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Connections Between Concrete Layers with Different Ages

Bruno Baleia Casal


Civil Engineering Department, Instituto Superior Tcnico, Universidade Tcnica de Lisboa, Portugal
Abstract
Regarding the design of structures, the connections between different elements play a main role in the efficiency of the
structural system. These connections stand out, for example, in casting joints or in precast element joints, being an inherent feature
in any building where structural concrete is used. The interface between concrete layers with different ages in the given examples
must assure enough shear strength as a main requirement to resist the applied actions on the structure. Under this scope, the present
dissertation aims to study the behavior of connections between concrete layers with different ages.
Initially, the most relevant research projects, which represent significant advances at the time of their disclosure, are presented
and assessed. Furthermore, this dissertation includes a synthesis of the most used behavior models that describe the shear
mechanism: the adhesive bond, the dowel action and the friction. Later, an assessment and comparison of the most relevant
normative expressions in Europe is performed, aiming to related these expressions to the mechanism models of the presented
studies. Finally, the effects of shear are evaluated from an analytical point of view, with the presentation of two case studies
regarding the shear requirements for safety of composite elements.

Keywords: Concrete Connections, Adhesion, Bond, Friction, Dowel Action, Shear Resistance


1. Introduction
The connections between concrete layers with different
ages may occur in a wide range of situations, from structures
rehabilitation and repairing to the construction of new
buildings both with precast or cast-in-situ elements. The use of
these solutions originates the so-called composite elements
and, as a main requirement, these elements must assure
enough shear strength in their interfaces. However, the shear
stress transfer mechanism between two concrete layers is a
complex phenomenon that involves the combination of
different interactions and depends on several parameters that
influence the transmission process, such as the amount of
reinforcement crossing the interface, the compression
resistance of the weaker concrete, the roughness of the
interface, the presence of cracking or the stress caused by
normal forces across the interface.
This subject has been continuously studied over time, a
justifiable attention that has provided several research projects
since the 60s. As a consequence, there is a large number of
design expressions nowadays, which are included in several
documents, model codes and normatives. These equations,
which assess the behavior and/or resistance characteristics
through the use of variable parameters, were calibrated in
order to obtain design values similar to those from empiric
tests.
It is within this scope that this document is based, which
was prepared on the assumption of providing, at first, a better
understanding of the physical model of the shear mechanism
in a composite element. This assessment is therefore the basis
to apply the design expressions in a judicious and assertive
way and to reach the most efficient construction process of
each solution.
2. Shear Transfer Mechanism
This work starts with a research over the projects already
performed under the basis of the presented subject. Regarding
the most relevant studies, it is possible to summarize the ones
which were fundamental to develop designing models and
some important research works.
2.1. Hanson, 1960
In 1960, Hanson [12] presented the second part of a study
in which the connections in bridges, both with precast or cast-
in-situ elements were analyzed. In those tests, the following
variables were considered: adhesive bond, roughness, keys and
the shear reinforcement.
Initially, the author performed 62 push-off tests in concrete
elements. To establish a common basis of comparison between
various contact surfaces in the push-off tests, the effect of
stirrup reinforcement was isolated by subtracting the load-
deformation curve for stirrup-only (specimens with contact
Instituto Superior Tcnico
Universidade Tcnica de Lisboa
2 B. Casal


surface smooth and unbounded) from the curves of all
individual test specimens. The nature of failure in these tests is
illustrated by the shear-slip curves in Figure 1.

Figure 1 Typical Shear-Slip Curves [12]
With these first results, the author reached some interesting
conclusions, as follows:
The effect of bond might be called a rigid type of
connection. It is noted in Figure 1 that specimens for
which bond was utilized as part as connection, developed a
high shearing stress at low slip.
When roughness and bond are utilized together, an early
peak is followed by an immediately decreasing and
posterior increasing of shearing capacity. The slope of the
increase is dependent on the amount of stirrup
reinforcement. In this case, Hanson suggests that the early
peak stress is probably a suitable basis for practical design.
The shearing stress of keys cannot be added to the
contribution of bond and roughness. The slip movements
required to develop the keys are greater than the
movements for a bonded surface and it appears that bond
must be destroyed in order for a key to act.
For specimens with roughness unbounded some benefit
from the keys was indicated by a slight increase in the
average stress at the maximum points on the shear-slip
curves. The key added also an initial peak stress at low slip
which made the connection more rigid.
Although the concrete strength was not investigated as a
variable, some tests provide some indication of the effect
of variation in strength of concrete. Shearing stress appears
to be approximately proportional to the concrete strength.

