Anda di halaman 1dari 16

PDHengi neer.

com
Course S-3002

Effect of Reduced Concrete Strength on
Bending and Cracking of Reinforced
Concrete Beams

Thisdocumentisthecoursetext.Youmayreviewthismaterialat
yourleisurebeforeorafteryoupurchasethecourse.Ifyouhavenot
alreadypurchasedthecourse,youmaydosonowbyreturningtothe
courseoverviewpagelocatedat:

http://www.pdhengineer.com/pages/S3002.htm
(Pleasebesuretocapitalizeandusedashasshownabove.)

Oncethecoursehasbeenpurchased,youcaneasilyreturntothe
courseoverview,coursedocumentandquizfromPDHengineersMy
Accountmenu.

Ifyouhaveanyquestionsorconcerns,rememberyoucancontactus
byusingtheLiveSupportChatlinklocatedonanyofourwebpages,
byemailatadministrator@PDHengineer.comorbytelephonetoll
freeat1877PDHengineer.

ThankyouforchoosingPDHengineer.com.

PDHengineer.com,aservicemarkofDecaturProfessionalDevelopment,LLC.S3002C1
EFFECTOFREDUCEDCONCRETESTRENGTH 1 Hussain Shanaa, PhD, PE
ON BENDING AND CRACKING OF RC BEAMS PDH Engineers Course April 2010
EFFECTOFREDUCEDCONCRETESTRENGTH
ONBENDINGANDCRACKINGOFREINFORCEDCONCRETEBEAMS

by
HussainShanaa,PhD,PE
April2010

Introduction:

This course presents a real design and evaluation of beams that were constructed in a twenty storey
buildingin2007.Reinforcedconcretebeamsthat wereconstructed atlevel6ofthebuildingexhibited
widespread hairline cracking which was objectionable to the owner, the project consultant, and the
structural engineer. Due to earlierproblems in the casting of the concrete at this particular level, with
documented laboratory evaluation showing lower than specified concrete strength, the consultant
argued that the cracking was caused by this reduction in strength. This despite the fact that after the
laboratoryresultswerereceivedbytheconsultant,theconsultanthimselfdidadetailedcheckingofthe
structure for its strength under the reduced concrete strength. The consultant first indicated his
acceptanceofthereducedstrength,butlaterafterthecracksdevelopedfewmonthslaterarguedthat
thestrengthofconcretewasdetrimentalinthecrackingproblem.Asaresult,theconsultantinstructed
the contractor to perform a study / report on this cracking and report back with any problems. This
reportpresentsthecontractorfindingsthat:(1)thereducedstrengthoftheconcretedidnotresultsin
any significant loss of strength, (2) the reduced strength was not the cause of the cracking, (3) the
beamswouldhavecrackedevenunderthespecifiedconcretestrength,and(4)thebeamswouldmeet
thestrengthrequirementandcrackinglimitofthedesigncode.

ItisworthwhiletonotethatthereinforcedconcretestructureandtheevaluationwasbasedonBritish
Standards 8110 1997, and that the above stated findings were correct using that design code. This
course,however,documentsthedesignandevaluationbasedonACI31805.Youneedtoreadtothe
end of this course to find out if the same conclusions can be obtained using this design code. As the
BritishStandardsusesSIunits,thiscoursereportmaintainedtheuseoftheSIunits.Incertaincases,US
customaryunitsareshowninparenthesis[].Finally,itisnotedthattheBritishCodeisbasedonCube
strength of concrete (150mm cubes), designated by fcu. On the other hand, the ACI code is based on
Cylinderstrength(150mmdiameterx300mmheight),designatedbyfc.Thetwovaluesarenotequal,
butarerelatedapproximatelybytherelationshipfc=0.85fcu.

Asmentionedearlier,insitucoresampleswereselectivelydoneintheslabatlocationswhereevidence
of improper concreting procedures was showing and the concrete strength was suspicious. This
represented onlyaverysmallareaof thecasting, andthe remainingareas did notshowanyimproper
casting.Hence,allinsitucoresamplesindicatedlowerstrengththanthatspecifiedindesign.Inreality,
mostoftheslabareaswereadequatelycompacted.Thisisfurthercollaboratedbythecubetestsamples
collected during concreting where strengths as high as 50 to 60 N/mm
2
have been reported (cylinder
strengthof40to50N/mm2,or5800to7250psi).Hence,iftheconcretestrengthwastobesuspected
asthereasonforthecracking,itwouldbelimitedtothoseareaswhereimproperconcretingtookplace.
Thisisnotthecase.Thecrackingoccurredeverywhereinlongspanbeams,atthemidspan,atbottom
of the beams (locations of positive moment). These locations did not show any honey comb or badly
consolidated concrete. This gave the first assurance that the reduced strength was not the reason for
thecrackingexhibitedinthebeams.
EFFECTOFREDUCEDCONCRETESTRENGTH 2 Hussain Shanaa, PhD, PE
ON BENDING AND CRACKING OF RC BEAMS PDH Engineers Course April 2010
The design and evaluation of the beams was carried out twice. Once for the original design cube
concrete strength of 35 N/mm
2
(equivalent to f c = 30 N/mm
2
or 4300 psi), and the second for the
reportedlowinsitustrengthof25N/mm
2
(equivalenttofc=21N/mm
2
or3000psi).

