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Crack closure and enhanced autogenous healing of structural concrete using shape memory polymers

Teall, Oliver 2016. Crack closure and enhanced autogenous healing of structural concrete using shape memory polymers. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.
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Self-healing concrete has the potential to significantly reduce the life cycle cost of concrete structures. The ability for concrete to undergo autogenous self-healing is largely dependent upon the width of the cracks in the material. Shape memory polymers (SMP) can be used to close cracks in concrete and produce a compressive stress across crack faces, enhancing the load recovery associated with this healing process. Previous proof of concept studies used commercially available SMP strips to close cracks within small scale mortar beams. Within this thesis, specifically manufactured high shrinkage polymer samples are refined and tested. An SMP tendon system is developed which is capable of activation via electrical heating. This system is incorporated into structural concrete beam samples with and without steel reinforcement. Crack closure is successfully achieved and the system’s performance assessed with suggestions for future development. Enhanced autogenous healing of structural concrete using SMP strips is confirmed by comparing the mechanical load recovery of samples cured for one, three and six months. The SMP tendons are applied at full-scale, alongside three other self-healing techniques investigated as part of the Materials 4 Life project, to assess their performance in the field. A life cycle cost assessment of self-healing concrete is undertaken using a bridge deck slab as a case study, concluding that a self-healing concrete capable of repeated healing cycles has the potential to significantly reduce costs over a 120-year design life.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Date Type: Completion
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Engineering
Subjects: T Technology > TA Engineering (General). Civil engineering (General)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Concrete; Self-healing; Shape Memory Polymers; Crack Closure.
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 2 May 2017
Last Modified: 26 Oct 2021 11:07

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