayama, K.; Otani, S.; and Aoyama, H., “Earthquake Resistant 30. Sivaselvan, M. V., and Reinhorn, A. M., “Hysteretic Models
Design Criteria For Reinforced Concrete Interior Beam-Column Joints,” for Deteriorating Inelastic Structures,” Journal of Engineering
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pp. 315-326. (ASCE)0733-9399(2000)126:6(633)
8. Hakuto, S.; Park, R.; and Tanaka, H., “Effect of Deterioration of Bond 31. Eom, T.; Park, H.; and Kang, S., “Energy-Based Cyclic Force-
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12. Lowes, L. N., and Altoontash, A., “Modeling Reinforced-Concrete 34. Sucuoğlu, H., and Erberik, A., “Energy-Based Hysteresis and
Beam-Column Joints Subjected to Cyclic Loading,” Journal of Structural Damage Models for Deteriorating Systems,” Earthquake Engineering &
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(ASCE)0733-9445(2003)129:12(1686) 35. Kwak, H., and Kim, S., “Nonlinear Analysis of RC Beam Subjected to
13. Elmorsi, M.; Kianoush, M. R.; and Tso, W. K., “Modeling Bond- Cyclic Loading,” Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE, V. 127, No. 12,
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l99-085 Incorporate Strength and Stiffness Deterioration,” Earthquake Engineering
14. Fleury, F.; Reynouard, J. M.; and Merabet, O., “Multi-Component & Structural Dynamics, V. 34, No. 12, 2005, pp. 1489-1511. doi: 10.1002/
Model of Reinforced Concrete Joints for Cyclic Loading,” Journal of Engi- eqe.495
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(ASCE)0733-9399(2000)126:8(804) American Society of Civil Engineers, Reston, VA, 2007.
15. Altoontash, A., and Deierlein, G. D., “A Versatile Model for Beam- 38. Mazzoni, S.; McKenna, F.; Scott, M. H.; and Fenves, G. L.,
Column Joints,” ASCE Structures Congress, Seattle, WA, 2003. “OpenSees Command Language Manual,” University of California,
16. Mitra, N., and Lowes, L. N., “Evaluation, Calibration, and Verifi- Berkeley, Berkeley, CA, 2006.
cation of A Reinforced Concrete Beam-Column Joint Model,” Journal 39. ACI Committee 374, “Acceptance Criteria for Moment Frames
of Structural Engineering, ASCE, V. 133, No. 1, 2007, pp. 105-120. doi: Based on Structural Testing and Commentary (ACI 374.1-05),” American
10.1061/(ASCE)0733-9445(2007)133:1(105) Concrete Institute, Farmington Hills, MI, 2005, 9 pp.
17. Uma, S. R., and Prasad, A. M., “Seismic Evaluation of R/C 40. Priestley, M. J. N., “Performance Based Seismic Design,” Proceed-
Moment Resisting Frame Structures Considering Joint Flexibility,” 13th ings, 12th WCEE, No. 2831, Auckland, New Zealand, 2000, pp. 1-22.
World Conference on Earthquake Engineering Conference Proceedings, 41. Park, H., and Eom, T., “A Simplified Method for Estimating the
No. 2799, Vancouver, BC, Canada, 2004. Amount of Energy Dissipated by Flexure-Dominated Reinforced Concrete
18. El-Metwally, S. E., and Chen, W. F., “Moment-Rotation Modeling of Members for Moderate Cyclic Deformations,” Earthquake Spectra, V. 22,
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V. 85, No. 4, July-Aug. 1988, pp. 384-394. 42. Eom, T., and Park, H., “Elongation of Reinforced Concrete
19. Alath, S., and Kunnath, S. K., “Modeling Inelastic Shear Deforma- Members Subjected to Cyclic Loading,” Journal of Structural Engi-
tion in RC Beam-Column Joints,” Proceedings of the 10th Conference on neering, ASCE, V. 136, No. 9, 2010, pp. 1044-1054. doi: 10.1061/(ASCE)
Engineering Mechanics, University of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder, CO, ST.1943-541X.0000201
1995, pp. 822-825. 43. Eom, T., and Park, H., “Evaluation of Shear Deformation and Energy
20. Kunnath, S. K., “Macromodel-Based Nonlinear Analysis of Dissipation of RC Members Subjected to Cyclic Loading,” ACI Structural
Reinforced Concrete Structures,” Structural Engineering Worldwide, Journal, V. 110, No. 5, Sept-Oct. 2013, pp. 845-854.
No. T101-5, Elsevier Science, Ltd., Oxford, England, 1998. 44. Paulay, T., and Priestley, M. J. N., Seismic Design of Reinforced
21. Ghobarah, A., and Biddah, A., “Dynamic Analysis of Rein- Concrete and Masonry Buildings, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., New York,
forced Concrete Frames Including Joint Shear Deformation,” Engi- 1992, pp. 768.
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S0141-0296(98)00052-2 Column Connection Behavior in Reinforced Concrete Frames,” ATC & SEI
22. Anderson, M.; Lehman, D.; and Stanton, J., “A Cyclic Shear Conference on Improving the Seismic Performance of Existing Buildings
Stress-Strain Model for Joints Without Transverse Reinforcement,” and Other Structures, San Francisco, CA, 2009, pp. 560-571.
Engineering Structures, V. 30, No. 4, 2008, pp. 941-954. doi: 10.1016/j. 46. Shin, M., and LaFave, J. M., “Modeling of Cyclic Joint Shear
engstruct.2007.02.005 Deformation Contributions in RC Beam-Column Connections to Overall
23. Birely, A. C.; Lowes, L. N.; and Lehman, D. E., “A Model for The Frame Behavior,” Structural Engineering & Mechanics, V. 18, No. 5, 2004,
Practical Nonlinear Analysis of Reinforced-Concrete Frames Including pp. 645-669. doi: 10.12989/sem.2004.18.5.645
Joint Flexibility,” Engineering Structures, V. 34, 2012, pp. 455-465. doi: 47. Vecchio, F. J., and Collins, M. P., “The Modified Compression Field
10.1016/j.engstruct.2011.09.003 Theory for Reinforced Concrete Elements Subjected to Shear,” ACI Struc-
24. Magliulo, G., and Ramasco, R., “Seismic Response of Three-Dimen- tural Journal, V. 83, No. 2, Mar.-Apr. 1986, pp. 219-231.
sional R/C Multi-Storey Frame Building Under Uni- and Bi-Directional 48. Biddah, A., and Ghobarah, A., “Modeling of Shear Deformation
Input Ground Motion,” Earthquake Engineering & Structural Dynamics, and Bond Slip in Reinforced Concrete Joints,” Structural Engineering &
V. 36, No. 12, 2007, pp. 1641-1657. doi: 10.1002/eqe.709 Mechanics, V. 7, No. 4, 1999, pp. 413-432. doi: 10.12989/sem.1999.7.4.413
25. Clough, R. W., “Effects of Stiffness Degradation on Earthquake 49. Kim, J., and LaFave, J. M., “Joint Shear Behavior of Reinforced
Ductility Requirement,” Rep. No. 6614, Struct. and Mat. Res., University Concrete Beam-Column Connections Subjected to Seismic Lateral
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26. Otani, S., “Inelastic Analysis of R/C Frame Structures,” Journal of Series, NSEL-020, 2009.
the Structural Division, ASCE, V. 100, No. 7, 1974, pp. 1433-1449. 50. LaFave, J. M., and Kim, J., “Joint Shear Behavior Prediction for
27. Saatcioglu, M., “Modeling Hysteretic Force-Deformation Relation- RC Beam-Column Connections,” International Journal of Concrete
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Structures Inelastic Response and Design, SP-127, S. K. Ghosh, ed., Amer- IJCSM.2011.5.1.057
ican Concrete Institute, Farmington Hills, MI, 1991, pp. 153-198. 51. Fischinger, M.; Kramar, M.; and Isaković, T., “Cyclic Response of
28. Takeda, T.; Sozen, M. A.; and Nielsen, N. N., “Reinforced Concrete Slender RC Columns Typical of Precast Industrial Buildings,” Bulletin of
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29. Song, J. K., and Pincheira, J. A., “Spectral Displacement Demands 52. FEMA, 440, “Improvement of Nonlinear Static Seismic Analysis Proce-
of Stiffness- and Strength-Degrading Systems,” Earthquake Spectra, V. 16, dures,” Federal Emergency Management Agency, Washington, DC, 2005.
No. 4, 2000, pp. 817-851. doi: 10.1193/1.1586141

166 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Title No. 112-S15

Ductility Enhancement in Beam-Column Connections

Using Hybrid Fiber-Reinforced Concrete
by Dhaval Kheni, Richard H. Scott, S. K. Deb, and Anjan Dutta

In the first part of this study, 36 prisms made of plain concrete, tested four full-scaled exterior precast beam-column joint
steel fiber-reinforced concrete, and hybrid fiber-reinforced concrete under cyclic loading in order to identify a suitable tech-
(HyFRC) were tested under quasi-static load to account for variability nique for connecting precast beam and column components.
in fiber specifications. Two types of steel fibers with hooked ends and Nie et al.8 tested six beam-column joints comprising three
two types of polymer fibers—namely, polypropylene and polyester—
interior and three corner joints to develop a new connec-
were used. The HyFRC prisms exhibited approximately 10 to 15 times
tion system for concrete-filled steel tube composite column
the enhancement in toughness compared to similar plain concrete
prisms up to failure. In the second part of the experimental program, and RC beams. Park and Mosalam9 carried out both exper-
four types of beam-column connections were tested under cyclic imental and analytical studies to develop a shear strength
loading. Test results established that the addition of hybrid fiber in the model and a moment-rotation relationship (backbone curve)
joint region of the specimens is effective in enhancing their displace- of unreinforced corner beam-column joint. It was observed
ment ductility and energy dissipation capacity. Detailed measurement that consideration of the flexibilities for unreinforced joints
of strain distributions along the main reinforcement of the specimens is important for seismic assessment of older-type RC build-
showed that there was substantial reduction in strain levels in the ings with unreinforced joints.
specimens with HyFRC in the joint region. The main thrust of the present investigation was to enhance
the displacement ductility of the beam-column connections
Keywords: beam-column; cyclic loading; damage; gauged bar; hybrid
fiber-reinforced concrete; toughness. rather than seek increases in strength. It is known that the
ductile steel fibers in concrete continue to carry stresses
INTRODUCTION beyond matrix cracking.10 However, the effect of steel fibers
During past devastating earthquakes, it has been noted on the compressive strength of concrete is variable. The range
that beam-column connections act as one of the weakest of increase was from negligible in most cases to 23% for
links in moment-resisting reinforced concrete (RC) framed concrete containing 2% by volume of fiber.11 The compres-
structures. Behavior of reinforced concrete frame structures sion stress-strain curves for steel fiber-reinforced concrete
during earthquakes throughout the world has highlighted (SFRC) showed that using steel fibers does not necessarily
the consequences of poor performance of beam-column increase the peak stress dramatically, but the post-peak
connections and it has been observed that exterior connec- descending slope of SFRC is significantly less steep than
tions suffer more in comparison to interior ones. For some that of plain concrete. Ultimate flexural strength generally
years, the Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati has increases in relation to the fiber volume fraction and aspect
been involved in a major research project to investigate ratio. Concentrations less than 0.5 volume percent of low
seismic effects on exterior reinforced concrete beam-column aspect fibers have negligible effect on static strength proper-
connections because large parts of India lie in highly active ties. However, the gradual and multi-scale nature of concrete
seismic zones, making issues related to the failure of these implies that different types of fibers may be combined to get
connections of particular relevance.1,2 Some of the important enhanced response from the structure. The use of both steel
studies on beam-column connections are reviewed in this fibers (macrofibers) and polymer fibers (microfibers) was
section. Paulay et al.3 examined the behavior of beam- found to be very effective as both microcracks and macro-
column joints under seismic actions. The existence of two cracks are arrested, leading to enhanced impact strength
shear-resisting mechanisms—one involving joint shear and toughness.12 Investigations were carried out12-14 using
reinforcement and the other a linear concrete strut—were different types of steel and polypropylene fibers to determine
postulated and the effects of reversed cyclic loading on these the optimal volume fraction of these fibers in concrete. There
mechanisms, in both elastic and inelastic range of response, is good enhancement in displacement ductility and energy
were discussed. Durrani and Wight4 reported results of an absorption capacity of a beam having hybrid fiber-reinforced
experimental investigation on the performance of an interior concrete (HyFRC), where the optimum ratio of steel to poly-
beam-column joint under earthquake-type loading. Abdel- olefin fiber is 0.6:0.4.15 However, incorporation of steel
Fattah and Wight5 studied the relocation of plastic hinging
zones for earthquake-resistant design of reinforced concrete ACI Structural Journal, V. 112, No. 2, March-April 2015.
MS No. S-2013-286.R2, doi: 10.14359/51687405, received June 21, 2014, and
(RC) buildings. Chutarat and Aboutaha6 investigated a solu- reviewed under Institute publication policies. Copyright © 2015, American Concrete
tion for relocating potential beam plastic hinge zones by the Institute. All rights reserved, including the making of copies unless permission is
obtained from the copyright proprietors. Pertinent discussion including author’s
use of headed bars in the exterior RC joints. Joshi et al.7 closure, if any, will be published ten months from this journal’s date if the discussion
is received within four months of the paper’s print publication.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 167

Table 1—Details of fibers
Length, in. Diameter, in. Density, lb/ft3 Aspect ratio Tensile strength,
Types of fibers (mm) (mm) Shape (kg/m3) (length/diameter) Classification ksi (MPa)
0.47 to 0.71 0.0012 to 0.0014 57.92 to 72.4
Polyester (PE) Straight 85.625 (1370) 400 to 500 Micro
(12 to 18) (0.03 to 0.035) (400 to 500)
0.0012 to 0.0014 57.92 to 72.4
Polypropylene (PP) 0.47 (12) Straight 56.875 (910) 400 to 500 Micro
(0.03 to 0.035) (400 to 500)
Steel (SF1) 2.36 (60) 0.0296 (0.75) 80 Macro 177.37 (1225)

Steel (SF2) 1.38 (35) 0.0216 (0.55) 64 Macro 159.27 (1100)

fiber decreases the workability considerably. This situation gation was needed to arrive at the best possible combination
adversely affects the consolidation of the fresh mixture and of steel and polymer fibers and their volume fraction due to
the fiber volume at which this situation is reached depends likely variations in the locally available product used for the
on the length and diameter of the fiber. An investigation had experimental investigation. The combinations showing best
been carried out16 to find the proper dosage of plasticizer possible enhancement in toughness as compared to a similar
using different combinations of fibers. Parra-Montesinos17 plain concrete specimen up to failure were selected for use
presented an overview of applications of tensile strain- in beam-column connections.
hardening, high-performance fiber-reinforced cement As part of the extensive main test program, strain-gauged
composites (HPFRCCs) for earthquake-resistant design U-bars manufactured at Durham University, UK, were
of structural elements such as beam-column connections, incorporated as part of the main beam reinforcement in four
low-rise walls, and coupling beams. Numerous types of beam-column specimens. The intention was to use the very
FRCCs reinforced with steel, polymeric, glass, and carbon comprehensive strain information generated by these bars
fibers were evaluated for structural applications. With regard to give detailed comparisons of the displacement ductility
to twisted steel fibers, high-performance tensile response and energy dissipation in the three specimens with different
could be achieved with a 1.5 to 2.0% volume fraction. fiber combinations and one conventional reinforced concrete
Ultra-high-molecular-weight polyethylene in volume frac- specimen. Detailed measurement of strain distribution along
tions ranging between 1.5 and 2.0% was found to exhibit the reinforcement of the specimens would also show the
excellent tensile response with multiple cracking patterns. extent of the reductions in strain levels in the main reinforce-
Zohrevand and Mirmiran18 used two promising materials ment in the specimens with HyFRC in the joint region.
to develop a new hybrid system. Engineered cementitious
composites (ECCs) allow optimization of the microstructure RESEARCH SIGNIFICANCE
of the material to achieve ultra-high strength, ductility, and It is expected that use of HyFRC in the joint region of
fracture toughness, while fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) beam-column connections would delay crack formation
tubes help to eliminate the need for lateral steel reinforce- and crack growth, which in turn would reduce strain level
ment for confinement and shear in RC columns. Kumar in the reinforcing bars. This would result in enhancement
et al.19 carried out detailed studies to improve seismic perfor- of displacement ductility of the connections due to delayed
mance of bridge columns using self-consolidating HyFRC bond-slip failure. In this study, comprehensive strain
(SC-HyFRC) composite. It was observed that SC-HyFRC measurements were also made for objective assessment of
columns exhibited better damage resistance and superior reduction in strain in main reinforcing bars and the measured
load-carrying capacity in spite of a 50% reduction in trans- reinforcing bar strain data were observed to be correlated to
verse reinforcement. Bedirhanoglu et al.20 investigated the the enhancement of displacement ductility and energy dissi-
seismic behavior of deficient RC exterior beam-column pation of the beam-column specimens using HyFRC.
joints constructed with low-strength concrete and plain
reinforcing bars before and after retrofitting with prefab- TEST FOR SELECTION OF FIBERS
ricated high-performance fiber-reinforced cementitious A detailed experimental exercise was carried out for the
composite (HPERCC) panels. Tests showed that retrofitting selection of the type and volume fraction of the fibers to be
with prefabricated HPFRCC panels provided considerable used in the concrete for the enhancement of toughness.21
enhancement, both in strength and in displacement capacity, Steel fibers of two different aspect ratio (length/diameter)
provided that the panels were properly anchored to the joint synthetic polymer fibers, such as polyester and polypro-
core and the slippage of the beam longitudinal bars in the pylene, were used in the concrete mixtures, and the geomet-
joint core was prevented. Thus, while the existing literature rical and mechanical properties are shown in Table 1.
clearly demonstrated that the use of hybrid fibers led to the Thirty-six specimens of size 5.9 x 5.9 x 27.56 in. (150 x
development of improved energy dissipation and a more 150 x 700 mm) were cast for the evaluation of toughness
ductile mode of failure of the specimen, a detailed investi- of the HyFRC element having different types of fibers with

168 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Table 2—Volume fractions of fibers used and average toughness of prisms
Types of fibers (volume fraction, %)
Average toughness,
No. of combination SF1 SF2 PP PE Total volume fraction, % kip-in. (kN-mm)
1 (plain concrete) — — — — — 0.221 (24.949)
2 0.5 0.5 — — 1.00 2.213 (250.039)
3 0.4 0.4 0.15 — 0.95 3.197 (361.291)
4 0.4 0.4 0.2 — 1.00 2.486 (280.991)
5 0.5 0.5 0.15 — 1.15 3.445 (389.317)
6 0.5 0.5 0.2 — 1.20 2.849 (321.982)
7 0.6 0.6 0.15 — 1.35 3.225 (364.467)
8 0.4 0.4 — 0.15 0.95 2.713 (306.551)
9 0.4 0.4 — 0.2 1.00 2.720 (307.375)
10 0.5 0.5 — 0.15 1.15 2.638 (298.071)
11 0.5 0.5 — 0.2 1.20 2.706 (305.843)
12 0.6 0.6 — 0.15 1.35 2.657 (300.253)

different volume fractions. Twelve different combinations Specimen 2: SF1 (0.5%) + SF2 (0.5%) + PP (0.15%)—
of the mixtures were considered with three samples for steel fibers + polypropylene
each combination. The target strength of concrete used for Specimen 3: SF1 (0.5%) + SF2 (0.5%) + PE (0.15%)—
the plain as well as all the specimens with different types steel fibers + polyester
of fibers is 4.35 ksi (30 MPa). Table 2 shows volume frac- Specimen 4: SF1 (0.5%) + SF2 (0.5%)—steel fibers only
tion and type of fibers used for each combination along with The fiber contents shown are percentage by total volume
average toughness obtained from the test. Flexural toughness of the concrete. Specimens 2 and 3, containing two types of
tests were carried out according to ASTM C1609/C1609M.22 fiber (steel and polymer) were termed “hybrid” specimens.
Prisms were tested in third-point loading with middle third Concrete with the aforementioned combinations was placed
of 7.87 in. (200 mm) under constant flexural demand. in the D-region (ACI 318, Section A.123) only, whereas
Displacement control test was performed and, hence, the test normal concrete was used in the B-region (ACI 318,
could be carried out to track the post-crack behavior until Section A.123), representing remaining parts of the specimen
almost complete loss of load-carrying capacity of the prism as shown in Fig. 1(a).
specimens. The area under the load-displacement curve was The four beam-column connection specimens were
used to evaluate the total strain energy stored or equivalent designed following the provisions of ductile detailing
toughness of the specimen. according to IS 1392024 and satisfying the condition of
The 12 combinations (Table 2) considered in the present strong column-weak beam flexural design. Columns had a
study demonstrated that the best toughness was achieved 7.87 x 7.87 in. (200 x 200 mm) cross section, and beams
with a combination of steel fibers (two different aspect were 9.45 in. (240 mm) deep by 7.87 in. (200 mm) wide.
ratios) with 0.5 (SF1) and 0.5 (SF2) volume fraction (%) Confining reinforcement according to the provisions of
and 0.15% polypropylene by volume fraction. The enhance- IS 1392024 was provided in the joint region. Specimens were
ment in toughness was found to be about 15 times that of cast using concrete with a target strength of 4.35 ksi (30 MPa)
the plain concrete specimen. HyFRC, comprising two basic for 5.9 in. (150 mm) cube. The concrete mixture proportion
types of fibers (steel fibers and synthetic polymer fibers was 1:1.84:3.18 with a water-cement ratio (w/c) of 0.59,
[polypropylene, polyester]), performed very well in general, and the observed standard deviation in cube test results was
as a substantial improvement in toughness was observed. All approximately 0.36 ksi (2.5 MPa). Portland cement Type IP
these specimens were also observed to undergo much higher as per ASTM C595/C595M25 was used and the maximum
ultimate displacements compared to plain concrete speci- aggregate size was 0.63 in. (16 mm). The reinforcement was
mens, thus leading to a more ductile type of failure pattern. equivalent to UK Grade B500C,26 which has a yield stress
of 72.46 ksi (500 MPa), and elongation at ultimate load is
DETAILS OF BEAM-COLUMN CONNECTIONS 7.5%. Details of the specimens and the reinforcement layout
To ascertain the efficacy of different fibers and their combi- are shown in Fig. 1(b). The beam reinforcement from top
nations in enhancing ductility in beam-column connections, (two side bars of 0.39 in. [10 mm] diameter) was bent down-
four different cases were considered. The beam-column ward in the beam-column connection up to the requirement
specimens considered for the experimental investigations of development length. Similarly, beam reinforcement from
were of a two-thirds scale. The fiber contents in the four bottom (two side bars of 0.39 in. [10 mm] diameter) was
strain-gauged specimens were determined as follows: bent upward in the beam-column connection. The middle
Specimen 1: No fibers—used as a control specimen bar of the beam (0.47 in. [12 mm] diameter) was the gauged
U-bar. Each U-bar contained 31 electric resistance strain

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 169

Fig. 1—Beam-column connections. (Note: Dimensions in mm; 1 mm = 0.0394 in.)
gauges installed within a central longitudinal duct and was ator with a loading capacity of ±36.23 ksi (250 kN) and
positioned as shown in Fig. 2. Bars of this type have been ±4.92 in. (125 mm) maximum stroke. The displacement
used in a number of previous investigations at Durham history as shown in Fig. 5 was followed with three push-
University and full details of their manufacture can be pull cycles being applied at each increment of amplitude and
found elsewhere.27,28 each cycle taking 40 seconds to complete. The importance
of loading sequence has not yet been established through
TEST PROCEDURE research, and the sequence of large-versus-small excursions
The schematic diagram of the testing arrangement is in an element of a structure subjected to a severe earthquake
shown in Fig. 3, and a photograph of the test rig is shown in does not follow any consistent pattern. The number of the
Fig. 4. The column was placed in a horizontal position with inelastic excursions increases with a decrease in the period
the beam vertical. An axial load of 10% of the gross capacity of the structural system, with the rate of increase being very
of column was applied to the column to simulate gravity high for short-period systems. It is to be recognized that
loading. To simulate support condition at both ends of the cyclic demands for a structure depend on a great number
column, special roller supports were fabricated. Cyclic load of variables and a unique loading history will always be a
was applied to the beam by a servo-controlled MTS actu- compromise.29 Thus, a multi-cycle loading history was used

170 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 2—Strain gauge layout in gauged bar. (Note: Dimensions in mm; 1 mm = 0.0394 in.)

Fig. 5—Displacement history. (Note: 1 mm = 0.0394 in.)

Table 3—Strength of concrete in beam-column
Compressive cube Indirect tensile
Specimen Fiber types strength, ksi (MPa) strength, ksi (MPa)
Fig. 3—Test arrangement.
1 None 4.67 (32.22) 0.585 (4.04)
2 SF1/SF2/PP 4.50 (31.11) 0.847 (5.85)
3 SF1/SF2/PE 4.89 (33.77) 0.715 (4.94)
4 SF1/SF2 4.95 (34.21) 0.607 (4.19)

was influenced by the addition of fibers, which, however,

was improved by the addition of a plasticizer. If improperly
produced, HyFRC may entrap excessive air and may thus
possess low density. Hence, some variation in strength may
also be attributed to variability in workability of HyFRC.
However, the improvement in rate of decay of load from the
peak level and toughness in HyFRC specimens are consis-
tently observed to be very significant, and this is true even
when the compressive strength of HyFRC is lower than that
Fig. 4—View of actual test setup. of plain concrete. Further, it is observed that the difference
in the values of indirect tensile strength between Specimen 1
in the present work. Tests were stopped when the degrada-
(without fibers) and Specimen 4 (with steel fibers) is not
tion in load-carrying capacity was in the range of 50 to 60%.
significant. In the case of steel fiber-reinforced concrete,
Further, the damage pattern in the connection zone was also
the response is generally linear until the tensile stress
monitored and the test was stopped when the damage in the
reaches a value slightly higher than the tensile strength of
connection zone was serious enough to cause concern about
the plain concrete. The fiber concrete cracks at that point.
the safety of the testing equipment.
The maximum post-cracking strength can either be less
or greater than the cracking stress, which depends on the
volume fraction as well as aspect ratio of steel fibers used.30
Table 3 lists 28-day concrete strengths for the four beam-
While higher volume fraction and aspect ratio is likely to
column specimens. It is observed that the compressive
show higher enhancement in tensile strength, the adopted
cube strength of Specimen 1 without fibers is slightly more
volume fraction of 1% and aspect ratio of 60 to 80 could
than that of Specimen 2 with steel fibers and PP fibers. The
actually achieve a marginal improvement in tensile strength.
compressive cube strength of specimen with polymer fiber
However, the improvement in rate of decay of load from the
may be less than that of plain concrete.11 The workability

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 171

Table 4—Test result of different beam-column specimens
Peak load, kip (kN)
Specimen Pull Push displacement, in. (mm) Drift, % Toughness, kip-in. (kN-mm)
1 8.75 (38.935) 7.73 (34.402) 1.84 (46.67) 5.18 236.55 (26,711)
2 8.69 (38.645) 9.64 (42.819) 2.76 (70.0) 7.77 688.029 (77,691)
3 7.24 (32.212) 6.863 (30.533) 2.76 (70.0) 7.77 593.66 (67,035)
4 6.64 (29.537) 7.47 (33.273) 2.43 (61.67) 6.85 410.855 (46,393)

Fig. 6—Comparison of damage in joint region.

peak level and toughness in HyFRC specimens are consis- behavior is obtained by comparing the load-displacement
tently observed to be very significant, and this is true even hysteresis loops as shown in Fig. 7. All four specimens
when the compressive strength of HyFRC is lower than that exhibited displacement ductility, but the superior perfor-
of plain concrete. mance of the specimens with fibers is indicated by their
At early load stages, all four specimens performed in a higher final displacements and their reduced strength degra-
similar fashion with initial cracking in both the beam and the dation as displacements increased. Direct comparisons can
connection zones being followed by a plastic hinge forming be made by comparing the envelopes of their hysteresis
in the beam close to the column face. This was as expected curves, which are generated by joining all the peak values
in view of the similarity of their geometry and the design of the capacity corresponding to first cycle for each of the
of their reinforcement layout. However, as beam displace- displacement amplitudes. Envelope curves for all four
ments increased, real differences became apparent between specimens are shown in Fig. 8, which reinforces the afor-
the behavior of Specimen 1 (no fibers) and the other three mentioned observations. Specimen 1 (no fibers) achieved a
specimens (with fibers), as indicated by the maximum final displacement of 1.837 in. (46.67 mm) with significant
displacements listed in Table 4. Figure 6 shows photographs load reduction as this displacement was approached. It is
of the connection zones after the final displacement, and the worth mentioning that the damage pattern and load-carrying
relative contribution of three selected fiber combinations in capacities of Specimen 1 were in agreement with test results
controlling degradation of the connection zone is immedi- on similar specimens as part of the ongoing test program
ately apparent. The addition of polymer fibers was partic- at IIT Guwahati.31 Both Specimens 3 and 4 performed
ularly effective. A more detailed comparison of specimen noticeably better, but Specimen 3 was slightly superior

172 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 7—Load-displacement hysteresis loops. (Note: 1 kN = 0.225 kip; 1 mm = 0.0394 in.)
as it achieved a final displacement of 2.76 in. (70.0 mm)
compared to 2.43 in. (61.67 mm) of Specimen 4. Specimen 2
clearly outperformed the other three specimens with its final
displacement of 2.76 in. (70.0 mm) coupled to a maximum
load of approximately 5.8 ksi (40.0 kN), which was compa-
rable with that for Specimen 1 (control specimen) and better
than the values for Specimens 3 and 4. Table 4 shows the
ultimate load carried by different specimens as obtained
from experimental investigation. Values of damage index by
Park and Ang32 for all four specimens are presented in Fig. 9
for comparison reasons. Different parameters involved
in the evaluation of damage index were estimated as per
Karayannis et al.33 From these results it can be inferred that
the Specimen 2 presented a lowest damage factor, while
Specimen 1 showed highest during the course of loading.
Specimen 3 had a relatively lower damage index than Spec-
imen 4 did. Further, Fig. 10 demonstrates the contribution
of fibers in the test specimens in terms of nominal principal
Fig. 8—Envelope curve for beam-column specimens. (Note:
tensile stresses values developed in the beam-column joint
1 kN = 0.225 kip; 1 mm = 0.0394 in.)
regions.29 From this figure it is construed that though the
developed nominal principal tensile stresses of all joints tensile stress indicate the influence of fibers in enhancing the
are not substantially different, the decay in stress for Spec- seismic performance of these specimens.
imen 1 is much more significant than all other specimens. The observation related to displacement ductility and
Specimen 2 and 3 also presented flatter stress patterns than cumulative energy dissipation of all the four specimens are
Specimen 4. Thus, both damage index and nominal principal discussed in detail to demonstrate the significance of using
HyFRC in the D-region of a beam-column connection.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 173

Fig. 11—Cumulative energy dissipation of beam-column
specimens. (Note: 1 kN = 0.225 kip; 1 mm = 0.0394 in.)
Fig. 9—Comparisons of the Park and Ang32 damage indexes
of the tested specimens.

Fig. 12—Procedures for displacement ductility calculation.

Fig. 10—Nominal principal tensile stresses developed (Note: 1 kN = 0.225 kip; 1 mm = 0.0394 in.)
in beam-column joint region. (Note: 1 MPa = 0.145 ksi;
1 mm = 0.0394 in.) section between two straight lines drawn on the envelope
curve. The first line is obtained by extending the line joining
Cumulative energy dissipation the origin and the point on envelope curve corresponding
Cumulative energy dissipation is calculated as the area to 50% of ultimate load-carrying capacity, while the second
under the load-displacement hysteresis loops, which is the line is the horizontal line corresponding to 80% of ultimate
measure of toughness of the specimen before failure. Tough- load-carrying capacity. Ultimate displacement corresponds
ness values for all the four specimen types are shown in to the point of intersection between the horizontal line corre-
Table 4 and it is immediately clear that the combination SF1/ sponding to 80% of ultimate load carrying capacity and the
SF2/PP of appropriate volume fraction has tremendous poten- envelope curve at the far end. The displacement ductility
tial for use in beam-column connections in seismic zones for was calculated as the ratio of maximum displacement to
the enhancement of ductile behavior. Figure 11 shows the the yield displacement, and the values are listed in Table 5.
cumulative energy dissipation by all the specimens. Specimen Specimen 2 showed the maximum displacement ductility,
2 has the maximum energy dissipation capacity, whereas the while the control specimen had the least and was worse than
control specimen (Specimen 1) has much less capacity to any of the other three fiber-reinforced specimens.
store dissipated energy. The results show the sequence of the
performance of all the specimens as Observation on reinforcement strain data
Detailed data pertaining to reinforcement strains were
Specimen 2 (best) > Specimen 3 > Specimen 4 > obtained from the strain-gauged U-bars. The distributions
Specimen 1 (worst) are plotted along a straightened form of the bar with Gauge 1
(top leg) at the left-hand end and Gauge 31 (bottom leg) at
Displacement ductility the right-hand end. Strains are plotted by considering tensile
Displacement ductility, which is the ratio of ultimate strains as positive. At low displacement levels, the reinforce-
displacement to yield displacement, was calculated for all ment was behaving elastically with peak strains occurring
specimens from the respective envelope curves according at the column face due to flexural cracking. There was also
to the procedure proposed by Shannag and Alhassan.34 a degree of symmetry between distributions for the push
Figure 12 shows (using the results for Specimen 1) the neces- and pull directions of loading, as would be expected from
sary construction for estimating beam tip displacements the symmetrical reinforcement layout. As displacements
under yield and ultimate conditions. As shown in this figure, increased, however, tensile stresses spread further into the
the yield displacement is calculated as the point of inter-

174 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Table 5—Displacement ductility of different beam-
column specimens
Specimen ∆y, in. (mm) ∆u, in. (mm) ∆u/∆y
1 0.172 (4.375) 1.044 (26.5) 6.057
2 0.125 (3.165) 1.826 (46.335) 14.640
3 0.156 (3.950) 1.793 (45.5) 11.519
4 0.210 (5.330) 1.834 (46.58) 8.739

connection zone until the entirety of the U-bar in the connec-

tion zone was in tension for both the push and pull loading
directions. Finally, the reinforcement yielded, leading to the
development of large residual strains. This behavior, which
was observed in all four specimens, was consistent with results
from beam-column connection tests performed by Scott.35
Specimen 1 showed the appearance of the first crack
at the beam-column face at a displacement of ±0.131 in.
(3.33 mm). The cracks in the other three specimens also
started approximately at the same location and displace-
ment level. The strain distributions in all three specimens
are shown in Fig. 13. The maximum value of strain in
Specimen 1 was marginally higher than those in the other
three specimens. Specimen 1 was tested up to a maximum
displacement of ±1.837 in. (46.67 mm) and the development
of deep crack along the beam-column interface could be
observed; the beam was observed to rotate about this plane
during the final stages of the experiment. Distributions of
strain for displacement of ±1.837 in. (46.67 mm) are shown
for all the specimens in Fig. 14, where the magnitudes of
peak strains indicate improved performance of specimens
with fiber compared to the control specimen. At displace-
ments of 1.837 in. (46.67 mm)—the largest displacement
sustained by all four specimens—peak strains were approx-
imately (as there was considerable creep) 21,420, 6110,
9900, and 13,300 microstrain for Specimens 1 to 4, respec-
tively. Increasing displacements led to increased strains in
Specimens 2 to 4. The data indicated that the addition of
fibers to the concrete mixture reduced the strain level in rein-
forcing bars required to achieve a given displacement, with
hybrid Specimens 2 and 3 proving more effective than Spec-
imen 4, which had steel fibers only. Specimens 2 and 3 were
tested up to ±2.76 in. (70 mm), while Specimen 4 could be
tested up to ±2.43 in. (61.67 mm). The distributions of strain
for the displacement of ±2.43 in. (61.67 mm) are shown for
Specimens 2 to 4 in Fig. 15. Thus, it is again observed that
fibers are very effective in arresting microcracks as well
as macrocracks and led to the growth of relatively lower
order of strain. The strain values were observed to gradually
increase near the connection zone, indicating the develop-
ment of plastic hinges. The magnitude of maximum strains
for Specimen 2 is again observed to be the least (Fig. 15)
and, hence, a HyFRC Specimen 2 is likely to be more effi-
cient under seismic loading. Fig. 13—U-bar strains at 0.131 in. (3.33 mm) displacement.
Overall, adding fibers gave increased displacement (Note: 1 mm = 0.0394 in.)
ductility coupled with reduced reinforcement strains. It polyester). Further, hybrid fibers (steel and polymer fibers)
may further be noted that polypropylene has better ulti- are better than the use of only steel fiber, as the inclusion
mate elongation as compared to polyester fibers. Thus, it is of steel fibers in the concrete mixture is an effective way of
observed that the performance of Specimen 2 (with poly- reducing macrocracking, while polymer fibers are very good
propylene) was relatively better than Specimen 3 (with

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 175

Fig. 15—U-bar strains at 2.43 in. (61.17 mm) displacement.
(Note: 1 mm = 0.0394 in.)
be a particularly effective way of limiting connection zone
degradation (Fig. 6) thus making joint repair after a seismic
event a more practicable proposition.

