Effect of corrosion of reinforcement on the mechanical behaviour of highly corroded RC beams

Wenjun Zhu, Raoul François, Dario Coronelli, David Cleland

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    1 Citation (Scopus)


    This paper describes an experimental investigation of the behaviour of corroded reinforced concrete beams. These have been stored in a chloride environment for a period of 26 years under service loading so as to be representative of real structural and environmental conditions. The configuration and the widths of the cracks in the two seriously corroded short-span beams were depicted carefully, and then the beams were tested until failure by a three-point loading system. Another two beams of the same age but without corrosion were also tested as control specimens. A short span arrangement was chosen to investigate any effect of a reduction in the area and bond strength of the reinforcement on shear capacity. The relationship of load and deflection was recorded so as to better understand the mechanical behaviour of the corroded beams, together with the slip of the tensile bars. The corrosion maps and the loss of area of the tensile bars were also described after having extracted the corroded bars from the concrete beams. Tensile tests of the main longitudinal bars were also carried out. The residual mechanical behaviour of the beams is discussed in terms of the experimental results and the cracking maps. The results show that the corrosion of the reinforcement in the beams induced by chloride has a very important effect on the mechanical behaviour of the short-span beams, as loss of cross-sectional area and bond strength have a very significant effect on the bending capacity.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)544-554
    Number of pages11
    JournalEngineering Structures
    Issue numbernull
    Publication statusPublished - Nov 2013


    • Corrosion
    • Concrete
    • Bending tests
    • Tensile tests
    • Residual performance

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Civil and Structural Engineering
    • Mechanics of Materials
    • Building and Construction
    • Materials Science(all)

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