The steel reinforcement is of British grade with a yield strength, fy, equal to 460 N/mm
2
[66.7 ksi]
whichisabout10%higherthantheUSgrade60reinforcement.

CrackingBehaviorofReinforcedConcrete:

Crackingofconcretestructuresisalwaysexpectedduetoitsweakstrengthintension.Attheinitiation
of loading of the structural beams (as soon as the formwork is removed) and the self weight become
carried by the beam itself, flexural tensile stresses will start to develop. Additional loading at later
stages of construction and of application of live load, will cause these tensile stresses to increase
further. This will continue until such a load is reached that the tensile stresses exceed the strength of
concreteintension,thuscausingthebeamtocrack.Atthispointinloading,thesteelreinforcementwill
be engaged and the tension stresses originally carried by concrete will be transferred and become
carriedbythereinforcement.Hence,itshouldbeunderstoodthatreinforcedconcretewillalwayscrack
under loading, and such natural behavior of reinforced concrete cannot be prevented no matter how
hard we try. Furthermore, cracking behavior cannot be predicted very accurately since it depends on
the concrete strength in tension which exhibits widespread scatter. Hence, both BS 8110 and ACI 318
recommendationsstatethatexactcrackingbehaviorisnotpossibletopredictaccurately.

All beams at the 6


th
level are continuous beams over three spans of varying lengths. As a result, the
bendingmomentsinthebeamwillbepositivemomentsatmidspans,causingtensionatthebottomof
thebeamandcompressionatthetop.Thusatmidspans,crackingwilloccuratthebottomofthebeam.
The negative bending moments willoccur over thesupporting columns, where the cracking will occur
onthetopsideofthebeamnearthecolumns.Suchtopcracksarenotofprimaryconcernsincetheyare
not very visible due to the slabs rough finish and since it will eventually be covered by finishes. The
bottomcracksaremostvisibleandarethemajorsourceofconcern.

It is worthwhile to note that cracking provision and requirements of the ACI code has changed in the
1999 edition of the code. This course presents the evaluation under both provisions, before 1999 and
after1999.

SelectionofCriticalBeam,BeamSection,andLoadingArrangement

Thecontinuousbeamwiththeheaviestloadsandthelongestspanwasselectedfortheevaluation.The
three span lengths were 11 meters, 7.8 meters, and 11.2 meters [36.08 ft, 25.6 ft, and 36.73 ft,
respectively].Parallelbeamsarespacedat2.8metersoncenters(tributarywidthis2.8meters=9.2ft
=slabspan).

The beams are cast monolithically with the 130 mm thick oneway solid slab [5.11 inch]. The drop of
the beam, the web, is 270 mm deep and 600 mm wide. Therefore the total depth of the beam, h, is
400mm. The beams are considered to act as Tbeams, with the solid slab forming the overhanging
flanges, and the flange thickness tf is taken equal to slab thickness. The calculation below, as per ACI
code31805,section8.10.2,derivesthevalueofbf,theflangewidth.

bfSpan/4 i.e.bf11.2/4=2800mm
bf16tf+bw i.e.bf16x130+600=2680mm
bfSpacingofBeamsi.e.bf2.8m=2800mm

tf
h
overhang bw overhang
bf
EFFECTOFREDUCEDCONCRETESTRENGTH 3 Hussain Shanaa, PhD, PE
ON BENDING AND CRACKING OF RC BEAMS PDH Engineers Course April 2010
Thus,insummary,thecrosssectionhasthefollowingdimensions:
h=400mm;tf=130mm;bw=600mm,andbf=2680mm

Due to possible variation in application of live loads, the ACI 31805, section 8.9.2, requires that live
loadingbepositionedtoproducethemostsignificanteffects.Thecoderequirementsresultintheneed
toevaluatefourloadingarrangementstoobtaintheultimatemomentenvelope(UltimateLimitState
ULS):

1. Apply1.4DLonallspans,and1.7LLontwoadjacentspans(takespans1&2)
2. Apply1.4DLonallspans,and1.7LLontwoadjacentspans(takespans2&3)
3. Apply1.4DLonallspans,and1.7LLonalternatespans(takeOddspans1&3)
4. Apply1.4DLonallspans,and1.7LLonalternatespans(takeEvenspans,span2)

The values 1.4 and 1.7 are the factors of safety for dead and live loads, respectively. In addition, to
evaluatethecracking,whichisaServiceabilityLimitState(SLS),weneedtoapplytheunfactoredloads,
i.e.withoutthe1.4and1.7.Ourinterestistoobtainthemaximumpositiveservicemoment,whichwill
occur in the longest span measuring 11.2 m long (span 3). This is obtained from the following load
arrangement:

5. Apply1.0DLonallspans,and1.0LLonSpans1&3.

Inaddition,aloadcaseof1.0DLisperformed,butthisisnotacoderequirement.

6. Apply1.0DLonallspans,Noliveloadsonanyspan.

Thevaluesoftheloadingandtheanalysisresultsareindicatedinthenextsection.