The improvement in displacement ductility of concrete
through the use of different fibers and their combination is
fairly well-known. However, specific applications of HyFRC
in beam-column connections with detailed measurements of
strain development were carried out to further understand
Fig. 14—U-bar strains at 1.837 in. (46.67 mm) displace- how steel strain is reduced while displacement ductility is
ment. (Note: 1 mm = 0.0394 in.) improved. Four tests were performed on exterior beam-
column connections subjected to seismic loading, each of
at arresting microcracking, thus leading to overall enhance- which contained a strain-gauged U-bar as part of the main
ment in toughness. The performance of Specimen 4 (with beam reinforcement. Specimen 1 was cast without the addi-
steel fibers only) was thus relatively inferior compared with tion of any fiber in concrete and was considered as the control
Specimens 2 and 3. The addition of polymer fibers proved to specimen for comparison, whereas Specimens 2 and 3 were

176 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

hybrids, containing both steel and polymer fibers, and Spec- Connections under Cyclic Loading,” Canadian Journal of Civil Engi-
neering, V. 40, No. 4, 2013, pp. 353-360. doi: 10.1139/cjce-2012-0041
imen 4 contained steel fibers only. Based on the results of 2. Marthong, C.; Dutta, A.; and Deb, S. K., “Seismic Rehabilitation of
this study, the following conclusions are made: RC Exterior Beam-Column Connections Using Epoxy Resin Injection,”
1. All three specimens with fibers showed marked Journal of Earthquake Engineering, V. 17, No. 3, 2013, pp. 378-398. doi:
improvements in displacement ductility compared with the 3. Paulay, T.; Park, R.; and Priestly, M. J. N., “Reinforced Concrete
control specimen. Hybrid Specimen 2 (steel and polypro- Beam-Column Joints under Seismic Actions,” ACI Journal Proceedings,
pylene fibers) performed best while hybrid Specimen 3 (steel V. 75, No. 6, June 1978, pp. 585-593.
4. Durrani, A. J., and Wight, J. K., “Behavior of Interior Beam-to-Column
and polyester fibers) performed relatively more poorly. The Connections under Earthquake-Type Loading,” ACI Journal Proceedings,
use of fibers with better ultimate elongation is attributed to V. 82, No. 3, May-June 1985, pp. 343-349.
the relative improvement in performance. Specimens with 5. Abdel-Fattah, B., and Wight, J. K., “Study of Moving Beam Plastic
Hinging Zones for Earthquake-Resistant Design of Reinforced Concrete
hybrid fibers performed better compared to specimens with Buildings,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 84, No. 1, Jan.-Feb. 1987, pp. 31-39.
only steel fibers, as both macrocracks and microcracks are 6. Chutarat, N., and Aboutaha, R. S., “Cyclic Response of Exterior
better controlled by hybrid fibers. Thus, it is also observed Reinforced Concrete Beam-Column Joints Reinforced with Beaded
Bars—Experimental Investigation,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 100, No. 2,
that Specimens 2 and 3 performed better than Specimen 4 Mar.-Apr. 2003, pp. 259-264.
(steel fibers only). 7. Joshi, M. K.; Murty, C. V. R.; and Jaisingh, M. P., “Cyclic Behaviour
2. The extent of damage of the connection zone in all the of Precast RC Connections,” Indian Concrete Journal, V. 79, No. 11, 2005,
pp. 43-50.
three specimens with fibers is significantly less than in the 8. Nie, J.; Bai, Y.; and Cai, C. S., “New Connection System for Confined
control specimen. Concrete Columns and Beams. I: Experimental Study,” Journal of Struc-
3. The results from the strain-gauged bars indicated that tural Engineering, ASCE, V. 134, No. 12, 2008, pp. 1787-1799. doi:
the improved displacement ductility in specimens with 9. Park, S., and Mosalam, K. M., “Experimental and Analytical Studies on
fibers was accompanied by reduced strains in the reinforce- Reinforced Concrete Buildings with Seismically Vulnerable Beam-Column
ment under ultimate displacement conditions. Large residual Joints,” Report No. PEER 2012/03, Pacific Earthquake Engineering Research
Center, University of California, Berkeley, Berkeley, CA, 2012.
strains were developed in all four specimens once the 10. Banthia, N., and Trottier, J. F., “Test Methods for Flexural Toughness
reinforcement had yielded. Characterization of Fiber-Reinforced Concrete: Some Concerns and a Prop-
4. The high confinement steel requirement in and around osition,” ACI Materials Journal, V. 92, No. 1, Jan.-Feb. 1995, pp. 48-57.
11. ACI Committee 544, “Design Considerations for Steel Fiber Rein-
the connection zone of beam-column connections in seismic forced Concrete (ACI 544.4R),” ACI Structural Journal, V. 85, No. 5,
areas may be reduced by the use of HyFRC, while still main- Sept.-Oct. 1988, pp. 563-580.
taining a very high displacement ductility level. 12. Banthia, N., and Soleimani, S. M., “Flexural Response of Hybrid
Fiber-Reinforced Cementitious Composites,” ACI Materials Journal,
V. 102, No. 6, Nov.-Dec. 2005, pp. 382-389.
AUTHOR BIOS 13. Qian, C., and Stroeven, P., “Fracture Properties of Concrete Reinforced
Dhaval Kheni is a Postgraduate Student in civil engineering at the Indian with Steel-Polypropylene Hybrid Fibres,” Cement and Concrete Compos-
Institute of Technology (IIT) Guwahati, Guwahati, India. He received his ites, V. 22, No. 5, 2000, pp. 343-351. doi: 10.1016/S0958-9465(00)00033-0
bachelor of engineering from Gujurat University, India. His research inter- 14. Banthia, N., and Nandakumar, N., “Crack Growth Resistance of Hybrid
ests include studies of beam-column joints. Fibre Reinforced Cement Composites,” Cement and Concrete Composites,
V. 25, No. 1, 2003, pp. 3-9. doi: 10.1016/S0958-9465(01)00043-9
ACI member Richard H. Scott is a Visiting Professor of structural engi- 15. Mohankumar, G., and Bangaruchandran, L., “Structural Behavior of
neering at City University London, London, UK, and IIT Roorkee, Roorkee, Hybrid Fibre Reinforced Concrete Beams,” Indian Concrete Journal, V. 83,
India. He received his BSc(Eng) in civil engineering from Queen Mary No. 10, 2009, pp. 14-20.
College, University of London, London, UK, in 1968; his MSc in concrete 16. Blunt, J., and Ostertag, C. P., “Performance-Based Approach for
structures and technology from Imperial College London, London, UK, in the Design of a Deflection Hardened Hybrid Fibre-Reinforced Concrete,”
1973; and his PhD from Durham University, Durham, UK, in 1985. He is Journal of Engineering Mechanics, ASCE, V. 135, No. 9, 2009, pp.
a member of ACI Committees 435, Deflection of Concrete Building Struc- 978-986. doi: 10.1061/(ASCE)0733-9399(2009)135:9(978)
tures, and 444, Structural Health Monitoring and Instrumentation. His 17. Parra-Montesinos, G. J., “High-Performance Fiber-Reinforced
research interests include the behavior of reinforced concrete structural Cement Composites: An Alternative for Seismic Design of Structures,” ACI
elements and structural health monitoring. Structural Journal, V. 102, No. 5, Sept.-Oct. 2005, pp. 668-675.
18. Zohrevand, P., and Mirmiran, A., “Cyclic Behavior of Fibre Rein-
S. K. Deb is a Professor of civil engineering at IIT Guwahati. He received forced Polymer-Encased Engineered Cementitious Composite for Bridge
his bachelor of engineering from Gauhati University, Guwahati, India; his Columns,” Structures Congress 2010, 2010, pp. 1828-1839.
masters in engineering from Jadavpur University, Kolkata, India; and his 19. Kumar, P.; Jen, G.; Trono, W.; Panagiotou, M.; and Osterberg, C.,
PhD from IIT Roorkee. His research interests include the passive structural “Self Compacting Fiber R.C. Composites for Bridge Columns,” Report No.
control, system identification, and seismic retrofitting. PEER 2011/106, Pacific Earthquake Engineering Research Center, Univer-
sity of California, Berkeley, Berkeley, CA, 2011.
Anjan Dutta is a Professor of civil engineering at IIT Guwahati. He 20. Bedirhanoglu, I.; Ilki, A.; and Kumbasar, N., “Precast Fiber Rein-
received his bachelor of engineering from Gauhati University; his masters forced Cementitious Composites for Seismic Retrofit of Deficient RC
in engineering from IIT Madras, Chennai, India; and his PhD from IIT Joints—A Pilot Study,” Engineering Structures, V. 52, 2013, pp. 192-206.
Delhi, Delhi, India. His research interests include the use of high-perfor- doi: 10.1016/j.engstruct.2013.02.020
mance materials in concrete and system identification based studies in 21. Govindbhai, K. D.; Deb, S. K.; and Dutta, A., “Studies on Toughness
assessment of structures. of Hybrid Fibre-Reinforced Cementitious Composite Beam,” Proceedings
of International Conference on Structural Engineering Construction and
Management, Kandy, Sri Lanka, Dec. 2011.
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS 22. ASTM C1609/C1609M-12, “Standard Test Method for Flexural
The financial support provided by the Royal Society’s International Joint
Performance of Fiber-Reinforced Concrete (Using Beam with Third-Point
Project Award is gratefully acknowledged.
Loading),” ASTM International, West Conshohocken, PA, 2012, 9 pp.
23. ACI Committee 318, “Building Code Requirements for Structural
REFERENCES Concrete (ACI 318-02) and Commentary,” American Concrete Institute,
1. Choudhury, A. M.; Deb, S. K.; and Dutta, A., “Study on Size Effect of Farmington Hills, MI, 2002, 443 pp.
Fibre Reinforced Polymer Retrofitted Reinforced Concrete Beam-Column 24. IS 13920:1993, “Ductile Detailing of Reinforced Concrete Structures
Subjected to Seismic Forces – Code of Practice,” Bureau of Indian Stan-
dards, New Delhi, India, 1993.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 177

25. ASTM C595/C595M-13, “Standard Specification for Blended Hydraulic 31. Choudhury, A. M., “Study of Size Effect of RC Beam-Column
Cements,” ASTM International, West Conshohocken, PA, 2013, 13 pp. Joints with and without Retrofitting under Cyclic Loading,” PhD thesis, IIT
26. BS 4449:2005, “Steel for the Reinforcement of Concrete – Weldable Guwahati, Guwahati, India, 2010.
Reinforcing Steel – Bar, Coil and Decoiled Product – Specification,” British 32. Park, R., and Ang, A. H. S., “Mechanistic Seismic Damage Model for
Standards Institution, London, UK, 2005. Reinforced Concrete,” Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE, V. 111,
27. Scott, R. H., and Beeby, A. W., “Long-Term Tension Stiffening No. 4, 1985, pp. 722-739. doi: 10.1061/(ASCE)0733-9445(1985)111:4(722)
Effects in Concrete,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 102, No. 1, Jan.-Feb. 2005, 33. Karayannis, C. G.; Chalioris, C. E.; and Sirkelis, G. M., “Local
pp. 31-39. Retrofit of Exterior RC Beam-Column Joints Using Thin RC Jackets—An
28. Scott, R. H., and Whittle, R. T., “Moment Redistribution Effects in Experimental Study,” Journal of Earthquake Engineering and Structural
Beams,” Magazine of Concrete Research, V. 57, No. 1, 2005, pp. 9-20. doi: Dynamics, V. 37, No. 5, 2008, pp. 727-746. doi: 10.1002/eqe.783
10.1680/macr.2005.57.1.9 34. Shannag, M. J., and Alhassan, M. A., “Seismic Upgrade of Interior
29. Karayannis, C. G., and Sirkelis, G. M., “Strengthening and Rehabili- Beam-Column Subassemblages with High-Performance Fiber-Reinforced
tation of RC Beam-Column Joints Using Carbon-FRP Jacketing and Epoxy Concrete Jackets,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 102, No. 1, Jan.-Feb. 2005,
Resin Injection,” Earthquake Engineering & Structural Dynamics, V. 37, pp. 131-138.
No. 5, 2008, pp. 769-790. doi: 10.1002/eqe.785 35. Scott, R. H., “Intrinsic Mechanisms in Reinforced Concrete Beam-
30. Karayannis, C. G., “Nonlinear Analysis and Tests of Steel-Fiber Column Connection Behavior,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 93, No. 3,
Concrete Beams in Torsion,” Structural Engineering & Mechanics, V. 9, May-June 1996, pp. 336-346.
No. 4, 2000, pp. 323-338. doi: 10.12989/sem.2000.9.4.323

178 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Title No. 112-S16

Behavior and Simplified Modeling of Mechanical

Reinforcing Bar Splices
by Zachary B. Haber, M. Saiid Saiidi, and David H. Sanders

Bridge seismic design codes do not allow mechanical reinforcing newer and more innovative bridge columns in earthquake-
bar splices in regions expected to undergo significant inelastic prone areas.
deformations during earthquakes, thus severely limiting precast Although previous studies have used mechanical splices
and innovative bridge column construction that uses such splices. in plastic hinge zones,8 there is little information as to the
The uniaxial behavior of two commercially available mechanical
deformation characteristics of mechanical splices and their
splices under different loading conditions was investigated
effects on local and global member behavior. Researchers
experimentally in this study with emphasis on deformation
response. Tests were performed with static, dynamic, and cyclic have studied the uniaxial behavior of mechanically spliced
loading. The performance of the splices was satisfactory under bar assemblies, but these studies have focused primarily on
all loading conditions in that bar fracture occurred outside the how strength is affected by fatigue loading,9 bar diameter,9
splice. Furthermore, the results revealed the effect of the relatively and blast loading rates.10 It was suggested by Haber et al.8
high stiffness of mechanical couplers. The responses of individual that the length of a splice is a critical factor that affects the
splices were used to interpret data from a series of cyclic tests on post-yielding flexural behavior of a member. That is, splices
half-scale bridge columns employing mechanical splices in plastic with smaller LSp/db ratios (<4) are less likely to change the
hinge zones. Lastly, a simple method was proposed and validated plastic hinging mechanism, where LSp is the length of the
for modeling these devices in reinforced concrete members. mechanical splice, and splices with larger ratios (>14) may
Keywords: accelerated bridge construction; acceptance criteria; coupler;
adversely affect hinge formation and behavior. The objective
ductility; mechanical splice; repair; seismic; shape-memory alloy. of this study was to evaluate the deformation characteristics
of two commercially available mechanical splices under
INTRODUCTION static, dynamic, and cyclic loading. The correlation between
Mechanical reinforcement splices have been used in cast- component- and system-level behaviors was addressed
in-place concrete construction when long, continuous bars by comparing uniaxial test results with a series of half-
or reinforcement cages are required. Unlike lap splices, scale bridge column test results conducted by the authors.
which can require lengths greater than 30 bar diameters (db), Lastly, experimental test data is used as a foundation for a
mechanical splices can be used to join bars at discrete locations. simple method to incorporate mechanical splices in member
Some of the mechanical reinforcing bar splices commercially deformation and capacity calculations.
available in the United States1 are shown in Fig. 1. Bridge
and building design codes use acceptance criteria such RESEARCH SIGNIFICANCE
as International Code Council (ICC) AC1332 and ASTM Previous studies have identified a number of applications
A1034/A1034M3 to quantify the ability of a splice to transfer for mechanical reinforcing bar splices in plastic hinge
load, withstand load reversals, and resist slip. Furthermore, regions. However, there is little understanding as to the local
some state departments of transportation (DOTs) have deformation response of these devices and how that response
developed their own acceptance criteria.4 After evaluation, can affect the global behavior of a ductile reinforced concrete
mechanical splices are given a performance classification member. This paper provides much-needed data and
compatible with the corresponding code provision of interest, insight into the local deformation behavior of mechanical
which is used to restrict placement in a structural member reinforcing bar splices through a series of uniaxial tests.
or limit stress/strain demands on spliced bars. In the United Using test data, a simple method for analytical modeling of
States, there is one significant difference between bridge mechanical splices in with concrete members is proposed
and building code requirements for mechanical splices. and validated with large-scale experimental test results.
ACI 318-025 allows Type 2 mechanical splices, which must
be able to develop the full tensile strength of the spliced bars EXPERIMENTAL INVESTIGATION
to be placed at any location within a member regardless of Specimen details
local inelastic demands. On the other hand, bridge design Two of the commercially available mechanical reinforcing
codes such as the AASHTO Bridge Design Specifications6 bar splices, shown in Fig. 1, were investigated in this study:
and Caltrans Seismic Design Criteria (SDC)7 prohibit
all mechanical splices from being placed in plastic hinge ACI Structural Journal, V. 112, No. 2, March-April 2015.
MS No. S-2013-319.R3, doi: 10.14359/51687455, received June 11, 2014, and
regions, which are subjected to high inelastic demands. Such reviewed under Institute publication policies. Copyright © 2015, American Concrete
Institute. All rights reserved, including the making of copies unless permission is
provisions have prevented the use of mechanical splices in obtained from the copyright proprietors. Pertinent discussion including author’s
plastic hinges of bridge columns and have been a barrier to closure, if any, will be published ten months from this journal’s date if the discussion
is received within four months of the paper’s print publication.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 179

Fig. 1—Mechanical reinforcing bar splice commercially available in the United States.
through formation of compression struts in the grout which
transfer force to the sleeve.
HC specimens were constructed using No. 8 (D25)
Grade 60 ASTM A706 bars having an average measured
yield stress, ultimate stress, and percent elongation at rupture
of 67.9 ksi (468 MPa), 95.1 ksi (655 MPa), and 18.2%,
respectively. Specimens were prepared with two 16 in.
(406 mm) headed bar segments joined using the threaded
steel collars described previously. The two collars were
initially tightened by hand followed by a pipe wrench to
the manufacturer’s minimum specified torque of 150 lbf-ft
(203 N-m).
GC specimens were constructed using No. 8 (D25)
Grade 60 ASTM A615 bars having an average measured
yield stress, ultimate stress, and percent elongation at
rupture of 66.8 ksi (460 MPa), 111.3 ksi (767 MPa), and
15.8%, respectively. To construct GC specimens, reinforcing
bars were first placed into the tapered end of the sleeves and
the assembly was tied to a support frame. The prepackaged
high-strength cementitious grout was mixed according to
manufacturer specifications and the sleeves were filled
approximately three-quarters full. The grout was rodded
with a smooth 0.25 in. (6.5 mm) diameter rod to ensure good
consolidation, and the second reinforcing bar was inserted
into the sleeve. The average 28-day compressive strength of
Fig. 2—Uniaxial test setup and instrumentation plans. the grout was 15.7 ksi (108 MPa) according to ASTM C109/
the upset headed coupler (HC) and grouted sleeve coupler
(GC). The HC splice consists of male and female threaded Test setup and loading protocols
steel collars that join bar segments with deformed heads, All specimens were tested in the Large-Scale Structures
which are created by heating the bar end and compressing Laboratory (LSSL) at the University of Nevada, Reno
the heated end with specially designed hydraulic ram. The (UNR), using a servo-hydraulic loading frame. The test setup
force transferring mechanism for the HC splice consists of was developed according to ASTM A1034/A1034M3 and
compression being transmitted directly through deformed Caltrans Test Method CT6704 (Fig. 2). Strain was measured
heads and tension through the threaded collars. The GC directly from the reinforcing bars using foil-backed resistive
splice has been commonly used in conventional and precast gauges (two on opposite sides per location), and over the
construction in East Asia11 and the United States.12 At the length of the splice using a digital extensometer. For GC test
precasting plant, reinforcing bars are inserted into the tapered specimens, a pair of strain gauges was also installed at the
end of the sleeve and the device is then cast within the concrete midheight of the sleeve. The extensometer gauge lengths
member. On site, the precast element is positioned such that over the coupler region LCR for HC and GC specimens were
reinforcing bar dowels protruding from the adjacent member 6 and 18 in. (152 and 457 mm), respectively. The clear length
enter the open sleeve ports. The connection is completed by between load frame grips, LClear, was selected as the minimum
pumping a proprietary high-strength (>14 ksi [96.5 MPa]) specified by CT670, which were 26.5 and 38 in. (673 and
cementitious grout into the sleeve. Force is transmitted 965 mm) for the HC and GC specimens, respectively.

180 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Table 1—Summary of test results
Yield stress, ksi Ultimate stress, ksi Strain at rupture, %
Bar Coupler region
ID Average Standard deviation Average Standard deviation Average Standard deviation Average Standard deviation
HC control bar 67.9 3.61 95.1 1.61 18.2 3.08 — —
HC-S 67.2 1.09 95.2 2.71 16.4 2.09 7.70 0.37
HC-D 71.9 0.42 98.1 0.31 15.5 1.09 8.46 0.27
HC-C1 68.5 — 93.3 — 16.9 — 7.80 —
HC-C2 67.7 — 94.6 — 12.6 — 8.48 —
GC control bar 66.8 3.69 111.3 1.61 15.8 0.44 — —
GC-S 66.3 0.66 108.6 1.08 15.9 1.19 5.61 0.35
GC-D 70.4 — 110.8 1.00 16.2 3.61 5.53 0.28
GC-C1 66.1 — 98.7 — 5.59 — 2.69 —
Note: 1 ksi = 6.89 MPa.

Five different loading protocols were used to evaluate load was reversed until the specimen reached a compression
the uniaxial behavior of the spliced bars. Three specimens stress of 20.7 MPa (10.5 kN). Both specimen types had long
per splice type were tested for each protocol with exception unsupported lengths. Thus, a low compression stress target
of the cyclic loading tests. The loading protocols and was selected to prevent buckling.
associated nomenclature were: monotonic static loading Elastic slip tests were conducted in accordance with
until failure (S), monotonic dynamic loading until failure Caltrans and AASHTO methods, which are used to determine
(D), slow cyclic loading until failure (C), single-cycle elastic the permanent relative deformation between the reinforcing
slip (SCS) loading, and multi-cyclic elastic slip (MCS) bar and mechanical splice. In single cycle slip tests (SCS),
loading. Specimens are identified by splice and loading samples were loaded to an initial stress of 3 ksi (20.7 MPa)
type, respectively. For example, a grouted splice specimen and the elongation over the sample measurement gauge
tested under monotonic dynamic loading would be identified length (DInitial) was measured. Samples were then stressed
as “GC-D.” to 30 ksi (207 MPa), held for 30 seconds, and subsequently
Loading was displacement-controlled for monotonic destressed to 3 ksi (20.7 MPa). Upon distressing, a final
static and dynamic tests. The loading rates for monotonic elongation measurement (DFinal) was recorded. The resulting
static tests were determined according to ASTM A370.13 slip, DSlip, is defined as the difference between final and initial
For HC-S specimens, pre- and post-yield displacement elongation measurements. After completing the single cycle
rates were 0.00625 and 0.05 in./s (0.159 and 1.27 mm/s, test, samples were subjects to three to five additional cycles
respectively. For GC-S specimens, pre- and post-yield to determine if slip increased with additional loading. This
displacement rates were 0.01875 and 0.15 in./s (0.476 and sequence is referred to as the multi-cycle slip test (MCS).
3.81 mm/s), respectively. The dynamic loading protocol The maximum permitted elastic slip for splices with No. 8
was selected to subject specimens to strain rates in the range (D25) bars according to Caltrans and AASHTO are 0.028
of those imposed by an earthquake event.14 A target rate and 0.01 in. (0.71 and 0.25 mm), respectively.
of 0.07 in./in./s was selected knowing that achieved rates
would be approximately 80 to 120% of the target.15 The EXPERIMENTAL RESULTS
corresponding displacement rates, which are based on LClear, A summary of test results is provided in Table 1, along with
for HC-D and GC-D specimens were 1.575 and 1.75 in./s the measured material properties for unspliced reinforcing
(40 and 44.5 mm/s), respectively. bars. On the day of testing, the average measured grout
The effect of tension-compression load reversals was strength for GC specimens was 18.5 ksi (128 MPa).
studied by applying cyclic loads. Although the widely used
ICC AC332 test criteria requires cyclic testing, spliced bars Monotonic static tests (S)
are only subjected to reversals up to five times the specified As would be expected, the average elongation over LCR
yield strain of the bar (5ey). Testing in this study subjected (otherwise referred to as the coupler region) was reduced
splices to load reversals beyond this level and was continued due to the presence of the threaded steel collars joining the
until failure. Cyclic tests were conducted in load control deformed heads. The average elongation at failure over
mode at rates of 1 kip/s (4.45 kN/s) during tensile loading and the coupler region was 7.70%, which was 53% less than
at 0.5 kip/s (2.22 kN/s) during compression loading, which that of the reinforcing bar. Figure 3 shows representative
correspond to stress rates of 1.27 and 0.635 ksi/s (8.72 and constitutive relationships for HC-S tests. The stress-strain
4.36 MPa) for tension and compression, respectively. Each curve for the coupler region exhibited a stiff initial slope
cycle of loading consisted of a single tensile and compression up to approximately 10 ksi (69 MPa), which subsequently
cycle. For each cycle, the peak tensile load was increased by softened and remained linear up to yielding of steel. Softening
increments of 0.2fy from 0.5fy to 1.1fy followed by increments occurs as the precompressive force on the deformed heads,
of 0.1fy thereafter. After the target tension was reached, the which is a result of the initial torque on the threaded collars,

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 181

Table 2—Average measured strain rates during
dynamic tests (unit: strain/s)
Standard Standard
Stress range Average deviation Average deviation
0 to yield 0.0175 0.0121 0.0781 0.0073
Yield to ultimate 0.0908 0.0178 0.0924 0.0041
Ultimate to failure 0.0633 0.0200 0.1060 0.0770

ductile reinforcing bar rupture, which occurred away from

and without damage to the splice.
In GC-S tests, the response of the spliced reinforcing
Fig. 3—Stress-strain curves from monotonic tests on bars was similar to that of the control bars (Fig. 4). The
HC device (static tests are solid lines; dynamic tests are deformation capacity over the coupler region was reduced
dashed lines). by 65% compared with strain measurements taken from
spliced reinforcing bars due to the presence of the grout-
filled cast-iron sleeve. Unlike the coupler region response in
HC-S specimens, the initial branch of the stress-strain curve
for GC-S specimens was similar to that of the reinforcing bar.
This indicates that the elastic stiffness of the GC assembly is
similar to that of mild steel bars. Similar to the HC-S tests, each
GC-S specimen failed by reinforcing bar rupture away from
and without damage to the splice. Strain measurements from
the midheight of the sleeves indicated that the average strain
in the sleeve at failure was 0.7%, which was three times the
average measured yield strain of steel. Strain measurements
from the sleeve also indicated that the sleeves undergo
nonlinear deformations once the stress in the reinforcing bars
reach approximately 70 ksi (482 MPa).
Fig. 4—Stress-strain curves from monotonic tests on Axially loaded reinforcing bars that are well-anchored in
GC device (static tests are solid lines; dynamic tests are cementitious materials undergo localized deformations from
dashed lines.) the anchoring material as a result of strain penetration,16
which is typically referred to as “bond-slip.” Although
not explicitly measured, Fig. 5 shows a grout cone failure
surface indicating that strain penetration occurs within the
grouted coupler assembly during loading. It was shown
by Haber et al.17 that bond slip can account for up to 40%
of the deformation over the coupler region (LCR). None of
the GC tests conducted in this study exhibited bar pullout
failure, but other studies have shown this can occur.10 Such a
failure mode would be caused by insufficient grout strength
or improper installation.

Monotonic dynamic tests (D)

Representative stress-strain curves from monotonic
dynamic loading are shown along with the static curves in
Fig. 3 and 4 for HC-D and GC-D tests, respectively. The
average measured strain-rates are listed in Table 2 according
to stress range. Previous tests on mild steel reinforcing bars
loaded at strain-rates similar to those shown in Table 2 have
exhibited increased yield and ultimate stresses by as much
Fig. 5—Evidence of strain penetration into grouted sleeve. as 30%18; Zadeh and Saiidi15 provide detailed discussion
regarding the behavior of axially loaded reinforcing bars
is overcome and the heads separate. Head separation is under high strain-rate loading. Thus, it is not unexpected
only evident up to yielding of steel. However, the heads that in both HC-D and GC-D tests that the yield and ultimate
continue to separate afterward, but the deformation over stresses were slightly larger than corresponding static tests.
the coupler region is controlled by nonlinear deformation Slight variations among the initial slopes of stress-strain
of the reinforcing bars. Each HC-S specimen failed due to curves can be observed between static and dynamic tests,

182 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 6—Cyclic test results: HC results (a) through (c); GC results (d) through (f).

which are expected due to differences in clamping forces at Cyclic loading tests
the grips. Previous studies have shown that dynamic loading Two HC-C specimens were tested, one with the
does not have a significant effect on the elastic modulus of manufacturer’s minimum specified torque applied to the
mild steel reinforcing bars.19 threaded collars, denoted as “HC-C1,” and a second with
In HC-D tests, the average yield and ultimate stresses collars hand-tight, denoted as “HC-C2.” The measured yield
increased 6% and 3%, respectively, compared with HC-S test and ultimate stresses of both specimens were within 2% of
results. In GC-D tests, the average yield and ultimate stresses those tested under monotonic static loading. Furthermore,
increased 6% and 2%, respectively, compared with GC-S the elongation over the coupler region was also comparable
test results. Similar to the static tests, both HC-D and GC-D with static tests. The cyclic stress-strain response for the
specimens exhibited reduced elongation over the coupler coupler region and the bar assembly of HC-C2 is shown in
region compared with measurements from the spliced Fig. 6(a) and (b), respectively, which indicate that the stress-
reinforcing bars. The average elongation at failure over the strain backbones for both the coupler region and reinforcing
coupler region was 45% and 66% lower in HC-D and GC-D bar are nearly identical to those from monotonic static tests.
specimens, respectively. All HC-D and GC-D specimens Both HC-C specimens failed due to ductile reinforcing bar
failed due to ductile reinforcing bar fracture away from and rupture away from and without damage to the splice.
without damage to the splices. This indicates that increased Once each peak stress level was reached, the load was
yield and ultimate stresses caused by dynamic loading were reversed to a target compressive stress of –3 ksi (–20.7 MPa).
sustained by both splice types without an adverse effect on During unloading, the slope of the stress-strain curves for the
the failure mode. Similar the GC-S tests, GC-D specimens coupler region and the reinforcing bar were approximately the
were inspected after testing and evidence of strain penetration same, indicating the reinforcing bars control the unloading
into the grouted sleeves was found in all specimens. Lastly, stiffness of the device. Once the load in the bar approached
dynamic loading did not affect the stress-strain curves in the zero, a distinct, instantaneous deformation occurred. It was
coupler regions of HC-D and GC-D specimens. hypothesized that separation of the deformed heads (otherwise
referred to as gap opening) within the steel collars occurred
Slip tests once precompression from the applied torque was overcome.
The maximum slip recorded for HC-SCS and GC-SCS Cyclic loading confirms this behavior and a relationship
samples were 0.007 and 0.0175 in. (0.178 and 0.044 mm), between peak stress and gap length can be established. The
respectively. The multi-cycle slip tests for each splice gap length, Dgap, was defined as the deformation during the
type did not indicate cumulative slippage with application transition between tensile and compressive force within the bar.
of three or more cycles. Both HC and GC splices passed There was an approximately linear relationship between the
single- and multi-cycles slip tests according to both Caltrans peak stress in the bar and the gap length between the deformed
and AASHTO maximum slip criteria, which are 0.028 and heads. The peak stress versus gap length plot (Fig. 6(c)) also
0.01 in. (0.71 and 0.25 mm), respectively. indicates elastic slip limits allowed by Caltrans and AASHTO.
It can be observed that these limits are significantly exceeded
even before yielding of the reinforcing bar. Further discussion
of this behavior is provided in subsequent sections.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 183

affect the characteristic behavior or failure modes of the
splice assembly. However, higher strain rates, such as those
expected in a blast, reduce the ultimate strength and ductility
of mechanically spliced bars.14
The SR plot indicates that the deformation response of
some splices could be as little as 25% (SR = 0.25) of that
of the reinforcing bar throughout the loading history, which
can be observed in test data from the GC device. The HC
splice did not exhibit as large of stiffness increase as the GC
splice. However, the gap-opening behavior is clearly visible
in Fig. 7, which allows the HC splice to deform significantly
compared to the reinforcing bars over a short part of the
loading history. Prior to a strain of 0.02, the majority of
deformation occurred within the coupler region, which is
indicated by a slope exceeding 1:1 (SR = 1) (Fig. 7).


A series of half-scale reinforced concrete bridge column
Fig. 7—Relationships between strain in reinforcing bar and tests were conducted by the authors to investigate the
strain over splice. seismic performance of precast column-footing joints
with mechanical reinforcing bar splices.8 Two connection
One GC specimen (GC-C1) was tested under cyclic
configurations were studied: one employing two layers of HC
loading. The average yield stress was found to be
splices, referred to as “HCNP,” and the second using single-
comparable to static results, but the average ultimate stress
layer GC splices, referred to as “GCNP.” The reinforcement
and elongation of the reinforcing bar at rupture were 9% and
details and model geometry were designed assuming the
65% lower than static tests, respectively (Fig. 6(d) through
behavior would be similar to a conventional cast-in-place
(f)). The discrepancies between static and cyclic tests on
(CIP) benchmark column; this is otherwise referred to
the GC device were not caused by premature failure of
as “emulative” design. That is, a conventional column
the splice. In both cases failure was a result of reinforcing
model was designed for a target displacement ductility
bar rupture away from the splice. However, in GC-C1, the
capacity of µC = 7.0 (ultimate displacement/effective yield
reinforcing bar did not exhibit ductile behavior—that is,
displacement) according to Caltrans SDC, and the details
necking of the bar at the point of fracture did not occur rather
of the plastic hinge region were modified to incorporate the
the fracture surface was flat. This may have been caused by
mechanically spliced connections. The column models had
a low-cycle fatigue-type effect, but such failures typically
24 in. (610 mm) diameter cross sections, an aspect ratio of
require significantly larger strain reversals.20 There was also
4.5, and longitudinal and transverse reinforcement ratios
a slight difference between the static and cyclic stress-strain
of 1.9% and 1.0%, respectively. The ratio of axial load to
backbone curves for the coupler region. The slope of the
the product of the gross column cross-sectional area and
unloading curves for both the coupler region and reinforcing
the specified concrete compressive strength was 0.1. Along
bar were similar indicating the reinforcing bars control
with the precast models, a CIP benchmark model was also
the unloading stiffness. Unlike HC-C tests, there was not
constructed and tested for comparison. Each column was
a visible instantaneous deformation during the transition
tested in a cantilever configuration and subjected to slow
between tensile and compressive loads. The average stress-
cyclic loading at increasing drift levels. Figure 8(a) shows
strain history from the midheight of the cast-iron sleeve
the pertinent plastic hinge connection details of these three
indicates low strains and slight nonlinearity.
half-scale column models. A detailed discussion of these
tests can be found in Haber et al.8
Comparison and discussion
Figures 8(b) and (c) show the moment-rotation
It was observed that the presence of the mechanical splice
relationships for columns with HC and GC splices,
reduced the deformation capacity over the coupler regions for
respectively, measured near the base of the column (shown
both devices. Figure 7 presents representative relationships
in Fig. 8(a)). The data, which is only shown up to 5% due to
between the strain over LCR and the estimated strain over
localized bar buckling thereafter, captures the influence of
LSp in terms of the average reinforcing bar strain obtained
the mechanical splices on the hinge rotations. The effect of
from strain gauge measurements. The slope of the curves is
gap closure can be clearly observed in the moment-rotation
referred to as the splice-bar strain ratio (SR) and indicates
response of HCNP in the form of a slight pinch in the
the relative stiffness of the splice to the reinforcing bar. As
unloading branches. The pinch, however, is small and stable
mentioned previously, there was little difference between the
and does not lengthen as deformations increase. Except for
static and dynamic behavior of the coupler regions, which
the pinch, the loops are similar in shape and magnitude to
can be seen in Fig. 7. This indicates that strain rates similar
those of the CIP column. This is not surprising given the
to those expected from an earthquake would not adversely
relatively short length of the HC device. On the other hand,

184 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 8—Behavior of RC members with mechanical splices: (a) general column details; (b) moment-rotation relationships for
HCNP; (c) moment-rotation relations for GCNP; and (d) force-drift behavior.
the moment-rotation behavior of the GC column section a proven method to model these devices does not exist. Data
differs significantly from that of CIP. The maximum rotation provided in this paper indicate that the deformation response
in the GC section is approximately one-third the maximum of mechanical splices indeed is different from that of the
rotation of CIP, and very little plastic rotation is achieved. reinforcing bar. Furthermore, it was evident that the presence
This is consistent with observations from uniaxial tests, of the GC splices slightly increased the lateral load capacity
which indicated that the deformation capacity of the GC of GCNP and affected the local moment-rotation behavior.
splice could be as little as 25% of the reinforcing bar. Similar effects could occur using other devices with large
Although individual characteristics of the mechanical LSp:bd ratios. Thus, modeling techniques are required for
splices can be observed locally within each column, incorporating these devices in analysis procedures. Haber
the global force-displacement relationships are not as et al.21 described a method for modeling columns with GC
significantly affected in this case. However, the influence splices, but required detailed methods and specific material
of the mechanical splices could become more apparent and geometric properties of the mechanical splice. The
in the global force-deformation response with different following sections provide a simple method for modeling
column geometries and/or reinforcement details. As shown mechanical splices and validation with the previously
in Fig. 8(d), the hysteresis loops for three columns are described column test data.
comparable. GCNP had slightly higher peak loads after
2% drift due presence of GC splices. HCNP also exhibited SIMPLIFIED MODELING OF MECHANICAL
slightly higher peak load, but was a result of cementitious SPLICES IN BRIDGE COLUMNS
grout present within the hinge zone that was approximately Proposed method
twice as strong as the concrete for CIP. Furthermore, It is proposed that mechanical splices can be modeled in
the slight pinch observed at the local level can be seen in a simplified manner by defining an effective uniaxial stress-
global response, but is not significant. It should be noted strain relationship for spliced longitudinal reinforcement that
that although force-displacement relationships were similar can be employed in fiber section analysis. This model may
among the three columns, the presence of the GC splices in be used in most commercially available structural analysis
GCNP ultimately shifted plastic hinging to the footing and programs that have moment curvature, lumped-plasticity
above the couplers. This shifted hinge mechanism eventually frame element, or distributed plasticity frame element
caused longitudinal bars to rupture in the footing at 6% drift analysis capabilities. Distinct points on the effective stress-
due to strain concentrations and numerous load reversals. As strain curve can be calibrated to match test results in specific
a result, the drift capacity of GCNP was significantly less cases or may be based on the relative stiffness between the
than the drift at failure in CIP and HCNP, which was 10%. splice assembly and the reinforcing bar in a more generalized
Typically, designers do not account for the presence approach. The strain component of the effective stress-strain
of mechanical splices in design calculations for ductile relation is defined by strains occurring over LSp, which can
reinforced concrete members. This is primarily because be determined from measurements over LCR. This method is
splices are not typically placed in locations expected to advantageous because it does not require direct knowledge
undergo significant nonlinear deformations. Other reasons of material and geometric properties of mechanical splice
may include that designers assume splice behavior is assembly, which may be proprietary. That is, the intrinsic
approximately the same as the spliced reinforcing bar or that deformation characteristics of the device are captured using

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 185

Fig. 9—Stress-strain model for reinforcing steel and
proposed splice model. Fig. 10—Analytical model for bridge column with grouted
sleeve column-footing connection.
standard evaluation and acceptance criteria tensile test data.
With respect to the GC device, these include influence of e*u e*sh Esh
the cast-iron sleeve on splice stiffness, deformation caused = = = SRI (2)
e u e sh Esh*
by unsupported reinforcing bar length, and deformation
resulting from bond slip within the sleeve.
It was observed in Fig. 7 that the GC device exhibited SRI ey
an approximately linear SR relationship, where the strain ≥ (3)
SRE e sh
over LSp was approximately 0.25 times that in the bar. Using
this information, an effective stress-strain relationship can
be created by scaling a constitutive stress-strain model for Validation with half-scale column test results
reinforcing steel to produce a similar SR relationship between The proposed model was validated using column model
the two stress-strain models. The effective stress-strain test results discussed previously for GCNP. Figure 10 shows
model can be applied in an individual nonlinear uniaxial fiber the general details of the half-scale test model along with
with the same cross-sectional area as the spliced reinforcing the key components of the analytical model. The analytical
bars. Figure 9 presents a typical stress-strain curve for mild model was developed in OpenSEES using force-based
steel reinforcing bars (solid line), which has an initial linear- distributed plasticity frame-elements with fiber sections at
elastic branch with slope Es, a yield plateau beginning at the each integration point. Because of the importance of bond-slip
yield strain ey, a nonlinear strain-hardening branch with a deformations, the method described by Haber et al.17 was used
slope Esh beginning at esh, and a plateau at the ultimate stress to incorporate the influence of the GC splice by including a
fu and corresponding strain eu. The stress-strain model for rotational spring at the column-footing interface. Two different
the splice, otherwise referred to as the “Proposed Model”, fiber-section assignments were used. Section “S1” was used in
is defined using the same constitutive model as the mild the frame element representing the shaft of the column above
reinforcing steel, but the characteristic parameters are the region with GC splices, and Section “S2” was used in the
scaled to achieve the desired SR response. The proposed region with the GC splices. For both sections, constitutive
curve representing the spliced region LSp is shown with a relationships for unconfined and confined concrete, and
dashed line and its parameters are identified with a “*”. The reinforcing bars were defined using available models from
parameters for the proposed curve are defined according to OpenSEES; namely “Concrete01,” “Concrete04,” and
Eq. (1) and (2), which correspond to the elastic and plastic “ReinforcingSteel,” respectively. Each constitutive model
portions of the stress-strain curve, respectively. Once tensile was calibrated using average measured materials properties.
testing has been performed, and the SR relationship has been The measured compressive strength of concrete on the day of
identified, the user can select appropriate elastic SRE and test was 4.7 ksi (32 MPa), and the average yield and ultimate
plastic SRI strain ratios for scaling the stress-strain curve for stress of longitudinal steel were 67 and 111 ksi (461 and
the splice model. Equation (3) must be used if the reinforcing 765 MPa), respectively. Confined concrete properties were
steel model includes a yield plateau to prevent calculation determined according to Mander’s model.21
errors as the stress state approaches yield. GC splices were defined in S2 as single fibers with the same
cross-sectional area as the No. 8 reinforcing bars. The actual
e*y diameter of GC device was approximately 2db – 2.5db, which
= = SRE (1) corresponds to an area footprint of 4 to 6.25 times the bar
ey Es* area. Therefore, at each splice location, an equal-area segment

of confined concrete fibers were removed to account for the

186 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 11—Comparison of measured and calculated SR
relationships. Fig. 12—Comparison between measured and calculated
force-displacement response.
presence of the splice. The constitutive relationship for the GC
fibers was based on the previously described method of scaling displacement and lateral load, respectively. After 1.0% drift,
the reinforcing steel stress-strain properties. For this study, the measured data indicated initiation of strain hardening.
SRE and SRI were selected to be 1.0 and 0.26, respectively. There was very good correlation between the post-yielding
Strain data from the GCNP column test indicated that yielding parts of the calculated backbone curves and the measured
of longitudinal reinforcement first occurred at the column- curve. The calculated response including bond slip deviated
footing interface. In this model, the fibers at the column- slightly from the measured curved after 3.0% with the
footing interface employ effective properties, and therefore maximum difference between the measured and calculated
strains in the reinforcing bars cannot be calculated explicitly. lateral loads being 5.5% at 6% drift in the negative direction.
However, by setting SRE = 1.0, the first yield of longitudinal When bond slip was excluded, the maximum difference was
steel can be approximated. This is a reasonable selection 8.6%, which is still reasonable.
because GC-S tests indicated that the strain over the splice In general, the calculated force-displacement response
was approximately 75% of that from the reinforcing bar prior of the column showed good correlation with the measured
to yielding of steel. The ability to reasonably approximate the result using an effective constitutive relationship for GC
yield displacement of the column is critical for displacement- splices. In this study, a force-based distributed-plasticity
based designed methods, which require displacement ductility frame element model was used to validate the effective
calculations. Figure 11 shows a comparison between the material method for incorporating mechanical reinforcing
measured SR response and that calculated using the proposed bar splices within a ductile member. However, the proposed
method with SRE = 1.0 and SRI = 0.26. modeling method could also be used in moment curvature or
fiber section lumped plasticity analysis and can be applied to
Comparison with experimental results and other constitutive relationships for reinforcing steel using an
discussion approach similar to that described in this paper.
The frame element model shown in Fig. 12 was subjected
to monotonic lateral displacement twice, once in each SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS
direction because the column reinforcing pattern was not Two commercially available mechanical reinforcing bar
symmetric. Pushover analysis was conducted with and splices, namely an upset headed (HC) splice and a grout-filled
without the presence of bond slip due to strain penetration ductile cast-iron sleeve (GC) splice, where evaluated under
into the footing. The resulting pushover curves were uniaxial monotonic static and dynamic loading until failure,
compared with the measured hysteretic response. The slow reversed cyclic loading until failure, and a series of
calculated initial stiffness with bond-slip included was elastic slip tests. Analysis of results focused on characterizing
approximately the same as the measured stiffness. When the force-deformation characteristics of each device. Key
bond slip was excluded, the calculated initial stiffness was observations from uniaxial tests were then correlated with
slightly higher than the measured result, which is to be a series of half-scale bridge column models employing
expected. Nonetheless, the calculated and measured results mechanical splices in flexural plastic hinge zones. Local
were still comparable and the analytical model would be moment-rotation and global force-displacement relationships
adequate for design purposes. Circular markers identify the were presented for columns HCNP and GCNP, containing
measured and calculated first yield points of the longitudinal mechanical splices and for a conventional cast-in-place
steel. In the positive direction, there was very little column. Based on observations from uniaxial tests, a simple
difference between the measured and calculated results. In method for determining an effective stress-strain model was
the negative direction, the results were comparable with a proposed for mechanical splices. As an example, effective
6% and 17% difference in the measured and calculated yield uniaxial properties were established for the GC splice

