Shear strengthening performance of GFRP reinforced lightweight SCC beams: Experimental and analytical study

W. Nawaz, M. Elchalakani, S. Yehia, T. Xie, H. Liu, B. Yang, X. Guo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Light weight construction using Glass Fibre-Reinforced Polymer (GFRP) bars and structural light weight concrete (LWC) have increased recently and offers a wide spectrum of advantages over traditional normal weight concrete (NWC) structures. However, the shear strengthening and rehabilitation performance of LWC beams reinforced with GFRP bars is very limited and currently there are no guidelines related to it. Therefore, this study presents the results of an experimental investigation on the shear strengthening behaviour of lightweight self-consolidating concrete (LWSCC) beams reinforced with GFRP bars. The test parameters studied in the experimental program were the longitudinal reinforcement ratio and strip configuration or orientation. A total of twelve shear deficient GFRP reinforced beams were prepared with a shear span to depth ratio of 3.12 and subjected to static four-point bending. Five beams in each series were externally strengthened with different configurations of Carbon Fibre-Reinforced Polymer (CFRP) strips and one beam served as a control specimen to compare the performance of the strengthened specimens. Crack patterns, load–displacement response curves, and strain in the external CFRP strips were recorded until the failure ultimate load. The results of the experimental study indicated that the external CFRP strips improved the nominal shear capacity of GFRP reinforced LWSCC beams, and the contribution of external CFRP strips was sensitive to the reinforcement ratio. The nominal shear capacity of the strengthened specimens increased from 33.3 to 168% compared to the control specimen. U-wraps with horizontal strips in the compression and tension zone were the most effective configuration, showing the highest increase in shear strength compared to other strengthened specimens. Moreover, the shear capacity was theoretically predicted using different Fiber-Reinforced Polymer (FRP) design standards and guidelines which were compared with the experimental results. All the FRP design standards have overestimated the shear capacity of LWSCC beams, and a modified equation with a set of recommendations was proposed based on the experimental study. In addition, a reduction factor of 0.75 is recommended for conservative design.

Original languageEnglish
Article number115545
JournalEngineering Structures
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2023


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