In the second part of this study ten T-shaped girders were
tested. This test allowed to compare the results of shearing
stress developed in girders and push-off specimens. In order to
establish this comparison, the variables of bond, roughness
and stirrups were combined in the girder-slab contact surface.
According to Hanson, it may be stated that the push-off
tests give a good representation of the character of the stress-
slip curves for the girders testes. Quantitatively, the push-off
test curves are conservative for a smooth bonded connection,
representative for a rough bonded connection and inconclusive
for a rough unbounded connection.
2.2. Birkeland and Birkeland, 1966
In 1966, Birkeland and Birkeland [8] published an article
presenting connections in precast concrete construction. For
the first time it was explained the shear friction analogy. When
a joint between two rough surfaces is required to transfer shear
forces, the shear will be resisted by friction, resulting from an
external force (Figure 2 a) or from reinforcement crossing the
joint (Figure 2 b). If the crack m-m is rough, sliding motion
along it will cause a separation of the two halves. If the
reinforcement is placed across the interface, the separation will
develop tension T in the reinforcement, resulting in
compression across the interface. The roughness may be
visualized as a frictionless saw tooth ramp, where the angle of
the teeth is the friction angle and thus the friction coefficient
is tan.

Figure 2 Shear friction hypothesis [8]
The ultimate shear capacity will be reached at yield of the
reinforcing. If this taken as the yield stress of the
reinforcement, then:
:
u
= p
sd
tan (2.1)
The value of tan depends on the type of concrete and the
interface roughness. For artificially roughened joints it is
recommended 1.4 and for ordinary joints 0.8 to 1.0.
2.3. Mattock and Hawkins, 1972
Mattock and Hawkins [16] developed a study in witch it
was investigated the role of concrete strength, shear plane
characteristics, reinforcement, and direct stress on the shear
transfer strength of reinforced concrete.
This work was based on 3 previous studies where
monolithically cast push-off, pull-off and modified push-off
specimens were tested. This last one was performed with an
obliqued shear plane that originated the development of a
compressive normal force across the plane.
The following highlight the main conclusions:
A pre-existing crack along the shear plane will reduce the
ultimate shear strength and increase the slip in all levels of
load.
Initial Peak
Bond and
Roughness
Bond and Roughness
with Key
Smooth Bonded
Rough Unbonded
0 0,127 0,254 0,381 0,508
0,69
1,38
2,07
2,76
3,45
4,14
Slip (mm)
A
v
e
r
a
g
e

S
h
e
a
r
i
n
g

S
t
r
e
s
s

(
M
P
a
)
Stirrup Effect Subtracted For All Curves
Rough Unbonded with Key
Reforo
P
V
P
V
P
V
P
N (=P)
T
V
T
V
T
V

T
T.tan

m m
m m
a)
b)
B. Casal 3



For the same parameter f
y
, the changes of spacing, the
strength and the size of reinforcement do not influence the
shear strength.
For values of f
y
<4.1MPa the measured shear strength was
higher for higher concrete strengths. For values of f
y

below, the concrete strength did not appear to affect the
shear strength.
To calculate the shear strength, an externally applied
compressive stress acting transversely to the shear plane
(
Nx
) could be add to the effect of parameter f
y
.

Mattock and Hawkins stated that in a pre-cracked
specimen the first developed mechanism is the shear friction,
followed by the dowel action of the reinforcement crossing the
crack.
Based on the results, it was found that eq. (2.1) is rather
conservative for low values of f
y
. Therefore, the authors
proposed using a modified shear friction method, calculated
with the following expression:
:
u
= 1.S8 +u.8(p
sd
+ o
n
) (2.2)
where a friction coefficient of 0.8 is established and the
contribution of an externally applied compressive strength (
n
)
is considered.
2.4. Walraven and Reinhardt, 1972
In this study, Walraven and Reinhardt [20] developed a
model called Aggregate Interlock that involves normal stress,
shear stress, crack width and shear displacement. It has been
shown that in reality the transmission of forces across a crack
takes place at numerous contact areas between the aggregate
particles, embedded in the crack faces, and the matrix on the
opposite face of the crack. The matrix will deform until
equilibrium can be reestablished, as shown in

Figure 3 a) Contact area between matrix and aggregate b)
Stress conditions [20]
By considering for the first time the size and shape of the
particles, as well as plastic deformations, this model can
predict not just the ultimate loading state but also the load-
-deformation response of a specimen.
Considering the equilibrium conditions at a particle surface
(fig. 3b), the relations between the stresses in a crack and the
displacement components can be formulated as:
o = o
pu
(A
x
- pA