Loading,StructuralModel,andStructuralAnalysis

Thefloorloadingconsistsoftheslabselfweight,superimposeddeadload,andsuperimposedliveload.
Theunitweightforconcreteistakenas2400kg/m
3
,whichwemultiplytimesthegravity9.83,toobtain
23592 Newton/m
3
= 23.6 kN/m
3
. The floor has very thin layer of finishing and supports sprinkler
pipingandlightfixtures,estimatedat0.5kN/m
2
.Thefloorservesasaparkingramp,andtheliveloadis
takenat2.5kN/m
2
.Thustheloadsaresummarizedinthefollowingtable:

EFFECTOFREDUCEDCONCRETESTRENGTH 4 Hussain Shanaa, PhD, PE


ON BENDING AND CRACKING OF RC BEAMS PDH Engineers Course April 2010

Thebeamisconsideredasathreespancontinuousbeam,withthecolumnsactingaspinnedsupports.
Staad Pro is used to analyze the beam and obtain the moment envelope. There were six load cases
analyzed(asmentionedearlier)withtheresultsshowninthefollowingtable.

Refer to the included Staad result file for the analysis and plots of load cases, moment diagrams, and
momentenvelope.Forreference,thestaadinputlinesareshownbelow.
SLABLOADS BEAMLOADS

FACTOREDFLOORLOADS(1.4DL+1.7LL):
Slab=0.13x23.6x1.4= 4.30kN/m
2

SuperimposedDL=0.5x1.4=0.70kN/m
2

LiveLoad=2.5x1.7= 4.25kN/m
2

Total= 9.25kN/m
2

FACTOREDFLOORDEADLOADS(1.4DL):
Slab=0.13x23.6x1.4= 4.30kN/m
2

SuperimposedDL=0.5x1.4=0.70kN/m
2

Total= 5.00kN/m
2

SERVICEFLOORLOADS(1.0DL+1.0LL):
Slab=0.13x23.6= 3.07kN/m
2

SuperimposedDL=0.5= 0.50kN/m
2

LiveLoad=2.5= 2.50kN/m
2

Total= 6.07kN/m
2

DEADLOADONLY(1.0DL):
Slab=0.13x23.6= 3.07kN/m
2

SuperimposedDL=0.5= 0.50kN/m
2

Total= 3.57kN/m
2

FACTOREDBEAMLOADS(1.4DL+1.7LL):
FromFloor=9.25x2.8m= 25.90kN/m
SelfWt=0.6x0.27x23.6x1.4=5.40kN/m

Total= 31.25kN/m

FACTOREDBEAMDEADLOAD(1.4DL):
FromFloor=5.00x2.8m= 14.00kN/m
SelfWt=0.6x0.27x23.6x1.4=5.40kN/m
Total= 19.40kN/m

SERVICEBEAMLOADS(1.0DL+1.0LL):
FromFloor=6.07x2.8m= 17.00kN/m
SelfWt=0.6x0.27x23.6= 3.82kN/m

Total= 20.82kN/m

DEADLOADONLY(1.0DL):
FromFloor=3.57x2.8m= 10.00kN/m
SelfWt=0.6x0.27x23.6= 3.82kN/m
Total= 13.82kN/m

LoadingCondition LoadValues Primaryresult MomentResult


inkNm
1
1.4DL+1.7LLonspans1&2;
1.4DLonspan3
Wuspan1=31.25 kN/m
Wuspan2=31.25kN/m
Wuspan3=19.40kN/m
MaximumNegative
Ultimatemomentat
the2
nd
support
M
u(ve)=331
2
1.4DL+1.7LLonspans2&3;
1.4DLonspan1
Wuspan1=19.40 kN/m
Wuspan2=31.25kN/m
Wuspan3=31.25kN/m
MaximumNegative
Ultimatemomentat
the3
nd
support
M
u(ve)=345
3
1.4DL+1.7LLonspans1&3;
1.4DLonspan2
Wuspan1=31.25kN/m
Wuspan2=19.40kN/m
Wuspan3=31.25kN/m
MaximumPositive
Ultimatemomentat
mispans1&3
M
u(+ve)=354
(maxatspan3)

4
1.4DL+1.7LLonspan2;
1.4DLonspans1&3
Wuspan1=19.40kN/m
Wuspan2=31.25kN/m
Wuspan3=19.40kN/m
MaximumPositive
Ultimatemomentat
mispan2
M
u(+ve)=small
5
1.0DL+1.0LLonspans1&3;
1.0DLonspan2
Wsspan1 =20.82 kN/m
Wdspan2=13.82kN/m
Wsspan3=20.82kN/m
MaximumPositive
Servicemomentat
mispans1&3
M
s(+ve)=235
6 1.0DLonallspans
Wdspan1=13.82 kN/m
Wdspan2=13.82kN/m
Wdspan3=13.82kN/m
MaximumPositive
Servicemomentat
mispans1&3
M
d(+ve)=151
EFFECTOFREDUCEDCONCRETESTRENGTH 5 Hussain Shanaa, PhD, PE
ON BENDING AND CRACKING OF RC BEAMS PDH Engineers Course April 2010

