1 April 2015 Monitoring of pre-release cracks in prestressed concrete using fiber optic sensors
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Abstract
Prestressed concrete experiences low to no tensile stresses, which results in limiting the occurrence of cracks in prestressed concrete structures. However, the nature of construction of these structures requires the concrete not to be subjected to the compressive force from the prestressing tendons until after it has gained sufficient compressive strength. Although the structure is not subjected to any dead or live load during this period, it is influenced by shrinkage and thermal variations. Thus, the concrete can experience tensile stresses before the required compressive strength has been attained, which can result in the occurrence of “pre-release” cracks. Such cracks are visually closed after the transfer of the prestressing force. However, structural capacity and behavior can be impacted if cracks are not sufficiently closed. This paper researches a method for the verification of the status of pre-release cracks after transfer of the prestressing force, and it is oriented towards achievement of Level IV Structural Health Monitoring (SHM). The method relies on measurements from parallel long-gauge fiber optic sensors embedded in the concrete prior to pouring. The same sensor network is used for the detection and characterization of cracks, as well as the monitoring of the prestressing force transfer and the determination of the extent of closure of pre-release cracks. This paper outlines the researched method and presents its application to a real-life structure, the southeast leg of Streicker Bridge on the Princeton University campus. The application structure is a curved continuous girder that was constructed in 2009. Its deck experienced four pre-release cracks that were closed beyond the critical limits based on the results of this study.
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Hiba Abdel-Jaber, Hiba Abdel-Jaber, Branko Glisic, Branko Glisic, } "Monitoring of pre-release cracks in prestressed concrete using fiber optic sensors", Proc. SPIE 9437, Structural Health Monitoring and Inspection of Advanced Materials, Aerospace, and Civil Infrastructure 2015, 943720 (1 April 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2086863; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2086863
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