Viscoelastic Creep in Reinforced Glulam

Conan O'Ceallaigh, Karol Sikora, Daniel McPolin, Annette Harte

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


The reinforcement of timber elements using fibre reinforced polymer (FRP) rods or plates is widely accepted as an effective method of increasing the strength and stiffness of members. The short-term behaviour of these reinforced members is relatively well understood, however, the long-term or creep behaviour of such members has received less attention. The objectives of the present work are to determine the long-term performance of reinforced timber beams under sustained loading and constant climate conditions. Timber is a viscoelastic material so its deformation response is a combination of both elastic and viscous components. This viscous creep component is defined as a deformation with time at constant stress and at constant environmental conditions. Sitka spruce is the most widely grown specie in Ireland and is the focus of this study. Glued Laminated (Glulam) beams were manufactured from Sitka spruce and a selected portion of them were reinforced with basalt-fibre reinforced polymer (BFRP) rods. The short-term flexural testing of these beams in their unreinforced and reinforced state demonstrated a significant increase in stiffness with a modest percentage reinforcement ratio. The long-term flexural testing required the design of a creep test frame to implement a constant stress of 8 MPa on the compression face of an equal proportion of unreinforced and reinforced beams. The long-term strain and deflection results for the first 52 weeks of testing are presented. The reinforcement was found to have an insignificant impact on the creep deflection but the maximum tensile creep strain was significantly reduced.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 20 Aug 2016
EventWorld Conference on Timber Engineering - Vienna, Austria
Duration: 26 Aug 201929 Aug 2019


ConferenceWorld Conference on Timber Engineering
Abbreviated titleWCTE


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