STAAD PLANE
* Three-span continuous beam: 11m, 7.8m, 11.2m
UNIT METER KN
JOINT COORDINATES
1 0 0 0; 2 11 0 0; 3 18.8 0 0; 4 30 0 0;
MEMBER INCIDENCES
1 1 2; 2 2 3; 3 3 4;
DEFINE MATERIAL START
ISOTROPIC CONCRETE
E 2.17185e+007
POISSON 0.17
DENSITY 23.5616
ALPHA 1e-005
DAMP 0.05
END DEFINE MATERIAL
CONSTANTS
MATERIAL CONCRETE MEMB 1 TO 3
* Define section as T-beam
MEMBER PROPERTY AMERICAN
1 TO 3 PRIS YD 0.4 ZD 2.68 YB 0.27 ZB 0.6
SUPPORTS
1 TO 4 PINNED
*
* Case 1: 1.4 DL + 1.7 LL on spans 1&2; 1.4 DL on span 3
LOAD 1
MEMBER LOAD
1 2 UNI GY -31.25
3 UNI GY -19.4
*
* Case 2: 1.4 DL + 1.7 LL on spans 2&3; 1.4 DL on span 1
LOAD 2
MEMBER LOAD
2 3 UNI GY -31.25
1 UNI GY -19.4
*
* Case 3: 1.4 DL + 1.7 LL on spans 1&3; 1.4 DL on span 2
LOAD 3
MEMBER LOAD
1 3 UNI GY -31.25
2 UNI GY -19.4
*
* Case 4: 1.4 DL + 1.7 LL on span 2; 1.4 DL on spans 1 & 3
LOAD 4
MEMBER LOAD
2 UNI GY -31.25
1 3 UNI GY -19.4
*
* Case 5: SLS ... 1.0 DL + 1.0 LL on spans 1&3; 1.0 DL on span 2
LOAD 5
MEMBER LOAD
1 3 UNI GY -20.82
2 UNI GY -13.82
*
* Case 6: SLS ... 1.0 DL on all spans; no LL applied
LOAD 6
MEMBER LOAD
1 TO 3 UNI GY -13.82
*
PERFORM ANALYSIS
PRINT ANALYSIS RESULTS
FINISH
EFFECTOFREDUCEDCONCRETESTRENGTH 6 Hussain Shanaa, PhD, PE
ON BENDING AND CRACKING OF RC BEAMS PDH Engineers Course April 2010
EvaluationofPositiveMomentCapacityfortheBeam:

ForthePositivemomentregioninendspans(span1and3),thebeamsarereinforcedwith(4)#32M
bars in the tension zone at the bottom, and (4)#25M in the compression zone at the top. The
corresponding areas are: 4x819 = 3276 mm
2
and 4x510 = 2040 mm
2
, respectively. The cross section
andthereinforcementneedtoresistanultimatepositivemomentequalto354kNm.

Itisassumedthatthereaderisfamiliarwiththecalculationsofthemomentcapacityofthebeam,and
nofurtherdiscussionisgivenonthematter.Therequiredequationsareasfollows:

Mn=Asfy(da/2)

Where:
=strengthreductionfactor=0.9
fy=yieldstrengthofreinforcement=460N/mm
2

d=theeffectivedepthofTensionreinforcement=hcoverstirrupbarsize/2
a=depthoftheequivalentcompressionblock=(fyAs)/(0.85fcb)
fc=concretecylinderstrength(fc=30N/mm
2
or21N/mm
2
asdiscussedearlier)
b=widthofcrosssectionincompression(flangewidth,bf,forthepositivemomentregion)

Thus,forthespecifiedconcretestrengthfc=30N/mm
2
,thefollowingisobtained:

b=bf=2680mm;
d=400401032/2=334mm
As=(4)#32M=4x819=3276mm
2

a=(3276x460)/(0.85x30x2680)=22.05mm
Mn=0.9x3276x460x(33422.05/2)=438.04x10
6
Nmm=438kNm

Forthesakeofcomparison,andtorealizetheadvantageofconsideringthebeamasaTbeam,instead
ofasarectangularbeamof600mmwidex400mmdeep,thesamecalculationsarerepeatedwithb=
600mm:

b=bf=2680mm;d=334mm;As=3276mm
2
a=(3276x460)/(0.85x30x600)=98.5mm
Mn=0.9x3276x460x(33498.5/2)=386.2x10
6
Nmm=386kNm

Thus it is apparent that there isa great benefit fromtaking the beam asa Tbeam. The increase in the
moment capacityfor the Tbeam results from theincreaseof the lever arm (d a/2) as a resultof the
decreaseinthedepthofcompressionblock,a,associatedwiththeincreaseinbeamwidth,b.

Ineithercase,Mu(+ve)MnandthebeamisfoundadequateinthePOSITIVEMOMENTregionasper
originaldesignfc.

Wenowrepeatthesamecalculationforthereducedvalueoffc=21N/mm
2
,andtakingthebeamasa
Tbeam:
b=bf=2680mm;d=334mm;As=3276mm
2

a=(3276x460)/(0.85x21x2680)=31.5mm
Mn=0.9x3276x460x(33431.5/2)=431.6x10
6
Nmm=431.6kNm
(only1.5%reduction)

Forcomparison,therectangularbeamassumptionwouldresultinMn=357kNm(8%reduction).

EFFECTOFREDUCEDCONCRETESTRENGTH 7 Hussain Shanaa, PhD, PE


ON BENDING AND CRACKING OF RC BEAMS PDH Engineers Course April 2010
Itisapparentfromtheabovethatthereductionintheconcretestrengthdidaffectthemomentcapacity
ofthebeam.However,thiseffectwassmallthatthebeamwasstilladequateforsupportingtheapplied
loads. It is worthwhile to note that f c was reduced by 30% (30 down to 21), while the reduction in
strengthwasonly1.5(ifTbeam)and8%(ifrectangularbeam).Thisclearlyindicatesthattheconcrete
strengthisnotamajorfactorcontributingtothestrengthofabeaminflexure.