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 187

using the measured coupler behavior. Effective properties ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
were implemented in a nonlinear frame-element model for The research presented in this document was funded by the California
Department of Transportation (Caltrans) under contracts No. 65A0372
GCNP, and pushover analysis results were compared with the and 65A0425. The support and advice of M. Mahan, R. Bromenschenkel,
measured force-displacement response. Based on the results M. Keever, and T. Ostrom of Caltrans are appreciated. The authors would like
of this study, the following conclusions can be made: to thank Headed Reinforcement Corp. (HRC), Splice Sleeve Japan, and Splice
Sleeve North America for donating splices and bars used in this study. Special
Mechanical splices can significantly reduce the thanks are expressed to R. Nelson and C. Lyttle for their help with testing.
deformation capacity of spliced reinforcing bars by as much
as 75%, which can have a noticeable effect on the local REFERENCES
moment-rotation behavior of a ductile reinforced concrete 1. ACI Committee 439, “Types of Mechanical Splices for Reinforcing
member depending on the size and stiffness of the splice Bars (ACI 439.3R-07),” American Concrete Institute, Farmington Hills,
MI, 2007, 20 pp.
relative to the reinforcing bar. 2. ICC-ES AC133, “Acceptance Criteria for Mechanical Connector
The characteristic stress-strain behavior for HC and GC Systems for Steel Reinforcing Bars,” International Code Council Evalua-
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3. ASTM A1034/A1034M-10, “Standard Test Methods for Testing
during earthquakes. These devices were able to sustain the Mechanical Splices for Steel Reinforcing Bars,” ASTM International, West
higher ultimate stress demands associated with the strain Conshohocken, PA, 2010, 5 pp.
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Steel Splices,” California Department of Transportation, Division of Engi-
effect on failure modes. neering Services, Sacramento, CA, 2011, 11 pp.
The gap formation between the heads of the HC splice, 5. ACI Committee 318, “Building Code Requirements for Structural
which significantly exceeded the elastic slip limits for Concrete (ACI 318-02) and Commentary,” American Concrete Institute,
Farmington Hills, MI, 2002, 443 pp.
AASHTO and Caltrans bridge design codes, does not have 6. American Assiciation of State Highway and Transportation Officials
an adverse effect on the force-displacement behavior of (AASHTO), “AASHTO Guide Specifications for LRFD Seismic Bridge
members containing these splices in plastic hinge zones. Design,” second edition, Washington, DC, 2011, 301 pp.
7. California Department of Transportation, “Seismic Design Criteria
The procedure proposed for determining the effective (SDC) Version 1.7,” Division of Engineering Services, Sacramento, CA,
stress-strain properties for a mechanical splice can be 2013, 180 pp.
employed using test results from standard test methods 8. Haber, Z. B.; Saiidi, M.; and Sanders, D. H., “Seismic Performance of
Precast Columns with Mechanically Spliced Column-Footing Connection,”
and acceptance criteria. Thus, proprietary geometric ACI Structural Journal, Vol. 111, No. 3, May-June 2014, pp. 639-650.
specifications and material properties for a mechanical 9. Paulson, C., and Hanson, J. M., “Fatigue Behavior of Welded and
splice are not required. Mechanical Splices in Reinforcing Steel,” NCHRP Report 10-35, Dec.
1991, 158 pp.
The calculated member response using the proposed 10. Rowell, S. P.; Grey, C. E.; Woodson, S. C.; and Hager, K. P., “High
model showed very good correlation with the measured Strain-Rate Testing of Mechanical Couplers,” Report ERDC TR-09-8, U.S.
test results with and without incorporation of bond-slip Army Corps of Engineers, Washington, DC, Sept. 2009, 74 pp.
11. Aida, H.; Tanimura, Y.; Tadokoro, T.; and Takimoto, K., “Cyclic
deformation. The calculate column load and displacement at Loading Experiment of Precast Columns of Railway Rigid-Frame Viaduct
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with the measured data. Institute, V. 27, No. 2, 2005, pp. 613-618.
12. Culmo, M. P., “Connection Details for Prefabricated Bridge Elements
The proposed effective strain-strain model for mechanical and Systems,” Report FHWA-IF-09-010, Federal Highway Administration,
splices can be easily implemented in available software Washington, DC, Mar. 2009, 568 pp.
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AUTHOR BIOS 14. Motaref, S.; Saiidi, M. S.; and Sanders, D. H., “Seismic Response
ACI member Zachary B. Haber is a Bridge Research Engineer with of Precast Bridge Columns with Energy Dissipating Joints,” Report No.
Professional Service Industries (PSI) at the Federal Highway Administration CCEER-11-01, Center for Civil Engineering Earthquake Research, Depart-
Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center in McLean, VA. He received ment of Civil Engineering. University of Nevada, Reno, Reno, NV, 2011.
his BS and MS in civil engineering from the University of Central Florida, 15. Sadrossadat-Zadeh, M., and Saiid Saiidi, M., “Effect of Strain Rate
Orlando, FL, and received his PhD in civil engineering from the University on Stress-Strain Properties and Yield Propagation in Steel Reinforcing
of Nevada, Reno, Reno, NV. His research interests include large-scale Bars,” Report No. CCEER-07-02, Center for Civil Engineering Earthquake
testing, advanced materials in civil engineering, and bridge engineering. Research, Department of Civil Engineering. University of Nevada, Reno,
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and the Co-Director of USDOT University Transportation Center on Concrete Frames during Earthquakes,” Structural Research Series No. 392,
Accelerated Bridge Construction-Seismic at the University of Nevada, Reno. University of Illinois, Urbana, IL, 1972, 551 pp.
He is the Founding and former Chair and a current member of ACI Committee 17. Haber, Z. B.; Saiidi, M.; Ou, Y. C.; and Sanders, D. H., “A Method for
341, Earthquake-Resistant Concrete Bridges, and a member of Joint Calculating the Seismic Response of Bridge Columns with Grouted Sleeve
ACI-ASCE Committee 352, Joints and Connections in Monolithic Concrete Column-Footing Connections,” Proceedings, Seventh National Seismic
Structures. He is also a member of ACI Subcommittee 318-D, Subcommittee Conference on Bridges & Highways, Oakland, CA., May 20-22, 2013.
on Flexure and Axial Loads (Structural Concrete Building Code). 18. Malvar, L. J, “Review of Static and Dynamic Properties of Steel
Reinforcing Bars” ACI Materials Journal, V. 95, No. 5, Sept.-Oct.1998,
David H. Sanders, FACI, is a Professor at the University of Nevada, Reno. He pp. 609-614.
received his BS from Iowa State University, Ames, IA, and his MS and PhD from 19. Fu, H. C.; Erki, M. A.; and Seckin, M., “Review of Effects of Loading
the University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX. He a member of the ACI Board Rate on Reinforced Concrete,” Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE,
of Direction and former Chair of the ACI Technical Activities Committee; ACI V. 117, No. 12, Dec. 1991, pp. 3660-3679.
Committee 341, Earthquake Resistant Concrete Bridges; and Joint ACI-ASCE 20. Mander, J. B.; Panthaki, F. D.; Kasalanati, A. “Low-Cycle Fatigue
Committee 445, Shear and Torsion. His research interests include concrete Behavior of Reinforcing Steel,” Journal of Materials in Civil Engineering,
structures with an emphasis on seismic performance of bridges. ASCE, V. 6, No. 4, 1994, pp. 453-468.
21. Mander, J. B.; Priestley, M. J. N.; and Park, R., “Theoretical Stress-
Strain Model for Confined Concrete,” Journal of Structural Engineering,
ASCE, V. 114, No. 8, 1988, pp. 1808-1826.

188 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Title No. 112-S17

Bond-Splitting Strength of Reinforced Strain-Hardening

Cement Composite Elements with Small Bar Spacing
by Toshiyuki Kanakubo and Hiroshi Hosoya

Strain-hardening cement composites (SHCCs) show excellent steel-reinforced SHCC elements that are associated with
mechanical behavior that is characterized by tensile strain hard- splitting of cover matrix. The use of high-strength materials
ening and multiple fine cracks. A suitable application of SHCC causes the increment of reinforcement ratio and increases the
for bond improvement involves reducing the cover thickness and transmission of stress from the reinforcement to the matrix.
bar spacing of the main bars. To investigate the bond behavior of
Bond failure associated with splitting of concrete cover is
reinforced SHCC elements and to propose a predicting method
often observed in RC elements that have a large amount of
for bond strength, the pullout bond test and beam bond test are
conducted in which small cover thickness and bar spacing are used. longitudinal reinforcement under seismic loading. Concrete
The results of the pullout bond test show that the bond strength cover shows splitting because of ring tension caused by the
of SHCC is higher than that of conventional concrete, which is bearing force from deformed bars.4 Therefore, the bridging
expected by the “partly cracked elastic stage” of the cylindrical stress of the fiber can resist the ring tension by restricting the
model by Tepfers. It is considered that the tensile stress distribution expansion of the splitting crack. Hence, it is considered that
of SHCC surrounding main bar corresponds to the “plastic stage.” bond strength and ductility can be improved using SHCC.
The results of the beam bond test also show that the bond strength Many researchers have studied bond behavior between
of SHCC has a higher value. A prediction methodology is proposed deformed bars and fiber-reinforced cementitious composites
as the summation of the bond strength exhibited by SHCC and the (FRCCs), including fiber-reinforced concrete (FRC). For
confinement of lateral reinforcement.
example, Hota and Naaman5 investigated the bond stress-slip
Keywords: beam bond test; bond splitting; confinement effect; cylinder relationship of deformed bar embedded in FRC. The bond
model; pullout bond test; tensile strength. strength and ductility of FRC show a remarkable increase
compared to conventional concrete. Concerning HPFRCC,
INTRODUCTION Chao et al.6 also studied the bond stress-slip relationship
Strain-hardening cement composites (SHCCs), which is of deformed bar embedded in HPFRCC. They mentioned
grouped into similar composites such as high-performance that the superior bond response in HPFRCC can be directly
fiber-reinforced cement composites (HPFRCCs) and engi- related to its tensile strain-hardening behavior, which distin-
neered cementitious composites (ECCs), show excellent guishes it from conventional concrete or conventional FRC.
mechanical behavior characterized by tensile strain hard- In fact, the bridging stress distribution along the inner crack
ening and multiple fine cracks.1 Examples of practical has been considered based on the direct tension characteris-
applications of SHCC have been reported in the literature.2 tics of HPFRCC in the literature.
SHCC (ECC) is applied in the coupling beams of center core The other way to appropriately use SHCC for bond
systems used in high-rise reinforced concrete (RC) buildings. improvement involves reducing the cover thickness and
The coupling beams are designed in compliance with the bar spacing. SHCC, which can provide excellent bond
following two requirements: 1) no substantial load degrada- strength and ductility, has the potential to produce enough
tion at a translational angle as high as 4%; and 2) no cracks bond response in spite of smaller cover thickness and bar
influencing durability with a width greater than 0.3  mm spacing. Furthermore, SHCC, in which coarse aggregate is
(0.012 in.) after an earthquake. It is difficult for conven- not required, is able to reduce bar spacing when the fibers
tional RC beams to keep the crack opening under 0.3 mm in SHCC are distributed uniformly in the element section.
(0.012 in.) after the elements have deformed at an angle Asano and Kanakubo7 also investigated the bond properties
of 4%. The finely distributed cracking behavior of SHCC of SHCC (ECC), focusing on the size effect. The pullout
has also been exploited to use SHCC for surface repair of bond test was conducted using SHCC block specimens in
concrete dams, water channels, and retaining walls.3 which slits were inserted to vary the cover thickness. The
The advantages of using SHCC lie in the appropriate test results show a definite increase in bond strength as the
use of its tensile property. The flexural performance of size of the specimen decreases. The smallest tested cover
structural elements can directly be improved by the strain- thickness is 5 mm (0.20 in.), which is smaller than the fiber
hardening and multiple-cracking behavior of SHCC. In the
case of shear elements such as coupling beams and shear ACI Structural Journal, V. 112, No. 2, March-April 2015.
walls, the bridging effect of the fiber in SHCC can transmit MS No. S-2013-322.R3, doi: 10.14359/51687228, received May 26, 2014, and
reviewed under Institute publication policies. Copyright © 2015, American Concrete
shear stress through multiple cracks. This paper focuses Institute. All rights reserved, including the making of copies unless permission is
obtained from the copyright proprietors. Pertinent discussion including author’s
on improvement of the bond behavior, especially for the closure, if any, will be published ten months from this journal’s date if the discussion
is received within four months of the paper’s print publication.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 189

Table 1—Mechanical properties of PVA fiber Table 2—Mixture proportion of SHCC
Tensile Elastic Sand- Unit weight, kg/m3 (lb/yd3)
Length, Diameter, strength, modulus, Fiber volume binder
Type mm (in.) mm (in.) N/mm2 (ksi) kN/mm2 (ksi) fraction, % w/b ratio Water Cement Fly ash Sand
0.04 400 540 240 619
PVA 12.0 (0.472) 1690 (245) 40.6 (5890) 2.0 0.50 0.77
(1.6 × 10–3) (675) (911) (405) (1044)
Cement: Ordinary portland cement
length of 12 mm (0.47 in.). It is assumed that the smaller Fly ash: Type II of Japanese Industrial Standard (JIS A 6202)
cover affects the orientation of fibers to bridge the matrix Sand: Size under 0.2 mm (7.9 × 10–3 in.)
over the section at the slit and shows higher performance High-range water-reducing admixture: binder × 0.65%
than larger specimens.
The objectives of this study are to investigate the types of uniaxial tension tests with several types of cemen-
bond-splitting behavior of reinforced SHCC elements and titious composites. The values of characteristics obtained
to propose a predicting method for the bond strength. The from each test show differences in spite of using the same
pullout bond test and the beam bond test are conducted using HPFRCC. It is assumed that the size effect due to fiber orien-
small cover thickness and bar spacing. As mentioned in the tation and distribution causes the difference of bridging effect
literature,6 the predicting method is based on the material of fiber in HPFRCC. Furthermore, tensile behavior is very
test results of SHCC. The fiber used for SHCC in this paper sensitive to the boundary conditions of loading, such as the
is polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) fiber. The volume fraction of existence of a secondary moment caused by non-uniformity
PVA fiber is set to 2.0%. of fiber distribution.
On the other hand, not many values of characteristics are
RESEARCH SIGNIFICANCE required for structural design. As one example, the perfect
Using SHCC for quake-resistant elements such as coupling elastic-plastic model is proposed for the tensile stress-strain
beams, shear walls, and energy-absorption columns provides curve of HPFRCC in the Japan Society of Civil Engineers
excellent structural performance and controlled opening Recommendations.9 The Japan Concrete Institute has a
of the crack width. Tensile behavior of SHCC due to the standard test method to determine the tensile characteristics
bridging effect of fiber affects crack-opening characteris- of HPFRCC on the basis of the bending test.10 The tensile
tics, shear-resistance performance, and bond behavior asso- strength and ultimate tensile strain can be obtained by simple
ciated with splitting of the matrix surrounding longitudinal reverse calculation from the bending test results given in the
reinforcement. The evaluation and prediction of bond standard. The calculation method for tensile strength and
strength are two of the important issues for the designing of ultimate tensile strain is introduced based on the assumptions
reinforced SHCC elements and using SHCC appropriately. for stress distribution under the maximum bending moment,
It is also important that the evaluations be conducted consid- as shown in Fig. 1, which are: 1) the stress distribution on the
ering the relationship between the material characteristics of compression side is triangular; and 2) the stress distribution
SHCC, such as not only compression behavior but also tensile on the tension side is uniform. These assumptions represent
behavior, and the structural behaviors of SHCC elements. a state in which the strain on the tension edge has reached
SHCC can retain sufficient tensile stress for the ring tension the ultimate strain but the stress on the compression edge has
caused by bearing stress in the matrix surrounding the longi- not reached the compressive strength under the maximum
tudinal reinforcement. Furthermore, SHCC does not include bending moment.10 In this study, this method is applied for
coarse aggregates. Thus, the minimum cover thickness and the material test of SHCC.
spacing of the reinforcement can likely be reduced. The material test results of SHCC are listed in Table 3.
A ϕ100 x 200 mm (ϕ3.94 x 7.87 in.) test cylinder was used
SHCC USED AND MATERIAL TEST for the compression test. The compressive strength was
PVA fiber 0.04 mm (1.6 × 10–3 in.) diameter was used in approximately 45 N/mm2 (6.5 ksi). Figures 2 and 3 show the
this study. The fiber volume fraction is 2.0%. Table 1 lists the bending test setup and measured moment-curvature curves,
mechanical properties of PVA fiber used. The water-binder respectively. Deflection-hardening and multiple-crack
ratio (w/b) was 0.50, and the unit weight of binder consisted behaviors are observed. The tensile strength varied from
of 540 kg/m3 (911 lb/yd3) ordinary portland cement and 4.2 to 4.6 N/mm2 (0.62 to 0.67 ksi). The ultimate strains
240 kg/m3 (405 lb/yd3) fly ash. Fine sand with a size under were 2.86 and 1.25%. According to previous experimental
0.2 mm (7.9 × 10–3 in.) was used as fine aggregate. The results,8 the scattering of tensile characteristics of test pieces
mixing of SHCC was carried out using a biaxial mixer of is greater than that of the compressive strength. It was
2 m3 (2.62 yd3) capacity. The mixture proportion of SHCC reported that the coefficient of variation is over 30% for
is shown in Table 2. ultimate strain. Furthermore, one of the test pieces for beam
It is difficult to perform the uniaxial tension test of test specimen ruptured at the out of the region of the linear
HPFRCC with a standardized test method. Many researchers variable displacement transducers (LVDTs). This test piece
and institutes have conducted uniaxial tension tests with showed small ultimate strain.
various test methods including specimens with different A deformed bar (D13) with a specific diameter of 13 mm
dimensions and shapes, and different boundary conditions (0.51 in.) was used for main bars (Fig. 4). The rib height
at the ends of specimens. Kanakubo8 also conducted several and spacing are 1.0 mm (0.039 in.) and 8.9 mm (0.35 in.),

190 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Table 3—Material test results of SHCC
Compression test (ϕ100 x 200 mm cylinder) Bending test* (100 x 100 x 400 mm)
Test series Compressive strength, N/mm (ksi)2
Elastic modulus, kN/mm (ksi)
Tensile strength, N/mm2 (ksi) Ultimate strain, %
For pullout test 44.5 (6.45) 15.3 (2220) 4.61 (0.669) 2.86
For beam test 46.1 (6.69) 17.5 (2540) 4.24 (0.615) 1.25
JCI-S-003-2007. Method of test for bending moment-curvature curve of fiber-reinforced cementitious composites.
Note: 1 mm = 0.0394 in.

Table 4—Mechanical properties of reinforcement

Type Test series Yield strength, N/mm2 (ksi) Tensile strength, N/mm2 (ksi) Elastic modulus, kN/mm2 (ksi)
D13 (13 mm) Pullout 369 (53.5) 543 (78.8) 193 (28,000)
D13 (13 mm) Beam (main bar) 762 (110.5) 952 (138.1) 192 (27,800)
D6 (6 mm) Beam (stirrup) 364 (52.8) 514 (74.5) 185 (26,800)

Note: 1 mm = 0.0394 in.

Fig. 1—Assumption of stress distribution of HPFRCC. Fig. 3—Moment-curvature curve.

Fig. 4—Tested reinforcement (D13).

Fig. 2—Bending test setup.
of 0.5, 1.0, and 1.5 times the bar diameter. These thicknesses
respectively. The tension test results for the deformed bars
are small values compared with the cases for conventional RC
used in this study are listed in Table 4.
elements. Three identical specimens for each parameter were
tested. Nine specimens were tested in total.
SHCC was cast from the side of the specimen, as shown
Outline of experiment
in Fig. 5. The casting level of SHCC at both sides of the slits
The specimen and loading method are shown in Fig. 5. The
was raised almost uniformly to avoid damage to the polysty-
specimen was a rectangular SHCC block with a height of
rene slits. The casting was done with careful observations of
91 mm (3.58 in.). One deformed bar with a diameter of 13 mm
the flow of the SHCC around the reinforcement to not have
(0.51 in.) was arranged in the central position of the block.
any voids between the slits.
The unbonded regions were set at both the loaded and free
The monotonic pullout load was applied until the
ends. The embedded length was four times the bar diameter db
reinforcement slipped out from the block under the controlled
in the central part of the specimen. The slits made of foamed
displacement. Teflon sheets were placed between the spec-
polystyrene were set, as shown in the figure, to simulate the
imen and the reaction plate to facilitate lateral displacement
cover thickness or bar spacing. The dimension of the slit was
of the block. The LVDT was set to measure slip at the free
the main parameter, and it was set to have a cover thickness C
end. The loaded end slip is obtained as the summation of the

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 191

Table 5—Pullout test results
Maximum bond stress τb,max, Slip at maximum bond stress, Maximum bond stress τb,max, Slip at maximum bond stress,
C/db ID N/mm2 (ksi) smax, mm (in.) N/mm2 (ksi) smax, mm (in.)
P05-1 7.68 (1.11) 0.499 (0.0196)
0.5 P05-2 6.85 (0.99) 0.589 (0.0232) 7.70 (1.12) 0.540 (0.0213)
P05-3 8.57 (1.24) 0.533 (0.0210)
P10-1 8.37 (1.21) 0.455 (0.0179)
1.0 P10-2 11.19 (1.62) 0.577 (0.0227) 9.75 (1.41) 0.474 (0.0186)
P10-3 9.70 (1.41) 0.389 (0.0153)
P15-1 12.01 (1.74) 0.303 (0.0119)
1.5 P15-2 12.98 (1.88) 0.333 (0.0131) 13.24 (1.92) 0.272 (0.0107)
P15-3 14.73 (2.14) 0.179 (0.0070)

Tepfers11 suggested the cylinder models of stress distribu-

tions of concrete around a pulled deformed bar as dividing
into three stages: 1) elastic stage; 2) partly-cracked elastic
stage; 3) and plastic stage. Figure 8 shows the relationships
between the cover thickness and bond strength for the three
stages of the Tepfers models. In the calculation of the bond
strength by these models, the tensile strength of SHCC listed
in Table 3 is adopted as that of the matrix, and the angle
between the bearing principal stress and axial direction is
assumed to be 45 degrees, which is similar to that assumed
in the Tepfers study. As shown in Fig. 8, the obtained bond
strengths of SHCC are equal or higher than those predicted
by the plastic stage assumption. The higher bond strength
was obtained by the specimens with C/db = 0.5. The cover
thickness of these specimens was about half of fiber length.
It is assumed that fiber orientation shows the tendency to
Fig. 5—Pullout specimen. (Note: 1 mm = 0.0394 in.) have the similar direction to the perpendicular between the
reinforcement and slits. This may cause the advancement of
elongation of the reinforcement and the free end slip under a fiber-bridging effect to the splitting crack.
the assumption that bond stress distributes uniformly among
the embedded region (4db). BEAM BOND TEST
Outline of experiment
Test results of pullout bond test A bond test for beam specimens with small bar spacing
Table 5 lists the test results of the pullout bond test. The was conducted to investigate the bond behavior and bond
maximum bond stress varied from 7.70 to 13.24 N/mm2 strength of SHCC. An example of the beam specimens is
(1.12 to 1.92 ksi), with 13.24 N/mm2 (1.92 ksi) as the average shown in Fig. 9. The specimens were designed for observing
value among the same three specimens. As expected, the the bond behavior in tension-side (bottom-side) reinforce-
maximum bond stress increased as the cover thickness also ment. Each beam had two test regions (L and R). After the
increases. Even if the cover thickness is remarkably small— left-side test region was subjected to three-point bending
that is, 0.5 times the bar diameter—a higher strength is using the loading and support positions indicated by void
obtained than in the case of conventional concrete. Figure 6 triangles in the figure, the right-side test region underwent
shows examples of the specimens after loading. The splitting identical loading. An unbonded zone covered by steel pipes
cracks between slits and the bar are observed at the free end of was arranged at the supported area. The slits along the
the specimen in the case of small thickness. From the photos perpendicular direction at the loaded and free ends were
of the side view, the opening between the slit and the block is set to avoid continuous cracks from the untested zone. The
recognized at the loaded end of the specimen. Figure 7 shows length between two slits was 208 mm (8.19 in.). SHCC
the bond stress-slip relationships. In general, the pullout load was cast from the side of the beam, as shown in the figure,
showed a sudden drop in the case of conventional concrete, because the SHCC elements could be used as the precast
when splitting cracks occur. In the case of SHCC, however, members. Though the fiber orientation around main bars
the bond stress-slip relationships showed very ductile could not be observed, it was assumed that the fiber oriented
behavior over the slip of 1/10 the bar diameter. Furthermore, both in longitudinal and circumferential directions.
the relationships between specimens with small cover thick-
ness exhibited a look-alike yielding behavior.

192 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 6—Pullout specimen after loading.
The list of beam specimens is shown in Table 6. Twelve
loading tests were carried out on six beam specimens. The
test parameters were the number of main bars, stirrup ratio,
and embedded length of the test region. A high-strength D13
deformed bar (refer to Table 4) was used as the main bar
to avoid flexural yielding. The number of main bars was
5, 6, and 7, corresponding to bar spacings of 1.0, 0.8, and
0.6 times the bar diameter db, respectively. A 6 mm (0.24 in.)
diameter deformed bar, D6, was used for the stirrups for half
of the specimens with a spacing of 80 or 40 mm (3.15 or
1.57 in.). Embedded lengths of 16 or 8 times the bar diam-
eter are selected. The embedded length was arranged by the
length of steel pipes, as shown in Fig. 9.
The monotonic load was applied under the controlled
displacement. The LVDTs were set for the all tension bars to
measure the slip at the free end. Strain gauges were placed
on all the tension bars at the leaded end, as shown in Fig. 9. Fig. 7—Bond stress-slip curves from pullout test.
Visible crack observations were recorded in each loading
measurement step.

Test results of beam bond test

Examples of the final crack patterns after loading are
shown in Fig. 10. Multiple fine cracks can be observed along
the main bar in side-view photos showing shear cracks. Axial
and perpendicular cracks also occurred on the bottom side.
In the specimens with seven main bars (No. 5 and No. 6),
cracks along the main bars extended through the section,
and finally a “side-split”-type bond failure was observed. No
yielding of the main bars was observed.
Experimental bond stress was obtained from measured
strain at the loaded end of the main bar. The bond stress is
calculated as the average stress that is obtained by tensile Fig. 8—Bond strength of pullout specimen.
force divided by the surface area of the main bar. The bond other hand, in the right-side figures, corner bars show high
stress-free end slip curves are shown in Fig. 11 through 13. bond stresses in the specimens with stirrups.
In all specimens, a sudden decrease in the bond stress was
not observed. The curves show ductile behavior until several Bond strength of beam bond test
millimeters of slip. From the left-side figures, in which spec- Table 7 lists the experimental results for bond strength
imens without stirrups are shown, curves obtained from the (maximum bond stress). Figure 14 shows the relationship
corner bars and center ones show similar behavior. On the between the average bond strength and stirrup ratio. It is
clearly observed that bond strength increases as the stirrup

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 193

Table 6—List of beam specimens
Main bar Stirrup
ID Arrangement pt, % Arrangement pw, % length
No.1-L None 0.0 16db
No.1-R 5-D13 2-D6 at 80 0.4 16db
No.2-L (C/db = 1.0) None 0.0 8db
No.2-R 2-D6 at 40 0.8 16db
No.3-L None 0.0 16db
No.3-R 6-D13 2-D6 at 80 0.4 16db
No.4-L (C/db = 0.8) None 0.0 8db
No.4-R 2-D6 at 40 0.8 16db
No.5-L None 0.0 16db
No.5-R 7-D13 2-D6 at 80 0.4 16db
No.6-L (C/db = 0.6) None 0.0 8db
No.6-R 2-D6 at 40 0.8 16db

Fig. 9—Beam specimen. (Note: Dimensions in mm; 1 mm = 0.0394 in.)

Fig. 10—Examples of crack patterns of beam specimens.

ratio increases. It is considered that this increment is due to is 1.30 and 1.41 for specimens with stirrup ratios of 0.4%
the confinement effect of lateral reinforcement that is also and 0.8%, respectively.
observed in conventional RC elements. Figure 15 shows The obtained bond strength is compared with the calculated
comparisons of bond strengths that are obtained from the strength that is proposed for conventional RC elements—
corner bars and center bars. In the specimens with stirrups, that is, prediction formulas proposed by Morita and Fujii12
the bond strengths of the corner bars are higher than those of and Orangun and Jirsa.13 These formulas are listed in the
the center bars. The average ratio of the corner to center bars Appendix. Morita and Fujii formulas were built based on

194 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 11—Bond stress-slip curves from beam test (5-D13). Fig. 13—Bond stress-slip curves from beam test (7-D13).
This means that the bond stress along the axial direction of
main bar distributes uniformly through the embedded length
in the beam specimen at the maximum bond stress. From the
test results, however, the embedded length of the beam spec-
imen affects the average bond strength, as listed in Table 7.
The bond strength obtained in 8db specimens is an average
of 1.84 times that obtained in 16db specimens. It is assumed
that at the unbonded region between slits (length = 208 mm
[8.19 in.], hereafter called the splitting length), SHCC also
resists the splitting force from the main bars. Equation (1)
shows the equilibrium condition between the tensile strength
of SHCC and the splitting stress. As described in previous
literature, bond stress is given by splitting stress, as shown in
Eq. (2). Substituting Eq. (2) with Eq. (1) gives Eq. (3)

σs · db · ℓb = σt · 2C · ℓs (1)
Fig. 12—Bond stress-slip curves from beam test (6-D13).
the experimental results of cantilever-type specimens, while τbc = σs · cotα (2)
Orangun and Jirsa formulas were built by the results from
beam specimens. The Orangun and Jirsa formulas include the 2C  s
τ bc = σ t ⋅ ⋅ ⋅ cot α (3)
effect of bond length, whereas the Morita and Fujii formulas db  b
do not include the term of bond length. Figure 16 shows the
comparisons of bond strength between experimental and
where σs is the splitting stress; db is the diameter of deformed
calculated values by two formulas. Clearly, experimental
bar; ℓb is embedded length; σt is the tensile strength of
bond strengths are quite higher than the calculated bond
SHCC; C is the half-length of bar spacing or cover thickness
strengths. The calculated values from the Orangun and Jirsa
(2C = [b – Nt · db]/Nt); ℓs is the splitting length; τbc is the bond
formulas are higher than those from Morita and Fujii due to
strength provided by SHCC; α is the angle between principal
the difference of bond length influence.
bearing stress and axial direction; b is the width of the beam;
and Nt is the number of main bars.
The confinement effect of the lateral reinforcement has to
be considered to evaluate the bond strength of the specimens
The test results of the pullout bond test indicate that the
with stirrups. Yasojima and Kanakubo14 proposed a predic-
stress distribution of SHCC corresponds to the “plastic stage”
tion method of bond splitting strength for conventional RC
model suggested by Tepfers. This assumption is understand-
elements. The bond strength provided by the confinement
able for SHCC, which retains tensile stress after cracking.
effect is predicted by considering compatibility conditions
Though the non-uniform tensile stress distribution is
between the splitting crack opening and deformation of
assumed by Chao et al.6 or Asano and Kanakubo,7 a uniform
the lateral reinforcement. The bond strength is given at the
stress distribution can be assumed in the case of small cover
compressive failure of concrete bearing with the rib of the
thickness or bar spacing, as shown in Fig. 17. Furthermore,
deformed bar. The identical situation can be considered in
the bond stress-slip curves from the pullout bond test show
the case of the SHCC element because the tensile behavior
very ductile behavior over the slip of 1/10 the bar diameter.
of SHCC has no effect on these phenomena. Equation (4) is

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 195

Table 7—Beam test results
Test variables Bond strength, N/mm2 (ksi)
ID Main bar pw, % Embedded length Corner bar (average) Center bar (average) Average (all bars)
No.1-L 0.0 16db 5.81 (0.843) 5.94 (0.862) 5.89 (0.854)
No.1-R 0.4 16db 8.98 (1.302) 7.06 (1.024) 7.83 (1.136)
No.2-L 0.0 8db 10.03 (1.455) 11.32 (1.642) 10.81 (1.568)
No.2-R 0.8 16db 10.48 (1.520) 7.91 (1.147) 8.94 (1.297)
No.3-L 0.0 16db 5.04 (0.731) 4.76 (0.690) 4.85 (0.703)
No.3-R 0.4 16db 7.91 (1.147) 6.32 (0.917) 6.85 (0.994)
No.4-L 0.0 8db 9.45 (1.371) 9.43 (1.368) 9.44 (1.369)
No.4-R 0.8 16db 9.75 (1.414) 6.51 (0.944) 7.59 (1.101)
No.5-L 0.0 16db 4.87 (0.706) 4.48 (0.650) 4.59 (0.666)
No.5-R 0.4 16db 7.78 (1.128) 5.62 (0.815) 6.24 (0.905)
No.6-L 0.0 8db 7.65 (1.110) 8.15 (1.182) 8.01 (1.162)
No.6-R 0.8 16db 8.37 (1.214) 5.97 (0.866) 6.66 (0.966)

Fig. 14—Bond strength-stirrup ratio relationship.

proposed for the bond strength provided by the lateral rein- Fig. 15—Bond strength of corner and center bars.
forcement confinement14

b ⋅ pw hr
τ bs = 0.018 ⋅ ⋅ ⋅ Est ⋅ σ B ⋅ cot α (4)
N t ⋅ d b 9d w

where τbs is the bond strength provided by lateral reinforce-

ment confinement; b is the width of beam; pw is the stirrup
ratio; Nt is the number of main bars; db is the diameter of
main bar; hr is rib height; dw is diameter of stirrup; Est is the
elastic modulus of stirrup; σB is the compressive strength of
SHCC; and α is the angle between principal bearing stress
and axial direction (= 56 degrees).
Consequently, bond strength τb is predicted by Eq. (5)

τb = τbc + τbs (5)

Fig. 16—Comparison with calculated bond strength.
Table 8 lists the calculation results using the proposed specimens reported in the literature.14 The rib height of the
method, and Fig. 18 shows the comparison between the D13 main bar is 1.0 mm (0.039 in.). The average of the ratio
experimental bond strengths and predicted ones by the of the experimental strengths to predicted strengths is 1.07.
proposed method. In the calculations, the angle between the The predicted bond strength shows good agreement with the
principal bearing stress and the axial direction is assumed experimental results.
to be 56 degrees, which was obtained for conventional RC

196 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Table 8—Calculated bond strength
Predicted bond strength, N/mm2 (ksi)
Main Experimental bond
ID bar strength, N/mm2 (ksi) τbc τbs τbc + τbs Experiment/prediction
No.1-L 5.89 (0.854) 6.32 (0.917) 0 (0) 6.32 (0.917) 0.93
No.1-R 7.83 (1.136) 6.32 (0.917) 1.59 (0.230) 7.91 (1.148) 0.99
No.2-L 10.80 (1.566) 12.65 (1.835) 0 (0) 12.65 (1.835) 0.85
No.2-R 8.94 (1.297) 6.32 (0.917) 2.25 (0.326) 8.57 (1.243) 1.04
No.3-L 4.85 (0.703) 5.06 (0.734) 0 (0) 5.06 (0.734) 0.96
No.3-R 6.85 (0.994) 5.06 (0.734) 1.21 (0.175) 6.27 (0.909) 1.09
No.4-L 9.44 (1.369) 10.12 (1.468) 0 (0) 10.12 (1.468) 0.93
No.4-R 7.59 (1.101) 5.06 (0.734) 1.71 (0.248) 6.77 (0.982) 1.12
No.5-L 4.59 (0.666) 3.79 (0.550) 0 (0) 3.79 (0.550) 1.21
No.5-R 6.24 (0.905) 3.79 (0.550) 0.96 (0.139) 4.75 (0.689) 1.31
No.6-L 8.01 (1.162) 7.59 (1.101) 0 (0) 7.59 (1.101) 1.06
No.6-R 6.66 (0.966) 3.79 (0.550) 1.36 (0.197) 5.15 (0.747) 1.29

of the beam bond test also show that the bond strength of
SHCC has a higher value. A prediction methodology is
proposed as the summation of the bond strength provided
by SHCC and the confinement of lateral reinforcement. The
predicted bond strength shows good agreement with the
experimental results.

ACI member Toshiyuki Kanakubo is an Associate Professor at the
Department of Engineering Mechanics and Energy, University of Tsukuba,
Tsukuba, Japan, where he received his PhD. His research interests include
high-performance fiber-reinforced cementitious composites, the structural
Fig. 17—Cylinder model for plastic stage. behavior of fiber-reinforced polymer reinforced concrete structures, and
bond properties of reinforcement and concrete.

Hiroshi Hosoya is a Research Engineer at the Technical Research Institute,

Okumura Corporation, Japan. He received his DrE from the University of
Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan. His research interests include structural behavior of
high-performance fiber-reinforced cementitious composites, precast struc-
tural systems for high-rise buildings, concrete structures using new types of
materials, and high-strength materials.

The authors wish to express their gratitude and sincere appreciation to the
Techno Material Co., Ltd. for providing SHCC materials.

1. RILEM TC 208-HFC, “Strain Hardening Cement Composites: Struc-
tural Design and Performance,” State-of-the-Art Report of the RILEM Tech-
nical Committee 208-HFC, SC3, 2013.
2. Kanda, T.; Tomoe, S.; Nagai, S.; Maruta, M.; Kanakubo, T.; and
Shimizu, K., “Full Scale Processing Investigation for ECC Pre-cast Struc-
Fig. 18—Comparison with predicted bond strength. tural Element,” Journal of Asian Architecture and Building Engineering,
V. 5, No. 2, 2006, pp. 333-340. doi: 10.3130/jaabe.5.333
CONCLUSIONS 3. Kunieda, M., and Rokugo, K., “Recent Progress on HPFRCC in Japan;
Required Performance and Applications,” Journal of Advanced Concrete
To investigate the bond-splitting behavior of reinforced Technology, V. 4, No. 1, 2006, pp. 19-33. doi: 10.3151/jact.4.19
SHCC elements and to propose a predicting method for 4. Tepfers, R., “A Theory of Bond Applied to Overlapped Tensile
bond strength, a pullout bond test and beam bond test were Reinforcement Splices for Deformed Bars,” Publication 73:2, Division
of Concrete Structures, Chalmers University of Technology, Göteborg,
conducted with small cover thickness and bar spacing. Sweden, 1973, 328 pp.
The test results of the pullout bond test show that the 5. Hota, S., and Naaman, A. E., “Bond Stress-Slip Response of
bond strength of SHCC is higher than that of conventional Reinforcing Bars Embedded in FRC Matrices under Monotonic and
Cyclic Loading,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 94, No. 5, Sept.-Oct. 1997,
concrete, which is expected by the “partly cracked elastic pp. 525-537.
stage” of the cylindrical model by Tepfers. It is considered 6. Chao, S. H.; Naaman, A. E.; and Parra-Montesinos, G. J., “Local
that the tensile stress distribution of SHCC surrounding the Bond Stress-Slip Models for Reinforcing Bars and Prestressing Strands
in High-Performance Fiber-Reinforced Cement Composites,” Antoine E.
main bar corresponds to the “plastic stage.” The test results

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 197

Naaman Symposium – Four Decades of Progress in Prestressed Concrete,
FRC, and Thin Laminate Composites, SP-272, American Concrete Institute,
Farmington Hills, MI, 2010, pp. 151-172. Ast
7. Asano, K., and Kanakubo, T., “Study on Size Effect in Bond Split- τ st = 24.9 ⋅ k ⋅ ⋅ σ B (A3)
ting Behavior of ECC,” Bond in Concrete 2012, Volume 2—Bond in New s ⋅ Nt ⋅ db
Materials and under Severe Conditions, 2012, pp. 855-859.
8. Kanakubo, T., “Tensile Characteristics Evaluation Method for
Ductile Fiber-Reinforced Cementitious Composites,” Journal of Advanced where τb is the bond strength for bottom bars (kgf/cm2);
Concrete Technology, V. 4, No. 1, 2006, pp. 3-17. doi: 10.3151/jact.4.3 τco is the bond strength without stirrup (kgf/cm2); τst is
9. Japan Society of Civil Engineers, “Recommendations for Design and the bond strength increment caused by stirrup (kgf/cm2);
Construction of High Performance Fiber Reinforced Cement Composites
with Multiple Fine Cracks (HPFRCC),” JSCE Concrete Engineering Series bi = b/N · db – 1 (side split); σB is the concrete compressive
82, 2007, pp. 14-15. strength (kgf/cm2); k = 1 (side split); Ast is the sectional area
10. Japan Concrete Institute, “Method of Test for Bending Moment-Curva- of pair of stirrup (cm2); s is stirrup spacing (cm); Nt is the
ture Curve of Fiber-Reinforced Cementitious Composites (JCI-S-003-2007),” number of main bar; and db is the diameter of main bar (cm).
11. Tepfers, R., “Lapped Tensile Reinforcement Splices,” Journal of the The Orangun and Jirsa calculation formula (the notation is
Structural Division, ASCE, V. 108, 1982, pp. 283-301. altered from the original) is
12. Morita, S., and Fujii, S., “Bond Capacity of Deformed Bars due
to Splitting of Surrounding Concrete,” Bond in Concrete, P. Bartos, ed.,
Applied Science Publishers, London, UK, 1982, pp. 331-352. τb = τco + τst (A4)
13. Orangun, C. O.; Jirsa, J. O.; and Breen, J. E., “A Reevaluation of
Test Data on Development Length and Splices,” ACI Journal Proceedings,
V. 74, No. 3, Mar. 1977, pp. 114-122.  3C 50db 
14. Yasojima, A., and Kanakubo, T., “Local Bond Splitting Behavior τ co = 1.2 + s + ⋅ σ B (A5)
of RC Members with Lateral Reinforcement,” 14th World Conference on  db  b 
Earthquake Engineering, Conference Proceedings, Paper ID 05-03-0033,
2008. (DVD)
Ast ⋅ σ wy
APPENDIX τ st = ⋅ σ B (A6)
500 ⋅ s ⋅ db
The Morita and Fujii12 calculation formula (notation is
altered from the original) is
where τb is the bond strength (psi); τco is the bond strength
τb = (τco + τst) · 1.22 (A1) without stirrup (psi); τst is the bond strength increment
caused by stirrup (psi); Cs is half of main bar spacing (in.); db
is the diameter of main bar (in.); ℓb is the bond length (splice
τ co = ( 0.307 ⋅ bi + 0.427 ) ⋅ σ B (A2) length) (in.); σB is the concrete compressive strength (psi);
Ast is the sectional area of pair of stirrup (in.2); σwy is the
yield strength of stirrup (psi);and s is stirrup spacing (in.).

