New service limit state criteria for reinforced concrete in chloride environments

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Corrosion Reviews, 2019, 37, (1), pp. 21-29
Issue Date:
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© 2019 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston. In chloride environments, reinforcement stress limits, intended to control flexural cracking, are one of the most important requirements for service limit state (SLS) design. However, concrete damage at the steel-concrete interface between bending cracks, so called cover-controlled cracking, is always correlated to areas of severe steel reinforcement corrosion. Based on the assumption that cover-controlled cracking should be limited, a model has been developed to provide alternative reinforcement stress limits in marine exposure conditions such as concrete in sea water, including permanently submerged, spray zone and tidal/splash zone, as well as coastal constructions located within 1 km of the shoreline. In this paper, the new reinforcement stress limitation is compared to the Australian Standards AS3600 concrete building code and AS5100.5 concrete bridge code provisions. Analysis shows that the new model is very sensitive to the reinforcement percentage of the cross-section. As a result, the existing AS3600 and AS5100.5 code provisions are more conservative than the new limitation for lightly to normally reinforced concrete cross-section. In this case, crack width control governs the SLS design. However, for normally to heavily reinforced concrete cross-section, the new model provides more conservative results suggesting that cover-controlled cracking governs the SLS design.
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