Contrary to the conclusion on the concrete strength, the yield strength of the reinforcement greatly
influences the strength of the beam in flexure. A 30% reduction in the yield strength will probably
amounttoa30%reductioninstrengthinflexure.

Boththeconcretestrengthandtheyieldstrengthhaveastrongimpactonstrengthofthecolumns,but
thatisleftforanotherstudytodemonstrate.

Oneimportantfactorthatisaffectedbythereductionintheconcretestrengthisthemaximumamount
of reinforcement that would be allowed by the ACI code in any given cross section. The reduction in
strength will result in the reduction of this maximum value. The maximum limit on the reinforcement
ratioinanygivencrosssectionismaxandisgivenby:

max=0.75b

where:
=reinforcementratio=As/(bd)
b=balancedreinforcementratio=1(0.85fc/fy)(600/(600+fy))
1=0.65[0.850.008(fc30)]0.85

whenfc=30N/mm
2
,1=0.85,andb=0.02667,andmax=0.02000
whenfc=21N/mm
2
,1=0.85,andb=0.01867,andmax=0.01400

Now let us look at the case of the Tbeam. Since b = 2680 mm, d = 334 mm, and As = 3276, then =
3276/(2680x334)=0.00366whichislessthanmax(0.020or0.014).Hence,thereisnoeffectonthis
matter.

Thisisnottrueforthecaseofrectangularsection.Sinceb=600mm,d=334mm,andAs=3276,then
=3276/(600x334)=0.016whichisokwhenfc=30N/mm
2
butbecomesviolatingthecodewhenfc
=21N/mm
2
.Thisofcoursewouldimplythatthebeamisnotadequateinthiscase(ifweconsideritas
arectangularsectiononly).Thereisonewaytoshowthatthisisnotcriticalinthisparticularbeamby
including the compression reinforcement in the calculations, which so far has been ignored. This
compression reinforcement will add more strength to the moment capacity (not shown here). More
importantly,themaximumamountofreinforcementwouldnowbelimitedto:

max=0.75b+

where
=reinforcementratioofthecompressionreinforcement=As/(bd)

Inthisexamplefortherectangularsection,=2040/(600x334)=0.0102.Thus,whenfc=21N/mm
2
thevalueformax=0.75x0.01867+0.0102=0.02427.Hence,<max,andsectionbecomesadequate
andmeetingcodeprovisions.

EFFECTOFREDUCEDCONCRETESTRENGTH 8 Hussain Shanaa, PhD, PE


ON BENDING AND CRACKING OF RC BEAMS PDH Engineers Course April 2010
EvaluationofNegativeMomentCapacityfortheBeam:

FortheNegativemomentregions(atsupport2and3),thebeamsarereinforcedwith(6)#25Mbarsin
the tension zone at the top, and (4)#22M in the compression zone at the bottom. The corresponding
areas are: 6x510 = 3060 mm
2
and 4x387= 1548 mm
2
, respectively. The cross section and the
reinforcementneedtoresistanultimatepositivemomentequalto345kNm.

SincetheflangeoftheTbeamisnowintension,andthewebisincompression,thewidthofthebeam
to be used for the moment calculation is the web width, bw. Thus, in the negative moment region we
willnothavetheadvantageoftheTbeamaswehadatthemidspan.

Thus,forthespecifiedconcretestrengthfc=30N/mm
2
,thefollowingisobtained:

b=bw=600mm;
d=400401025/2=338mm
As=(6)#25M=6x510=3060mm
2

a=(3060x460)/(0.85x30x600)=92mm
Mn=0.9x3060x460x(33892/2)=369.92x10
6
Nmm=370kNm

Andwhenfc=21N/mm
2
,thefollowingisobtained:

b=600mm;d=338mm;As=3060mm
2
a=(3060x460)/(0.85x21x600)=131mm
Mn=0.9x3060x460x(334131/2)=339.87x10
6
Nmm=340kNm

Itisapparentthatinthiscasethereductioninstrengthresultedinaslightundercapacityofthebeam
inthenegativemoment.Theultimatemomentis345kNmversus theprovidedstrengthof340kNm,
which is 1.5% less than required. By engineering judgment we will consider this as adequate,
particularlywhenweknowthatthecompressionreinforcementwillresultinsomeadditionalstrength
forthebeam(notshowhere).

Evaluationofthemaximumreinforcementratio,includingtheeffectofthecompressionreinforcement
inthecalculation,willresultin:

max=0.75b+

where=1548/(600x334)=0.00772

Then:
When fc=30N/mm
2
,b=0.022667(nochange)
max=0.75x0.02667+0.00772=0.0277

when fc=21N/mm
2
,b=0.020(nochange)
max=0.75x0.020+0.00772=0.0227

and =3060/(600x334)=0.0153

Again,maxandthecodeprovisionsaremet.
EFFECTOFREDUCEDCONCRETESTRENGTH 9 Hussain Shanaa, PhD, PE
ON BENDING AND CRACKING OF RC BEAMS PDH Engineers Course April 2010