198 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Title No. 112-S18

Wide Beam Shear Behavior with Diverse Types of

by S. E. Mohammadyan-Yasouj, A. K. Marsono, R. Abdullah, and M. Moghadasi
The shear behavior of six wide beams was was studied to inves- of loading. They discussed that, in the critical early stages,
tigate the effectiveness of various types of shear reinforcement in the values of strain rate for high-rate loading are lower than
improving the shear capacity of wide beams. One specimen each the threshold established by experiments relating the varia-
was provided: without vertical stirrups, with vertical stirrups, inde- tion in compressive and tensile strength of concrete under
pendent bent-up bars, independent middepth horizontal bars, and
different rates. Previous researchers5-7 found that the rate of
the combination of vertical stirrups and bent-up bars. To study
loading can influence the arrangement and distribution of
the effectiveness of longitudinal flexural reinforcement on the
shear capacity of wide beams, an additional specimen without shear reinforcement in beams. There are some guidelines on
stirrups, but including approximately two-thirds of longitudinal wide beam properties and design in ACI 31811 and Eurocode
flexural reinforcement that were arranged in column band, was 2,12 where many codes do not address them directly. In fact,
investigated. The performances were measured in terms of deflec- most of them refer to the special cases of beams or slabs,
tion, crack patterns, concrete and steel strains, ultimate load, and which are in concert with wide beams. In recent research,13,14
modes of failure. The results showed that independent bent-up bars there have been studies to evaluate and propose a practical
increased the shear capacity and ductility of wide beams. It was and optimum arrangement of shear reinforcement for these
revealed that, although independent horizontal bars increased the members and to compare against ACI 318 and Eurocode 2. To
shear capacity to some extent, the beam was less ductile through clarify and improve upon the shear strength predicted by ACI
failure. The results also indicated that the beam with banded main
318 and Eurocode 2, and to apply it to reinforced concrete wide
reinforcement achieved larger failure load.
beams, the influence of shear reinforcement distribution and
Keywords: ductility; independent bent-up bars; longitudinal reinforce- support width were stuided.13 In addition, the use of two stirrup
ment; shear reinforcement; slabs; stirrups; wide beams. legs was banned because the maximum spacing among vertical
legs in a stirrup is suggested to be limited to values close to the
INTRODUCTION beam depth. Taking into account the large number of stirrup
Reinforced concrete materials are widely accepted due to legs, the small height of wide beams, and thus the difficulty of
their strength, durability, reduced costs, quality, and ease of stirrup placement, there should be some alternatives to these
forming into various shapes and sizes to construct structural beams for shear.
members such as beams, slabs, columns, and shear walls. Based on previous research, aggregate size, beam size,
The use of reinforced concrete wide beams is advantageous flexural reinforcement, and stirrups influence the shear
for many reasons. In buildings such as warehouses, commer- strength of reinforced concrete wide beams.8,15-21 It is
cial buildings, parking garages, and office buildings, rein- accepted that, in the presence of shear reinforcement, ulti-
forced concrete wide beams with a width-depth ratio of at mate strength capacity is governed either by flexure or
least 2 are used to reduce floor height and facilitate the run by the web crushing, the least of the shearing, and shear
of services under the floor. compression resistance.22 Considering the geometry of wide
There have been many studies on wide beam behavior, beams using a larger number of longitudinal flexural rein-
mostly on their support width and transversal spacing of forcement in comparison to normal beams, shear strength
stirrup legs.1-10 Regarding the particular feature and behavior is highly influenced by longitudinal flexural reinforcement.
of connections in wide beams that the column is narrower It is known that concrete shear strength is decreased when
than the beam, some researchers conducted different tests the longitudinal flexural reinforcement ratio is reduced, and
to investigate the behavior of wide beams under different with an increase of depth (for example, from 460 to 910 mm
load conditions, statically and dynamically. Based on the [18.11 to 35.83 in.], the equivalent decrease in concrete
results of the research, the use of wide beams for different shear strength was 18%.16 Lubell et al.19 demonstrated that
regions and conditions is limited. The seismic performance in members with no shear reinforcement, both the member
of wide beams was investigated,1,2,10 with some recom- depth and the details of longitudinal flexural reinforcement
mendations to use these members in seismic regions. In influence the shear capacity of the member.
a different loading for shear,3 tests on impact behavior of Cracking spacing is influenced by the distrbution of longitu-
reinforced concrete beams for the effect of shear mecha- dinal flexural reinforcement and its bond effect on concrete.17
nisms revealed that specimens with higher shear capacity
ACI Structural Journal, V. 112, No. 2, March-April 2015.
are able to sustain more impacts and absorb higher values MS No. S-2013-360.R4, doi: 10.14359/51687299, received May 27, 2014, and
reviewed under Institute publication policies. Copyright © 2015, American Concrete
of energy. Abbas et al.4 investigated the structural response Institute. All rights reserved, including the making of copies unless permission is
of wide beams and the results indicated that, under high-rate obtained from the copyright proprietors. Pertinent discussion including author’s
closure, if any, will be published ten months from this journal’s date if the discussion
loading, the beam is capable of withstanding higher values is received within four months of the paper’s print publication.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 199

Due to the short height of wide beams, the spacing between loads on the beam. Details of specimen configuration and
longitudinal flexural reinforcement and the midheight of the test setup are shown in Fig. 1, and reinforcement cages
beams becomes smaller; thereby crack spacing can be affected before casting can be seen in Fig. 2. In all of the specimens,
by longitudinal flexural reinforcement. the beam part was designed to nominal dimensions of 1820
In beam-column connections, researchers suggested that mm (71.6 in.) length, 750 mm (29.5 in.) width, and 250 mm
all beam longitudinal flexural reinforcement should pass (9.8 in.) height. The column part was square and with
through the beam supports.1 Popov et al.18 tested rein- nominal dimensions of 300 mm (11.8 in.) sides and 300 mm
forced concrete beam-column-slab cruciform interior joint (11.8 in.) height. The specimens were supported under the
subassemblages under simulated seismic loadings. They beam part at ends with a shear span of 550 mm (21.6 in.)
confirmed that, in wide beams with narrow interior supports, from each support to the face of the column. Shear span
the contribution of longitudinal bars outside of the column together with other geometric properties of the specimens
confinement to the lateral resistance is significant. It was are detailed in Table 1. The column parts were reinforced
also shown that when the supported width is narrower than properly with stirrups and axial reinforcement using appro-
the width of the member, the shear capacity of a member priate anchorage length of bars to resist the applied load and
decreases.8 transfer it to the beam part.
This paper investigates the overall behavior of wide beams
under different methods of reinforcing for shear. Three types Materials
of shear reinforcement that have been previously used23,24 Ready mixed concrete containing coarse aggregate of
are used in this study, which include: stirrups as normal 20  mm (0.8 in.) maximum size and a nominal specified
reinforcement; independent bent-up bars as a new type of strength of 30 MPa (4.3 ksi) was used. All specimens were
shear reinforcement for wide beams (which is a focus of this simultaneously cast in plywood formwork and cured under
study); and independent middepth horizontal bars. A column moist burlap. Standard cylindrical molds 150 mm (6 in.) in
part added to the beam part in the specimens plays the diameter and 300 mm (12 in.) high were cast at the same
role of the reinforced concrete wide beam-internal column time as the specimens and cured for control tests. Concrete
structure. samples were tested, and the average specified compressive
The main objective of this paper is to find an easier and strength of the concrete fc′ was 29 MPa (4.2 ksi).
more effective way of reinforcing concrete wide beams to Steel bars of 6, 10, 12, and 16 mm (0.24, 0.39, 0.47, and
behave under shear. Furthermore, to quantify the effect of 0.63 in.) were used for stirrups, independent bent-up bars,
critical design parameters, a numerical model is employed. compression bars, independent middepth horizontal bars,
The numerical analysis, after being verified by the exper- and flexural reinforcement, respectively. The properties of
imental results, gives a better understanding of specimen reinforcing steel bars are shown in Table 2 and Fig. 3.
behavior and provides the possibility of change into the
details of the specimens for future design schemes. Specimens
Each specimen was denoted with WB, an acronym of
RESEARCH SIGNIFICANCE “wide beam,” followed by the specimen number. From
Many researchers express the importance of shear capacity the geometric properties of the specimens shown in Table
of wide beams and suggest guidelines to use stirrups in these 1, Specimen WB1 was devised with no shear reinforce-
beams. They recommend to increase stirrup legs through the ment—this served as the control specimen. Specimen WB2,
cross section in wide beams. The need for a large amount with two parallel independent bent-up bars in cross section,
of flexural reinforcement in concrete wide beams provides was designed to investigate the shear capacity of indepen-
anchorage support for independent bent-up bars; however, it dent bent-up bars. An inclination angle equal to 50 degrees
is difficult to place stirrups with more than two legs in these with the longitudinal flexural reinforcement was selected
beams. Independent bent-up bars could be a feasible option as for independent bent-up bars. This angle was close to 45
an innovative shear reinforcement that can contribute to the degrees, which is perpendicular to the most critical cracks
shear capacity of wide beams, which can also be developed in shear span. As illustrated in Fig. 1(c), the length of inde-
into reinforced concrete slabs. pendent bent-up bars was approximately 240 mm (9.5 in.).
In some previous studies,23,24 independent bent-up bars
EXPERIMENTAL PROGRAM with different anchorage lengths were tested in reinforced
This paper presents results of experimental tests on six concrete beams, and specimens including independent
reinforced concrete wide beams that were part of a study bent-up bars with a minimum anchorage length of 75 mm
on the influence of different types and arrangements of rein- (2.9 in.) revealed acceptable performance. Accordingly,
forcement on concrete wide-beam capacity.25 The specimens an anchorage length of 100 mm (3.9 in.) for independent
consisted of identical concrete mixtures and configurations, bent-up bars was selected in the present study. Specimen
including a beam part and a column part. From the design WB3 included independent middepth horizontal bars for
stage, the ratio of beam weight to minimum ultimate load shear reinforcement that were evenly distributed through
was negligible; therefore, the column part is projected to the width of the beam part and spanning the entire length of
support the real condition of thebeam-internal columns. In the specimen. The value of this reinforcement, regarding the
this case, when load was applied on the column part of the size and number of longitudinal flexural reinforcement, was
specimen, the supports’ reactions were considered imposed approximately 40% of flexural reinforcement. In Specimen

200 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

WB4, about two-thirds of the longitudinal flexural reinforce- distributed bars across the width in other specimens. Stirrups
ment was arranged in a band of width equal to and centered with spacing of approximately 150 mm (5.9 in.) for vertical
on the column width to compare its effect with the evenly legs, transversally and longitudinally, were determined as
shear reinforcement in Specimen WB5. From the specimen
configuration in Fig. 1(a), each stirrup in the cross section
was composed of three rectangular stirrups, including two
internal stirrups 152 x 184 mm (6 x 7.2 in.) and one external
stirrup of 672 x 184 mm (26.5 x 7.2 in.). Specimen WB5 was
a sample of a normal wide beam reinforced with only stirrups
as shear reinforcement. In beams, bent-up bars should not
be used as shear reinforcement except in combination with
stirrups.12 Therefore, a combination of independent bent-up
bars and stirrups was adopted in Specimen WB6. In addition
to providing shear capacity, stirrups could keep the longi-
tudinal flexural reinforcement tightly together. Independent
bent-up bars (same as SpecimenWB2) and stirrups of 150
mm (5.9 in.) transversally and 300 mm (11.8 in.) longitudi-
nally were arranged for WB6. Doubled longitudinal spacing
of stirrups in Specimen WB6, relative to Specimen WB5,
was designed to prevent flexural failure prior to shear failure.
Linear variable displacement transducers (LVDTs) were
used to measure vertical displacement of the specimens. To
investigate the forces in steel bars, electrical strain gauges
were installed on flexural bars of Specimens WB1, WB2,
and WB4, and on middepth horizontal shear bars of Spec-
imen WB3. For flexural bars, strain gauges were installed
on the middle bars near the column face and, for middepth
horizontal shear bars, on one of the bars passing through
the column band and another on the bar out of the column
band. The strain gauges on the middepth horizontal shear
bars were installed at a distance of approximately h/2 from
the column face where the highest shear stress in the cross
section was predicted. Before the main test, approximately
10% of predicted failure load was applied and released for
each specimen to check that the supports and equipment were
firm and consistent. A load cell was placed on the column
stub under the machine head to measure the applied load.
The load was applied through the column stub at the middle
of the beam part and support reactions acted as line loads on
each end of the beams. Data from LVDTs, strain gauges, and
load cell were recorded by an electronic data logger.

Items of investigation
After curing the specimens for 28 days under laboratory
conditions, the specimens were tested and their perfor-
mances were measured in terms of midspan displacement,
crack pattern, concrete and steel strain, ultimate load, and
mode of failure. At the same time, cylindrical concrete spec-
imens were tested and, for each bar stock, randomly selected
samples were used to determine the standard stress-strain
curve of the steel bars.


The beams were reinforced in such a way that flexural
failure was prevented. This implied that a shear failure
mechanism forms first before the yielding of flexural rein-
forcement. In members without shear reinforcement, shear
failure mechanism depends on the tensile strength of the
concrete. Based on modified truss analogy, nominal shear
Fig. 1—Specimens configuration and test setup.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 201

Table 1—Geometric properties of specimens
Designation of shear reinforcement
Stirrups Horizontal bars Independent bent-up bars
bw/d, mm Height h, Shear span a,
Specimen (in.) mm (in.) mm (in.) a/d ρw, % Av, mm (in. ) Sv, mm (in.)
2 2
Avh, mm (in. )
2 2
Avb, mm2 (in.2) Sb, mm (in.)
WB1* 3.6 (3.5) 250 (9.8) 550 (21.6) 2.6 1.4 — — — — —
WB2 3.6 (3.5) 250 (9.8) 550 (21.6) 2.6 1.4 — — — 157 (0.2) 150 (5.9)
WB3 3.6 (3.5) 250 (9.8) 550 (21.6) 2.6 1.4 — — 804 (1.3) — —
WB4 *
3.6 (3.5) 250 (9.8) 550 (21.6) 2.6 1.4 — — — — —
WB5 3.6 (3.5) 250 (9.8) 550 (21.6) 2.6 1.4 170 (0.3) 150 (5.9) — — —
WB6 3.6 (3.5) 250 (9.8) 550 (21.6) 2.6 1.4 170 (0.3) 300 (11.8) — 157 (0.2) 150 (5.9)
No shear reinforcement; however, they were different in longitudinal flexural reinforcement distribution.
Notes: bw/d is beam width-depth ratio; a/d is shear span-depth ratio; and Avh is the area of middepth horizontal shear bars.

Fig. 2—Reinforcement cages before casting.

strength of a reinforced concrete beam, Vc, can be written as where concrete struts run parallel to diagonal cracks and
(ACI 318-08, Eq. (11-2))11 stirrups perform as tension members.26
For a member subject to shear and flexure only, the expres-
Vn = Vc + Vs (1) sion used for shear capacity of the member without shear
reinforcement is (ACI 318-08, Eq. (11-3))
where Vc is nominal shear strength of concrete, and Vs is
nominal shear strength of web reinforcement. Vc = 0.166 f c′bw d (MPa) (2a)
In the truss analogy contains the shear resistance of a
parallel chord truss and a web-reinforced concrete beam,
Vc = 2.0 f c′bw d (psi) (2b)

202 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Table 2—Reinforcement characteristics
Steel Diameter, Yield stress fy, Yield strain Ultimate strength
bar mm (in.) MPa (ksi) εy fu, MPa (ksi)
D-6 5.39 (0.21) 637.7 (92.49) 1.2 × 10–3 727.5 (105.5)
D-10 9.69 (0.38) 601.5 (87.24) 1.3 × 10–3 700.4 (101.6)
D-12 11.53 (0.45) 617.6 (89.57) 1.8 × 10–3
726.4 (105.4)
D-16 15.71 (0.62) 465.6 (67.53) 1.1 × 10–3
547.1 (79.35)

where fc′ is specified compressive strength of concrete; bw is

the web width; and d is the distance from the compression
face to the centroid of longitudinal tensile reinforcement.
Under a more detailed calculation, three variables such as Fig. 3—Stress-strain of steel bars.
tensile strength of concrete, the ratio of area of longitudinal exceed 0.42 f c′ MPa (5 f c′ psi); otherwise, the limits
tensile reinforcement, and Vud/Mu are taken into account.
The basic equations then become (ACI 318-08 Eq. (11-5)) should be reduced by half.
Wherever a group of parallel bent-up bars is used as shear
reinforcement, Vsb is computed by (ACI 318-08, Eq. (11-16))
 V d
Vc =  0.166 f c′ + 17ρw u  bw d (MPa) (3a)
 Mu  Avb f yb (sin α + cos α )d
Vsb = (5)
 V d
Vc =  2.0 f c′ + 2500ρw u  bw d (psi) (3b)
 Mu  where fyb is yield strength of bent-up bar; α is the angle
where fc′ is specified compressive strength of concrete; ρw between bent-up bar and longitudinal tensile reinforcement;
is the ratio of area of longitudinal tensile reinforcement (As) Avb is the area of parallel bent-up bars; and sb is center-to-
to the multiplication of the web width (bw), and the distance center spacing of bent-up bars measured in direction parallel
from the compression face to the centroid of longitudinal to the longitudinal tensile reinforcement. Beams reinforced
tensile reinforcement (d); Vu is the factored shear force at a with stirrups and bent-up longitudinal bars should be spaced
section; and Mu is factored moment at a section. at d/2 such that any crack initiating at mid-depth and propo-
Some researchers27,28 indicate that Eq. (3a) or (3b) over- gating at approximately 45 degrees is crossed by at least one
estimates the influence of fc′ and underestimates the influ- row of stirrups or bent-up bars.11 Therefore, to control the
ence of ρw and Vu d/Mu; however, to consider the influence of most critical shear cracks by independent bent-up bars, this
mid-depth horizontal shear bars on the shear capacity of the limit is important.
specimen, Eq. (3a) or (3b) can be used in this study. In a member using a combination of stirrups and inde-
With the assumption that the diagonal members in the pendent bent-up bars as shear reinforcement, the term Vs in
truss analogy are assumed to be inclined at 45 degrees, shear Eq. (1) can be written as
reinforcement needs to carry the exceeding shear that causes
inclined cracking. Where shear reinforcement used in the Vs = Vsv + Vsb (6)
member is vertical to the longitudinal tensile reinforcement,
nominal shear strength provided by shear reinforcement, Vsv, where Vsv and Vsb are nominal shear strengths of vertical shear
is given by (ACI 318-08 Eq. (11-15)) reinforcement and independent bent-up bars, respectively.
In comparison to ACI 318-08,11 the method of shear
Av f ys d design used by Eurocode 212 is the variable strut inclination
Vsv = (4) method, and the shear capacity of the concrete VRd,c is given
sv by (EC2, Clause (6.2.2))

where Av is the area of shear reinforcement; sv is center-to- VRd , c = [0.18(1 + 200 /d )(100ρw ⋅ f ck )1/ 3 ]bw d (MPa) (7a)
center spacing of shear reinforcement measured in direction
parallel to longitudinal tensile reinforcement; and fys is yield VRd , c = [4.96(1 + 7.87 /d )(100ρw ⋅ f ck )1/ 3 ]bw d (psi) (7b)
strength of stirrup.
Research6,7 has shown that, with a decrease in the trans- with a minimum shear capacity of
verse spacing of stirrup legs across the section in wide beams
with substantial flexural reinforcement, the shear behavior is
VRd , c min = [0.035(1 + 200 /d )3/ 2 f ck ]bw d (MPa) (8a)
improved. Other research14 has indicated that the transverse
spacing of web reinforcement shown in ACI 318-08 limited
to the lesser of: a) the effective depth d; or b) 600 mm [24 VRd , c min = [0.42(1 + 7.87 /d )3/ 2 f ck ]bw d (psi) (8b)
in.] is adequate when the nominal shear stress does not
where characteristic cylinder strength of concrete fck is taken
equivalent to the specified compressive strength of concrete

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 203

fc′. EC2 considers action of a reinforced concrete beam
in shear by the analogous truss with an angle θ between
22 to 45 degrees to the horizontal for inclined compression
members.29 In this analogy, the bottom chord and vertical
stirrups are the horizontal tension steel and the transverse
tension members, respectively. Where the ultimate shear
force VEd is larger than VRd,c, all shear will be resisted by
the provision of stirrups without direct contribution from the
shear capacity of the concrete. The shear resistance of the
stirrups, VRd,s, is given by (EC2, Clause (6.2.3))

VRd , s = × df ys cot θ (9)

and shear resistance of a multiple system of bent-up bars,

Vwd, is given by

0.9d (cot α + cot θ)

Vwd = f yb Asb sin α × (10)

where the maximum longitudinal spacing of bent-up bars by

EC2 is limited to 0.6d(1 + cotα), where at least 50% of shear
reinforcement should be resisted by stirrups.
In this study, when using a combination of independent
bent-up bars and stirrups, a larger longitudinal spacing of
stirrup legs is used to make a shear-critical, rather than
flexure-critical, member. Safety factors were removed from
design stage formulas, however, to predict the real failure
load under the test stage.


Load-displacement response
All the specimens were tested and load-displacement
responses of the various specimens are presented in Fig. 4.
Load details and displacements of the specimens are also
shown in Tables 3 and 4.
Shear reinforcement—The lowest failure load, 401 kN
(90 kip), was for reference Beam WB1 with no shear rein-
forcement. Approximately an 11% increase of failure load in
comparison to the load predicted by ACI 318-08 and a 10%
Fig. 4—Load-displacement responses of specimens.
increase to the load predicted by EC2 was observed in this
specimen. Maximum midspan displacement of WB1, approx- the load from ACI 318-08 and 20% less from EC2. Using
imately 2.6 mm (0.1 in.), was less than 50% of the maximum stirrups of 150 mm (5.9 in.) longitudinal spacing in WB5,
midpan displacement, 6.9 mm (0.27 in.), for WB2. Indepen- maximum midspan displacement became 5.9 mm (0.232 in.).
dent bent-up bars improved the shear capacity of WB2 to Specimen WB6, with a dual system of independent bent-up
approximately 51% and it was able to carry a load of 604 kN bars and stirrups of 300 mm (11.8 in.) longitudinal spacing
(136 kip). The failure load for WB2 was approximately 18% in comparison to WB1, revealed an increase in failure load
less than the load from ACI 318-08 and 97% more than EC2. to approximately 635 kN (143 kip). The failure load by WB6
With a moderate increase in failure load, approximately 26% was the highest load among the specimens. This load was
greater than WB1, Specimen WB3 carried 507 kN (114 kip) 29% less than the load from ACI 318-08 and 7% less than
to failure. In contrast to the predicted load from the design EC2. Maximum midspan displacement recorded for WB6,
stage, independent middepth horizontal bars enhanced the 5.8 mm (0.228 in.), was less than that of WB5 and WB2.
failure load of WB3 up to 30% and 18% higher than ACI Longitudinal flexural reinforcement—Specimen WB4
318-08 and EC2, respectively. Maximum midspan displace- failed under 480 kN (108 kip) load, which was 34% larger
ment of this specimen was 3.1 mm (0.12 in.), which was than the predicted failure load by ACI 318-08 and 27% larger
larger than in WB1. Regarding the stirrups used in WB5, than that predicted by EC2. In contrast to reference Spec-
the failure load of 581 kN (131 kip) for this specimen was imen WB1, it is observed that concentration of the longitu-
45% higher than the failure load of WB1, but 13% less than dinal flexural reinforcement in the column band increased

204 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Table 3—Ultimate capacity and comparison
Specimen Pu,ACI, kN (kip) Pu,EC2, kN (kip) Pu,experiment, kN (kip) Pu,experiment/Pu,ACI Pu,experiment/Pu,EC2
WB1 360 (81) 379 (85) 401 (90) 1.11 1.10
WB2 736 (165) 307 (69) 604 (136) 0.82 1.97
WB3 387 (87) 429 (96) 507 (114) 1.30 1.18
WB4 360 (81) 379 (85) 480 (108) 1.34 1.27
WB5 664 (149) 727 (163) 581 (131) 0.87 0.80
WB6 889 (200) 686 (154) 635 (143) 0.71 0.93

Notes: Pu,ACI is total capacity of each specimen by ACI 318 from design stage; Pu,EC2 represents total capacity of each specimen by Eurocode 2 from design stage; Pu,experiment is
ultimate load that caused failure to each specimen.

Table 4—Flexural and shear cracking load and displacement

Pu,experiment – Pshear crack,
Specimen Pu,experiment, kN (kip) Pflexural crack, kN (kip) Pshear crack, kN (kip) kN (kip) ∆u,experiment, mm (in.)
WB1 401 (90) 216 (49) 392 (88) 9 (2) 2.6 (0.102)
WB2 604 (136) 195 (44) 420 (94) 184 (41) 6.9 (0.272)
WB3 507 (114) 195 (44) 400 (90) 107 (24) 3.1 (0.122)
WB4 480 (108) 210 (47) 430 (97) 50(11) 3.5 (0.138)
WB5 581 (131) 200 (45) 440 (99) 141 (32) 5.9 (0.232)
WB6 635 (143) 180 (41) 480 (108) 155 (35) 5.8 (0.228)

Notes: Pflexural crack is load under which first flexural crack was observed; Pshear crack is load under which first shear crack was observed; and ∆u,experiment is final deflection of the wide
beam midspan at Pu,experiment.

the failure load of WB4 to approximately 79 kN (17.76 kip). Consequently, loads for first flexural cracks were observed
Due to the change in reinforcement concentration, maximum to be in a close range and were not very different. In all the
midspan displacement of WB4, shown to be 3.5 mm (0.138 specimens, after a certain load for flexural cracks, diag-
in.), was greater than the maximum midspan displacement onal shear cracks began at an angle of approximately 45
of WB1, which was 2.6 mm (0.102 in.). degrees. Specimens WB1 and WB4, with almost the same
Load-displacement responses of the specimens, however, load for first flexural crack (216 and 210 kN [49 and 47 kip],
indicate that middepth horizontal shear reinforcement respectively), revealed different load for first shear crack. It
moderately improves the shear capacity and maximum appeared that stirrups in other specimens influenced the first
midspan displacement of wide beams. In addition, the beam flexural cracks to initiate at a lower load; however, the first
with banded main reinforcement achieves a larger failure flexural cracks in WB3—with mid-depth horizontal shear
load than the beam with evenly distributed main bars. reinforcement—also appeared at a lower load.
Results also showed that independent bent-up bars enhance Shear reinforcement—In WB1, only two diagonal shear
the shear capacity of wide beams like stirrups, and an even cracks occurred; soon after the first shear crack, a brittle
higher maximum midspan displacement and final load for failure occurred due to the second shear crack. In WB3, more
a wide beam using only independent bent-up bars can be diagonal cracks were observed; however, the last crack,
achieved. A combination of independent bent-up bars and similar to WB1, caused a brittle failure to the specimen. All
stirrups induce a reasonable performance of the wide beam shear cracks in WB1 and WB3 occurred on only one side
with a high shear capacity. of the specimens, started at middepth, and then propagated
to the column face and support. Table 4 shows a higher
Crack development and mode of failure load capacity than that of the design prediction. Principal
Final crack patterns for the specimens are shown in Fig. 5. diagonal shear cracks in WB2, WB5, and WB6 appeared
To compare against the capacity of the specimens, values symmetrically on both the left and right sides of the beam
of loads for first flexural crack, first shear crack, and the part after loading, and ductile failure for these specimens
value of total load carried by each specimen from appear- was observed. The resisted load after first shear crack in
ance of first shear crack until ultimate load are presented in WB2 was greater than in other specimens, which indicated
Table 4. It is important to note that a review of the type of a good shear capacity of bent-up bars. In WB5, stirrups of
cracks was based on the visual crack monitoring during the 150 mm (5.9 in.) longitudinal spacing improved the spec-
test process and taking into account the cracks visible to the imen and had a first shear crack load higher than WB1 to
eye. In all the specimens, first cracks propagated at midspan WB3; however, the load after this crack to failure was less
in flexure mode and then developed upward and symmetri- than those in WB2 and WB6. A combination of bent-up bars
cally on the left and right sides. Middepth horizontal shear and 300 mm (11.8 in.) longitudinal spacing stirrups influ-
reinforcement was placed in position with neutral axes and enced the first shear crack in WB6 to appear under a 480 kN
could not influence flexural capacity of WB3 significantly. (108 kip) load, which was greater than in WB1 to WB5.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 205

Fig. 5—Crack development and modes of failure.
From the results for crack patterns and mode of failure, the WB3 and WB4 with no shear stirrups may indicate slippage
use of independent bent-up bars improved the failure mode of longitudinal flexural reinforcement at high loads. In other
of wide beams, where wide beams with a combination of words, the rule of stirrups in bonding and confining concrete
stirrups and independent bent-up bars exhibit a large number may improve specimens to prevent slippage of longitu-
of smaller cracks and a high resisted load, showing a more dinal flexural reinforcement at support. Moreover, crack
ductile failure. The shear crack extended past the beam development in Specimen WB2, including independent bent-up
centerline confirming the Lubell et al.8 results, which indi- bars as shear reinforcement with no stirrups, also showed no
cate that the lack of confining pressure under the loading slippage for longitudinal flexural reinforcement at supports,
plate with a width lesser than the beam causes the crack to which indicates an advantage of independent bent-up bars.
Longitudinal flexural reinforcement—In Table 1, longitu- Reinforcement strains
dinal flexural reinforcement ratio ρw is similar for WB1 and The location of each steel strain gauge is shown in Fig. 6,
WB2 (at 1.4%), but approximately two-thirds of the longi- as well as the variation in mid-depth horizontal shear bars
tudinal flexural reinforcement of WB4 was concentrated in and longitudinal flexural bars obtained from electrical strain
the column band. The first shear crack in WB1 with evenly gauges. Strain in longitudinal flexural reinforcement of WB1
distributed longitudinal flexural reinforcement occurred at without shear reinforcement and WB2 with bent-up bars are
392 kN (88 kip), whereas the first crack for WB4 was at a load denoted by StWB1 and StWB2, respectively. WB4, with concen-
of 430 kN (7 kip), approximately a 10% increase. Concen- trated longitudinal flexural reinforcement strain in the middle
tration of longitudinal flexural reinforcement improved the bar of the column band, is labelled StWB4. Before 100 kN (22
shear capacity of Specimen WB4, but the crack propagation kip) loading, minor digressions from the linear part of load-
and mode of failure in WB4 was approximately the same as strain responses of the specimens were observed, but following
WB1. the increase in load, these responses became nonlinear.
The anchorage length for longitudinal flexural reinforce- The strain profile of StWB2 indicated that, with increasing
ment was 200 mm (7.87 in.) to prevent the slippage at the applied load, longitudinal flexural reinforcement yielded.
supports. The crack propagation in supports for Specimens Results showed that using independent bent-up bars as shear

206 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

reinforcement increased the shear capacity of the specimen,
but the strain in longitudinal flexural reinforcement did not
change much.
Two other electrical strain gauges, Stouter and Stinner, were
located on middepth horizontal shear reinforcements of
WB3. The total response of Stouter exhibited a linear behavior
and indicated no yield in the horizontal shear reinforcement
that was out of the column area. In comparison to Stouter, a
large deviation in the response of Stinner indicated a higher
strain due to the shear stress that caused yielding of the
longitudinal shear bar in the column area.
Strain gauge StWB4 is compared to StWB1 and, from Fig. 6,
it is shown that a concentration of approximately two-thirds
of longitudinal flexural reinforcement in the column band
induces a higher strain, which could have resulted from
higher stress in the column band.
With regard to the stress-strain relationship, results
showed that, across the width of a wide beam supported
by a column, not supporting the full cross sectional of the
beam, shear stress is not evenly distributed. However, the
higher stress and yielding of longitudinal flexural reinforce-
ment in the column band of the specimen with concentrated
reinforcement indicates stress deviation due to the change of
reinforcement area through the cross section.

Numerical model for parametric study

The license for the ABAQUS, Version 6.9, finite element
(FE) software is available at the Universiti Teknologi
Malaysia.30 Specimen WB2, which included only indepen-
dent bent-up bars as new shear reinforcement, was modeled Fig. 6—Overview on location and variation of middepth
by the FE software. In Fig. 7, a summary of the load-mid- horizontal shear bars and longitudinal flexural bars.
span deflection of experimental and FE analysis for Specimen
WB2 are presented. Results for the numerical modeling that
is close to the experimental results indicate that the numer-
ical modeling can be validated by the experimental results
and used to model other specimens to conduct a parametric

Testing wide beam specimens with a larger number and
smaller size of independent bent-up bars in combination
with stirrups is recommended. It is also recommended to
test specimens using independent bent-up bars for punching
shear, if acceptable. The use of independent bent-up bars as
shear reinforcement is faster and easier than other types of
shear reinforcement. In both cases, the results will contribute
new practical guidelines to improve shear capacity of wide
beams and slabs using independent bent-up bars.

The behavior of reinforced concrete wide beams with
diverse types of reinforcement was investigated under this
experimental study. The results revealed that using indepen-
dent bent-up bars significantly improved the shear capacity
of wide beams. The combination of independent bent-up bars
with stirrups led to higher shear capacity and gradual failure
of the specimen. Independent horizontal bars increased the
shear capacity to some extent, but the beam was less ductile
Fig. 7—Load-midspan defection of experimental and FE
through failure. The results also indicated that the beam with
analysis for Specimen WB2.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 207

banded main reinforcement achieved a larger failure load Engineering, ASCE, V. 138, No. 3, 2012, pp. 416-424. doi: 10.1061/
than did the beam with evenly distributed main bars. 10. Gentry, T. R., and Wight, J. K., “Wide Beam-Column Connections
under Earthquake-Type Loading,” Earthquake Spectra, V. 10, No. 4, 1994,
AUTHOR BIOS pp. 675-703. doi: 10.1193/1.1585793
ACI member Seyed Esmaeil Mohammadyan-Yasouj is a PhD Candi- 11. ACI Committee 318, “Building Code Requirements for Structural
date of civil engineering–structure at Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Concrete (ACI 318-08) and Commentary,” American Concrete Institute,
Johor Bahru, Malaysia, where he received his MS. His research interests Farmington Hills, MI, 2008, 473 pp.
include analysis and design of reinforced concrete structures, industrialized 12. Eurocode 2, “Design of Concrete Structures—Part 1-1: General
building systems, and research to practical guidelines on the construction Rules and Rules for Buildings (EN1992-1-1),” European Committee for
of concrete structures. Standardization, Brussels, Belgium, Dec. 2004, 451 pp.
13. Serna-Ros, P.; Fernandez-Prada, M. A.; Miguel-Sosa, P.; and Debb,
Abdul Kadir Marsono is an Associate Professor of civil engineering at O. A. R., “Influence of Stirrup Distribution and Support Width on the Shear
Universiti Teknologi Malaysia. He received his MPhil from Heriot-Watt Strength of Reinforced Concrete Wide Beams,” Magazine of Concrete
University, Edinburgh, UK, and his PhD from University of Dundee, Research, V. 54, No. 3, 2002, pp. 181-191. doi: 10.1680/macr.2002.54.3.181
Dundee, UK. His research interests include industrialized building 14. Lubell, A. S.; Bentz, E. C.; and Collins, M. P., “Shear Reinforce-
systems, nonlinear analysis, and reinforced concrete shear walls of tall ment Spacing in Wide Members,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 106, No. 2,
building structures. Mar.-Apr. 2009, pp. 205-214.
15. Sherwood, E. G.; Bentz, E. C.; and Collins, M. P., “Effect of Aggre-
Ramli Abdullah is a Senior Lecturer and an Associate Professor of civil gate Size on Beam-Shear Strength of Thick Slabs,” ACI Structural Journal,
engineering at Universiti Teknologi Malaysia. He received his MS from the V. 104, No. 2, Mar.-Apr. 2007, pp. 180-190.
University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, UK, and his PhD from Heriot-Watt 16. Tompos, E. J., and Frosch, R. J., “Influence of Beam Size, Longitudinal
University. His research interests include reinforced concrete structures. Reinforcement, and Stirrup Effectiveness on Concrete Shear Strength,” ACI
Structural Journal, V. 99, No. 5, Sept.-Oct. 2002, pp. 559-567.
ACI member Mostafa Moghadasi is an Assistant Professor of civil engi- 17. Zakaria, M.; Ueda, T.; Wu, Z.; and Meng, L., “Experimental Inves-
neering at Bu-Ali Sina University, Hamedan, Iran. He received his MSc and tigation on Shear Cracking Behavior in Reinforced Concrete Beams with
PhD in structural engineering from Amirkabir University of Technology Shear Reinforcement,” Journal of Advanced Concrete Technology, V. 7,
(Tehran Polytechnic), Tehran, Iran, and Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, No. 1, 2009, pp. 79-96. doi: 10.3151/jact.7.79
respectively. His research interests include nonlinear behavior of rein- 18. Popov, E. P.; Cohen, J. M.; Thomas, K.; and Kasai, K., “Behavior of
forced and precast concrete structures, industrialized building systems, and Interior Narrow and Wide Beams,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 89, No. 6,
tall buildings. Nov.-Dec. 1992, pp. 607-616.
19. Lubell, A. S.; Bentz, E. C.; and Collins, M. P., “Influence of Longi-
tudinal Reinforcement on One-Way Shear in Slabs and Wide Beams,”
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE, V. 135, No. 1, 2009, pp. 78-87.
The authors would like to acknowledge the support from the faculty of doi: 10.1061/(ASCE)0733-9445(2009)135:1(78)
civil engineering at Universiti Teknologi Malaysia. 20. Bažant, Z. P., and Kim, J. K., “Size Effect in Shear Failure of Longi-
tudinally Reinforced Beams,” ACI Journal Proceedings, V. 81, No. 5,
Sept.-Oct. 1984, pp. 456-468.
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29. Mosley, B.; Bungey, J.; and Hulse, R., Reinforced Concrete Design to
Wide Concrete Beams with Narrow Supports,” ASCE Structural Congress,
Eurocode2, Palgrave Macmillan, New York, 2007, 408 pp.
Crossing Borders, Reston, VA, 2008.
30. ABAQUS, ABAQUS manual, Version 6.9, Pawtucket, RI, 2009.
9. Shuraim, A. B., “Transverse Stirrup Configurations in RC Wide
Shallow Beams Supported on Narrow Columns,” Journal of Structural

208 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Title No. 112-S19

Effect of Axial Compression on Shear Behavior of High-

Strength Reinforced Concrete Columns
by Yu-Chen Ou and Dimas P. Kurniawan

To observe the effect of axial compression on the shear behavior tions for Vc to axial compressive stress greater than 0.15fcʹ,
of high-strength reinforced concrete columns, eight shear-critical experiments9 were performed using 38 members with fcʹ
high-strength columns were tested under cyclic shear with an axial ranging from 22 to 27 MPa (3120 to 3950 psi) subjected
compressive stress of 0.3fcʹ to 0.4fcʹ and compared to eight columns to axial compressive stress ranging from zero to 0.7fcʹ. Of
tested in a previous study with an axial compressive stress of 0.1fcʹ
the 38 members tested, 23 were subjected to axial compres-
to 0.2fcʹ. Test results showed that the increase rate of concrete
sive stress exceeding 0.15fcʹ. The ACI code equations for Vc
shear strength tended to decrease with increasing axial compres-
sion and reached an upper limit at high axial compression. Most proved to be conservative for axial compressive stress up to
columns under axial compressive stress of 0.3fcʹ to 0.4fcʹ failed at 0.7fcʹ. However, these studies were limited to normal-strength
the same drift as diagonal cracking. This suggests the minimum concrete. Test results10,11 of reinforced concrete beams with
shear reinforcement equations of the ACI Building Code need to fcʹ values ranging from 21 to 93 MPa (3000 to 13,500 psi)
include the effect of axial compression. Based on a test database of showed that the degree of conservatism of the ACI Code
77 high-strength columns and the biaxial behavior of high-strength equations for Vc reduced with increasing fcʹ. Experimental
concrete, this study proposes concrete shear-strength equations studies12 of 24 concrete elements with fcʹ ranging from 30 to
incorporating the weakening effect of axial compression. 87 MPa (4300 to 12,600 psi) under various combinations of
shear and axial compression showed that ACI Code equa-
Keywords: axial compression; columns; cyclic loading; diagonal cracking;
double curvature; high-strength concrete; high-strength reinforcement; tions for Vc were nonconservative for highly axially loaded
reinforced concrete; shear. reinforced concrete elements. The study recommended that
the axial compression term Nu/Ag in the simplified ACI shear-
INTRODUCTION strength equation should be limited to 20 MPa (3000 psi).
The advantages of high-strength concrete combined The equation for shear strength provided by shear rein-
with high-strength steel have been demonstrated in prac- forcement (Vs) of the ACI Code2 was developed based on the
tical use. They are commonly used in high-rise buildings truss analogy.8 A limit of 414 MPa (60,000 psi) was imposed
to reduce the dimensions of columns in lower stories to for fyt because test data showed that shear reinforcement
increase available floor area and to relive reinforcement with high fyt was not able to develop its yield strength. Test
congestion. Advanced technology has enabled the develop- results of 87 beams with fyt ranging from 484 to 1454 MPa
ment of high-strength materials in Taiwan. High-strength (70,000 to 211,000 psi)3,13,14 showed that shear reinforce-
concrete with specified compressive strength up to 100 MPa ment may not be able to develop its yield strength when fyt
(14,500 psi) and high-strength deformed reinforcement with ≥ 700 MPa (102,000 psi) and fcʹ < 40 MPa (5800 psi), or when
specified yield strength of 685 and 785 MPa (100,000 and fyt is very high—for example, fyt = 1454 MPa (211,000 psi).
114,000 psi) for main and transverse reinforcement,1 respec- Test results for 42 columns with fyt ranging from 846 to
tively, are now commercially available. However, in shear 1447 MPa (123,000 to 210,000 psi)13-15 showed that many
design for columns, the current ACI Building Code2 limits of the columns did not show yielding of shear reinforcement.
concrete compressive strength fcʹ to 70 MPa (10,000 psi) The presence of axial compression appeared to decrease the
(ACI 318-11, Section 11.1.2) due to the lack of test data and effectiveness of shear reinforcement to resist shear.
practical experience with fcʹ ≥ 70 MPa (10,000 psi). More- This study tested eight large-scale columns with high-
over, the yield strength of shear reinforcement (fyt) is limited strength steel and high-strength concrete. The columns
to 420 MPa (60,900 psi) (ACI 318-11, Section 11.4.2) to were tested under double-curvature cyclic loading with high
control diagonal crack width and to ensure yielding of shear axial compression to simulate seismic loading conditions
reinforcement before shear failure.3 in typical lower-story columns in high-rise buildings. Test
The equations for shear strength provided by concrete results of the eight columns and test data from literature
(Vc) of the ACI Code2 for nonprestressed members subject were then used to examine the effects of axial compression
to axial compression were developed based on the results on shear strength of high-strength concrete columns.
of studies4-7 of 67 specimens under axial compressive stress
ranging from 0.02fcʹ to 0.81fcʹ, which were reported by Joint ACI Structural Journal, V. 112, No. 2, March-April 2015.
ACI-ASCE Committee 326.8 However, only four specimens MS No. S-2013-365.R2, doi: 10.14359/51687300, received May 1, 2014, and
reviewed under Institute publication policies. Copyright © 2015, American Concrete
had axial compressive stress higher than 0.15fcʹ, and the fcʹ Institute. All rights reserved, including the making of copies unless permission is
values ranged from 14 to 41 MPa (2000 to 6000 psi). For obtained from the copyright proprietors. Pertinent discussion including author’s
closure, if any, will be published ten months from this journal’s date if the discussion
further assessment of the applicability of the ACI Code equa- is received within four months of the paper’s print publication.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 209

Table 1—Specimen design
Concrete compressive strength Longitudinal reinforcing bar D32 (No. 10) Shear reinforcing bar D13 (No. 4)
Axial compres- Shear reinforcing
Column sion ratio, % bar spacing, mm fcs′, MPa fc′, MPa fyls, MPa fyl, MPa ρl, % ρw, % fyts, MPa fyt, MPa ρt, %
C-1 70 104.1
450 0.16
C-2 100 138.8
C-3 70 104.6
260 0.28
C-4 100 130.0
685 735 3.52 1.37 785 862
D-1 70 101.0
450 0.16
D-2 100 125.5
D-3 70 106.4
260 0.28
D-4 100 127.8
Note: 1 MPa = 145 psi.

