Strengthening of Bridge Columns Subjected to an Impact Lateral Load Caused by Vehicle Collision: Phase I Final Report
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Strengthening of Bridge Columns Subjected to an Impact Lateral Load Caused by Vehicle Collision: Phase I Final Report

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    Fiber reinforced polymer (FRP) materials have gained wide acceptance for repair and retrofit of existing infrastructures or to design new infrastructures due to their desirable properties (high strength to weight ratio, light weight and consequent ease of field placement, corrosion resistance, durability, and low maintenance cost among others). There is a need to strengthen the deficient and aging civil infrastructure or new structures that are identified with certain design flaws against sudden loads including impact, blast, natural disasters, or increased traffic loads over time. The addition of FRP materials to upgrade the deficiencies or to strengthen the structural components prior to collapse can save lives and damage to infrastructure, and reduces the need for their costly replacement. The retrofit with the FRP materials with desirable properties provides an excellent replacement for traditional materials including steel jacket to strengthen the damaged reinforced concrete structural members that are repairable. Additionally, there are a number of accidental vehicle-bridge component collisions reported every year that result in loss of lives and severe property damages. These outcomes suggest that some of these bridges are not impact proof.

    In this phase of the project, a literature review was performed on the FRP-strengthening of concrete bridge members and structural components to evaluate its use and benefits. In particular, the FRP strengthening of columns for several loading scenarios including impact load is discussed. Various forms of FRP strengthening techniques are also introduced. The existing studies have shown that the use of FRP materials restore or improve the member original design strength and in some cases allow the structure to carry an increased load that it was not designed for. It was also concluded that there is a need for additional research on the columns under impact load. The compiled information will help prepare the ground work for further evaluation of the bridges that are in serious need for repair or replacement either due to accidental impact or deterioration, and to propose an innovative and reliable bridge repair technique that is fast, durable and cost efficient.

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