Non-destructive Evaluation of the Contribution of Polymer-Fibre Orientation and Distribution Characteristics to Concrete Performance during Fire

  • Tyler OeschEmail author
  • Ludwig Stelzner
  • Frank Weise
Part of the Advanced Structured Materials book series (STRUCTMAT, volume 95)


Although concrete itself is not a combustible material, concrete mixtures with high density, such has high-performance concretes (HPCs), are susceptible to significant damage during fires due to explosive spalling. Past research has shown that the inclusion of polymer fibres in high density concrete can significantly mitigate this fire damage. The exact mechanisms causing this increased spalling resistance are not yet fully understood, but it is thought that the fibres facilitate moisture transport during fire exposure, which in turn contributes to relief of internal stresses in the spalling-susceptible region. In this study, X-ray Computed Tomography (CT) was applied to observe the interaction between polymer fibres and cracking during thermal exposure. For this purpose, two concrete samples containing different polymer fibre types were subjected to incremental application of a defined thermal exposure. CT images were acquired before and after each thermal exposure and powerful image processing tools were used to segment the various material components. This enabled a detailed analysis of crack formation and propagation as well as the visualization and quantification of polymer fibre characteristics within the concrete. The results demonstrated that the orientation of both fibres and cracks in polymer-fibre reinforced concrete tend to be anisotropic. The results also indicated that crack geometry characteristics may be correlated with fibre orientation, with cracks tending to run parallel to fibre beds. Clear quantitative relationships were also observed between heating and increasing cracking levels, expressed in terms of both crack surface area and crack volume.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und –prüfungFederal Institute for Materials Research and TestingBerlinGermany

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