Fig. 1—Specimen design: (a) Specimens C-1, C-2, D-1, and D-2; (b) Specimens C-3, C-4, D-3, and D-4; and (c) cross section.
(Note: 1 mm = 0.0394 in.)
RESEARCH SIGNIFICANCE the specimen design. The locations of strain gauges installed
Columns in the lower stories of high-rise buildings typi- in the longitudinal and shear reinforcement are also shown
cally carry large axial compression. By using high-strength in Fig. 1. Further details of instrumentation can be found
concrete and steel, designers can control the column dimen- elsewhere.16 The columns had a square cross section of
sions and increase the available floor area. However, current 600 x 600 mm (23.62 x 23.62 in.) and a clear height of
ACI Code equations for shear-strength limit concrete 1800 mm (70.87 in.). The columns were reinforced with
compressive strength to 70 MPa (10,000 psi) and limit the D32 (No. 10) SD685 high-strength deformed bars for longi-
yield strength of shear reinforcement to 420 MPa (60,900 psi). tudinal reinforcement and D13 (No. 4) SD785 high-strength
This study tested high-strength concrete columns under high deformed bars for shear reinforcement, and were cast with
axial compression and compared test results with those of high-strength concrete with two levels of fcsʹ. Table 2 lists the
high-strength columns reported in the literature to develop concrete mixture proportions. Two levels of axial compres-
shear-strength equations for designing columns with mate- sion ratio—30% (Column C series) and 40% (Column D
rial strengths that exceed the ACI limitations. series)—were examined. The axial compression ratio is the
ratio of applied axial compressive load to fcʹAg. The fcʹ was
EXPERIMENTAL PROGRAM obtained from the average of three 150 x 300 mm (6 x 12 in.)
Specimen design and test setup concrete cylinders. Two levels of shear reinforcement
Eight large-scale columns were tested. Table 1 lists the spacing—450 mm (17.72 in.) and 260 mm (10.24 in.)—
design parameters of the columns. The columns were tested were studied with shear reinforcement ratios of 0.16% and
approximately 1 year after fabrication. Figure 1 illustrates 0.28%, respectively. The spacings were selected to ensure
shear failure before longitudinal reinforcement yielding.

210 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Table 2—Concrete mixture proportions
Unit weight, kgf/m3
fc′, MPa w/b, % C S FS W FA CA HRWRA SL, cm
70 29 285 200 25 143 789 936 8.16 70 ± 5
100 23 350 300 50 150 654 866 14 70 ± 5

Notes: W is water; B is binder; C is cement; S is slag; FS is fly ash; FA is fine aggregate; CA is coarse aggregate; HRWRA is high-range water-reducing admixture; and SL is slump;
1 MPa = 145 psi; 1 kgf = 2.2046 lbf; 1 m = 39.37 in.; 1 cm = 0.394 in.

The columns were tested using the multi-axial testing

system (MATS) (Fig. 2) at the National Center for Research
on Earthquake Engineering (NCREE), Taiwan. Rotations of
the top and bottom ends of the column were restrained by
fixing the top and bottom blocks of the column to the testing
system. During testing, axial compression was applied first
and maintained constant using force control throughout the
testing. Displacement-controlled lateral cyclic loading was
then applied with the loading history, as shown in Fig. 3,
until the columns lost axial load capacity.


Crack pattern and general behavior
This study was a continuation of earlier tests1 of A and
B series high-strength concrete columns (with the same
specimen designs as C and D series) subjected to low axial
compression ranging from 0.1fcʹAg to 0.2fcʹAg. Those test
results were used as comparison in the current study to inves-
tigate the axial compression effect. Figures 4 and 5 show the
lateral force-displacement relationships for Column C and
Fig. 2—Multi-axial testing system (MATS). (Note: 1 mm =
D series, respectively. Shear failure occurred before longi-
0.0394 in.)
tudinal reinforcement yielding, as expected in design. It has
been observed that at low axial compression,1 increasing
axial compression from 0.1fcʹAg to 0.2fcʹAg enhanced shear
strength. The Vtest at the ultimate condition (peak applied
load), on average, increased by 38% from 0.1fcʹAg to 0.2fcʹAg
(Table 3). However, the brittleness increased. The difference
in Vtest between the ultimate and diagonal cracking condi-
tions was, on average, reduced from 32% to 15% when axial
compression was increased from 0.1fcʹAg to 0.2fcʹAg (Table 3).
In Series C and D columns with axial compression of 0.3fcʹAg
and 0.4fcʹAg, respectively, increasing axial compression also
increased brittleness. The difference in Vtest between the
ultimate and diagonal cracking conditions was, on average,
reduced from 15% to 1%, and from 1% to 0%, when axial
compression was increased from 0.2fcʹAg to 0.3fcʹAg, and
from 0.3fcʹAg to 0.4fcʹAg, respectively (Table 3). However,
increasing axial compression had little or no effect on shear Fig. 3—Loading protocol.
strength. The Vtest at the ultimate condition, on average, average angle of dominant diagonal cracks at that drift
increased by 9% from 0.2fcʹAg to 0.3fcʹAg, and on average level. Crack patterns in Series A and B columns gener-
by –4% from 0.3fcʹAg to 0.4fcʹAg (Table 3). Figures 6(a) to ally started as flexural cracks and became flexure-shear
6(d), and 6(e) to 6(h) show cracking and spalling patterns cracks with increased drift. Further increases in lateral load
in Series C and D columns, respectively, at peak applied produced web-shear cracks with reduced crack angles. In
load. Cover concrete spalling was minor for Series A and B Series A columns, diagonal crack angles (average of those
columns.1 The extent of spalling increased for Series C and of four columns) were 42 degrees (ranging from 40 to
D columns, particularly at the top and bottom corners. 45 degrees) and 33 degrees (ranging from 31 to 34 degrees)
Figure 7 shows the relationship between the diagonal at diagonal cracking condition (first appearance of diagonal
crack angle (with respect to column longitudinal axis) and shear cracks) and ultimate condition, respectively. In Series
the drift ratio for each of the Series A, B, C, and D columns. B columns, the angles were 35 degrees (ranging from 31 to
The diagonal crack angle at a drift level is defined as the 41 degrees) and 24 degrees (ranging from 20 to 28 degrees),

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 211

Fig. 4—Hysteretic behavior of specimens with 30% axial compression: Specimens (a) C-1; (b) C-2; (c) C-3; and (d) C-4.
respectively. Due to high axial compression, web-shear forcement stress increased drastically before failure without
cracks in Series C and D columns were major cracks with increasing the peak applied load. This type of failure mode is
little or no flexural or flexure-shear cracks. The diagonal similar to that for members with very small amounts of shear
crack angle at diagonal cracking condition was the same as reinforcement. In such cases, shear reinforcement stress at
that at peak applied load. For Series C columns, the diagonal ultimate condition was set equal to that at diagonal cracking
crack angle was 17 degrees (ranging from 14 to 19 degrees) condition in the calculation of Vs_test (Table 3). Redistribu-
at both diagonal cracking and peak applied load. For Series tion of internal forces after diagonal cracking was successful
D columns, the angle was 15 degrees (ranging from 12 to for Column C-3, which failed at a higher load than the diag-
16 degrees). Figure 8 shows the damage distribution of each onal cracking load. Note that Column C-3 had the highest
column at test end. ratio of shear reinforcement capacity to diagonal cracking
load (Vs to Vtest at diagonal cracking) among all the Series C
Shear contribution of steel and concrete and D columns. The ability of the column to control diag-
Figure 9 shows the relationship between the column drift onal cracking to allow redistribution likely increases with
and the maximum stress of shear reinforcement for each increasing ratio of shear reinforcement capacity to diagonal
column. The shear reinforcement stress increased slowly in cracking load. Columns C-1 and C-2 failed once diagonal
the early drift and increased rapidly after diagonal cracks cracks formed. Thus, strain measurements were unavailable
formed. As axial compression increased, the formation of after diagonal cracking (Fig. 9).
diagonal cracks tended to be delayed, but after diagonal For columns with low axial compression (Series A and
cracking, shear reinforcement stress increased more rapidly. B columns), redistribution of internal forces after diagonal
The third and fourth columns in Table 3 list the drift at diagonal cracking was successful. The ultimate condition occurred
cracking condition and corresponding shear reinforcement at a larger drift than the diagonal cracking. This allowed
stress, respectively. The eighth and ninth columns in Table 3 further formulation of diagonal cracks and, hence, increased
list the drift at ultimate condition and corresponding shear shear reinforcement stress at the ultimate condition (Table
reinforcement stress, respectively. Except for Column C-3, 3). The foregoing observations suggest that as the axial
all the Series C and D columns reached the ultimate condi- compression increases, more shear reinforcement is needed
tion due to sudden, explosive failure of compression zone at to ensure a successful redistribution of forces after diagonal
the same drift as diagonal cracking. Redistribution of internal cracking. In other words, a term to include axial compres-
forces after diagonal cracking was not successful. Shear rein- sion effect is needed in the minimum shear reinforcement

212 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 5—Hysteretic behavior of specimens with 40% axial compression: Specimens (a) D-1; (b) D-2; (c) D-3; and (d) D-4.

Fig. 6—Crack pattern at peak applied load for Specimens: (a) C-1; (b) C-2; (c) C-3; (d) C-4; (e) D-1; (f) D-2; (g) D-3; and
(h) D-4.
equations of the ACI Code. For columns that had the ulti- column shear failure to a larger drift and, hence, increased
mate condition at a larger drift than the diagonal cracking shear reinforcement stress at the ultimate condition.
condition (Series A and B columns and Column C-3), no Table 3 also lists experimental shear strength Vtest, steel
columns showed yielding of shear reinforcement at the ulti- shear strength Vs_test, and concrete shear strength Vc_test under
mate condition. This observation is consistent with the liter- the diagonal cracking and ultimate conditions. The Vtest is the
ature,13-15 as mentioned previously. Note that test results also load (shear) applied to the column. The Vs_test was calculated
showed that a higher amount of shear reinforcement delayed using Eq. (1), where σst was determined by the stress-drift

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 213

Table 3—Shear strength contributed by concrete and steel from tests
Diagonal cracking condition* Ultimate condition†
Column fc′, MPa Drift ratio, % σst, MPa Vtest, kN Vs_test, kN Vc_test, kN Drift ratio,% σst, MPa Vtest, kN Vs_test, kN Vc_test, kN
(1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7) (8) (9) (10) (11) (12)
A-1 92.5 0.35 19 1264 9 1255 0.57 243 1578 150 1428
A-2 99.9 0.33 6 1286 3 1283 0.53 235 1638 150 1488
A-3 96.9 0.32 16 1279 13 1266 0.75 359 1772 413 1359
A-4 107.1 0.33 14 1298 10 1288 0.79 418 1781 447 1334
B-1 108.3 0.45 18 1862 10 1852 0.59 223 2078 165 1913
B-2 125.0 0.41 20 2007 11 1996 0.50 183 2298 195 2103
B-3 112.9 0.40 16 2098 17 2081 0.54 214 2418 411 2007
B-4 121.0 0.42 18 2103 14 2089 0.64 380 2528 522 2006
C-1 104.1 0.42 28 2036 45 1991 0.42 28 2036 45 1991
C-2 138.8 0.60 28 2958 39 2919 0.60 28 2958 39 2919
C-3 104.6 0.38 28 2153 56 2097 0.70 602 2210 1140 1070
C-4 130.0 0.62 32 3018 68 2950 0.62 32 3018 68 2950
D-1 101.0 0.37 30 2239 46 2193 0.37 30 2239 46 2193
D-2 125.5 0.46 24 2486 36 2450 0.46 24 2486 36 2450
D-3 106.4 0.45 32 2355 77 2278 0.45 32 2355 77 2278
D-4 127.8 0.44 28 2547 92 2455 0.44 28 2547 92 2455
First appearance of diagonal shear cracks.

Peak applied load.
Notes: 1 MPa = 145 psi; 1 kN = 0.224 kip.

relationship (Fig. 9), and θ was determined by the measured

crack angle (Fig. 7). The Vc_test was calculated using Eq. (2).

Av σ st d
Vs _ test = cot θ (1)

Vc_test = Vtest – Vs_test (2)

It can be seen from Table 3 that the amount of shear rein-

forcement did not substantially affect the Vc_test value at
diagonal cracking. On the other hand, axial compression has
a positive effect on Vc_test at diagonal cracking but the effect
appeared to reach an upper limit under high axial compres-
sion. As axial compression increased from 0.1fcʹAg to 0.2fcʹAg,
from 0.2fcʹAg to 0.3fcʹAg, and from 0.3fcʹAg to 0.4fcʹAg, the
Vc_test increased in average by 57%, 24%, and –4%, respec- Fig. 7—Drift ratio versus diagonal crack angle.
tively. Moreover, the difference in Vc_test between the diag-
onal cracking condition and ultimate condition decreased  Nu 
Vc = 0.17 1 +  f c′bw d (MPa)
with increasing axial compression.  13.8 Ag  (3)


Vc = 2 1 +  f c′bw d (psi)
According to the ACI Code, nominal shear strength Vn can  2000 Ag 
be obtained from two components: shear strength provided
by concrete, Vc, and shear strength provided by steel rein-
forcement, Vs. In the Code, Eq. (3) to (6) are used to calculate  V d
Vc of reinforced concrete members under axial compression. Vc =  0.16 f c′ + 17ρw u  bw d (MPa)
Equation (3) is the simplified equation. Equations (4) and  Mm  (4)
(5) are used for detailed calculation for Vc but should not be  V d
greater than Eq. (6). The Vs can be calculated using Eq. (7). Vc = 1.9 f c′ + 2500ρw u  bw d (psi)
 Mm 

214 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 8—Damage distribution at end of test: Specimens (a) C-1; (b) C-2; (c) C-3; (d) C-4; (e) D-1; (f) D-2; (g) D-3; and (h) D-4.

M m = M u − Nu
( 4h − d ) (5)

0.29 N u
Vc = 0.29 f c′bw d 1 + (MPa)
Ag (6)
Vc = 3.5 f c′bw d 1 + (psi)
500 Ag

The Mu is taken as: 1) moment at distance d from the section

of maximum moment when the ratio of shear span to effec-
tive depth is greater than 2; or 2) moment at the center of
shear span when the ratio of shear span to effective depth is
less than 2.8

Av f yt d
Vs = (7)
Fig. 9—Stress of shear reinforcement.
Although Eq. (3) to (6) are used to estimate nominal shear
C-3 because the shear reinforcement of these columns failed
strength in the ACI Code, they were originally derived based
to permit redistribution of internal forces, as noted previ-
on shear corresponding to diagonal cracking.8 The Vc_test at
ously. In other words, shear reinforcement did not function
two conditions—diagonal cracking and ultimate shear condi-
effectively in these columns. Equation (7) obtained a conser-
tions—were compared to the simplified (Eq. (3)) and detailed
vative estimate for Column C-3 even though shear reinforce-
(Eq. (6)) shear-strength equations (Table 4). Note that the
ment stress was below yield stress (Table 3). The estimate
ACI Code limit on concrete compressive strength (fcʹ ≤ 70
was conservative because actual shear crack angles were
MPa [10,000 psi]) was not applied when using the above ACI
much smaller than 45 degrees, as assumed in Eq. (7), leading
Code equations. Equation (3) yields conservative prediction
to a larger actual steel shear strength. As noted previously,
for most columns except Columns D-2 and D-4, but becomes
shear reinforcement stress can be further increased at peak
less conservative as axial compression increases. In the
applied load by increasing the amount of shear reinforce-
detailed shear strength calculation, the Mm values (Eq. (5))
ment. This should be properly considered when determining
are negative for all columns. This means that the moment
the limit value of shear reinforcement stress to be used in
effect is small and, hence, Vc is independent of moment. In
Eq. (7). Further research is needed to address this issue.
this case, Vc is governed by Eq. (6). Comparisons with the
Equation (6) originated from Eq. (8), which was derived
test results show that Eq. (6) is not conservative for Vc at the
based on the principal stress equation at the point of diagonal
diagonal cracking and ultimate conditions for all columns.
cracking. The effects of axial load and shear were consid-
When Eq. (7) is used with the actual yield strength of
ered. The effect of moment was assumed to be small and,
shear reinforcement (Table 1), it does not yield conserva-
hence, was neglected.8
tive results for Series A and B columns (the last column in
Table 4) because, at peak applied load, stress in shear rein-
forcement was far from yield (Table 3). Equation (7) cannot ft ′ Nu
Vc = bw d 1 + (8)
be evaluated in Series C and D columns except for Column F2 f t ′ bw d

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 215

Table 4—Ratio of test results to shear-strength prediction using ACI 318-11 without strength limitation
Diagonal cracking shear strength Ultimate shear capacity

Vc _ test Vc _ test Vc _ test Vc _ test Vs _ test

Column VEq ( 3) VEq ( 6 ) VEq ( 3) VEq ( 6 ) VEq ( 7 )

(1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6)

A-1 1.61 0.81 1.83 0.93 0.43
A-2 1.49 0.76 1.72 0.88 0.43
A-3 1.55 0.79 1.67 0.85 0.68
A-4 1.44 0.74 1.49 0.76 0.74
B-1 1.69 0.89 1.75 0.92 0.47
B-2 1.39 0.77 1.46 0.82 0.56
B-3 1.53 0.85 1.48 0.82 0.68
B-4 1.42 0.80 1.36 0.77 0.86
C-1 1.23 0.74 1.23 0.74 —
C-2 1.27 0.82 1.27 0.82 —
C-3 1.30 0.77 0.66 0.39 1.89
C-4 1.39 0.88 1.39 0.88 —
D-1 1.15 0.73 1.15 0.73 —
D-2 0.97 0.66 0.97 0.66 —
D-3 1.12 0.72 1.12 0.72 —
D-4 0.95 0.65 0.95 0.65 —

Based on test data,8 ftʹ/F2 was set to 0.29√fc′ (MPa) or of Vc_test to Vc predicted by Eq. (3), (6), and (9), respec-
3.5√fc′  (psi). The ft′ was assumed to be 0.62√fc′ (MPa) or tively. Whereas Eq. (3) yields conservative predictions for
7.5√fc′ (psi). Thus, Eq. (8) becomes Eq. (9). most columns, Eq. (6) yields nonconservative predictions
for 48 columns. The number of nonconservative results is
1.6 N u greatly reduced to 17 if Eq. (9) is used.
Vc = 0.29 f c′bw d 1 + (MPa) Figure 10 shows the relationship between Vc at diagonal
f c′bw d (9) cracking and axial compression for each of the 77 columns.
0.133N u The figure also shows the Vc predicted by various models.
Vc = 3.5 f c′bw d 1 + (psi) Note that each model generates different relationships for
f c′bw d
different fcʹ in Fig. 10. Only two relationships corresponding
to fcʹ of 100 and 130 MPa (14,500 and 18,800 psi), respec-
For simplicity, 1.6/√fc′ MPa (0.133/√fc′ psi) was replaced tively, which cover most data, are shown for each model.
by a constant value of 0.29 MPa (0.002 psi), which corre- Figure 10 also shows that, although Eq. (3) is conservative
sponds to an fcʹ of approximately 30 MPa (4400 psi). More- for most columns, the linear correlation with axial compres-
over, bwd was approximated by Ag. With these two changes, sion described by Eq. (3) significantly differs from behavior
Eq. (9) becomes Eq. (6). The simplification made in Eq. (6) revealed by the test data. The test data indicate that Vc
by assuming fcʹ is equal to 30 MPa (4400 psi) leads to an increases with axial compression, but the rate of increase
overestimation when fcʹ exceeds the assumed value. In the tends to decrease. At high axial compression, Vc appears
case of fcʹ = 100 MPa (14,500 psi) and Nu/fcʹAg = 0.4, design to reach an upper limit. For instance, Vc test data from this
parameters for Columns D-2 and D-4, the simplification study show an upper limit at axial compression of 0.3fcʹAg to
causes a 30% overestimation of Vc. 0.4fcʹAg. The Sakaguchi13 data show an upper limit of 0.4fcʹAg
Based on experimental results (Table 3) and the litera- to 0.5fcʹAg. The Maruta15 data show that the increase in Vc
ture,1,13,15,17-23 a test database of Vc_test at diagonal cracking substantially slows when axial compression is increased
from 77 shear-critical high-strength columns was estab- from 0.3fcʹAg to 0.6fcʹAg. Equations (6) and (9) are better for
lished (Table A1 in the Appendix*). Because the value of capturing the increasing trend of test data but cannot reflect
Mm (Eq. 5) is negative for all 77 columns, Eq. (6) governs the upper-limit phenomenon at high axial compression.
detailed shear-strength calculation instead of Eq. (4). The To address the aforementioned Vc behavior under varying
12th, 13th, and 14th columns of Table A1 show the ratio axial compression, Eq. (8) was modified to include the
reduction in principal tensile strength, ftʹ, caused by the
The Appendix is available at in PDF format, presence of compressive stress acting in the other principal

appended to the online version of the published paper. It is also available in hard copy
from ACI headquarters for a fee equal to the cost of reproduction plus handling at the direction.24-28 The principal compressive stress increases
time of the request. with increasing axial compression of the column.

216 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 10—Relationship between test data and Vc predictions.
σt = αft′ (10)

The ftʹ is set equal to 0.5√fc′ (MPa) or 6√fc′ (psi) based on

earlier studies29-32 and test data shown in Fig. 11.26,28 Based
on regression analysis of test data (Fig. 11), Eq. (11) is
proposed for reduction factor α. The σc in Eq. (11) is limited
to 0.6fc′ due to limited biaxial test data for σc larger than
0.6fc′ and because 0.6fc′ is the highest axial compressive
stress observed in the 77 columns.

 σ  σ
α = 1 − 0.85 c  for 0 ≤ c ≤ 0.6 (11)
 f ′
c  f c′

The σc at diagonal cracking is calculated using the principal

stress equation (Eq. (12)) with applied shear equal to diag-
onal cracking shear.

2 2
N  N   V 
σ c = u +  u  +  c  (12)
2 Ag  2 Ag   bw d 

Fig. 11—Tensile strength degradation of high-strength After defining the reduction factor, Vc can be calculated
concrete. using Eq. (13), which is based on Eq. (9) with reduced prin-
cipal tensile strength σt (Eq. (10)) substituted for ftʹ.
Figure 11 shows test data for concrete under biaxial loading
for high-strength concrete26,28 (69 to 100 MPa [10,000 to
14,500 psi]). The decrease in principal tensile strength due 2 Nu
Vc = 0.29α f c′bw d 1 + (MPa)
to compressive stress in the other principal direction can be α f c′bw d (13)
described by the following equation.
0.17 N u
Vc = 3.5α f c′bw d 1 + (psi)
α f c′bw d

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 217

Note that before Vc can be calculated using Eq. (13), the testing eight large-scale shear-critical columns under high
Vc is required as input in Eq. (12). Thus, the aforementioned axial compression and then comparing the results with the
calculation requires an iterative procedure. However, the other eight columns tested in an earlier study under low axial
difference between Nu/Ag and σc is only 0.005 to 0.0017fc′ compression. A test database of Vc at diagonal cracking from
for axial compression of 0.1fc′Ag to 0.6fc′Ag, respectively. 77 high-strength columns was established and analyzed with
For simplicity, Nu/Ag may be used instead of σc in Eq. (11) various Vc models considering axial compression effect. The
to eliminate iteration. The new equation is Eq. (14). The main conclusions are summarized as follows.
simplification made in Eq. (14) increases the Vc by only 1. The results of tests on the 16 high-strength columns
0.41% and 1.91% for axial compression of 0.1fc′Ag and showed that with increasing axial compression from 0.1fcʹAg
0.6fc′Ag, respectively. The 15th column in Table A1 shows to 0.4fcʹAg, shear cracking patterns gradually changed from
predictions obtained by Eq. (13) with α obtained by Eq. (14). flexure-shear cracks to web-shear cracks with the average
Conservative results are obtained for all columns except for diagonal crack angle at the ultimate condition changed from
Columns A-2 and A-4, in which the ratios of measured to 33 to 15 degrees. Moreover, increasing axial compression
predicted strength are 0.96 and 0.98, respectively. Figure 10 increased brittleness, reducing the difference in measured
graphically compares predictions obtained by Eq. (13) with responses between diagonal cracking and ultimate condi-
fcʹ of 100 and 130 MPa (14,500 and 18,800 psi) with the test tions. For most columns under high axial compression
data. It can be seen that predictions obtained by Eq. (13) (0.3fcʹAg and 0.4fcʹAg), redistribution of internal forces after
approximate the lower bound of test data. diagonal cracking was not successful. The columns failed
at the same drift as diagonal cracking. The redistribution
 Nu  Nu was more successful under low axial compression (0.1fcʹAg
α = 1 − 0.85  for 0 ≤ ≤ 0.6 (14) and 0.2fcʹAg). The ultimate condition occurred at a larger
 f c′Ag  f c′Ag
drift than the diagonal cracking condition. Based on these
observations, a term to consider axial compression effect is
For simplicity in design, Eq. (13) combined with Eq. (14) can needed in the minimum shear reinforcement equations of the
be conservatively approximated by Eq. (15). Equation (15) ACI Code. For columns that had the ultimate condition at a
is Eq. (9) with the coefficient 0.29√fc′ (MPa) or 3.5√fc′ (psi) larger drift than the diagonal cracking condition, no columns
replaced by 0.25√fc′ (MPa) or 3.0√fc′ (psi) and with an upper showed yield in shear reinforcement at the ultimate condi-
limit of 0.2fc′Ag on Nu. The 16th column in Table A1 shows tion. Stress in shear reinforcement at the ultimate condition
the predictions obtained by Eq. (15); conservative results tended to decrease with increasing axial compression and
are obtained for all columns except for Column A-4, in tended to increase with an increasing amount of shear rein-
which the ratio of measured to predicted strength is 0.99. forcement. Further research is needed to recommend a limit
Figure 10 shows that Eq. (15) reaches an upper limit at an on shear reinforcement stress in shear strength design.
axial compression of 0.2fc′Ag and remains constant with 2. The Vc increased as axial compression increased.
increasing axial compression. This study proposes to replace However, the rate of increase tended to decrease with
the ACI Code Eq. (6) with Eq. (13) combined with Eq. (14) increasing axial compression and reached an upper limit at
or with Eq. (15). high axial compression. The tested columns showed an upper
limit on Vc at an axial compression of 0.3fcʹAg to 0.4fcʹAg.
1.6 N u Test results reported by other researchers have shown an
Vc = 0.25 f c′bw d 1 + (MPa) upper limit from 0.4fcʹAg to 0.5fcʹAg.
f c′bw d (15) 3. The ACI simplified Vc equation, Eq. (3), yields conserva-
0.133 N u tive predictions for most columns in the test database. However,
Vc = 3.0 f c′bw d 1 + (psi)
f c′bw d the linear relationship between Vc and axial compression
described by Eq. (3) significantly differed from the behavior
revealed by the test database. Predictions by the ACI detailed
Nu shall not be taken greater than 0.2fc′Ag. Vc equations were not conservative for most columns in the
Axial compression reduces principal tensile stress and, test database. This study proposes new Vc equations (Eq. (13)
hence, increases Vc. This is the mechanism of axial compres- with Eq. (14) or Eq. (15)) to replace the upper limit equation of
sion on Vc of the ACI Code equations (Eq. (3) to (6)). On the ACI detailed Vc equations (Eq. (6)). Comparisons between
the other hand, axial compression reduces principal tensile the proposed equations and test database show conservative
strength and, hence, decreases Vc. This is the mechanism predictions for most columns.
this research proposes to add to Vc (Eq. (13) combined with
Eq. (14) or Eq. (15)). The combined effect of the two mecha- AUTHOR BIOS
nisms increases Vc at low axial compression but the increase Yu-Chen Ou is an Associate Professor of civil and construction engi-
slows down with increasing axial compression and eventu- neering at the National Taiwan University of Science and Technology,
Taipei, Taiwan. He received his PhD from the University of Buffalo, the
ally reaches an upper limit at high axial compression. State University of New York at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY. He is the Vice Presi-
dent of the Taiwan Chapter – ACI. His research interests include reinforced
CONCLUSIONS concrete structures and earthquake engineering.
The effect of axial compression on shear behavior of ACI member Dimas P. Kurniawan is a Research Assistant of civil and
high-strength reinforced concrete columns was examined by construction engineering at the National Taiwan University of Science

218 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

and Technology. He received his BS from Bandung Institute of Technology, 10. Mphonde, A. G., and Frantz, G. C., “Shear Tests of High- and
Bandung, Indonesia, and his MS from the National Taiwan University of Low-Strength Concrete Beams without Stirrups,” ACI Journal Proceed-
Science and Technology. ings, V. 81, No. 4, July-Aug. 1984, pp. 350-357.
11. Elzanaty, A. H.; Nilson, A. H.; and Slate, F. O., “Shear Capacity of
Reinforced Concrete Beams Using High-Strength Concrete,” ACI Journal
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS Proceedings, V. 83, No. 2, Mar.-Apr. 1986, pp. 290-296.
The authors would like to thank National Center for Research on 12. Gupta, P. R., and Collins, M. P., “Evaluation of Shear Design Proce-
Earthquake Engineering (NCREE), Taiwan, and the Excellence Research dures for Reinforced Concrete Members under Axial Compression,” ACI
Program of National Taiwan University of Science and Technology for their Structural Journal, V. 98, No. 4, July-Aug. 2001, pp. 537-547.
financial support. 13. Sakaguchi, N.; Yamanobe, K.; Kitada, Y.; Kawachi, T.; and Koda,
S., “Shear Strength of High-Strength Concrete Members,” Second Inter-
NOTATION national Symposium on High-Strength Concrete, SP-121, W. T. Hester, ed.,
Ag = gross area of concrete cross-section American Concrete Institute, Farmington Hills, MI, 1990, pp. 155-178.
Av = total cross-sectional area of shear reinforcement 14. Watanabe, F., and Kabeyasawa, T., “Shear Strength of RC Members
a = shear span with High-Strength Concrete,” High-Strength Concrete in Seismic Regions,
bw = effective web width of member cross section SP-176, C. W. French and M. E. Kreger, eds., American Concrete Institute,
d = effective depth of member cross section Farmington Hills, MI, 1998, pp. 379-396.
F2 = ratio of shear stress at diagonal cracking point to average shear 15. Maruta, M., “Shear Capacity of Reinforced Concrete Column Using
stress on effective cross section High Strength Concrete,” Invited Lecture in the 8th International Sympo-
fc' = concrete compressive strength sium on Utilization of High-Strength and High-Performance Concrete,
fcs' = specified concrete compressive strength Tokyo, Japan, Oct. 27-29, 2008, pp. 403-408.
ft' = concrete principal tensile strength 16. Kurniawan, D. P., “Shear Behavior of Reinforced Concrete Columns
fy = yield strength of steel with High Strength Steel and Concrete under Low Axial Load,” MS thesis,
fyl = yield strength of longitudinal reinforcement National Taiwan University of Science and Technology, Taipei, Taiwan,
fyls = specified yield strength of longitudinal reinforcement 2011, 341 pp.
fyt = yield strength of shear reinforcement 17. Takami, S., and Yoshioka, K., “Shear Strength of RC Columns
fyts = specified yield strength of shear reinforcement Using High-Strength Concrete,” Summaries of Technical Papers of Annual
h = overall height of member cross section Meeting, Structures IV, Architectural Institute of Japan, Tokyo, Japan,
M m = applied moment modified to consider effect of axial compression 1997, pp. 25-26. (in Japanese)
Mu = applied moment 18. Takaine, Y.; Nagai, S.; Maruta, M.; and Suzuki, N., “Shear Perfor-
Nu = applied axial load (positive in compression) mance of RC Column Using 200 N/mm2 Concrete,” Summaries of Tech-
s = spacing of shear reinforcement nical Papers of Annual Meeting, Structures IV, Architectural Institute of
Vc = nominal shear strength provided by concrete Japan, Tokyo, Japan, 2010, pp. 295-296. (in Japanese)
Vc_test = experimental shear strength provided by concrete 19. Kuramoto, H., and Minami, K., “Experiments on the Shear Strength
Vn = nominal shear strength of Ultra-High Strength Reinforced Concrete Columns,” Proceedings of the
Vs = nominal shear strength provided by shear reinforcement Tenth World Conference on Earthquake Engineering, Madrid, Spain, July
Vs_test = experimental shear strength provided by shear reinforcement 1992, pp. 3001-3006.
Vtest = experimental shear strength 20. Aoyama, H., Design of Modern Highrise Reinforced Concrete Struc-
Vu = applied shear tures, Imperial College Press, London, UK, 2001, 442 pp.
a = reduction factor 21. Shinohara, Y.; Kubota, T.; and Hayashi, S., “Shear Crack Behaviors
q = shear crack angle to column longitudinal axis of Ultra-High-Strength Concrete Columns (Part 1 and Part 2),” Summaries
rl = longitudinal reinforcement ratio of Technical Papers of Annual Meeting, Structures IV, Architectural Insti-
rt = shear reinforcement ratio tute of Japan, Tokyo, Japan, 2008, pp. 605-608. (in Japanese)
rw = longitudinal tension reinforcement ratio 22. Akihiko, N.; Kuramoto, H.; and Koichi, M., “Shear Strength and
sc = principal compressive stress Behavior of Reinforced Concrete Columns Using High-Strength Concrete
sst = shear reinforcement stress of σB = 1200 kgf/cm2 (Part 1 and Part 2),” Proceedings of Architectural
st = concrete principal tensile strength reduced by principal compres- Institute of Japan, 1990, pp. 53-60. (in Japanese)
sive stress in perpendicular direction 23. Sibata, M.; Kanasugi, H.; Uwada, M.; Ooyama, H.; and Yamashita,
Y., “Experimental Study on Shear Behavior of Reinforced Concrete
Columns Using High-Strength Shear Reinforcement of 8000 kgf/cm2 Grade
REFERENCES (Part 4),” Summaries of Technical Papers of Annual Meeting, Structures IV,
1. Ou, Y. C., and Kurniawan, D. P., “Shear Behavior of Reinforced Architectural Institute of Japan, 1997, pp. 7-8. (in Japanese)
Concrete Columns with High-Strength Steel and Concrete,” ACI Structural 24. McHenry, D., and Karni, J., “Strength of Concrete under Combined
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V. 108, No. 5, Sept.-Oct. 2011, pp. 620-629. Loading Conditions,” PhD thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland,
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Frame Member without Web Reinforcement,” ACI Journal Proceedings, 27. Hussein, A., and Marzouk, H., “Behavior of High-Strength Concrete
V. 53, No. 3, Mar. 1957, pp. 833-869. under Biaxial Stresses,” ACI Materials Journal, V. 97, No. 1, Jan.-Feb.
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Shear Strength of Reinforced Concrete Frame Members,” ACI Journal 28. Hampel, T.; Speck, K.; Scheerer, S.; Ritter, R.; and Curbach, M.,
Proceedings, V. 55, No. 11, Nov. 1958, pp. 635-654. “High-Performance Concrete under Biaxial and Triaxial Loads,” Journal of
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352-396. pp. 609-615.
9. Mattock, A. H., and Wang, Z., “Shear Strength of Reinforced Concrete 32. Sezen, H., and Moehle, J. P., “Shear Strength Model for
Members Subject to High Axial Compressive Stress,” ACI Journal Proceed- Lightly Reinforced Concrete Columns,” Journal of Structural Engi-
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ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 219