CrackingEvaluationoftheBeams

As mentioned earlier, cracking of concrete structures is always expected due to its weak strength in
tension. Prior to loading the beam to this cracking level, the stresses in the beam are calculated based
onthetheoryofelasticityandmechanicsofmaterialsstressequations.Thus,thestressattheextreme
topandbottomconcretefibersaregivenby:

t=stressattopofcrosssection=MYt/Ig

b=stressatbottomofcrosssection=MYb/Ig

where,

M=themomentinthebeamduetotheload(loadissmallanddoesnotcausecracking)
Ig=GrossmomentofInertiaofthecrosssection(Tbeaminthiscase)
Yt=Distancefromcentroidofcrosssectiontotopfibers
Yb=Distancefromcentroidofcrosssectiontobottomfibers

Thecalculationofthesevaluesisshownintheexcelsheetbelow:

H (total) 400 mm
Y values are measured from bottom of section
B H Area Y A*Y Io
Flange 2680 130 348400 335 1.167E+08 4.907E+08
Stem 600 270 162000 135 2.187E+07 9.842E+08
A = A*Y = Io =
Sums 510400 1.386E+08 1.475E+09
N.A. Location from bottom = A*Y / A = mm
Total I (Ig) = Io + A*d^2 = mm^4
Yt = Distance from N.A. to top of section = 128.5 mm
Yb = Distance from N.A. to bottom of section = 271.5 mm
271.5
5.898E+09

NOTE: the above sheet is a live sheet. Cells in yellow can be changed for other dimensions of the T
Shape.

Thusweobtain:

Ig=5.898x10
9
mm
4

Yt=128.5mm
Yb=271.5mm

Aslongasthestressleveldoesnotreachthetensilestrengthofconcrete,thebeamwillnotcrack.This
strengthintensioninflexureiscalledthemodulusofrupture,andisgivenbyACIasequalto:

fr=0.62fc

wheretheunitsoffcistakenasN/mm
2
inthisequationandtheresultoffcisalsoinN/mm
2
.

EFFECTOFREDUCEDCONCRETESTRENGTH 10 Hussain Shanaa, PhD, PE


ON BENDING AND CRACKING OF RC BEAMS PDH Engineers Course April 2010
It should be noted that this formula is empirical and test results show significant scatter. This makes
predictionsofcrackingdifficult.Now,settingbfr,gives:

MYb/Ig0.62fc

AndsolvingforM,weget:

M=Mcr(+ve)=[0.62fc]Ig/Yb

Thismomentiscalledthepositivecrackingmoments,anditisthemomentvalueatwhichthebeamwill
crackatthebottomfibers.Weareinterestedinthisvaluesincethisisthelocation(bottom)wherethe
crackinghasbeenobservedandisofconcern.

Calculatingthecrackingmomentforthetwovaluesoffc,weobtain:

Forfc=30N/mm
2
fr=3.40N/mm
2

Mcr(+ve)=73.86x10
6
Nmm=74kNm

Similarly,forfc=21N/mm
2
fr=2.84N/mm
2

Mcr(+ve)=73.86x10
6
Nmm=62kNm

Itshouldbenotedthatwhilethecompressivestrengthofconcretewasreducedby30%,thereduction
incrackingmomentwasonly16%.

NowconsideringtheStaadProresultsforloadcases#6(1.0DeadLoad),wefindthemoment:
M
d(+ve)=151kNm
ItisclearbeyondanydoubtthatM
d(+ve)ismuchlargerthanthecrackingmomentMcr(+ve)foranyof
thetwovaluesoffc.Hence,itisexpectedthatthebeamwillcrackunderdeadloadonly(evenwithout
application of live load). This would have happened regardless of the reduction of f c, and under the
originaldesignassumptions.

Asaresult,atserviceconditions(1.0DL+1.0LL)whentheliveloadisalsoapplied,thecrackingwould
have happenedunderbothscenarios off c. Ofcourse,oncethebeamcracks,and with theaddition of
theliveloads,thestressesinsidethebeamwillshiftandthecrackswillincreaseinwidth.
From Staad Pro Analysis, the maximum positive moment at service is M
s (+ve) = 235 kNm, and the
crackingmomentasperdesignis74kNm.Itisbeyondanydoubtthatthebeamwouldcrackatservice
as per original design. The reduced concrete compressive strength gives a slight reduction of cracking
momentto62kNm.However,thisisbyallmeansnottheprimaryreasonforthecracking.Thebeams
wouldhavecrackedanywayunderoriginaldesign.

CrackWidthEstimation:

So far we have concluded that the reduction of compressive strength of concrete was not the primary
cause of the cracks, and that the original design would have resulted in the cracking of the beam
anyway. The reduction may have slightly reduced the strength in tension, but that was not the
detrimentalreasonforthecracking.Nowthequestionarises,wouldthereductioninstrengthresultisa
widercrackwidths?

