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Helene Mathisen

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An Examination Into Gains Presented By GFRP Concrete Reinforcement

For a very long time, concrete has been used as a preferred building material. This is mainly due to its durability, a high comprehensive strength and the low costs. Despite this, it also has its shortfalls that include brittleness and limited tensile strength. The steel reinforcing bars have been used over the past century in concrete structures experiencing tension as a way of solving the shortcomings experienced by concrete. The GFRP Concrete Reinforcement is a modern technology that is slowly gaining popularity.

Steel rebar is relatively efficient and functionally efficient. This means that in most cases, it provides a likeable job. However, steel rebar also has its weaknesses that include; corrosion when exposed to salts, moisture and aggressive chemicals. When the steel bars corrode, they lead to cracking and spalling which create openings leading to further and faster deterioration of steel and concrete.

The above shortcomings of steel rebar leads to rise in costs of repair and maintenance and if the defects progress, the integrity of the structure will be compromised. Over the decades, various technologies on penetrants and coatings have been introduced in attempts to seal out moisture. However, preventing long-term corrosion has remained a challenge. Further, the ability of steel to conduct magnetic and electrical fields makes it undesirable in certain plants such as power generation, nuclear buildings and in medical imaging.

Various reasons as to why GFRP is more preferred in concrete structures exist. First, GFRP has the ability to resist corrosion making it perfect for usage involving long-term immersion in liquids (water or brine). It can be used applications such as offshore platforms, swimming pools, jetties, aquariums and others. Its ability to also resist deicing chemicals and road salts also makes the maintenance of parking structures, roads, runways and bridges to be long lasting and easier.

The tensile strength of GFRP is higher than steel giving it an advantage. This makes it able to provide an excellent counterbalance to the comprehensive strength resulted by concrete. It also gives a great fatigue resistance making it suitable for cyclic loading such as roads and bridges. Its weight is also relatively lower compared to steel.

It practical benefits comprise of; workers at construction sites will not be required to carry or install them making them to experience less cases of wear and tear. The cranes and other heavy-lifting machinery are also not highly needed. Cutting them is enhanced and common cutting equipment can be used and their saw blades will not be compromised. They can be hauled onto a truck in more quantity without exceeding legal loading limit.

For applications that are sensitive on electromagnetic, the GFRP is nonconductive hence it will not transmit any current. This will ensure that it does not attract lightning or interfere with normal operation of the nearby electrical devices. With this, it becomes a safer option for plants dealing in nuclear, aluminum, airport structures, electrical towers and others.

Despite the high cost incurred during initial stages, this GFRP tech becomes very cost friendly in the long term. These benefits and many others makes this modern tech to be highly favored by the construction industry.

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