220 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Title No. 112-S20

Experimental Investigations on Prestressed Concrete

Beams with Openings
by Martin Classen and Tobias Dressen

Due to the needs of sustainability, there are efforts to develop inno-

vative integrated floor slabs that feature wide spans, and enable
a variable arrangement of building services in the construction
height to allow for buildings with adaptive floor layouts and high
flexibility of use. These integrated floor slab concepts usually
require large web openings in the structural bending elements. The
influence of openings on the load-bearing capacity and deforma-
tion behavior of double-T-shaped concrete beams with prestressed
tension chord was investigated within six beam tests. The main test
parameters were concrete strength, amount of vertical reinforce-
ment at the edges of the opening, and location of the opening in the
longitudinal direction. Proper arrangement and dimensioning of
reinforcement, the load-carrying capacity of concrete beams with
openings can attain approximately the same load-carrying capacity
as concrete beams without openings. At ultimate limit state, the
global shear force of beams with openings is mainly carried by the
compression chord. Fig. 1—Prestressed floor slab system for integration of
Keywords: beams; high-strength concrete; integrated floor slab system; building services.
prestressed concrete; shear force; ultimate strength; web openings.
(flooring/supporting structure/building services and installa-
tions/suspended ceiling) and to dissolve the compact cross
sections of conventional floor slabs into wide-span, slender
The majority of existing buildings have monofunctional
multi-web structures. In Fig. 1, an example of an integrated
properties, characterized by inflexible floor layouts that
floor slab system with a multi-web structure composed of
complicate changes in use (for example, from residential
prestressed concrete beams is shown. The precast floor slab
to office building or vice versa) or they are incompatible to
elements are designed for spans up to 16 m (630 in.) and
current architectural requirements or new technical inno-
a service load of 5 kN/m2 (0.725 psi). The provided space
vations. This often leads to demolishing or substantially
between the webs is used for the integration of building
restructuring such buildings long before they reach their
services. The dimensions of the cross section are detailed
economic lifetime. To exploit the buildings’ full economic
in Fig. 1. Openings in the web of the girders allow for flex-
lifetime, adaptive structural systems with a high degree
ible arrangements in all directions. Ease of access to the
of flexibility should be developed. Wide-spanning floor
installation floor and a convenient installation and main-
slab systems with integrated building services can make a
tenance of the components from above is achieved by the
compromising contribution.1-5
use of removable cover panels placed on top flanges of the
These integrated floor slabs provide wide spans for high
concrete beams. Revision openings allow for maintenance
flexibility and adaptability to allow for conversions of use
and minor modifications. To make use of innovative floor-
without significant modification of the building structure.
slab concepts, the technical feasibility needs to be proven.
Beside static aspects, the choice of the floor slab structure has
Therefore, the load-bearing and deformation behavior of the
an impact on numerous building properties. Floor slabs not
integrated concrete slab5,7 was investigated in a comprehen-
only fulfill load-bearing and bracing functions, they create
sive experimental study that was aimed at systematically
the separation between adjoining functional units and, thus,
exploring the impact of large web openings in prestressed
influence the planimetry, building services, physical prop-
concrete beams. The results of these experimental investiga-
erties of the building, and economic and ecological impact
tions are presented in this paper.
of the structure. Hence, the profile of requirements6 for inte-
grated floor slabs includes issues from the fields of structural
engineering, architecture, manufacturing, fire protection, ACI Structural Journal, V. 112, No. 2, March-April 2015.
building physics, dismantling, and recycling. MS No. S-2014-188.R, doi: 10.14359/51687302, received May 27, 2014, and
reviewed under Institute publication policies. Copyright © 2015, American Concrete
A general approach to design-integrated slab systems Institute. All rights reserved, including the making of copies unless permission is
obtained from the copyright proprietors. Pertinent discussion including author’s
is to break up the conventional additive ceiling assembly closure, if any, will be published ten months from this journal’s date if the discussion
is received within four months of the paper’s print publication.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 221

Fig. 2—(a) Global internal forces at opening; and (b) free-body diagram with local internal forces.
RESEARCH SIGNIFICANCE The normal forces in the concrete chords depend on the
While significant research on reinforced concrete beams global acting moment and the prestressing force, as shown in
with large web openings has been carried out in the past, Fig. 2. For slender chords with high normal forces, second-
there are few test data on prestressed concrete beams order effects have to be taken into account. In the adjacent,
available. For that reason, experimental investigations on homogeneous parts of the beam, the internal shear forces are
prestressed beams with filigree cross sections and a wide transferred by compression and tension struts.10
bottom flange made of high-strength concrete are presented Based on previous experimental investigations of concrete
in this paper. Furthermore, the applicability of different theo- beams with web openings, different failure modes were
retical approaches on the tested beams is demonstrated and defined. Kennedy and Abdalla11 stated four different failure
conclusions for a safe design of prestressed concrete beams modes for prestressed beams with large web openings:
with large web openings are derived. 1. Bending failure of the chords: To realize plastic bending
hinges at the edges of the opening, a sufficient rotation
THEORETICAL BASICS capacity of the bottom and top chord has to be ensured.
Load-bearing behavior of prestressed concrete Assuming an adequate design for shear, plastic hinges occur
beams with large web opening by reaching the yield surface of the interaction diagram
Concrete chords in prestressed concrete beam webs weak- between bending moment and normal force.12
ened by large openings need to carry increased shear forces. 2. Compression-shear failure: Due to compression forces
This leads to the formation of a local load-carrying mech- caused by the global and local secondary bending moment
anism in the web opening, which has a significant impact at the ends of the compression chord, a sudden compres-
on the global behavior of these slender beams in terms of sion-shear failure may occur. Contrary to the Failure Mode 1
their ultimate strengths and deformations. The structural listed previously, the transverse reinforcement of the chord
behavior of the bottom and top concrete chords in the area of does not yield. Thus, no plastic hinges arise.
a web opening is characterized by combined moment-shear 3. Shear failure in opening chords: High shear forces may
stresses. In the literature,8 different mechanical models are cause a local shear failure of the slender concrete chords.
given, which usually suggest a simple Vierendeel truss as Usually, a local bending-shear failure can be stated.
a static system of the opening area. Commonly, the chords 4. Tension failure: Analogous to the compression chord,
are assumed to be restrained to the adjacent, homogeneous tensile forces due to the global bending moment and
beam sections. Figure 2 shows the opening with its global secondary moments are acting on the bottom chord. If these
internal forces as well as the simplified static system with forces cause tensile stresses in the chord that exceed the
the local internal forces. To calculate the local stresses of the concrete tensile strength, cracks occur over the full depth of
concrete chords and provide adequate construction design, a the bottom chord. This failure typically appears at openings
mechanical relationship between global internal forces and in regions of high global bending moment.
local shear forces in the concrete chords needs to be derived. To provide a safe design of prestressed concrete beams with
Besides these local shear forces in the chords, the root of the web openings, a suitable failure criterion has to be defined.
secondary bending moment needs to be determined with its According to Neff and Ehmann13 failure occurs with the first
position in the longitudinal direction (point of contraflexure). plastic hinge in one of the opening corners. Mansur and Tan14
Although in some investigations9,10 significant variations allow for interaction of plastic hinges at all of the four edges
regarding this point of contraflexure have been detected, for at failure state. Plastic hinges can only occur if premature
usual loading states, its position generally can be assumed to failure due to one of the other failure modes (2, 3, and 4 listed
lie in the center of the web opening, as presented in Fig. 2. previously) is eliminated. This can be ensured by an adequate
arrangement of stirrups and longitudinal reinforcement.

222 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Distribution of shear force between bottom and I i ,t
top chord Vt = ⋅ V (5)
I i ,t + I i ,b ( cr )
Knowing the magnitudes of internal forces, a simple
design of the concrete chords according to corresponding
design codes can be performed. In the following, different I i ,b
Vb = ⋅ V (6)
approaches to calculate the distribution of local shear forces I i ,t + I i ,b
to the chords are presented. Predominantly, these approaches
use geometrical properties of the concrete chords to calcu-
where Ii,b(cr) is the effective bending stiffness of the cracked
late the carried proportions of internal shear force.
bottom chord.
Nasser et al.8 as well as Salam and Harrop15 suggest
Kennedy and Abdalla17 also suggest a similar method. In
a distribution of shear force depending on the ratio of the
the uncracked state, the shear force is distributed depending
cross-sectional areas at the opening (Eq. (1)). This approach
on the ratio of cross-sectional areas and bending stiffnesses
has no mechanical background and is limited to the
of the chords (Eq. (3) and (4)). It is assumed that concrete
uncracked state. However, a good accordance with experi-
cracking starts in the bottom chord due to additional tensile
mental results was found.
forces caused by the global bending moment. After comple-
tion of the crack propagation, the bottom chord is unable to
At / b
Vt / b = ⋅ V (1) carry additional shear forces. Consequently, the local shear
At + Ab force of the bottom chord remains constant, while additional
shear forces have to be carried by the top chord. Assuming
where Vt/b is the shear force acting in the top and bottom a concrete tensile strength ft, the acting global shear force
chord; and At/b is the cross-sectional area of the top and VOm,cr at cracking of the bottom chord is calculated by Eq.
bottom chord. (7) for the static system presented in Fig. 2.
Hottmann and Schäfer10 recommend calculating the distri-
bution of shear force according to the ratio of bending stiff- N P ,b
nesses’, It/b, of top and bottom chords. Hereafter, the propor- ft −
tion of shear force in the chords results from a linear-elastic VOm , cr = (7)
 lOm Vb lO 1 
calculation of a framework system, neglecting shear defor-
 z A + V ⋅ 2 ⋅ W 
mation of the beams (Eq. (2)). G b b

It /b where NP,b is the normal force in the bottom chord due to

Vt / b = ⋅ V (2) prestressing forces; lOm is the distance between the midspan
It + Ib
of the opening and support; and Wb is the section modulus of
the bottom chord.
Kennedy and Abdalla11 developed an empirical approach The corresponding shear force of the bottom chord results
that considers both cross-sectional area as well as bending from Eq. (4). In the case of full-depth cracks, the entire shear
stiffness of the chords (Eq. (3) and (4)). It was calibrated by force is carried by the top chord.
finite-element calculations. For I-beams, good accordance Neff13 developed a concept to calculate the distribution of
with numerical results was observed. For T-beams, however, shear forces in the chords based on research by Ehmann,13
the distribution of shear force according to the bending stiff- which also takes into account the influence of the local
ness of the chords led to better results. normal forces in the bottom and top chord, depending on the
global bending moment and the prestressing force.
Vt = V – Vb (3)
Ιb,eff = χb · Ib = [15(ρl,b + ρ′l,b) – 0.25 + (nb – 0.5)2] · Ib (8)
Ab ⋅ I b
Vb = ⋅ V (4) Ιt,eff = χt · It = [15(ρl,t + ρ′l,t) + 0.4 – (nt – 0.5)2] · It (9)
Ab ⋅ I b + At ⋅ I t

Nb / t
Due to cracking of the concrete chords at ultimate limit nb / t = (10)
state (secondary bending moments), the stiffness of the Ab / t � f c
cross sections in the web opening corners is reduced. The
decrease of stiffness should be considered in the calculation where ρl,t/b (ρ′l,t/b) are the flexural tensile (compression) rein-
of shear force distribution between the bottom and top chord. forcement ratios of top and bottom chord, respectively. In
Barney16 described an approach using effective stiffnesses addition to the aforementioned methods, an approach for the
Ii,t/b. In the cracked state of the concrete, the shear force effective stiffness of the chord at failure was developed taking
is distributed according to Eq. (5) and (6). The approach into account the effects of normal forces on the bending stiff-
usually provides conservative results (Vb + Vt > V). If a full- ness. Beside these complex calculations, simple assumptions
depth crack appears at the bottom (tensile) chord, the entire for the distribution of the shear force may be taken. Leon-
shear has to be carried by the top (compression) chord. hardt18 suggests the following distribution at failure

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 223

Fig. 3—Dimensions of cross section and web opening between load introduction and support. (Note: Dimensions in mm (in.).)
Vt = 0.8 ~ 0.9 · V (11) are presented in Fig. 3. The double-T-shaped concrete beams
featured several arrangements of reinforcement (prestressing
Vb = 0.1 ~ 0.2 · V (12) tendons, longitudinal reinforcement, and stirrups). To
ensure practical conditions, the reinforcement and prestress
The presented approaches have different levels of complexity were designed for an additional dead load of 1.5 kN/m2
and usability. In the following, the specific qualities and (0.218 psi) and a live load of 5.0 kN/m2 (0.725 psi) acting on
fields of application of the different formulas are evaluated a span of 16 m (630 in.). The calculation and dimensioning
and recommendations are deduced: of reinforcement is based on current standards. The shear
• Equations (1), (11), and (12) are simple. They can be force reinforcement in the web of the concrete beam was
used for reinforced concrete beams and allow for an realized by vertically positioned single reinforcement bars
initial rough estimate of the distribution of shear force 6 mm (0.24 in.) in diameter at 160 mm (6.3 in.). The longi-
to the chords. tudinal reinforcement in the compression chord consisted
• Equations (2), (3), and (4) may be applied to reinforced of four bars 20 mm (0.79 in.) in diameter. Bars 10 mm
concrete beams with openings in Uncracked State I. (0.39 in.) in diameter were used as longitudinal reinforce-
Equations (3) and (4) are recommended for I-sections, ment in the tensile chord. Closed stirrups 6 mm (0.24 in.)
whereas Eq. (2) can be used for T-beams. in diameter at 160 mm (6.3 in.) were arranged in the top
• For reinforced concrete beams in Cracked State II, and bottom chord, respectively. Furthermore, a vertical
more sophisticated approaches such as Eq. (5) to (7) reinforcement consisting of single bars 10 mm (0.39 in.)
are recommended to determine the distribution of shear in diameter were placed close to the edges of the opening.
force to the chords. The amount of vertical reinforcement at the opening edge
• Equations (8) to (10) have been developed for prestressed was designed to anchor the entire acting shear force (As,A,S
concrete beams. Here, the longitudinal stress state in the and As,A,L = VEdfyd  = 157 mm2 [0.243 in.2]). In some tests,
chords is taken into account. As,A,L was varied between 157 and 236 mm2 (0.243 and
0.366 in.2). The overall concrete cover amounted to 20 mm
EXPERIMENTAL PROGRAM (0.79 in.). The specimens were prestressed by 10 tendons
In six beam tests, the influence of large web openings on with a diameter of 11 mm (0.43 in.) and a concrete cover
the load-bearing and deformation behavior of double-T- of 50 mm (1.97 in.). Additional reinforcement was placed
shaped concrete beams with prestressed tension chord was at the ends of the specimens to avoid splitting failure due
investigated. Based on the initial beam Test DE-1.1, indi- to prestressing forces. The arrangement of reinforcement is
vidual parameters were varied in each of the other five tested detailed in Fig. 4.
beams. In Test DE-2.1, the space between the support and In all specimens, German reinforcing steel BSt 500 and
opening was reduced to 350 mm (13.8 in.). DE-2.2 had a prestressing steel St1570/1770 were used. The material
greater amount of vertical reinforcement at the edge of the properties of the used reinforcement steels were measured
opening. With Test DE-3, the influence of higher concrete in tensile tests on three reinforcement samples that were
strengths has been investigated, and high-strength concrete taken from the same charge of reinforcement (Table 1). The
with a cylinder strength of 110 MPa (15,954 psi) instead of tendons (prestressing steel) had a yield stress fsy of 1638 MPa
normal-strength concrete’s 65 MPa (9427 psi) was used. (237.6 ksi) measured at a strain of 0.1% and tensile strength
Test DE-1.2 served as a reference test without web opening. fsu of 1890 MPa (274.1 ksi). The concrete strength was
varied between cylinder strengths of 65 and 111 MPa
Test specimens, material properties, and beam (9427 and 16,099 psi). Test cylinders (150 x 300 mm
fabrication [5.9 x 11.8 in.]), cubes (150 x 150 mm [5.9 x 5.9 in.]), and
For practical reasons, the experiments were performed prisms (700 x 150 x 100 mm [27.6 x 5.9 x 3.9 in.]) were cast
at spans between 8 and 5.5 m (315 and 217 in.). The test from each mixture to determine the concrete compression
specimens had an overall length of 8300 mm (328 in.) and a and tensile strengths as well as Young’s modulus. Table 2
double-T-shaped cross section. The openings had a length of summarizes the properties of the used concretes.
600 mm (23.6 in.) and a height of 250 mm (9.8 in.), which The specimens were produced in two steps. After
represents approximately half of the overall beam depth. prestressing of the tendons, the bottom chord was concreted.
The dimensions of the cross section and the web opening The concrete facing was roughened at the joint between

224 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

the bottom chord and the web. On the following day, the for 1 day and were kept in the laboratory environment until
web and the top chord were fabricated in a second step. testing at an age of 28 days. After a hardening time of 6 days,
The concrete was mixed at the laboratory of the Institute the specimens were prestressed with a prestressing force P0
of Structural Concrete at RWTH Aachen. The specimens of 0.79 MN (177.6 kip), which is equivalent to a tension in
remained in the formwork covered with a polyethylene sheet the tendons of 1000 MPa (145 ksi).

Table 1—Material properties of reinforcement Test setup and instrumentation

Bar size, A0, mm 2
fy, MPa ft, MPa Es, GPa Two experiments were performed on each specimen.
mm (in.) (in.2) (ksi) (ksi) A10, % (ksi) Interference between the tests was avoided by a sufficiently
605 653 201.3 large distance between the openings and adequate bedding
6 (0.236) 28 (1.10) 17.3 conditions. The span of the first three-point bending tests
(87.75) (94.71) (29,196)
10 499 626 201.3
was 8 m (315 in.). After the failure of each test, the supports
78 (3.07) 19.0 were moved and a second test was carried out, but with a
(0.394)* (72.37) (90.79) (29,196)
reduced span of 5500 mm (216 in.). To prevent bending
10 610 704 206.0
77 (3.03)
(88.47) (102.11)
(29,878) failure, a shear slenderness of a/d = 4.76 was chosen.
The beam details are presented in Fig. 5. The beams were
307 544 645 200.4
20 (0.787)
(12.09) (78.90) (93.55)
supported on steel plates with slide bearings. The load was
transferred from the hydraulic jack to the beam through a
steel plate. All beams were monotonically loaded up to the

Longitudinal reinforcement.
predicted service load. Afterward, 50 load cycles between 35
Notes: A0 is cross-sectional area at beginning of tensile test; fy is yield strength; ft is
tensile strength; A10 is strain at failure; and Es is Young’s modulus. and 130% of the service load were executed. To predict the

Table 2—Details of test specimens and test results

Test fc,cyl, MPa (psi) fct,sp, MPa (psi) Ec, GPa (ksi) As,A,L, mm2 (in.2) lOm, mm (in.) Vmax, kN (kip) Vcalc, kN (kip) Vcalc/Vmax
DE-1.1 65.7 (9529) 3.84 (556.9) 35.8 (5192) 157 (0.243) 950 (37.4) 113 (25.4) 122 (27.4) 1.08
DE-1.2 64.2 (9311) 3.78 (548.2) — — — 107 (24.0) — —
DE-2.1 68.3 (9906) 3.64 (527.9) 36.1 (5236) 157 (0.243) 650 (25.6) 101 (22.7) 116 (26.1) 1.15
DE-2.2 68.8 (9979) 4.16 (603.4) 37.1 (5381) 236 (0.366) 950 (37.4) 117 (26.3) 120 (27.0) 1.03
DE-3.1 110.6 (16,041) 6.08 (881.8) 49.6 (7194) 157 (0.243) 950 (37.4) 135 (30.3) 167 (37.5) 1.24
DE-3.2 110.3 (15,998) 6.14 (890.5) 47.5 (6889) 236 (0.243) 950 (37.4) 143 (32.1) 167 (37.5) 1.17

Notes: fc,cyl is cylinder compression strength; fct,sp is splitting tensile strength; Ec is Young’s modulus of concrete; As,A,L is vertical reinforcement at opening edges; lOm is distance
between support and midspan of opening; Vmax is maximum shear force; and Vcalc is calculated load-bearing shear force for local bending failure.

Fig. 4—Reinforcement details of Test DE-1.1.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 225

Fig. 5—Testing procedure, beam spans, and loading.
reduced distance between the opening and support (DE-2.1),
the bending failure in the opening corner occurred in combi-
nation with a shear failure in the concrete joint interface
between web and bottom chord. The beam tests with open-
ings reached the magnitude of the load-bearing capacity of
the reference test (DE-1.2), which failed by a transverse
shear crack in the slender web of the cross section. The ulti-
mate shear forces and main test parameters are summarized
in Table 2.

Load-deflection characteristics
The load-deflection curves of all tests are presented in
Fig.  8. To eliminate the influence of different spans, the
deflections were related to the span and plotted over the
applied shear force V. Initially, the first test on each spec-
imen (DE-1.1, DE-2.1, and DE-3.1) had a small impact on
Fig. 6—Test setup of Test DE-2. the load averted opening, on which the second beam test
(DE-1.2, DE-2.2, and DE-3.2) was performed. In fact, the
deflections of the beams at the service load level, different averted opening was preloaded by a shear force of approxi-
approaches were used.18,19 From a loading of 70% of the mately 30% of the predicted load-bearing capacity. Conse-
predicted load-bearing capacity, the beams were loaded quently, certain initial cracks of low width were detected in
under displacement control until failure. Figure 6 shows the the tensile chord and in the joint between the web and the
test setup for Test DE-2. bottom chord. Due to that preloading impact, the stiffness
The deflections of the beams at the load introduction were of each second beam test (DE-2.2 and DE-3.2) was lower
measured using a linear variable transducer (WAxx). The compared to the first one. The tests with higher concrete
steel and concrete strains at surface were measured by elec- strength (DE-3.1 and DE-3.2) had higher stiffness and load-
trical resistance strain gauges. To determine the curvature bearing capacities. A sufficient ductility and good load-
at each edge of the opening, the steel strain of the longi- bearing behavior was observed throughout the entire test
tudinal reinforcement (SLxx) and the strain of concrete in series. The load-bearing capacities, however, were reached
compression (using strain gauges) and tension (using linear at different vertical deflections.
transducers) were measured. The strains of the stirrups
(SBxx) were recorded at the four corners of the opening, Cracking characteristics
the midspan of the top chord, and in the web. The strains at The cracking behavior of the beam is strongly influenced
the concrete surface were measured in three directions in the by the secondary bearing mechanism of the web opening.
midspan of the top chord. The arrangement of the instrumen- The crack patterns of the tested beams after failure are
tation is shown in Fig. 7. presented in Fig. 9. Caused by secondary bending moments
at the opening edges, the first bending cracks appeared in
TEST RESULTS AND DISCUSSION the top chord of the concrete beam. The cracking of the
Failure characteristic top chord started simultaneously on its lower surface at
In the following, results of the performed beam tests are the opening edge next to the load introduction and on its
described. The global failure of each beam test (except upper surface at the opening edge next to the support. With
reference Test DE-1.2) was initiated by a local failure in the increasing load, transverse shear cracks occurred in the
area of the web opening. Tests DE-1.1 and DE-2.2 failed slender web of the beam around the opening. The shear
by exceeding the bending capacity of the top chord in one cracking began approximately at the service load level.
web-opening corner (Failure Mode 1). In tests with higher At the moment of their formation, the shear cracks had a
concrete strength (DE-3.1 and DE-3.2) and the test with width of 0.1 to 0.2 mm (0.004 to 0.008 in.). The angle of the

226 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 7—Arrangement of strain measurements: (a) concrete strains; and (b) reinforcement steel strains.

Fig. 8—Shear force V over related deflection f/l3: Test: (a) DE-1; (b) DE-2; and (c) DE-3.

Fig. 9—Failure pattern of test specimens.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 227

Fig. 10—Typical crack formation: Test: (a) DE-2.1; (b) DE-2.2; and (c) DE-3.2.

Fig. 11—Strain distribution at opening corners for Test DE-1.1.

shear cracks in the web varied between 36 and 45 degrees was observed in Tests DE-2.1, DE-3.1, and DE-3.2, and is
in Tests DE-1.1 to DE-2.2. For a higher concrete strength, well known from experimental investigations on filigree
shear crack angles of 31 degrees (DE-3.1) and 35 degrees prestressed composite beams.20-22 Besides concrete pryout,
(DE-3.2) were measured. With increasing load, lower shear vertical cracks occurred at the edge of the web opening in
crack angles (~25 degrees) were found in the web. Near the the ultimate limit state, which resulted from the activation of
support of the beam, the diagonal shear cracks of the web the vertical reinforcement. In Fig. 10(b), the vertical cracks
encroached upon the bottom chord (Fig. 10(a)). at the opening edge are shown.
The high compressive stresses in the top chord redound to
the formation of a very flat concrete strut, which allows for Strain of opening corners
the transfer of shear forces above the opening. Consequently, In Fig. 11, the strain distribution of the four opening
at the ultimate limit level, shear cracks with a very flat incli- corners is plotted at different load levels for Test DE-1.1.
nation occurred in the top chord of the beam, which grew The strain distribution was determined by the measured
from the opening edge toward load introduction. Here, the compression and tension strain at the concrete surfaces as
cracking developed in an almost horizontal direction. In Fig. well as the strain of longitudinal reinforcement. The global
10(b), the horizontal cracks of the top chord are illustrated. bending moment and prestressing force led to compression
Finally, the redistribution of the shear force in the region normal forces in the top chord. The strains resulting from
of the web opening effected high pullout forces in the the release of pretension have not been measured separately,
vertical reinforcement next to the openings edge (As,A,S and as their ordinates are small compared to the strains resulting
As,A,L). This phenomenon causes concentrated stresses in from bending. At ultimate limit state, a compression strain
the adjacent concrete. Consequently, a gradual separation of 0.002 was reached in the opening of Corners 1 and 2
in the interface between concrete web and bottom chord (Fig. 11). Nevertheless, significant tensile stresses occurred
occurred, which finally resulted in a concrete pryout allo- in the top chord, resulting from the secondary bending
cated at the edge of the opening (Fig. 10(c)). This behavior moments. In the bottom chord, which was exposed to tensile

228 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fig. 12—Curvature at opening corners over shear load (Test DE-3.2).
stresses by global bending, the compression zone only
amounted to 20 to 30 mm (0.79 to 1.18 in.), and significantly
smaller magnitudes of compression strain were measured.
The strain distributions in the corners of the web opening
allow for the calculation of the curvatures κm. In Fig. 12, the
curvature κm of each opening corner is plotted over the shear
force V (for Test DE-3.2). At a load level of 60 to 70% of
the load-bearing capacity, a significant increase of curvature
was observed. At least at one corner of the web opening, the
formation of a plastic hinge occurred at failure state.

Influence of vertical reinforcement at opening edges

At the edges of the web opening, the shear force is
distributed to the concrete chords above and below the web
opening. To prevent failure of the connection between chords
and the solid beam, vertical reinforcement at the opening
edges needs to be considered. Generally, the vertical rein-
Fig. 13—Loading of vertical reinforcement at opening edges.
forcement is assumed to hang up and anchor the shear force
carried by the compression chord of the beam. In the liter-
ature, different approaches14,16,18 for the dimensioning of
this vertical reinforcement are given. In Tests DE-1.1 and
DE-3.1, the vertical reinforcement was dimensioned to carry
the entire applied shear force at ultimate limit state (As,A,S
and As,A,L = VEd/fyd; 2 x 10 mm [3.9 in.] diameter reinforce-
ment bars). In Tests DE-2.2 and DE-3.2 the degree of vertical
reinforcement furthermore was increased to 150% (3 x 10
mm [3.9 in.] diameter bars). Figure 13 shows the ratio of
ultimate shear force Vmax and maximum tensile force of the
vertical reinforcing bars at yield stress. Both tests with low
reinforcing ratios led to load factors higher than 1.0 (1.15
and 1.37 for Tests DE-2.2 and DE-3.2, respectively). Taking
into account the crack pattern and the geometrical properties
Fig. 14—Strain of vertical reinforcement at opening edges.
of the opening, alternative load transfer (arch mechanism)
can be eliminated. Thus, at ultimate load, an appreciable in Fig. 14, these findings are confirmed. Using two bars of
part of the shear force was carried by the bottom chord. The 10 mm (0.39 in.) diameter, an ultimate strain of approxi-
theoretical load-bearing capacity of the reinforcement at the mately 0.003 was reached in the tests so that the stresses in
edges of the opening was not reached for Tests DE-2.2 and the vertical reinforcement reached the yield strength (499
DE-3.2 with a higher reinforcement ratio. Considering a sole N/mm2 [72.37 ksi] according to Table 1). The strains in the
transfer of the shear force by the top chord, the load-bearing vertical reinforcement of Test DE-2.2 with a higher rein-
capacity of the reinforcement was not attained. Due to the forcement ratio stayed significantly below this value. Here,
higher load level, higher stress of the reinforcement at the only an ultimate strain of 0.0013 was reached, which corre-
opening edges was reached in tests with higher concrete sponds to a tensile stress of 261 N/mm2 (37.9 ksi) in the
strength. Comparing the measured strains of reinforcement vertical reinforcement bars.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 229

Influence of openings near supports and influence Comparison of experiments and theoretical
of concrete strength approaches
The influence of openings with low distances to supports To quantify the influence of shear failure in the concrete
was investigated by comparing Test DE-2.1 with DE-1.1 joint interface, and local bending failure of the concrete
and DE-2.2, respectively. The load-bearing capacity of the chords, the experimental results are compared to theoretical
test with openings near the support of the beam was 15% load-bearing capacities. For that reason, appropriate theo-
lower than that of both other tests. At up to 80% of the load- retical failure criteria have to be checked for both observed
bearing capacity, no differences between the tests could be failure modes. The criterion, which provides the smaller
observed. After that, the deflection of Test DE-2.1 dispropor- carrying capacity, is decisive for the design and identifies
tionately increased with a small increase of applied load. At the relevant failure mode.
the same time, longitudinal cracks at the joint between web The criterion for bending failure of the chords uses
and bottom chord as well as the end of the beam occurred. bending moment/normal force-interaction diagrams. First of
In the following, the shear force in the joint between web all, the distribution of shear force to the chords was calcu-
and bottom chord was mostly carried by the vertical rein- lated by Eq. (5) and (6), depending on their effective flexural
forcement in terms of dowel action. However, a combined stiffness. The point of contraflexure was considered to lie
failure was observed. On the one hand, significant slip in the at midspan of the opening, and the combined moment and
reinforced joint between web and bottom chord occurred, normal force of the chords was calculated in relation to the
which led to shear failure in interface. On the other hand, the applied load P. Plotting the loading path in the interaction
bending moment capacity of the top chord was reached at the diagram of each chord, the load-bearing capacity was found
same time in terms of yielding of longitudinal reinforcement. at the intersection point of loading path and the interaction
The use of higher-strength concrete (fc = 110 MPa surface. Therefore, the load-bearing capacity for bending
[15,954 psi]) led to a 20% higher load-bearing capacity failure of the chords is predicted, while all other failure
compared to tests with a concrete strength of fc = 67 MPa modes are excluded. In Fig. 15, the procedure is presented
(9717 psi). Just as Test DE-2.1 with reduced distance for the top chord of Test DE-1.1. A good accordance between
between support and opening, in Tests DE-3.1 and DE-3.2, predicted load-bearing capacity and maximum experimental
a significant slip between web and bottom chord was found load was found for Tests DE-1.1 and DE-2.2 (refer to Vcalc,
(shear failure in the concrete joint). Table 2), which had a local bending failure of the chords.
In Tests DE-2.1, DE-3.1, and DE-3.2, a failure of the
concrete joint interface between web and bottom chord
occurred. To quantify the influence of failure in the concrete
joint, a second failure criterion had to be checked. For that
reason, the maximum resistant shear stresses were compared
to the acting shear stresses in the concrete joint. Figure 16
shows the ratio of the shear resistance τRm of a reinforced
interface according to Eurocode 223 to the shear stress in
the interface caused by loading τE at ultimate limit state.
The shear resistance τRm was estimated by using the mean
values of the material properties (Table 1), assuming a rough
interface. For Tests DE-2.1, DE-3.1, and DE-3.2 with exper-
imental failure of the concrete interface, values lower than
1.0 were calculated. Therefore, the results of the calculation
confirmed the experimental observations.
Generally, the failure of the joint between web and bottom
Fig. 15—Exemplary determination of load-bearing capacity chord reduces the load-carrying capacity compared to the
for Test DE-1.1. carrying capacity of beams with local bending failure.

Fig. 16—Comparison of acting and resisting shear stress in interface.

230 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Consequently, for prestressed beams with openings and
concreting joints, the well-known failure modes by Kennedy
and Abdalla11 should be supplemented by a shear failure
criterion of the concrete joint interface, especially for high-
strength concrete. Neglecting this failure may cause a deficit
in safety because the calculated capacities Vcalc for a local
bending failure exceed the experimental capacities for inter-
face failure by approximately 20% (Table 2).

Experimental distribution of shear force in chord

To determine the shear force acting in top and bottom
chords, respectively, the measurements of the strain gauge
rosette applied at midspan of the top chord was evaluated.
According to Twelmeier,24 the shearing strain γ was deter-
mined from the measured principal strains. Knowing the
shear modulus, the shear stress was calculated considering
Hooke’s law (Eq. (13)), whereat the impact of global loading
on the shear modulus was considered by Eq. (14) with a
Poisson’s ratio ν of 0.2

τ = γG = γ (13)
2(1 + ν)

M global (1 − ν2 )
M global = σ x Az ⇒ Ec = (14)
Az (e x + νe x )
Fig. 17—Distribution of applied shear force carried by
The acting shear force in the top chord results from the inte- top chord.
gration of the shear stress over the cross section. As refer-
ence, the tensile forces in the vertical reinforcement at the CONCLUSIONS
load-allocated edge of the opening were calculated by the The results of the experimental investigations confirm the
measured strains. In the case of distinctive crack formation, capability and technical feasibility of the developed floor
the sum of these forces equaled the shear force carried by slab system as a structural element in multiple-use buildings.
the top chord. The results of these calculations are presented Based on the results of the experimental investigation on
in Fig. 17. With increasing load, both methods led to the beams with large web openings, the following conclusions
same values. As expected, the strains of the reinforcement can be drawn:
were small at low load levels because the beam remained 1. In the uncracked stage (service load), a considerable part
in an uncracked state. Thus, the shear force of the top chord of the global shear force is carried by the bottom (tension)
was underestimated by the evaluation of the reinforcement’s chord. However, at failure, approximately 90% of the shear
strains. The values calculated by the strain gauge rosette on force is carried by the top (compression) chord indepen-
the concrete surface remained nearly constant over the entire dent of the position of the opening (M/V ratio), the concrete
load range. Similar results were already detected in tests by strength, and the cross section of the vertical reinforcement
Twelmeier24 and Tan.25 at the edge of the opening (shear concentration factor).
Due to the measured compression strain with the strain 2. The load-bearing capacity of the beams is reached with
gauge applied in a –45-degree direction in Test DE-1.1, a the formation of a plastic hinge at one of the opening corners
significantly lower value of the shear force acting in the of the top chord. A ductile failure could be stated for all
top chord was detected. At higher load levels, however, tests. The use of higher-strength concrete led to an increase
the values calculated by the strains of the reinforcement lie of the load-bearing capacity, but at a subproportional rate
between the values of the other tests. compared to concrete tensile and compressive strength.
Higher degrees of vertical reinforcement at the edge of 3. The load-bearing capacity of the joint between the web
the opening (Tests DE-2.2 and DE-3.2) led to higher shear and the bottom chord, due to the manufacturing process, may
forces carried by the top chord compared to the other tests be decisive for the global load-bearing capacity when using
with only two bars 10 mm (0.4 in.) in diameter as vertical high-strength concrete and openings close to the support.
reinforcement. With the exception of Test DE-3.1, the 4. For the investigated conditions, the arrangement of
measured shear force carried by the top chord was deter- openings between the transition length of the prestressing
mined to be approximately 90% of the acting shear force in steel had no adverse influence on load-bearing capacity
ultimate limit state. These results fall between the predicted and deformation behavior. All beams with openings under
values in References 13 and 18. moment-shear loading led to higher deformations when

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 231

compared to solid beams. The increase is small at service 8. Nasser, K. W.; Acavalos, A.; and Daniel, H. R., “Behavior and Design
of Large Openings in Reinforced Concrete Beams,” ACI Journal Proceed-
load level. ings, V. 64, No. 1, Jan. 1967, pp. 25-33.
5. An increase of the cross-sectional area of the vertical 9. Pessiki, S., and Thompson, J. M., “Experimental Investigation of
reinforcement at the edge of the opening led to higher shear Precast, Prestressed Inverted Tee Girders with Large Web Openings,” PCI
Journal, V. 51, No. 6, 2006, pp. 2-17.
force carried by the top chord for the entire load range. The 10. Hottmann, H. U., and Schäfer, K., “Bemessen von Stahlbetonbalken
failure, however, is not affected if a sufficient amount of und -wandscheiben mit Öffnungen,” Deutscher Ausschuss für Stahlbeton,
reinforcement is used. The cross-sectional area of vertical Heft 459, Beuth Verlag, Berlin, Germany, 1996.
11. Kennedy, J. B., and Abdalla, H., “Static Response of Prestressed
reinforcement was calculated for the anchorage of the entire Girders with Openings,” Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE, V. 118,
acting shear force. No. 2, 1992, pp. 488-504. doi: 10.1061/(ASCE)0733-9445(1992)118:2(488)
12. Mansur, M. A.; Tan, K.-H.; and Lee, S.-L., “Collapse Loads
of R/C Beams with Large Openings,” Journal of Structural Engi-
AUTHOR BIOS neering, ASCE, V. 110, No. 11, 1984, pp. 2602-2618. doi: 10.1061/
Martin Classen is a Research Engineer at the Institute of Structural
Concrete, RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, Germany, where he received
13. Schnellenbach-Held, M.; Ehmann, S.; and Neff, C., “Untersuchung
his degree in structural engineering in 2011. His research interests include
des Trag- und Verformungsverhaltens von Stahlbetonbalken mit großen
the development of integrated floor slab solutions and the structural
Öffnungen,” Deutscher Ausschuss für Stahlbeton, Heft 566, Beuth Verlag,
behavior of concrete and composite construction.
Berlin, Germany, 2007.
14. Mansur, M. A., and Tan, K.-H., Concrete Beams with Openings:
Tobias Dressen is a Structural Engineer at Kempen&Krause, Aachen,
Analysis and Design, CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL, 1999, 224 pp.
Germany. He received his PhD in structural engineering from RWTH
15. Salam, A., and Harrop, J., “Prestressed Concrete Beams with Trans-
Aachen University in 2011. His research interests include the sustainability
verse Circular Holes,” Journal of the Structural Division, ASCE, V. 105,
of concrete structures and its structural realization.
1979, pp. 635-652.
16. Barney, G. B.; Corley, W. G.; Hanson, J. M.; and Parmalee, R. A.,
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS “Behavior and Design of Prestressed Concrete Beams with Large Web
This paper comprises results of a comprehensive research program titled Openings,” PCI Journal, V. 22, No. 6, 1977, pp. 32-61. doi: 10.15554/
“Sustainable Building with Concrete” under coordination of the Deutscher pcij.11011977.32.61
Ausschuss für Stahlbeton e. V, which was jointly funded by the German 17. Abdalla, H., and Kennedy, J. B., “Design of Prestressed Concrete Beams
Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and third-party with Openings,” Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE, V. 121, No. 5,
donors. Their support is gratefully acknowledged. May 1995, pp. 890-898. doi: 10.1061/(ASCE)0733-9445(1995)121:5(890)
18. Leonhardt, F., and Mönnig, E., Vorlesungen über Massivbau: Dritter
Teil – Grundlagen zum Bewehren im Stahlbetonbau, Springer Verlag,
REFERENCES Berlin, Germany, 1977, 246 pp.
1. Frangi, A.; Fontana, M.; and Mensinger, M., “Innovative Composite Slab 19. Dressen, T., and Classen, M., “Deformation of Reinforced and
System with Integrated Installation Floor,” Structural Engineering Interna- Prestressed Concrete Beams with Large Web Openings,” Beton- und Stahl-
tional, V. 19, No. 4, 2009, pp. 404-409. doi: 10.2749/101686609789846948 betonbau, V. 108, No. 7, July 2013, pp. 462-474.
2. Hegger, J.; Claßen, M.; Gallwoszus, J.; Schaumann, P.; Weisheim, 20. Hegger, J.; Claßen, M.; Schaumann, P.; Sothmann, J.; Feldmann, M.;
W.; Sothmann, J.; Feldmann, M.; Pyschny, D.; Bohne, D.; and Hargus, and Döring, B., “Integrated Composite Floor-Slab-Systems for Sustainable
S., “Multifunctional Composite Slab System with Integrated Building Steel Structures,” Stahlbau, V. 82, No. 1, 2013, pp. 11-17. doi: 10.1002/
Services,” Stahlbau, V. 83, No. 7, 2014, pp. 452-460. doi: 10.1002/ stab.201301645
stab.201410170 21. Classen, M.; Gallwoszus, J.; and Hegger, J., “Einfluss von Querrissen
3. Classen, M.; Gallwoszus, J.; and Hegger, J., “Load-Bearing Behavior auf das Schubtragverhalten von Verbunddübelleisten in schlanken Beto-
of an Integrated Composite Floor System,” Bauingenieur, V. 89, No. 3, ngurten,” Beton- und Stahlbetonbau, V. 119, No. 12, pp. 882-894.
Mar. 2014, pp. 91-101. 22. Classen, M., and Hegger, J., “Verankerungsverhalten von Verbund-
4. Kolleger, J.; Kainz, A. E.; and Burtscher, S. L., “Slab with Integrated dübelleisten in schlanken Betongurten,” Bautechnik, V. 91, No. 12, 2014,
Installations,” Creating and Renewing Urban Structures—Tall Buildings, pp. 869-883.
Bridges and Infrastructure, 17th Congress of IABSE, Sept. 17-19, Chicago, 23. European Committee for Standardization, “Eurocode 2: Design of
IL, 2008, pp. 230-231. Concrete Structures, Part 1.1: General Rules and Rules for Buildings,”
5. Hegger, J.; Dreßen, T.; and Schießl, P. et al., “Nachhaltiges Bauen im Brussels, Belgium, Dec. 2004, pp. 96-99.
Lebenszyklus,” Bauingenieur, V. 84, July-Aug. 2009, pp. 304-312. 24. Twelmeier, H.; Dallmann, R.; Fischer, T. et al., “Einfluss von großen
6. Dressen, T., and Classen, M., “Experimentelle Untersuchung an Span- Stegöffnungen auf das Trag-und Verformungsverhalten von Stahlbetonträ-
nbetonträgern mit großen Stegöffnungen,” Bauingenieur, V. 89, No. 9, gern,“ Report of the Institute of Structural Analysis, Technical University of
Sept. 2014, pp. 359-369. Brunswick, Brunswick, Germany, 1985, pp. 120-123.
7. Classen, M.; Gallwoszus, J.; Hegger, J.; Papakosta, A.; Kuhnhenne, 25. Tan, K. H.; Mansur, M. A.; and Huang, L.-M., “Reinforced
M.; Psychny, D.; and Feldmann, M., “Sustainability Assessment of Long Concrete T-Beams with Large Web Openings in Positive and Negative
Span Floor Systems,” Bauingenieur, V. 89, No. 3, Mar. 2014, pp. 125-133. Moment Regions,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 93, No. 3, May-June 1996,
pp. 277-289.