Toassessthis,weneedtocalculatethecrackwidththatcanbeexpectedtooccurinthebeam.TheACI
31805nolongerincludetheprovisionsofcrackwidthcalculation,asthecodechangedthecrackcheck
EFFECTOFREDUCEDCONCRETESTRENGTH 11 Hussain Shanaa, PhD, PE
ON BENDING AND CRACKING OF RC BEAMS PDH Engineers Course April 2010
provision with the 1999 edition of the code (see later). For this we can refer to the earlier (pre 1999)
editionsoftheACIcodeandcommentary.ThecrackwidthiscalculatedusingtheGergelyLutzequation
(usingUScustomaryunits):

Wmax=0.076fs(dcA)
0.333

Where:
Wmax=crackwidthinunitsof0.001inches
=(hc)/(dc)=depthfactor,unitless
dc=thicknessofcovertothecenterofthefirstlayerofthebars,inunitsofinches
fs=maximumsteelstressatserviceloadsandcanbetakenas0.6fy,inunitsofksi
A=areaofconcreteintensionzonedividedbythenumberofbars,inunitsofin
2

Wefirstnotethattheequationdoesnothaveanydirectrelationshiptofc.Thus,itwouldappearthat
theconcretestrengthdoesnotaffectthecrackwidth.Thus,wecansubstitutethefollowingvalues(see
additionalsectioncalculationslater):

=1.2(averagevalueasgivenbyACI)
dc=40+10+32/2=66mm=2.6inch
fs=0.6fy=0.6x66.7ksi=40ksi
A=(2dc)bw/4=2x2.6x(600/25.4)/4=30.71inch
2

Then,

Wmax=0.076x1.2x40x(2.6x30.71)
0.333
=15.68(inunitsof0.001inch)
Or Wmax=15.68x0.001=0.01568inch=0.398mm=0.4mm

This would have been the predictions without detailed calculations, and it would appear that the
reducedstrengthofconcretewillnotaffectthisresult.

This can also be confirmed by detailed calculations, which will reveal that the concrete strength will
slightly affect these results. The reduced value of f c will result in a change in the value of c (the
locationoftheneutralaxisofthecrackedsection),aswellastheservicestressfs.Toshowthisweneed
to do more refined calculations using the analysis of the Cracked Transformed Section, shown in the
sketchbelow.

d
d'
c
h
Compression
bf
Tension Zone
ignored
Transformed Area of compression
Steel =(n - 1) As
Transformed Area of Tension Steel
=n As
EFFECTOFREDUCEDCONCRETESTRENGTH 12 Hussain Shanaa, PhD, PE
ON BENDING AND CRACKING OF RC BEAMS PDH Engineers Course April 2010

The cracked transformed section is considered to be the effective section for resisting moments after
thecrackingoftheconcrete.Inthefigure,thesectionismadeupofthefollowingareas:
(a) Thecompressionzoneinconcretewithadepthequaltoc,wherecisthelocationoftheneutral
axisfromtopofsection.Theareaisequaltobfc.
(b) Thetensionzoneinconcreteisignoredasitisassumedcrackedandineffective.
(c) The transformed area of tension steel which represents the area of tension steel transformed
intoconcrete.TheareaisequaltonAs,wherenisthemodularratioandisgivenbytheratiorof
elasticmodulusofsteeldividedbytheelasticmodulusofconcrete(n=Es/Ec).
(d) The transformed area of compression steel which represents the area of compression steel
transformedintoconcrete.Theareaisequalto(n1)As.

Even though an equation can be written to find the depth of the neutral axis, c, we will use an excel
spreadsheettofindcbytrialanderror,asfollows:

Cracked Transformed Section By Trial and Error


NOTE: calculations assume that C < tf (thickness of flange)
Choose value of C, depth of N.A. until Sum of A*Y is zero
C = 70.25 mm A*Y = 7,139
Zero
Guage 0.00



B H Area Y A*Y Io A*d^2
Compression Zone in Flange 2680 70.25 188270 35.1 6612984 309708072 0
Transformed Compr Reinforcement 13809 7.8 107020 0 829403
Transformed Tens. Reinforcement 25452 -263.8 -6712864 0 1770517974
Sums 7,139 309708072 1771347377

Cracked Moment of Inertia = Icr
2081055449
Depth to N.A. (after trial & error) c 70.25
k =c / dt k 0.210
j =arm =1 - k/3 j 0.930

Oncethelocationofneutralaxis,c,forthecrackedsectionisfound,thecrackedmomentofinertia,Icr,
iscalculated.Withoutgoingintothedetailsofthederivations,thestressinthesteelisequalto:

fs=nM(dc)/Icr
fs=7.77x235x10
6
x(33470.25)/(2.081x10
9
)=231N/mm
2

fs=231/6.895=33.6ksi
and
=(hc)/(dc)=(40070.25)/(33470.25)=1.25
dc=40+10+32/2=66mm=2.6inch(asbefore)
A=(2dc)bw/4=2x2.6x(600/25.4)/4=30.71inch
2
(asbefore)

Then,

Wmax=0.076x1.25x33.6x(2.6x30.71)
0.333
=13.7(inunitsof0.001inch)
Or Wmax=13.7x0.001=0.0137inch=0.348mm

EFFECTOFREDUCEDCONCRETESTRENGTH 13 Hussain Shanaa, PhD, PE


ON BENDING AND CRACKING OF RC BEAMS PDH Engineers Course April 2010
Repeatingthesamecalculationsforthereducedvalueofconcretestrength(21N/mm
2
),willresultin
thefollowing:

C=75.5mm
Icr=2.42x10
9

fs=233/6.895=33.8ksi
=(hc)/(dc)=(40075.5)/(33475.5)=1.26

then Wmax=0.352mm

Fromtheabovecalculation,itisclearthattheeffectofthereducedstrengthofconcreteisinsignificant
inrelationshiptocrackingofthebeamandthecrackwidth.Areductionofconcretestrengthfrom30to
21 N/mm
2
(30% reduction) resulted in an increase of crack width from 0.348 to 0.352 mm (1%
increase).Itshouldbekeptinmindthattheprecisionofthesecalculationisnotasexactastojustify3
decimalsignificantdigits.Therefore,onceweroundtotwosignificantdigitsthedifferencedisappears.

