Experimental and numerical investigation of compressive membrane action in GFRP-reinforced concrete slabs

Gobithas Tharmarajah*, Su Taylor, Desmond Robinson

*Corresponding author for this work

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Experimental and numerical analyses of eight in-plane restrained slabs (1425 mm (length) × 475 mm (width) × 150 mm (thickness)) reinforced with glass fiber-reinforced polymer (GFRP) bars are reported in this paper. The test slabs were installed into a rig, that provided 855 kN/mm in-plane stiffness and rotational stiffness. The effective depths of the reinforcement in the slabs varied from 75 mm to 150 mm, and the amount of reinforcement changed from 0 to 1.2% with 8, 12, and 16 mm bar diameters. A comparison of the service and ultimate limit state behavior of the tested one-way spanning slabs shows that a different design approach is necessary for GFRP-reinforced in-plane restrained slabs that demonstrate compressive membrane action behavior. Design codes based on yield line theory, which considers simply supported and rotationally restrained slabs, are not sufficient to predict the ultimate limit state behavior of restrained GFRP-reinforced slabs. Tests reported a higher failure load for GFRP-reinforced slabs by a factor of 2, which was further validated by numerical models. The experimental investigation was validated by a numerical analysis, and the acceptability of the model was further confirmed by consistent results obtained by analyzing in-plane restrained slab data from the literature.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1230
Number of pages17
Issue number5
Early online date28 Feb 2023
Publication statusPublished - 01 Mar 2023


  • Polymers and Plastics
  • General Chemistry


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