232 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Disc. 111-S41/From the May-June 2014 ACI Structural Journal, p. 503

Bond-Slip-Strain Relationship in Transfer Zone of Pretensioned Concrete Elements. Paper by Ho Park and
Jae-Yeol Cho
Discussion by José R. Martí-Vargas
Professor, ICITECH, Institute of Concrete Science and Technology, Universitat Politècnica de València, Valencia, Spain

The discussed paper presents an interesting study on a Guyon’s theory.12 Specimen A seems to show a combination
novel bond-slip-strain relationship for a strand in the transfer of both uniform and linear bond stress distributions, which
zone of a pretensioned, prestressed concrete member, as well would correspond to an intermediate case with a certain
as equations for the distributions of the bond stress, slip, α value (α = 2.67 and α = 2.44 have been also proposed
and strand strain. To this end, test specimens with various in theoretical and experimental studies26,27,34). Finally,
test variables, such as concrete compressive strength, Specimen C depicts an atypical bond stress distribution.
cross section size, cover thickness, strand diameter, curing What was the transfer length for Specimen C?
method, and debonded region, were fabricated, and strand 4. The measurements on the cut-end sides were also
strains were measured in the pretensioning and detensioning excluded from the analysis, not to consider an effect of
process. The authors should be complimented for providing dynamic impact. However, in light of the differences in
a detailed paper that is useful for calculating transfer length, transfer lengths at both ends of one similar specimen, as
end slip, and maximum bond stress in the transfer zone. The shown in Fig. 2, the discusser encourages the authors to
discusser would like to address the following comments and carry out further studies and to include measurements on the
questions for the authors’ consideration and response. cut end because these measurements are more unfavorable
1. There are several relevant, complete, and recent for strength capacities, and code equations usually do not
references that have not been considered by the authors, reflect manufacturing methods.
such as extensive collections of equations for transfer 5. The authors have assumed that the distribution of
length, including comparatives and new equations concrete and strand strains has a similar shape. However,
considering concrete compressive strength25 and strand- it is noteworthy that the distribution of concrete strains
free end slip,26 which were available prior to the submission presents a certain retardation in relation to the distribution of
date. Furthermore, the authors considered one reference by strand strains. Transfer length is defined as the distance over
Balázs14 in their comparisons (Table 3), whereas another which the strand should be bonded to concrete to develop
related, complementary study was ignored.27 Moreover, the effective prestress in prestressing steel.28 This effective
ACI 318-081 is used and referenced by the authors, whereas stress is completely transferred to concrete when concrete
there is a later edition.28 stresses are assumed to take a linear distribution, which
2. The authors detail that variations in cover depth, cross occurs outside dispersion length.35 As the authors obtained
section dimensions, and the level of prestressing force transfer length by applying the 95% average maximum
have very little effect on bond characteristics, whereas strain (AMS) method9 to the curves of the tendon strain (as
a recent study29 has found that concrete cover may also shown in Fig. 3) instead of curves of the concrete strain, it
markedly affect transfer length in pretensioned members. seems that the authors determine a shorter transfer length.
It has been stated that bond strength reduces as concrete 6. To obtain a bond-slip-strain relationship for a strand, a
cover increases,30 whereas increases in bond strength with basic form of the equation is adopted from a previous bond
increased concrete cover thickness by using pullout tests model,17 devised for reinforced concrete. The bond stress
have been also reported,31 and the same conclusion was in the model is composed of a slip function and a strain
drawn for prestressing strands32 by using the ECADA function. It seems that the slip function is obtained from
test method.33 Fig. 4. Furthermore, the authors detail that the slip at a point
3. In addition to the 16 specimens listed in Table 2, more in a member is obtained by integrating the relative difference
specimens were originally fabricated, which were excluded of concrete and the strand strain. As only strand strains were
from the analysis because: 1) only concrete strains were measured and the authors applied the 95% AMS method9 to
measured; or 2) the specimens seemed to have bond the tendon strain curves, can the authors detail how the slips
deficiencies. The authors detail that only strand strains were were obtained?
measured for the test specimens analyzed in this work. 7. The bond stress was derived from the equilibrium
To offer a better understanding, can the authors provide condition along the strand according to Eq. (6). The discusser
additional details on how the bond stress distributions were notes that nominal perimeter πdp is used instead of actual
obtained for the excluded specimens in which only concrete perimeter (4/3)πdp.25,36
strains were measured? Furthermore, it seems that some 8. The authors conclude that slip distribution presents an
specimens were excluded for their lower bond stress values initial value in the transfer zone, which corresponds to the
compared to Specimen 4. It is noteworthy that bond stress initial value of bond stress at the begining of transfer length.
distributions, as offered by Specimens B and D, are also However, as seen in Fig. 7(a), an initial bond stress value
possible, which would correspond to a bound case (α = 2) is observed, whereas an initial slip value is not observed
according to Guyon’s theory,12 whereas Specimens 4, 9, 10, in Fig. 7(c). The discusser notes that the slip distribution
and 16 displayed a linear bond stress distribution that, in along the transfer length shown in Fig. 7(c) seems to
turn, coincides with the other bound case (α = 3) according to qualitatively agree with the slip distribution model recently

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 233

derived from the experimental tests by the ECADA test
method37 and the theoretical curves obtained from finite
element analyses.29 None of these proposals includes an
initial slip value.

25. Martí-Vargas, J. R.; Arbeláez, C. A.; Serna-Ros, P.; Navarro-Gregori,
J.; and Pallarés-Rubio, L., “Analytical Model for Transfer Length Prediction
of 13 mm Prestressing Strand,” Structural Engineering and Mechanics,
V. 26, No. 2, 2007, pp. 211-229.
26. Martí-Vargas, J. R.; Arbeláez, C. A.; Serna-Ros, P.; and Castro-
Bugallo, C., “Reliability of Transfer Length Estimation from Strand End
Slip,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 104, No. 4, July-Aug. 2007, pp. 487-494.
27. Balázs, L. G., “Transfer Length of Prestressing Strand as a Function
of Draw-in and Initial Prestress,” PCI Journal, V. 38, No. 2, Mar.-Apr.
1993, pp. 86-93.
28. ACI Committee 318, “Building Code Requirements for Structural
Concrete (ACI 318-11) and Commentary,” American Concrete Institute,
Farmington Hills, MI, 2011, 503 pp.
29. Oh, B. H.; Lim, S. N.; Lee, M. K.; and Yoo, S. W., “Analysis and
Prediction of Transfer Length in Pretensioned, Prestressed Concrete
Members,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 111, No. 3, May-June 2014, Fig. 13—Strand strain distribution of Specimen C. (Note:
pp. 549‑559. 1 mm = 0.039 in.)
30. Ichinose, T.; Kanayama, Y.; Inoue, Y.; and Bolander, J. E., “Size
Effect on Bond Strength of Deformed Bars,” Construction and Building rate of transfer length decreases when the cover depth is
Materials, V. 18, 2004, pp. 549-558. increased. In the equation proposed by Oh et al.,29 transfer
31. García-Taengua, E.; Martí-Vargas, J. R.; and Serna-Ros, P., length is inversely proportional to cover depth. It means that
“Statistical Approach to Effect of Factors Involved in Bond Performance
of Steel Fiber-Reinforced Concrete,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 108, No. 4,
the effect of cover depth rapidly diminishes with the increase
July-Aug. 2011, pp. 461-468. in cover depth. Ichinose et al.30 concluded that the size effect
32. Martí-Vargas, J. R.; Caro, L. A.; and Serna-Ros, P., “Size Effect on on bond strength is reduced with increasing confinement due
Strand Bond and Concrete Strains at Prestress Transfer,” ACI Structural to larger cover depth. Martí-Vargas et al.32 also showed that
Journal, V. 111, No. 2, Mar.-Apr. 2014, pp. 419-429. the increasing rate of average bond stress is reduced when
33. Martí-Vargas, J. R.; García-Taengua, E.; Caro, L. A.; and Serna-
Ros, P., “Measuring Specific Parameters in Pretensioned Concrete Members cross section is increased.
Using a Single Testing Technique,” Measurement, V. 49, 2014, pp. 421-432. 3. The specimens for which only concrete strains were
34. Viula, D.; Lucio, V.; Pinho, G.; and Martí-Vargas, J. R., discussion measured were excluded from the analysis because the bond
of “Pull-out and Push-in Tests of Bonded Steel Strands,” Magazine of stress distributions could not be obtained. Specimens A to
Concrete Research, V. 65, No. 18, 2013, pp. 1128-1131.
35. CEN, “Eurocode 2: Design of concrete structures—Part 1-1: General
D were excluded to develop a basic bond model for the
Rules and Rules for Buildings. (EN 1992-1-1:2004:E),” Comité Européen favorable bond condition. The proposed model is capable
de Normalisation, Brussels, Belgium, 2004. to consider different types of bond stress distributions by
36. Tabatabai, H., and Dickson, T., “The History of the Prestressing modifying the coefficient a0. As the value of the coefficient
Strand Development Length Equation,” PCI Journal, V. 38, No. 5, Sept.- a0 becomes smaller, the resulting bond stress approaches a
Oct. 1993, pp. 64-75.
37. Martí-Vargas, J. R.; Hale, W. M.; García-Taengua, E.; and Serna- uniform distribution. Strand strain distribution and transfer
Ros, P., “Slip Distribution Model along the Anchorage Length of length of Specimen C is provided in Fig. 13.
Prestressing Strands,” Engineering Structures, V. 59, 2014, pp. 674-685. 4. The authors agree with the discusser’s opinion on the
importance of transfer length at the cut end.
AUTHORS’ CLOSURE 5. The assumption of a similar shape between the
The authors would like to thank the discusser for his distributions of concrete and strand strains was made based
interest in the paper and valuable comments. The authors’ on the measured strain data. In another paper,18 the authors
item-by-item response is presented in the following text: showed that both strain distributions had a very similar shape
1. Over last decades, many equations for transfer lengths for the given specimen configurations. It can be justified by
have been proposed by various researchers. Because it was the following references. According to CEB-FIP MC90,38 the
impossible to consider all of the equations in the paper, the difference between the transfer length and the dispersion
most representative and frequently cited equations were length vanishes for a cross section with the total depth less
chosen to be compared with the experimental results and the than 80% of transfer length. In the authors’ experiment, the
proposed model. Equations incorporating the term of end depth of the test specimens was less than one-fourth of the
slip26,27 were not included in the comparison because the measured transfer lengths. Buckner39 and Den Uijl40 have
measured end slip data were found to be unreliable. There is demonstrated by means of finite element analysis that the
no difference in the calculation of transfer lengths according deviation of strain distributions at concrete surface and at the
to the 2008 and the 2011 editions of ACI 318.1,28 strand was not significant for members with a cross section,
2. As mentioned by the discusser, concrete cover depth which is small in relation to the transfer length.
greatly affects transfer lengths in the pretensioned concrete 6. The concrete strain distribution was generated based on
members. The authors stated that cover depth has little effect the assumption of a similar shape between the distributions
on bond characteristics if there are no splitting cracks. Many of concrete and strand strains. The ratio of concrete to strand
researchers indicated that the influence of cover depth on strain at any point was given as Eq. (8). The slip distribution
transfer length is reduced with increasing cover depth. Den along the strand was obtained from Eq. (9) and (10).
Uijl15 stated that transfer length decreases with increasing 7. The authors followed the approach given in Balázs14 and
cover depth but no further reduction occurs beyond the cover Cousins et al.2,41 In their analyses, the nominal perimeter of
depth of 3 to 4dp. Oh and Kim11 reported that the reduction strand was used for the calculation of bond stress.

234 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

8. The coefficient a5, representing the initial value of slip, 39. Buckner, C. D., “An Analysis of Transfer and Development Lengths
satisfies a mathematical requirement. It is also consistent for Pretensioned Concrete Structures,” FHWA-RD-94-049, Virginia
Military Institute, Lexington, VA, Dec. 1994.
with the physical explanation for the initial value of bond 40. Den Uijl, J. A., “High Performance Concrete in Prefab Industry.
stress. The value of the coefficient a5 is very small, as shown Part 3: Transmission Length of Prestressing Strand,” Stevin Report 25.5-
in Fig. 7(c). 95-3, TU Delft, Delft, the Netherlands, 1995, 65 pp.
41. Cousins, T. E.; Johnston, D. W.; and Zia, P., “Transfer and
Development Length of Epoxy Coated and Uncoated Prestressing Strand,”
REFERENCES PCI Journal, V. 35, No. 4, July-Aug. 1990, pp. 92-103.
38. CEB-FIP, “Model Code 1990,” Comité Euro-International du Béton
(CEB), Bulletin d’Information 213/214, London, UK, 1990, 437 pp.

Disc. 111-S44/From the May-June 2014 ACI Structural Journal, p. 537

Fire Protection for Beams with Fiber-Reinforced Polymer Flexural Strengthening Systems. Paper by Nabil
Grace and Mena Bebawy
Discussion by W. L. Gamble
FACI, Professor Emeritus, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL

This paper adds useful information and data about the AUTHORS’ CLOSURE
behavior of fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) in fire situations, The authors thank the discusser for his interest in the paper
but it also presents some puzzles. It is unfortunate that there and the published work. The discussion focuses on three
apparently were no tests of the reinforcing bars because main points: 1) the moment capacity of the beam; 2) the
both a measured yield stress and a measured stress-strain rupture of the steel in Beam B-DH-C/F; and 3) the removal
curve would have been helpful in understanding some of the of the entire load in Beam B-CF-G/F. The authors will try to
results. The 80 ksi (551 MPa) yield stress implied from the address all three points.
strain measurements for Beam B-U-O/A seems high but is For the first point, it should be noted that due to the
plausible for a small bar. nature of the fire testing, a special support system was used
However, even this high stress does not explain the throughout the entire experiment, even for beams tested at
behavior of this beam. At 10 kip (44.5 kN) force (the reported ambient temperature. As shown in Fig. 13, the beam was
yield force), the applied moment is approximately 31.3 ft-kip resting on two 12 in. (305 mm) wide steel plates at its ends.
(42.4 kN-m), including the small dead-load moment. However, Therefore, for the purpose of moment calculations, the
the computed value of Mn is approximately 25.4 ft-kip effective span should be taken as 10 ft (3.05 m) as the beam
(34.4 kN-m) when fc′ = 7.3 ksi (50 MPa) and fy = 80 ksi rotated around the interior edges of the support plates. By
(551 MPa). At the maximum force of 12.92 kip (57.5 kN), considering an effective span of 10 ft (305 mm), the moment
the applied moment is approximately 40.1 ft-kip (54.4 kN-m). due to dead load will be equal to 0.935 ft-kip (1.27 kN-m).
The difference between the observed yield moment and the At steel strain of 3000 µɛ, the depth of the NA is 2.26 in.
computed nominal capacity seems too large, as does the differ- (57.4 mm) and the theoretical yield moment is 25.72 ft-kip
ence between the observed yield and maximum applied loads. (34.87 kN-m). By subtracting the moment due to dead load
The computed strain at Mn is less than 0.02, which implies from the yield moment, the moment due to the concentrated
some strain hardening but probably not 29%. load becomes 24.79 ft-kip (33.61 kN-m), which is equiv-
A possible source of the differences is restrained elonga- alent to a moment due to a concentrated load of 9.91 kip
tion. The longitudinal restraint applied at the bottom surface (44 kN). It is worth noting that the beam was resting freely
of the beam that is able to increase the moment capacity on the supports and no significant longitudinal restraint
from 25 to 40 ft-kip is not too large. The support system is was provided.
not well described other than Fig. 2 showing a roller under
one end of the beam.
Beam B-DH-C/F is reported to have collapsed due to frac-
tured reinforcement. The statement that “the reinforcement
of the beam melted” cannot be true because the melting point
of steel is much higher than either the fire temperature or the
steel temperature at the time of collapse. This suggests some
flaw in the reinforcement, or perhaps some exothermic reac-
tion involving the epoxy. Was a sudden flare-up observed?
Beam B-CF-G/F was loaded to a significant load for
only 15 minutes, and then unloaded. It is not clear whether
the remaining load was only the dead load of the member
and the loading column or some larger load. This load reduc-
tion was described as equivalent to the removal of the live
load, but this is not consistent with actual reinforced concrete
buildings. In most reinforced concrete buildings, the dead
load exceeds the live load, so a representative case might
involve removing half of the applied load, but not a major
fraction. The fact that this beam was able to resist major
loads after cooling is an important piece of information. Fig. 13—Beam B-U-O/A under three-point loading setup.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 235

Fig. 14—Close-up view of Beam B-U-O/F showing rupture Fig. 16—Beam B-CF-GB/F split in half after exposure to
of bottom steel reinforcement bars after exposure to fire test. fire/loading event.

is only 4% of its ambient yield strength. Also, its modulus

of elasticity at that temperature is also approximately 4.5%
of its ambient value. Therefore, the rupture of the steel even
under the self-weight of the beam at that point of the test
was not unexpected. The wide cracks exposed the steel to
the air temperature and subsequently the reinforcement lost
almost all of its structural strength and fractured/ruptured.
There were flares at failure in all beams with FRP strength-
ening systems due to the ignition of the epoxy, but the
control system of the furnace regulated the air temperature
by cutting off the fuel input and increasing the flow of the
exhaust system. Consequently, the air temperature followed
exactly the ASTM E119 curve and the ignition of the epoxy
adhesive hardly influenced the conditions of the test.
For the third point, Beam B-CF-G/F was loaded to a signif-
icant load for only 15 minutes and the remaining load was
the self-weight of the beam plus the weight of the loading
column, which was resting on the beam. It is true that the
Fig. 15—Beam B-DH-GB/F2 split in half after exposure
dead load may exceed the live load in reinforced concrete
to fire.
structures. However, the strengthening system is usually
For the second point, Beam B-DH-C/F did split in half due designed to only sustain the live load (or part of it). The
to rupture of bottom steel reinforcement, as shown in Fig. 6. strengthening system is applied to existing structures, which
It should be noted that it was not the only beam that experi- are already loaded with at least the dead load. Therefore,
enced this kind of steel fracture/rupture. Beam B-U-O/F had unless the existing beam is jacked prior to the application of
no FRP wraps and yet experienced steel rupture, as shown the strengthening system, the FRP strengthening system will
in Fig. 14. Beams B-DH-GB/F2 and B-CF-GB/F also split not resist the dead loads. Consequently, in case of fire, there
in half, as shown in Fig. 15 and Fig. 16, respectively. The air is a good chance that the FRP strengthening system will not
temperature at the time of failure in all these beams ranged be stressed if the live load manages to escape early as repre-
from 1850 to 1890°F (1010 to 1032°C), which conformed sented in the loading scenario of Beam B-CF-G/F.
to ASTM E119 time-temperature curve. While it is possible
that the steel had some flows, according to Purkiss (2007) REFERENCES
Purkiss, J. A., 2007, “Fire Safety Engineering,” Design of Structures,
and multiple other references and fire design codes, at second edition, Elsevier Ltd.
temperature of 1832°F (1000°C), the yield strength of steel

236 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Disc. 111-S45/From the May-June 2014 ACI Structural Journal, p. 549

Analysis and Prediction of Transfer Length in Pretensioned, Prestressed Concrete Members. Paper by Byung
Hwan Oh, Si N. Lim, Myung K. Lee, and Sung W. Yoo
Discussion by José R. Martí-Vargas
Professor, ICITECH, Institute of Concrete Science and Technology Universitat Politècnica de València, Valencia, Spain

Based on three-dimensional finite element analyses and along transfer length, which coincides with a bound case
experimental tests conducted to obtain transfer lengths in (α = 2) according to Guyon’s theory,28 whereas a recent
pretensioned, prestressed concrete members, the discussed study27 proposes a linear bond stress distribution which, in
paper explores the important factors that affect transfer turn, coincides with the other bound case (α = 3) according
length and proposes a realistic prediction equation for a more to Guyon’s theory.28 An intermediate case (α = 2.44)26,31 has
rational design of pretensioned members. In particular, it has been also proposed. Therefore, in light of the interest of
been found that transfer length decreases with increased these topics, the discusser suggests further analyses to be
cover depth, and also with increased concrete compressive addressed to obtain: 1) the corresponding α value from the
strength. Then these two parameters, as well as prestress authors’ experimental data; and 2) as there is a wide range
magnitude and strand diameter, have been included in a of strand-end slips that correspond to the same transfer, and
new equation for transfer length determination. The authors vice versa, the quantification of the number of cases out the
should be congratulated for producing a detailed paper. allowable free-end slip and the predicted transfer length
Some findings are interesting for the discusser, who would according to the main codes is recommended.32
like to address the following comments for the authors’ 4. The authors found that concrete cover may also
consideration and response. markedly affect transfer length in pretensioned members,
1. Regarding the references related with this paper, the whereas a recent study27 provides details that variations
discusser would like to point out that: a) ACI 318-0217 is in cover depth, the dimensions of the cross section, and
referenced by the authors, whereas there are later editions the level of prestressing force have very little effect on
available prior to the paper submission date23; and b) bond characteristics. It has been stated that bond strength
there are several relevant, complete, and recent references reduces as concrete cover increases,33 whereas increases
that were not considered by the authors, such as extensive in bond strength with greater concrete cover thickness by
collections of equations for transfer length, including using pullout tests34 have also been reported, and the same
comparatives and new equations considering concrete conclusion was obtained for prestressing strands35 by using
compressive strength24,25 and strand free-end slip.26 the ECADA test method.36
2. The authors detail that bond stress-slip relations have 5. The discusser notes that variation in the slip values
been obtained from the measurement of strains. In particular, along the distance from the end of the pretensioned members
the strand-to-concrete slip has been obtained from measuring shown in Fig. 15, which were obtained from finite element
concrete strains at two adjacent points using Eq. (5). It is analyses, qualitatively agrees well with the slip distribution
noteworthy that, at a point within transfer length, slip is model recently derived from experimental tests.37 However,
obtained by integrating the relative differences of the concrete it seems that the end slip values obtained by the authors are
and strand strains when prestress is transferred.8,27 However, higher than in other studies,27,37 which perhaps is related with
it seems that Eq. (5) considers only the differences between the specific procedure used, as mentioned in remark No. 2.
the concrete strains at two locations, regardless of strand
strains. To offer a better understanding, can the authors REFERENCES
23. ACI Committee 318, “Building Code Requirements for Structural
provide additional details on how slips were obtained? Concrete (ACI 318-11) and Commentary,” American Concrete Institute,
3. The authors state that there are good correlations between Farmington Hills, MI, 2011, 503 pp.
the transfer lengths and end slip values in pretensioned 24. Martí-Vargas, J. R.; Arbeláez, C. A.; Serna-Ros, P.; Navarro-
members and, hence, it may be possible to calculate transfer Gregori, J.; and Pallarés-Rubio, L., “Analytical Model for Transfer Length
length from the end slip value. The discusser notes that Prediction of 13 mm Prestressing Strand,” Structural Engineering and
Mechanics, V. 26, No. 2, 2007, pp. 211-229.
there are earlier studies on this possibility,28,29 that most 25. Martí-Vargas, J. R.; Serna-Ros, P.; Navarro-Gregori, J.; and
experimental standards26 are based on this method, and that Pallarés, L., “Bond of 13 mm Prestressing Steel Strands in Pretensioned
it has been proposed as a simple nondestructive assurance Concrete Members,” Engineering Structures, V. 41, 2012, pp. 403-412.
procedure by which quality bond can be monitored within 26. Martí-Vargas, J. R.; Arbeláez, C. A.; Serna-Ros, P.; and Castro-
Bugallo, C., “Reliability of Transfer Length Estimation from Strand End
precasting plants.11 Furthermore, several researchers have Slip,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 104, No. 4, July-Aug. 2007, pp. 487-494.
conducted experimental studies to obtain transfer length 27. Park, H., and Cho, J. Y., “Bond-Slip-Strain Relationship in Transfer
from the strand free-end slip in hollow-core slabs, beams, Zone of Pretensioned Concrete Elements,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 111,
piles, and prisms, while some authors11,30 have established No. 3, May-June 2014, pp. 503-513.
an allowable free-end slip as the strand-end slip, which 28. Guyon, Y., Pretensioned Concrete: Theoretical and Experimental
Study, Paris, France, 1953, 711 pp.
results in a transfer length equal to that computed by the 29. Thorsen, N., “Use of Large Tendons in Pretensioned Concrete,” ACI
ACI 318 provisions for transfer length. Despite all these Journal Proceedings, V. 53, No. 6, June 1956, pp. 649-659.
previous works, the authors have compared their data with 30. Wan, B.; Harries, K. A.; and Petrou, M. F., “Transfer Length of
only the Logan22 equation, which showed no agreement with Strands in Prestressed Concrete Piles,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 99,
No. 5, Sept.-Oct. 2002, pp. 577-585.
the good regression equation between transfer length and 31. Viula, D.; Lucio, V.; Pinho, G.; and Martí-Vargas, J. R., discussion
strand-end slip (Eq. (11a)) obtained by the authors. It seems of “Pull-out and Push-in Tests of Bonded Steel Strands,” Magazine of
that Logan22 considered a uniform bond stress distribution Concrete Research, V. 65, No. 18, 2013, pp. 1128-1131.

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 237

32. Martí-Vargas, J. R., and Hale, W. M., “Predicting Strand Transfer transfer (for example, as can be seen from Fig. 20 of the paper
Length in Pretensioned Concrete: Eurocode versus North American Practice,” and from References 26 and 32), the causes may come from
Journal of Bridge Engineering, ASCE, V. 18, No. 12, 2013, pp. 1270-1280.
33. Ichinose, T.; Kanayama, Y.; Inoue, Y.; and Bolander, J. E., “Size the variability of many factors such as material strengths,
Effect on Bond Strength of Deformed Bars,” Construction and Building surface conditions of strands, accuracy of measurement
Materials, V. 18, 2004, pp. 549-558. of prestressing force and slip, and time-dependant effect
34. García-Taengua, E.; Martí-Vargas, J. R.; and Serna-Ros, P., (that is, elapsed time after prestress transfer). All of these
“Statistical Approach to Effect of Factors Involved in Bond Performance
of Steel Fiber-Reinforced Concrete,” ACI Structural Journal, V. 108, No. 4, factors may partially affect the measured values of slip or
July-Aug. 2011, pp. 461-468. transfer length. Therefore, great care must be paid to reduce
35. Martí-Vargas, J. R.; Caro, L. A.; and Serna-Ros, P., “Size Effect on the variability in experiments. A comprehensive analysis of
Strand Bond and Concrete Strains at Prestress Transfer,” ACI Structural transfer lengths and slip values considering the variability
Journal, V. 111, No. 2, Mar.-Apr. 2014, pp. 419-429.
36. Martí-Vargas, J. R.; García-Taengua, E.; Caro, L. A.; and Serna- of test variables is another valuable subject that needs to be
Ros, P., “Measuring Specific Parameters in Pretensioned Concrete Members researched in the future.
Using a Single Testing Technique,” Measurement, V. 49, 2014, pp. 421-432. 4. Next, the discusser commented on the effects of concrete
37. Martí-Vargas, J. R.; Hale, W. M.; García-Taengua, E.; and Serna- cover on transfer length and bond. It seems that the discusser
Ros, P., “Slip Distribution Model along the Anchorage Length of
Prestressing Strands,” Engineering Structures, V. 59, 2014, pp. 674-685. doubts the effect of concrete cover on transfer length. The
discusser also indicated that contradictory results on bond
AUTHORS’ CLOSURE strength exist as the concrete cover increases.33-36 However,
The authors would like to thank the discusser for providing it can be clearly seen from Fig. 3 and Table 1 that the
good comments. The following are the appropriate responses measured transfer lengths from experiments decrease with
to those comments. an increase of concrete cover. This effect is again confirmed
1. First, the discusser commented on the references in the by the results of finite element analyses as shown in
paper. First of all, the authors would like to thank the discusser Table 3 and Fig. 16. It is obvious that the concrete cover
for the addition of more references relevant to the present plays a key role in transferring steel forces to concrete.38 It
paper. Those added references would be good resources for is well-known that shallow cover may cause splitting failure
readers as well as the authors. As for the recent reference in reinforced and prestressed concrete due to inadequate
of ACI 318-11,23 the provision for the transfer length is the bond capacity.38 As shown in Fig. 16, the rate of increase
same as the previous version of ACI 318.17 Therefore, it does of transfer length due to the increase of concrete cover may
not affect the content of the paper. decrease as the concrete cover increases further. This means
2. Second, the discusser commented on the determination that the effect of concrete cover may diminish if a sufficient
of slip values. The authors measured the strains of strand cover depth is secured, which may be far larger than usual
and concrete due to pretensioning, as shown in Fig. 4 in the cover depths. This is because it may reach sufficient bond
paper. The slip was determined, as the discusser pointed capacity after a certain required cover depth.
out, by integrating the differences between the change of 5. Finally, the discusser commented on the slip distribution
strand strain and the concrete strain.8 The authors would like along the transfer length and the end slip values, and
to clarify that the explanation in the paper was somewhat mentioned that the slip distribution data of the authors’
mixed with the determination of transfer length, which was study qualitatively agree well with the results of another
determined from the variation of concrete strains along study.37 The discusser also indicated that the end slip values
the member. obtained by the authors seem higher than in other studies.
3. Third, the discusser commented on the transfer length However, Fig. 20 clearly shows that the present study
in terms of end slip values, citing the authors’ statement that includes not only high values but also low values in end
“there are good correlations between the transfer lengths slip. It is generally known that the end slip values are greatly
and end slip values in pretensioned members and, hence, it affected by the design parameters of pretensioned members
may be possible to calculate transfer length from the end slip such as cover depth, concrete strength, and magnitude of
value.” The discusser also pointed out that previous studies prestressing forces. In the authors’ study, the cover depth
reported the value α (in Guyon’s theory) of 2 to 3 depending varies from a very low value to a high value. This may give
on the bond stress distribution (that is, constant or linear) a wide range of end slip values depending on cover depth.
along the transfer length. Intermediate values of α were Furthermore, the prestress magnitude in the authors’ study
also reported from the previous studies.8,26,31 The discusser ranges from a very low (0.40fpu) to a high value (0.75fpu),
suggested that the authors perform further analyses to obtain which may induce low as well as high slip values. The
the appropriate value of α from the authors’ experimental combination of all these design parameters may give a wide
data. In the authors’ opinion, it is very likely that the real range of slip values in pretensioned members. This may be
distribution of bond stress may be nonlinear, which is the reason why the slip values in the authors’ study range
different from the previous assumption of constant or linear from low to high values, as shown in Fig. 15 and 20.
bond stress distribution. Therefore, the authors plan to
further study this subject to clarify the real behavior (and REFERENCES
distribution) of bond stress and slip. As for the scatter of 38. Nilson, A. H.; Darwin, D.; and Dolan, C. W., Design of Concrete
the data on the end slip values that correspond to the same Structures, Chapter 5, 14th edition, McGraw-Hill Co. Inc., 2010, pp. 168-207.

238 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Disc. 111-S50/From the May-June 2014 ACI Structural Journal, p. 607

Flexural Testing of Reinforced Concrete Beams with Recycled Concrete Aggregates. Paper by Thomas H.-K.
Kang, Woosuk Kim, Yoon-Keun Kwak, and Sung-Gul Hong
Discussion by Bhupinder Singh
Associate Professor, Department of Civil Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee, Roorkee, India

The authors should be complimented for carrying out a 6. The beam specimens with 2-D10 tension reinforcement
thorough and a meticulous investigation of flexural behavior would in effect be doubly reinforced because of the presence
of reinforced concrete beams made with recycled concrete of 2-D10 hanger bars near the top face of the beam, which
aggregates (RCAs). The discusser invites the authors to will effectively act as compression reinforcement. Because
comment on the following issues: of the presence of this compression reinforcement, this
1. The replacement levels of the coarse RCAs used by beam is likely to show very large ductility compared to other
the authors are too closely spaced and, at the considered beams and, hence, its behavior would be an outlier.
replacement levels variations in mechanical and structural 7. In Fig. 7, the characteristic (or the measured) flexural
properties, are unlikely to manifest themselves distinctly. strength of the RCA beams have been compared with
2. Only one stand-alone specimen has been tested by the predictions of the ACI Code, which are based on factored
authors for each parameter under investigation. Toward material strengths. Such a comparison would be biased
ensuring repeatability of results, it is desirable that at least toward giving conservative flexural strength predictions for
two companion specimens should be tested and their results the RCA beams. If a suitable strength reduction factor is
compared before arriving at any conclusion. applied to the experimental results plotted in Fig. 7, then it
3. The authors have not mentioned in the paper how will be seen that many of them would fall below predictions
grading of their RCA particles compares with that of the of the ACI Code. It would be interesting to know how the
coarse natural aggregate (NA) particles. Were the RCA experimental results plotted in Fig. 7 would compare with
particles graded to confirm to a particular range given, for ACI Code predictions made using characteristic material
example, in any of the current design codes? Further, no strengths. In the backdrop of such an exercise, the authors
mention has been made in the paper of the source of the may like to revisit some of the conclusions in the paper.
waste concrete from which the RCA was derived. Was the
waste concrete obtained from a demolition project or was it AUTHORS’ CLOSURE
sourced from waste laboratory specimens? The authors would like to thank the discusser for the
4. Table 2 does not give information with respect to two interest in the paper and comments. Responses to the
important physical properties of RCA—namely, residual discusser’s comments are selectively provided, as the
mortar content and aggregate crushing value. The residual discusser suggested and as already explained in the paper.
mortar content controls water absorption of the RCA In response to Comment 3, the used RCA has a solid
particles and the aggregate crushing value is a good indicator volume percentage for shape determination of 58.3%,
of strength. The moisture state of the RCA particles used in exceeding the minimum value (55%) specified by Korean
the concrete mixtures was not mentioned in the paper. To Standard (KS F 2573; Korean Standard 2011), but slightly
maintain a nominally constant free water-cement ratio (w/c) lower than that (60.1%) of the used natural aggregate. The
across comparable concrete mixtures, one would expect the authors note that the RCA was obtained from a commercial
RCA particles to be used in the saturated surface-dry (SSD) company that is no longer in business. To the best of the
state. The authors are invited to clarify. authors’ knowledge, this company acquired the aggregates
5. The usual silica fume dosage in a concrete mixture is from demolition projects.
approximately 10% of the weight of cement. The dosage of In response to Comment 4, the authors agree that the
43% used by the authors is unusual. Such a dosage would residual mortar content affected the water absorption rate
severely impact concrete workability and require the use of of RCA. Though it was reported that “the larger water
high-range water reducer (HRWR) dosages. absorption rate of RCA affected the total water content of the

Fig. 8—Crushing tests of natural aggregate (first test = 18.6 kN [4.2 kip]; second test =
17.5 kN [3.9 kip]).

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 239

Fig. 9—Crushing tests of recycled concrete aggregate (first test = 16 kN [3.6 kip]; second
test = 16.1 kN [3.7 kip]).
concrete and its compressive strength,” the authors found compare the strengths of NA and RCA aggregates, as shown
that there was little correlation between the water absorption in Fig. 8 and 9, minimizing the eccentricity.
rate and the beam’s flexural strength. It is also confirmed that In response to Comment 5, the authors agree that the
all the aggregates were generally in the SSD moisture state. mixture proportion is not practical and a large amount of
This was done by spraying aggregates with water at 9 am, HRWR was used. However, the authors can assure that the
laying out to dry in indoor spaces until 6 pm, and packing it reported slump values are correct and that the mechanical
in a bag to use the next day. test results were used only for assessment of mechanical
The authors agree that aggregate strength does become behavior. Finally, in reference to Comment 7, the discusser
important in high-strength concrete, although the strength seemed to mistakenly interpret the graph. As indicated in
of an aggregate is rarely tested; hence, the authors the paper, the measured material properties of the steel and
had reported in Table 2 that “the strength of RCA is concrete were used to calculate the nominal flexural strength
approximately 90% of natural coarse aggregate’s strength” (not specified properties).
(not significant). Aggregate compressive strengths typically
vary from 65 to 270 MPa (9.4 to 39.2 ksi), which depends REFERENCES
on the aggregate type. Because it is hard to measure the KS F 2573, 2011, “Recycled Aggregate for Concrete,” Korean Industrial
crushed aggregate cross-sectional area, the authors tried to Standards, Seoul, Korea.

240 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

In 2014, the individuals listed on these pages served as technical reviewers of papers offered for publication
in ACI periodicals. A special “thank you” to them for their voluntary assistance in helping ACI maintain
the high quality of its publication program.