Insummary,thereducedconcretestrengthwouldnothavecausedtheobservedcracking,asevenwith
theoriginaldesign,crackingwouldhaveoccurredatthesamerangeofbehavior.

UnderthecurrentACIcode, andstarting withthe1999edition,itisnolonger requiredto docracking


calculations. The provision has been substituted by a maximum spacing between tension bars that
shouldnotbeexceeded:

S<[380(280/fs)2.5Cc]
And S<[300(280/fs)]

Where,

S=maximumbarspacingtocontrolcrackingwithinacceptablelimits
fs=steelstress
Cc=Clearcoverfromnearestsurfaceofconcretetosurfaceoftensionreinforcement

Inourproblem,

fs=231N/mm
2
(asperdetailedcalculation)
Cc=40+10=50mm

Then,

S<[380(280/231)2.550]=335mm(controls)
And S<[300(280/fs)]=363

Inthisproblem,thespacingis:

(bw2cover2stirrupbardia)/Noofbars.
=(6002x402x1032)/4=117mm

Sincethespacingof117mmislessthatthelimitof363mm,thennoexcessivecrackingisexpectedto
occur in the beam according to the current ACI provisions. This result is independent of the concrete
strength,andhencenoeffectfromthereductionistobeexpected.

EFFECTOFREDUCEDCONCRETESTRENGTH 14 Hussain Shanaa, PhD, PE


ON BENDING AND CRACKING OF RC BEAMS PDH Engineers Course April 2010
CONCLUSIONSRELATINGTOTHECALCULATIONS:

Theabovecalculationsconfirmthefollowingconclusions:

1. Thestructuralbeamsatlevel6ofthebuildingweredesignedproperlyandmeetthedesignstrength
requirementsofBS81101997,aswellastheACIcoderequirement.

2. Thereducedstrengthofconcreteincertainareasofthebeamsresultedinaslightreductionofthe
bendingmomentcapacity;however,thebeamsstillmeetthestructuralstrengthrequirements.

3. Using a Tbeam section, when allowed by the code for monolithically constructed insituslab on
beams floor, will result in higher strength compared to the design of the same beam if taken as a
rectangularbeam.

4. Reinforcementinthecompressionzonewillallowtheadditionofmorereinforcementinthetension
zone,resultinginahighercapacitybeamforthesamecrosssection.

5. Thestructuralbeamsatlevel6,asdesigned,wouldhaveexhibitedcrackingatthedeadloadlevel,as
wellastheserviceloadlevel.Suchcrackingisacceptableandiswithinthecodeprovisions,andthe
resultingcrackwidthsareacceptable.

6. The cracking behavior is shown not to be affected by the concrete strength, hence, the reduced
strengthofconcretedidnotcontributetotheextentofcrackinganymorethanwouldhavebeenthe
caseundertheoriginalspecifiedstrength.

7. Thus it is concluded that the beams at level 6 are adequate, and the cracking observed is to be
expectedasausualbehaviorofreinforcedconcrete,andshouldnotbeamatterofconcern.

8. Thestrengthofthestructureinthiscaseisnotanissue,asthefloorhasalreadybeensubjectedtoa
loadtestwhenitsupportedthenextlevel(7
th
level)ofslabsandbeams.

9. Thecrackwidthsareverysmall,anddonotexceed0.2mminwidth,whichisnocauseofconcern.
Foraestheticpurposes,thecrackscanbeproperlytreatedatpaintingtime,withproperpaintfillers,
andbyusingacrackbridgingpaint.

CONCLUSIONSRELATINGTOREINFORCEDCONCRETEDESIGN:

1. It can be concluded that the design of reinforced concrete beams is not very sensitive to the
strength of the concrete. Hence, lower strength (and less costly) mixes should be specified, unless
higherstrengthmixesarejustifiable.

2. Even though it is not shown here, the strength of columns are highly affected by the concrete
strength.

3. It should be understood that emphasis on the control of concrete strength is still an important
aspect of concrete construction. However, any areas exhibiting reduced strength should not be
immediately refused, but careful reevaluation may reveal additional strength that was not
accountedforinoriginaldesign.

4. Simple additional redundancies can be incorporated into the structure without any substantial
increaseincost.RedundanciescanincludesimpleitemssuchasignoringtheflangeofTbeams(or
onlytaking asmallerpartthanallowedbycode)and extending partsof thetensionreinforcement
(both+veandve)intoadjacentzonesofcompression,withoutincludingthisinthestrength.Such
EFFECTOFREDUCEDCONCRETESTRENGTH 15 Hussain Shanaa, PhD, PE
ON BENDING AND CRACKING OF RC BEAMS PDH Engineers Course April 2010
practice is inherent in the code as it requires that certain percentages should be extended into
neighboringzones.

5. Crackingisanaturalbehaviorandistobeexpectedinreinforcedconcretebeams.Extraprecaution
should be taken for beams that will be exposed, as the unfamiliar public may raise concerns with
visiblecracks.

6. Cracking can be reduced by adding more reinforcement and thus reducing the stress level in the
reinforcement,fs,attheservicelevel.

7. Theequationforthecrackwidth(Wmax)indicatesthatareducedcrackwidthwillresultifalarger
numberofsmallerbarsareused.