£aźniewska-Piekarczyk, Beata Achillopoulou, Dimitra

Silesian University of Technology Democritus University of Thrace
Gliwice, Poland Xanthi, Greece
Aamidala, Hari Shankar Acun, Bora
Parsons Brinckerhoff University of Houston
Herndon, VA Houston, TX
Abaza, Osama Adamczewski, Grzegorz
University of Alaska Anchorage Warsaw University of Technology
Anchorage, AK Warsaw, Poland
Abbas, Abdelgadir Adhikary, Bimal
Carleton University Austin, TX
Ottawa, ON, Canada Afif, Rahma
Abbas, Safeer Damascus University
Western University Damascus, Syrian Arab Republic
London, ON, Canada Aggelis, Dimitrios
Abbasnia, Reza University of Ioannina
University of Science and Technology Ioannina, Greece
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran Agustiningtyas, Rudi
Abdalla, Hany Ministry of Public Works
College of Technological Studies Bandung, Indonesia
Shuwaikh, Kuwait Ahmad, Shamsad
Abdelaziz, Gamal King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals
Benha University Dhahran, Saudi Arabia
Cairo, Egypt Ahmadi, Jamal
Abdelaziz, Magdy University of Science of Technology
Fayoum, Egypt Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Abdel-Fattah, Hisham Ahmed, Ehab
University of Sharjah University of Sherbrooke
Sharjah, United Arab Emirates Sherbrooke, QC, Canada
Abdelgader, Hakim Ahmed, Zeyad
Tripoli University Michigan Technological University
Tripoli, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Houghton, MI
Abdelrahman, Amr Aire, Carlos
Heliopolis, Egypt National Autonomous University of Mexico
Abdulla, Nwzad Mexico, DF, Mexico
University of Salahaddin Akakin, Tumer
Erbil, Iraq Turkish Ready Mixed Concrete Association
Abeyruwan, Helarisi Istanbul, Turkey
University of Peradeniya Akalin, Ozlem
Peradeniya, Sri Lanka Plustechno Ltd
Abouhussien, Ahmed Istanbul, Turkey
Memorial University of Newfoundland Akbari, Reza
St. John’s, NL, Canada University of Tehran
Aboutaha, Riyad Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Syracuse University Akbarnezhad, Ali
Syracuse, NY The University of New South Wales
Abou-Zeid, Mohamed Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
American University in Cairo Akcaoglu, Tulin
Cairo, Egypt Eastern Mediterranean University
Abruzzo, John Magusa, Turkey
Thornton Tomasetti Akcay, Burcu
San Francisco, CA Kocaeli University
Abu Yosef, Ali Kocaeli, Turkey
WDP and Associates Akınay, Yuksel
Austin, TX Iron and Steel Institution/Material Researcher Center
Karbuk, Turkey

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 241

Akiyama, Mitsuyoshi Al-Mufti, Rafal
Waseda University Surrey University
Tokyo, Japan Guildford, UK
Al-alaily, Hossam Almuhsin, Bayrak
Memorial University of Newfoundland University of Technology
St. John’s, NL, Canada Karrada, Baghdad, Iraq
Alam, A. K. M. Jahangir Alsiwat, Jaber
Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET) Saudi Consulting Services
Dhaka, Bangladesh Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Alam, M. Shahria Altunişik, Ahmet Can
The University of British Columbia Karadeniz Technical University
Kelowna, BC, Canada Trabzon, Turkey
Alam, Mahbub Aly, Aly Mousaad
Stamford University Bangladesh Louisiana State University
Dhaka, Bangladesh Baton Rouge, LA
Al-Attar, Tareq Amani Dashlejeh, Asghar
University of Technology Tarbiat Modares University
Baghdad, Iraq Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Al-Azzawi, Adel Amani Dashlejeh, Jafar
Nahrain University Bauhaus University of Weimar
Baghdad, Iraq Weimar, Germany
Albahttiti, Mohammed Amir, Sana
Kansas State University Delft University of Technology
Manhattan, KS Delft, South Holland, the Netherlands
Albuquerque, Albéria Andersson, Ronny
Federal Center of Technological Education of Mato Grosso Hollviken, Sweden
Cuiabá, Mato Grosso, Brazil Andrade, Jairo
Alcocer, Sergio Chatolic University of Rio Grande do Sul
Institute of Engineering, UNAM Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil
Mexico City, DF, Mexico Andriolo, Francisco
Aldea, Corina-Maria Andriolo Ito Engenharia S/C Ltda
St. Catharines, ON, Canada São Carlos, São Paulo, Brazil
Alexander, Mark Angel, Nelson
University of Cape Town Universidad de los Andes
Cape Town, South Africa Bogotá, Cundinamarca, Colombia
Al-Hadithi, Abdulkader Ansari, Abdul Aziz
University of Anbar Quaid-e-Awam Engineering University
Ramadi, Al-anbar, Iraq Nawabshah, Sindh, Pakistan
Al-Harthy, Ali Aoki, Yukari
Sultan Qaboos University University of Technology Sydney
Al-Khaudh, Oman Ultimo, New South Wales, Australia
Ali, Samia Aragón, Sergio
University of Engineering and Technology, Lahore Holcim (Costa Rica)
Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan San Rafael, Alajuela, Costa Rica
Al-Karkhi, Hassan Araujo, Daniel
Al-Mustansiriya University College of Engineering Federal University of Goiás
Baghdad, Iraq Goiania, Brazil
Alkhairi, Fadi Aravinthan, Thiru
Arabtech Jardaneh University of Southern Queensland
Amman, Jordan Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia
Allahdadi, Hamidreza Arisoy, Bengi
Bangalore, India Ege University
Allena, Srinivas Izmir, Turkey
Washington State University Tri-Cities Aristizabal-Ochoa, Jose
Richland, WA National University
Almaral, Jorge Medellin, Antioquia, Colombia
Universidad Autónoma de Sinaloa Arockiasamy, Madasamy
Los Mochis, Sinaloa, Mexico Florida Atlantic University
Almeida, Joao Boca Raton, FL
Lisbon, Portugal

242 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Asaad, Diler Bae, Sungjin
Gaziantep University Bechtel Corporation
Gaziantep, Turkey Frederick, MD
Asamoto, Shingo Bagge, Niklas
Saitama University Luleå University of Technology
Saitama, Saitama, Japan Luleå, Sweden
Ashrafy, Mohammad Bai, Shaoliang
Islamic Azad University – Arak Branch Chongqing University
Kermanshah, Kermanshah, Islamic Republic of Iran Chonqqing, China
Aslani, Farhad Bai, Yongtao
University of Technology Sydney Kyoto University
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia Kyoto, Japan
Assaad, Joseph Balakumaran, Soundar
Notre Dame University Virginia Center for Transportation Innovation and Research
Beirut, Lebanon Charlottesville, VA
Atamturktur, Sez Balilaj, Mentor
Clemson University Polytechnic University of Tirana
Clemson, SC Tirana, Albania
Athanasopoulou, Adamantia Balouch, Sana
Metropolitan College University of Dundee
Xalandri, Attiki, Greece Dundee, UK
Avendano, Alejandro Banibayat, Pouya
Technological University of Panama ARUP
Doral, FL New York, NY
Aviram, Ady Banić, Davor
Simpson Gumpertz & Heger, Inc. Civil Engineering Institute of Croatia
San Francisco, CA Zagreb, Croatia
Awida, Tarek Baran, Eray
KEO International Consultants Middle East Technical University
Kuwait Ankara, Turkey
Awwad, Elie Barboza, Aline
Lebanese University, Branch II Universidade Federal de Alagoas
Mount Lebanon, Lebanon Maceio, Alagoas, Brazil
Ayano, Toshiki Barišić, Ivana
Okayama University Osijek, Croatia
Okayama, Japan Barragan, Bryan
Aydin, Abdulkadir Cuneyt BASF Construction Chemicals
Ataturk University Treviso, Treviso, Italy
Erzurum, Turkey Barroso de Aguiar, Jose
Aydin, Ertug University of Minho
European University of Lefke Guimaraes, Portugal
Nicosia, Turkey Bartos, Peter
Aykac, Sabahattin University of Paisley
Gazi University Paisley, UK
Ankara, Turkey Basava, Vamsi
Azad, Abul Malla Reddy Engineering College
King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India
Dhahran, Saudi Arabia Bashandy, Alaa
Azari, Hoda Menoufiya University
The University of Texas at El Paso Shibin El-Kom, Menoufiya, Egypt
El Paso, TX Batson, Gordon
Aziz, Omar Clarkson University
University of Salahaddin Potsdam, NY
Erbil, Iraq Baty, James
Babafemi, Adewumi Concrete Foundations Assoc
Obafemi Awolowo University Mount Vernon, IA
Ile-ife, Osun, Nigeria Bayraktar, Alemdar
Bacinskas, Darius Trabzon, Turkey
Vilnius Gediminas Technical University
Vilnius, Lithuania

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 243

Bayuaji, Ridho Bilek, Vlastimil
Institut Teknologi epuluh Nopember ZPSV a.s.
Surabaya, East Java, Indonesia Brno, Czech Republic
Bebawy, Mena Bilir, Turhan
Lawrence Technological Univeristy Bülent Ecevit University
Southfield, MI Zonguldak, Turkey
Becq-Giraudon, Emilie Billah, Abu Hena
Chicago Department of Transportation The University of British Columbia
Chicago, IL Kelowna, BC, Canada
Beddar, Miloud Bimschas, Martin
M’sila University Regensdorf, Switzerland
M’sila, Algeria Binici, Baris
Bediako, Mark Middle East Technical University
CSIR—Building and Road Research Institute Ankara, Turkey
Kumasi, Ashanti, Ghana Birkle, Gerd
Bedirhanoglu, Idris Stantec Consulting Ltd.
Dicle University Calgary, AB, Canada
Diyarbakir, Turkey Bisby, Luke
Beglarigale, Ahsanollah University of Edinburgh
Dokuz Eylul University Edinburgh, UK
Izmir, Izmir, Turkey Bisschop, Jan
Behnam, Hamdolah University of Oslo
Hong Kong University of Science and Technology Oslo, Norway
Hong Kong, China Bobko, Christopher
Behnoud, Ali North Carolina State University
Iran University of Science and Tech Raleigh, NC
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran Bolhassani, Mohammad
Belagraa, Larbi Drexel University
Bordj Bou Arreridj, University Center Philadelphia, PA
Bordj Bou Arreridj, Algeria Bonacci, John
Belkowitz, Jon Karins Engineering Group
Stevens Institute of Technology Sarasota, FL
Freehold, NJ Bondar, Dali
Belleri, Andrea Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
University of Bergamo Bondy, Kenneth
Dalmine, Italy Consulting Structural Engineer
Benliang, Liang West Hills, CA
Shanghai, China Bonetti, Rodolfo
Bennett, Richard Pontificia Universidad Católica Madre y Maestra
The University of Tennessee Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
Knoxville, TN Borges, Paulo
Bernard, Erik Stefan Federal Centre for Technological Education of Minas Gerais
TSE P/L Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil
Penrith, Australia Bouras, Rachid
Berry, Michael UMMTO
Montana State University Tiziouzou, Algeria
Bozeman, MT Bournas, Dionysios
Beygi, Morteza University of Nottingham
Mazandaran University Nottingham, UK
Babol - Mazandaran, Islamic Republic of Iran Bousias, Stathis
Bhangal, Malkit University of Patras
Thapar University Patras, Greece
Patiala, Punjab, India Bradberry, Timothy
Bharati, Raj TXDot Bridge Division
National Institute of Technology Calicut Austin, TX
Calicut, Kerala, India Braestrup, Mikael
Bhattacharjee, Bishwajit Ramboll Hannemann and Hojlund A/S
Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi Virum, Denmark
New Delhi, India Braimah, Abass
Carleton University
Ottawa, ON, Canada

244 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Brand, Alexander Carroll, Chris
University of Illinois University of Louisiana at Lafayette
Urbana, IL Lafayette, LA
Breña, Sergio Carvalho, Alessandra
University of Massachusetts Pontifical Catholic University of Goiás
Amherst, MA Goiânia, Goiás, Brazil
Brewe, Jared Castles, Bryan
CTLGroup Western Technologies Inc.
Skokie, IL Phoenix, AZ
Broujerdian, Vahid Castro, Javier
Iran University of Science and Technology Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran Santiago, Chile
Brown, Michael Catoia, Bruna
Virginia Transportation Research Council Federal University of São Carlos
Charlottesville, VA São Carlos, São Paulo, Brazil
Brown, Simon Cattaneo, Sara
Read Jones Christoffersen Ltd. Politecnico di Milano
Calgary, AB, Canada Milan, Italy
Bu, Wensheng Cavalaro, Sergio Henrique
Wardrop Engineering Inc. Universidad Politécnica de Cataluña
Sudbury, ON, Canada Barcelona, Spain
Burak, Burcu Çavuşoğlu, İbrahim
Orta Dogu Teknik Universitesi Gümüşhane University
Ankara, Turkey Gümüşhane, Turkey
Burris, Lisa Cervenka, Vladimir
University of Texas at Austin Cervenka Consulting
Austin, TX Petriny, Czech Republic
Byard, Benjamin Cetisli, Fatih
University of Tennessee at Chattanooga Pamukkale University
Chattanooga, TN Denizli, Turkey
Bzeni, Dallshad Chaallal, Omar
University of Salahaddin Ecole de Technologie Superiere
Erbil, Iraq Verdun, QC, Canada
Cai-Jun, Shi Chai, Hwa Kian
Hunan University Tobishima Corporation
Changsha, Hunan, China Noda, Chiba, Japan
Calixto, José Chakraborty, Arun
UFMG Bengal Engineering And Science University
Belo Horizonte, Brazil Howrah, West Bengal, India
Camero, Hugo Chang, Ta-Peng
Construdiseños Ingenieros Arquitectos S.A.S. NTUST
Bogota D.C., Colombia Taipei, Taiwan, China
Campione, Giuseppe Chao, Shih-ho
Universita Palermo University of Texas at Arlington
Palermo, Italy Arlington, TX
Cano Barrita, Prisciliano Chaudhary, Sandeep
Instituto Politécnico Nacional/CIIDIR Unidad Oaxaca Malaviya National Institute of Technology Jaipur
Oaxaca, Mexico Jaipur, Rajasthan, India
Canpolat, Fethullah Chaunsali, Piyush
Yildiz Technical University University of Illinois
Istanbul, Turkey Urbana, IL
Cao, Weiqun Chen, Chun-Tao
Qingdao, China National Taiwan University of Science and Technology
Capozucca, Roberto Taipei, Taiwan, China
Ancona, Italy Chen, Hua-Peng
Carino, Nicholas The University of Greenwich
Chagrin Falls, OH Chatham, UK
Carreira, Domingo Chen, Qi
Chicago, IL Boral Materials Technology
San Antonio, TX

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 245

Chen, Shiming Chu Thi, Binh
Tongji University Hanoi Architectural University
Shanghai, China Hanoi, Vietnam
Chen, Wei Chung, Deborah
Wuhan University of Technology University at Buffalo, the State University of New York
Wuhan, Hubei, China Buffalo, NY
Chen, Xia Chung, Jae
Changjiang River Scientific Research Institute University of Florida
Wuhan, China Gainesville, FL
Cheng, Min-Yuan Chung, Lan
National Taiwan University of Science and Technology Dankook University
Taipei, Taiwan, China Seoul, Republic of Korea
Chi, Maochieh Cintra, Danielli
Wufeng University Vitória, Espírito Santo, Brazil
Chiayi County, Taiwan, China Claisse, Peter
Chiang, Chih-Hung Coventry University
Chaoyang University of Technology Coventry, UK
Wufong, Taichung, Taiwan, China Cleland, Ned
Chindaprasirt, Prinya Blue Ridge Design Inc.
Khon Kaen University Winchester, VA
Khon Kaen, Thailand Climent, Miguel
Cho, Jae-Yeol University of Alacant
Seoul National University Alacant, Spain
Seoul, Republic of Korea Coelho, Jano
Cho, Soon-Ho Altoqi Informatica
Gwangju University Florianopolis, Santa Catarina, Brazil
Gwangju, Republic of Korea Colombo, Matteo
Choi, Chang-Sik Politecnico di Milano
Hnayang University Lecco, Italy
Seoul, Republic of Korea Cordova, Carlos
Choi, Eunsoo La Paz, Bolivia
Hongik University Costa, Ricardo
Seoul, Republic of Korea University of Coimbra
Choi, Hyun-Ki Coimbra, Portugal
Hanyang University Crespi, Pietro
Seoul, Republic of Korea Politecnico of Milan
Choi, Kyoung-Kyu Milano, Italy
Soongsil University Criswell, Marvin
Seoul, Republic of Korea Colorado State University
Choi, Sejin Fort Collins, CO
University of California, Berkeley Cueto, Jorge
Berkeley, CA Universidad de La Salle
Chompreda, Praveen Bogota, Colombia
Mahidol University Cumming, Neil
Nakornpathom, Thailand Levelton Engineering Ltd
Choong, Kokkeong Richmond, BC, Canada
Universiti Sains Malaysia D’agata, Giuseppe
Pulau Pinang, Seberang Perai Selatan, Malaysia University of Catania
Chorzepa, Migeum Catania, Italy
Park Ridge, IL d’Andréa, Renata
Chowdhury, Sharmin Getafe, Madrid, Spain
Bogazici University Dang, Canh
Istanbul, Turkey University of Arkansas
Chowdhury, Subrato Fayetteville, AR
Ultra Tech Cement LTD D’Arcy, Thomas
Mumbai, Maharashtra, India Consulting Engineers Group
Christen, Robert San Antonio, TX
American Engineering Testing Inc. Darwin, David
Port Charlotte, FL University of Kansas
Lawrence, KS

246 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Das, Sreekanta Diaz Loya, Eleazar
University of Windsor Louisiana Tech University
Windsor, ON, Canada Ruston, LA
Das Adhikary, Satadru Ding, Yining
National University of Singapore Dalian, China
Singapore Diniz, Sofia Maria
De Brito, Jorge Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais
IST / TUL Be lo Horizonte, Brazil
Lisbon, Portugal Do, Jeongyun
De Korte, Ariën Kunsan National University
University of Twente Kunsan, Jeonbuk, Republic of Korea
Enschede, the Netherlands Dogan, Unal
De Rooij, Mario Istanbul Technical University
TNO Istanbul, Turkey
Delft, the Netherlands Dolan, Charles
De Schutter, Geert University of Wyoming
Ghent University Laramie, WY
Ghent, Belgium Dongell, Jonathan
Deb, Arghya Pebble Technologies
Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur Scottsdale, AZ
Kharagpur, West Bengal, India Dontchev, Dimitar
Decker, Curtis University of Chemical Technology and Metallurgy
U.S. Military Academy Sofia, Bulgaria
West Point, NY Dotreppe, Jean-Claude
Degtyarev, Vitaliy Université of Liege-Mehanique Genie Civil
Columbia, SC Liege, Belgium
Delalibera, Rodrigo Du, Hongjian
University of São Paulo National University of Singapore
São Carlos, São Paulo, Brazil Singapore
Demir, Serhat Du, Lianxiang
Blacksea Technical Univesity The University of Alabama at Birmingham
Trabzon, Turkey Birmingham, AL
Den Uijl, Joop Du, Jinsheng
Delft University of Technology Beijing Jiao Tong University
Delft, the Netherlands Beijing, China
Deng, Mingke Du, Yingang
Xi’an University of Architecture and Technology Anglia Ruskin University, UK
Xi’an, Shaanxi, China Chelmsford, UK
Deng, Yaohua Dutta, Anjan
Iowa State University Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati
Ames, IA Guwahati, Assam, India
Devries, Richard Ebead, Usama
Milwaukee School of Engineering Qatar University
Milwaukee, WI Doha, Qatar
Dhinakaran, G. Eid, Rami
Sastra University University of Sherbrooke
Thanjavur, India Sherbrooke, QC, Canada
Dhonde, Hemant El Meski, Fatima
University of Houston American University of Beirut
Houston, TX Beirut, Lebanon
Di Ludovico, Marco El Ragaby, Amr
University of Naples Federico II University of Manitoba
Naples, Italy Winnipeg, MB, Canada
Diao, Bo El Sayed, Mohamed
Beihang University University of Windsor
Beijing, China Windsor, ON, Canada
Dias, W. P. S. Elamin, Anwar
University of Moratuwa University of Nyala
Moratuwa, Sri Lanka Nyala, Sudan

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 247

Elbatanouny, Mohamed Evangelista, Luís
University of South Carolina Instituto Superior de Engenharia de Lisboa
Columbia, SC Lisbon, Portugal
El-Dash, Karim Faleschini, Flora
College of Technological Studies University of Padova
Kuwait Padova, Italy
El-Dieb, Amr Fantilli, Alessandro
Ain Shams University Politecnico di Torino
Abbasia, Cairo, Egypt Torino, Italy
El-Hawary, Moetaz Fardis, Michael
Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research Patras, Greece
Safat, Kuwait Farghaly, Ahmed
El-Maaddawy, Tamer University of Sherbrooke
United Arab Emirates University Sherbrooke, QC, Canada
Al-Ain, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates Faria, Duarte
El-Metwally, Salah Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia
University of Hawaii at Manoa Caparica-Lisbon, Portugal
Honolulu, HI Farrokhi, Farhang
El-Refaie, Sameh Zanjan, Islamic Republic of Iran
El-Gama City, Mataria, Cairo, Egypt Farrow, William
El-Salakawy, Ehab Lebanon, NJ
University of Manitoba Farzam, Masood
Winnipeg, MB, Canada Tabriz, Islamic Republic of Iran
El-Sayed, Ahmed Fathi, Hamoon
University of Sherbrooke Sanandaj Branch, Islamic Azad University
Sherbrooke, QC, Canada Sanandaj, Kurdistan, Islamic Republic of Iran
Elfgren, Lennart Feldman, Lisa
Luleå University of Technology University of Saskatchewan
Luleå, Sweden Saskatoon, SK, Canada
Elhashmy, Awad Felekoglu, Burak
Cairo, Egypt Dokuz Eylul University
Elkady, Hala Izmir, Turkey
NRC Fernández Montes, David
Giza, Egypt Madrid, Spain
Elnady, Mohamed Fernández Ruiz, Miguel
Mansoura University Ecole Polytechnique Federale De Lausanne
Vancouver, BC, Canada Lausanne, Vaud, Switzerland
Elmenshawi, Abdelsamie Ferrara, Liberato
University of Calgary Politecnico di Milano
Calgary, AB, Canada Milan, Italy
Elsayed, Tarek Ferrier, E.
Cairo, Egypt Université Lyon 1
Emamy Farvashany, Firooz Villerubanne, France
Perthpolis Pty Ltd Folino, Paula
Perth, Western Australia, Australia University of Buenos Aires
Erdem, T. Buenos Aires, Argentina
Izmir Institute of Technology Foraboschi, Paolo
Izmir, Turkey Universita IUAV di Venezia
Ergün, Ali Venice, Italy
Afyonkarahisar, Turkey Fouad, Fouad
Esmaeily, Asad University of Alabama at Birmingham
Kansas State University Birmingham, AL
Manhattan, KS Fradua, Martin
Esmaili, Omid Feld, Kaminetzky & Cohen, P.C.
University of California, Irvine Jericho, NY
Irvine, CA Francüois, Buyle-Bodin
Esperanza, Menendez University of Lille
IETCC-CSIC Villeneuve d’Ascq, France
Madrid, Spain Freyne, Seamus
Etman, Emad Manhattan College
El-Mahalla El-Kobra, Egypt Riverdale, NY

248 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Fuchs, Werner Giaccio, Craig
University of Stuttgart AECOM
Stuttgart, Germany Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Fuentes, Jose Maria Girgin, Canan
Polytechnic University of Madrid Yildiz Technical University
Madrid, Spain Istanbul, Turkey
Furlong, Richard Goel, Rajeev
Austin, TX CSIR-Central Road Research Institute
Gabrijel, Ivan Delhi, India
University of Zagreb Gökçe, H. Süleyman
Zagreb, Croatia Ege University
Gajdosova, Katarina Izmir, Turkey
Bratislava, Slovakia Gongxun, Wang
Galati, Nestore Hunan University of Science and Technology
Structural Group Inc. Xiangtan, China
Elkridge, MD Gonzales Garcia, Luis Alberto
Gallegos Mejia, Luis Lagging SA
Fundacion Padre Arrupe de El Salvador Lima, Peru
Soyapango, San Salvador, El Salvador González, Javier
Gamble, William University of Basque Country
University of Illinois Bilbao, Basque Country, Spain
Urbana, IL González-Valle, Enrique
Gao, Xiangling Madrid, Spain
Tongji University Goudarzi, Nabi
Shanghai, China Edmonton, AB, Canada
Garber, David Grandić, Davor
Florida International University University of Rijeka
Miami, FL Rijeka, Croatia
Garcez, Estela Gribniak, Viktor
Universidade Federal de Pelotas Vilnius Gediminas Technical University
Pelotas, RS, Brazil Vilnius, Lithuania
Garcia-Taengua, Emilio Gu, Xiang-Lin
Queen’s University of Belfast Tongji University
Belfast, UK Shanghai, China
Gedik, Yasar Guadagnini, Maurizio
Istanbul Technical University The University of Sheffield
Istanbul, Turkey Sheffield, UK
Gesoglu, Mehmet Guan, Garfield
Gaziantep University Cambridge, UK
Gaziantep, Turkey Guimaraes, Giuseppe
Gettu, Ravindra Pontificia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro
Indian Institute of Technology Madras Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Chennai, India Gulec, Cevdet
Ghafari, Nima Thornton Tomasetti, Inc.
Laval University Los Angeles, CA
Quebec, QC, Canada Güneyisi, Erhan
Ghali, Amin Gaziantep University
University of Calgary Gaziantep, Turkey
Calgary, AB, Canada Guo, Honglei
Ghanem, Hassan Wuhan Polytechnic University
Texas A&M University Wu Han City, Hu bei Province, China
College Station, TX Guo, Liping
Ghasemzadeh, Farnam Southeast University
North Carolina State University Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, China
Raleigh, NC Guo, Zixiong
Ghezal, Aïcha Huaqiao University
Ecole de Technologie de Montreal Quanzhou, Fujian, China
Montreal, QC, Canada Gupta, Ajay
Ghoddousi, Parviz M.B.M. Engineering College
Iran University of Science and Technology Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 249

Gupta, Rishi Hassan, Wael
Vancouver, BC, Canada University of California, Berkeley
Gupta, Supratic Berkeley, CA
Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi Hassani, Abolfazl
New Delhi, India Tarbiat Modares University
Haddad, Rami Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Jordan University of Science and Technology He, Zhiqi
Irbid, Jordan Southeast University
Haddadin, Laith Nanjing, Jiangsu, China
United Nations Heinzmann, Daniel
New York, NY Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts
Hadje-Ghaffari, Hossain Horw, Switzerland
John A. Martin & Assoc. Helal, Yasser
Los Angeles, CA University of Sheffield
Hagenberger, Michael Sheffield, UK
Ohio State University Helmy, Huda
Columbus, OH Applied Science International
Haggag, Hesham Durham, NC
Cairo, Egypt Hemalatha, T.
Hamilton, Trey CSIR-Structural Engineering Research Centre
University of Florida Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
Gainesville, FL Henry, Richard
Hammood, Oday University of Auckland
University Technology Malaysia Auckland, New Zealand
Skudai, Johor Buhro, Malaysia Herrera, Angel
Han, Dongyeop Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico
University of Texas at Austin Hindi, Riyadh
Austin, TX Saint Louis University
Harajli, Mohamed St. Louis, MO
American University of Beirut Ho, Johnny
Beirut, Lebanon The University of Hong Kong
Harbec, David Hong Kong, China
Université de Sherbrooke Hochstein, Daniel
Sherbrooke, QC, Canada Manhattan College
Hariri-Ardebili, Mohammad Amin Riverdale, NY
University of Colorado Hoehler, Matthew
Boulder, CO Encinitas, CA
Harries, Kent Hoff, George
University of Pittsburgh Hoff Consulting Inc.
Pittsburgh, PA Clinton, MS
Harris, Devin Holschemacher, Klaus
University of Virginia HTWK Leipzig
Charlottesville, VA Leipzig, Germany
Harris, G. Terry Hong, Sung-Gul
Green Cove Springs, FL Seoul National University
Hasan, Sahar Seoul, Republic of Korea
Higher Institute for Engineering and Technology Hosny, Amr
Alexandria, Egypt North Carolina State University
Hashemi, Shervin Raleigh, NC
Seoul National University Hossain, Mustaque
Seoul, Republic of Korea Kansas State University
Hasnat, Ariful Manhattan, KS
University of Asia Pacific Hoult, Neil
Dhaka, Bangladesh Toronto, ON, Canada
Hassan, Assem Hrynyk, Trevor
Toronto, ON, Canada University of Texas at Austin
Hassan, Mohamed Austin, TX
University of Sherbrooke Hu, Jiong
Sherbrooke, QC, Canada Texas State University
San Marcos, TX

250 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Hu, Nan Issa, Mohsen
Tsinghua University University of Illinois at Chicago
Beijing, China Chicago, IL
Huang, Yishuo Izquierdo-Encarnación, Jose
Chaoyang University of Technology Porticus
Wufeng, Taichung, Taiwan, China San Juan, Puerto Rico
Huang, Zhaohui Jaari, Asaad
Brunel University Dera, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
London, UK Jain, Mohit
Huang, Chang-Wei Nirma University
Chung Yuan Christian University Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India
Chung Li, Taiwan, China Jain, Shashank
Huang, Chung-Ho Delhi Technological University (DTU)
Dahan Institute of Technology New Delhi, India
Hualien, Taiwan, China Jalal, Mostafa
Huang, Jianwei PWUT
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Edwardsville, IL Jan, Song
Huang, Xiaobao Bechtel Corp.
GM-WFG/GM-N American Project Center Houston, TX
Warren, MI Jang, Seung Yup
Huo, Jingsi Korea Railroad Research Institute
Hunan University Uiwang, Gyongggi-do, Republic of Korea
Changsha, Hunan, China Jansen, Daniel
Husain, Mohamed California Polytechnic State University
Zagazig University San Luis Obispo, CA
Zagazig, Egypt Jawaheri Zadeh, Hany
Husem, Metin Miami, FL
Karadeniz Technical University Jayapalan, Amal
Trabzon, Turkey Exponent Failure Analysis Associates
Huynh, Minh Phuoc Menlo Park, CA
Ho Chi Minh City University Transport Jeng, Chyuan-Hwan
Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam National Chi Nan University-Taiwan
Ibell, Tim Puli/Nantou, Taiwan, China
University of Bath Jiang, Jiabiao
Bath, UK W R Grace (Singapore) Pte Ltd
Ibrahim, Amer Singapore
Baquba, Iraq Johnson, Gaur
Ichinose, Toshikatsu University of Hawaii
Nagoya Institute of Technology Honolulu, HI
Nagoya, Japan Jozić, Dražan
Ikponmwosa, Efe Split, Croatia
University of Lagos Kaklauskas, Gintaris
Akoka, Lagos, Nigeria Vilnius Gediminas Technical University
Ince, Ragip Vilnius, Lithuania
Firat University Engineering Faculty Kan, Yu-Cheng
Elazig, Turkey Chaoyang University of Technology
Ipek, Süleyman Taichung County, Taiwan, China
Gaziantep University Kanagaraj, Ramadevi
Gaziantep, Turkey Kumaraguru College of Technology
Irassar, Edgardo Coimbatore, Tamilnadu, India
National University of Central Buenos Aires Kanakubo, Toshiyuki
Olavarria, Buenos Aires, Argentina University of Tsukuba
Islam, Md. Tsukuba, Japan
Chittagong University of Engineering & Technology (CUET) Kandasami, Siva
Chittagong, Bangladesh Bristol, UK
Issa, Mohamed Kang, Thomas
National Center for Housing and Building Resarch Seoul National University
Giza, Egypt Seoul, Republic of Korea

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 251

Kankam, Charles Klein, Gary
Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc.
Kumasi, Ghana Northbrook, IL
Kansara, Kunal Klemczak, Barbara
Mouchel Infrastructure Services Silesian Technical University
Bristol, UK Gliwice, Poland
Kantarao, Velidandi Ko, Lesley Suz-Chung
Central Road Research Institute Holcim Group Support Ltd.
New Delhi, India Holderbank, AG, Switzerland
Karayannis, Christos Koehler, Eric
Democritus University of Thrace University of Texas at Austin
Xanthi, Greece Austin, TX
Karbasi Arani, Kamyar Koenders, Eddy A. B.
University of Naples Federico II Delft University of Technology
Napoli, Campagna, Italy Delft, the Netherlands
Kawamura, Mitsunori Konsta-Gdoutos, Maria
Kanazawa, Ishikawa, Japan Northwestern University
Kazemi, Mohammad Evanston, IL
Sharif University of Technology Kotsovos, Gerasimos
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran National Technical University of Athens
Kazemi, Sadegh Athens, Greece
University of Alberta Kotsovos, Michael
Edmonton, AB, Canada Athens, Greece
Kenai, Said Kreger, Michael
Université de Blida Purdue University
Blida, Algeria West Lafayette, IN
Khan, Mohammad Książek, Mariusz
King Saud University Wrocław University of Technology
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia Wroclaw, Poland
Khan, Sadaqat Kumar, Pardeep
Universiti Teknologi Petronas University of California, Berkeley
Tronoh, Perak, Malaysia Berkeley, CA
Khuntia, Madh Kumar, Rakesh
Dukane Precast Inc. Central Road Research Institute
Naperville, IL Delhi, India
Kianoush, M. Reza Kumaravel, S.
Ryerson University Annamalai University
Toronto, ON, Canada Cuddalore, Tamilnadu, India
Kim, Jang Hoon Kupwade-Patil, Kunal
Ajou University Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Suwon, Republic of Korea Cambridge, MA
Kim, Sang-Woo Kurtis, Kimberly
Kongju National University Georgia Institute of Technology
Cheonan, Chungnam, Republic of Korea Atlanta, GA
Kim, Woo Kusbiantoro, Andri
Chonnam National University Universiti Malaysia Pahang
Kwangju, Republic of Korea Gambang, Pahang, Malaysia
Kim, Yail Jimmy Kuyucular, Adnan
University of Colorado Denver Pamukkale University
Denver, CO Kinikli-Denizli, Turkey
Kirgiz, Mehmet Kwan, Albert
Hacettepe University The University of Hong Kong
Ankara, Turkey Hong Kong, China
Kishen, Chandra Lai, James
Indian Institute of Science La Cañada, CA
Bangalore, Karnataka, India Lai, Jianzhong
Kishi, Norimitsu Nanjing University of Science and Technology
Muroran Institute of Technology Nanjing, Jiangsu, China
Muroran, Japan Laldji, Said
Université de Sherbrooke
Sherbrooke, QC, Canada

252 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Lam, Eddie Li, Fumin
The Hong Kong Polytechnic Universiy China University of Mining and Technology
Hong Kong, China Xuzhou, Jiangsu, China
Larbi, Kacimi Li, Long-yuan
University of Sciences and Technology of Oran University of Plymouth
Oran, Algeria Plymouth, UK
Laskar, Aminul Li, Wei
National Institute of Technology Wenzhou University
Silchar, Assam, India Wenzhou, Zhejiang, China
Laterza, Michelangelo Li, Xinghe
University of Basilicata University of New Hampshire
Potenza, Italy Durham, NH
Latifee, Enamur Li, Yi-An
Clemson University National Taiwan University
Clemson, SC Taipei, Taiwan, China
Law, David Lignola, Gian Piero
RMIT University University of Naples Federico II
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia Naples, Italy
Lawler, John Lin, Wei-Ting
Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc. Ilan, Taiwan, China
Northbrook, IL Lin, Zhibin
Lawrence, Adrian Fargo, ND
Gainesville, FL Liu, Jun
Lee, Chi King Beijing, China
Nanyang Technological University Liu, Junshan
Singapore Sargent Lundy LLC
Lee, Chung-Sheng Chicago, IL
University of California, San Diego Liu, Shuhua
La Jolla, California Wuhan University
Lee, Deuck Hang Wuhan, Hubei, China
University of Seoul Liu, Zhao
Seoul, Republic of Korea Southeast University
Lee, Douglas Nanjing, Jiangsu, China
Douglas D. Lee and Associates Liu, Xuejian
Fort Worth, TX University of Texas at Arlington
Lee, Heui Hwang Arlington, TX
Arup Liu, Yanbo
San Francisco, CA Florida Atlantic University
Lee, Hung-Jen Boca Raton, FL
National Yunlin University of Science and Technology Liu, Ze
Douliu, Yunlin, Taiwan, China China University of Mining & Technology, Beijing
Lee, Jung-Yoon Beijing, China
Sung Kyun Kwan University Lo, T. Y.
Suwon, Republic of Korea City University of Hong Kong
Lee, Nam Ho Hong Kong, China
SNC-Lavalin Nuclear Long, Nguyen
Oakville, ON, Canada Kosice, Slovakia
Lee, Seong-Cheol Long, Xu
KEPCO International Graduate School (KINGS) Nanyang Technological University
Ulsan, Republic of Korea Singapore
Lei, Aizhong Loo, Yew-Chaye
China Institute of Water Resources and Hydropower Research Gold Coast, Australia
Beijing, China Lopes, Anne
Lepage, Andres Furnas Centrais Eletricas Sa Aparecida De Goiania
University of Kansas Goias, Brazil
Lawrence, KS Lopes, Sergio
Lequesne, Remy University of Coimbra
University of Kansas Coimbra, Portugal
Lawrence, KS López-Almansa, Francisco
Technical University of Catalonia
Barcelona, Spain

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 253

Lotfy, Abdurrahmaan Marikunte, Shashi
Lafarge Canada Inc. Southern Illinois University
Toronto, ON, Canada Carbondale, IL
Lounis, Zoubir Martí-Vargas, José
National Research Council Universitat Politècnica de València
Ottawa, ON, Canada Valencia, Spain
Lubell, Adam Martinelli, Enzo
Read Jones Christoffersen Ltd. University of Salerno
Vancouver, BC, Canada Fisciano, Italy
Ludovit, Nad Maruyama, Ippei
Alfa 04 Nagoya University
Kosice, Slovakia Nagoya, Aichi, Japan
Luo, Baifu Maslehuddin, Mohammed
Harbin, China King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals
Lushnikova, Nataliya Dhahran, Saudi Arabia
National University of Water Management and Matta, Fabio
Nature Resources Use University of South Carolina
Rivne, Ukraine Columbia, SC
Ma, Zhongguo Maximos, Hany
University of Tennessee Pharos University in Alexandria
Knoxville, TN Alexandria, Egypt
MacDonald, Kevin Mbessa, Michel
Cemstone Concrete Products Co. University of Yaoundé I - ENSP
Mendota Heights, MN Yaoundé, Center, Cameroon
Machida, Atsuhiko McCarter, John
Saitama University Heriot Watt University
Saitama, Japan Edinburgh, UK
Macht, Jürgen McDonald, David
Kirchdorf, Austria USG Corp
Maekawa, Koichi Libertyville, IL
University of Tokyo McLeod, Heather
Tokyo, Japan Kansas Department of Transportation
Maganti, Ravindra Topeka, KS
D.M.S. S.V.H. College of Engineering Machilipatnam Meda, Alberto
Andhra Pradesh, India University of Bergamo
Magliulo, Gennaro Bergamo, Italy
University of Naples Federico II Medallah, Khaled
Naples, Italy Saudi Aramco IKPMS
Maguire, Marc Al Khobar, Saudi Arabia
Utah State University Meddah, Mohammed Seddik
Paradise, UT Kingston University London
Mahfouz, Ibrahim Kingston, UK
Cairo, Egypt Mehanny, Sameh
Mahrenholtz, Christoph Cairo University
Berlin, Germany Cairo, Egypt
Mahrenholtz, Philipp Meinheit, Donald
Frankfurt, Germany Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc.
Malik, Adnan Chicago, IL
University of New South Wales Melo, José
Sydney, Australia University of Aveiro
Mander, John Aveiro, Portugal
Texas A&M University Meng, Tao
College Station, TX Institution of Building Materials
Manso, Juan Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China
University of Burgos Menon, Devdas
Burgos, Castilla - León, Spain Indian Institute of Technology
Mari, Antonio Chennai, Tamilnadu, India
Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya Mermerdaş, Kasım
Barcelona, Spain Hasan Kalyoncu University
Gaziantep, Turkey

254 ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015

Meshgin, Pania Mullapudi, Taraka Ravi
University of Colorado Boulder MMI Engineering
Boulder, CO Houston, TX
Milestone, Neil Munoz, Jose
Callaghan Innovation Federal Highway Administration
Lower Hutt, New Zealand McLean, VA
Minehane, Michael Muttoni, Aurelio
RPS Group Ltd. Swiss Federal Institute of Technology
Cork, Ireland Lausanne, Switzerland
Mlynarczyk, Alexandar Nabavi, Esrafil
Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc. Rezvanshahr, Guilan, Islamic Republic of Iran
Princeton Junction, NJ Nafie, Amr
Mo, Yi-Lung Cairo, Egypt
University of Houston Nair, Priya
Houston, TX Cochin University of Science and Technology
Mohamed, Ashraf Kochi, Kerala, India
Alexandria University Naish, David
Alexandria, Egypt California State University, Fullerton
Mohamed, Nayera Fullerton, CA
Assiut University Najimi, Meysam
Assiut, Egypt University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Mohammadyan Yasouj, Seyed Esmaeil Las Vegas, NV
UTM University Nakamura, Hikaru
Johor, Malaysia Nagoya University
Mohammed, Tarek Nagoya, Aichi, Japan
University of Asia Pacific Nam, Boo Hyun
Dhaka, Bangladesh University of Central Florida
Mohd Zain, Mumammad Fauzi Orlando, FL
Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Negrutiu, Camelia
Bangi, Malaysia Technical University of Cluj Napoca
Mokarem, David Cluj Napoca, Cluj, Romania
Virginia Polytechnic University Neves, Luís
Blacksburg, VA University of Coimbra
Mondal, Bipul Coimbra, Portugal
Chittagong University of Engineering & Technology Ng, Ivan
Chittagong, Bangladesh Drainage Services Department
Montejo, Luis Hong Kong, China
North Carolina State University Nichols, John
Raleigh, NC Texas A&M University
Moradi, Hiresh College Station, TX
Amirkabir University of Technology Niemuth, Mark
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran Lafarge
Moretti, Marina Alpharetta, GA
University of Thessaly Nimityongskul, Pichai
Athens, Greece Asian Institute of Technology
Moser, Robert Pathumthani, Thailand
U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center Nishiyama, Minehiro
Vicksburg, MS Kyoto University
Mostafaei, Hossein Kyoto, Japan
University of Toronto Noor, Munaz
Toronto, ON, Canada Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology
Mostofinejad, Davood Dhaka, Bangladesh
Isfahan University of Technology Noshiravani, Talayeh
Isfahan, Islamic Republic of Iran EPFL
Muciaccia, Giovanni Lausanne, Switzerland
Politecnico di Milano Ochotorena, Richard
Milan, Italy Permasteelisa Group
Mulaveesala, Ravibabu Hong Kong Island, Hong Kong, China
Indian Institute of Technology Ropar Oh, Byung
Rupnagar, India Seoul National University
Seoul, Republic of Korea

ACI Structural Journal/March-April 2015 255

Ohtsu, Masayasu Pantazopoulou, Stavroula
Kumamoto University Demokritus University of Thrace
Kumamoto, Japan Xanthi, Greece
Okeil, Ayman Pape, Torill
Louisiana State University University of Newcastle
Baton Rouge, LA Callaghan, New South Wales, Australia
Okelo, Roman Parsekian, Guilherme
Dallas, TX Federal University of São Carlos
Olanitori, Lekan São Carlos, São Paulo, Brazil
Federal University of Technology, Akure Pauletta, Margherita
Akure, Ondo State, Nigeria University of Udine
Ombres, Luciano Tavagnacco, Udine, Italy
University of Calabria