)
(2.3)
= o
pu
(A

+pA
x
)
(2.4)
where is the normal stress across a crack, is the shear
stress, is a friction coefficient and A
x
and A
y
are projected
areas for a unit crack area, corresponding to project contact
lengths, a
x
and a
y
, that depend on the crack width, the shear
displacement, the maximum particle diameter and the total
aggregate volume per unit volume of concrete. Best results
were reported for the values of:
o
pu
= 6,S9
cc
0,56

(2.5)
In a later study [20], Walraven et al. conducted a statistical
analysis on the results of 88 push-off test. The following
equation was suggested for the design of a precracked shear
interface:
:
u
= C
1
(p
sd
)
C
2

(2.6)
Where:
C
1
= u,822f
cc
0,406
andC
2
= u,1S9f
cc
0,303

(2.7)
2.5. Loov and Patnaik, 1994
In 1994 an experimental study was performed by Loov and
Patnaik [15] to evaluate the horizontal shear strength of
composite concrete beams with a rough interface. To do so, 16
composite concrete beams were tested with a single spam. The
web portion was first fabricated with stirrups projecting from
it and the flange concrete was placed three days later. The
interface was left as-cast with some of the coarse aggregate
protruding.
Two major variables were investigated. The clamping
stress was varied while maintaining the concrete strength at
about 35 MPa and the concrete strength was varied for a fixed
clamping stress of about 0.8 MPa.
By analyzing the results, the authors could conclude the
following:
Slip and stirrup stresses in the test beams were
insignificant until the beam attained a horizontal shear
stress of about 1.5 to 2 MPa. Thereafter, the horizontal
shear stress increase with slip, up to a slip ranging from 0.3
to 0.8 mm, and then decreased.
Almost all beams reached slips at failure from 2 to 7 MPa
The stirrups were not stressed until a horizontal shear
stress of about 1.5 to 2.0 MPa was reached. These values
can be considered as a basis shear strength for connections
without stirrups. The stirrups become relatively effective
when shear stress reached 3 MPa.
Most stirrups can be expected to reach or be linear yield at
a slip of about 0.5 mm (for f
y
<420MPa)
Based on the results of various tests, the authors developed
the following equation to approximate the horizontal shear
strength of composite beams:
:
u

c
= k_
u,1 +p

c

(2.8)

where:
- k=0,6 for concrete placed monolithically;
- k=0,5 for rough concrete interfaces.
The factor is a constant used to account for the effect of
concrete density:
- =1 for normal weight concrete;
- =0,85 for sand-lightweight concrete;
- =0,75 for all-lightweight concrete.
a
y
a
x
w

a)
a
x
a
y

pu

pu

pu

pu

pu

pu
b)
4 B. Casal


2.6. Summary of the Different Effects on the Shear
Mechanism
From the several analyzed studies and from its evolution in
recent years, one may conclude that the shear resistance in the
interface of concrete layers with different ages is indeed a
phenomenon where many simultaneous effects may be
identified. As it turned out, the combination of these
mechanisms is complex and varies with the various
intervenient factors, such as the type of concrete, the amount
of reinforcement, the roughness, etc. With regard to the
discussed studies, these effects and their contribution to shear
resistance will be addressed below.
2.6.1. Interface Roughness
The interface roughness has a determinant role throughout
the mobilization process of the shear mechanism.
There are numerous measuring methods to quantify the
parameters related to the roughness. The SPT method, based
on a quantitative approach, is certainly one of the best known.
This method consists of pouring a specific material, usually
sand, on a contact surface. Then, the subsequent measurement
of the covered area diameter permits the roughness
calculation.
Nevertheless, recent studies have been emerging, in which
some innovative processes to measure roughness are
presented. The contribution of Jlio and Santos [14] is an
outstanding example. In fact, three different methods were
developed by these authors: a method based on the processing
of the digital image (PDI), a two-dimensional laser roughness
analyzer (2D-LRA) and an update of the latter, a three
dimensions laser scanner (3D-LS).
Regarding the surface treatment, there are several
techniques to assign roughness to an interface. In a recent
study, Jlio et al [13] assessed four examples of a concrete
surface treatment: (1) a surface cast again steel formwork (as a
reference), (2) a surface prepared with a steel brush, (3) a
surface treated with sandblasting and (4) a partially chipped
surface. According to the pull-off and shear tests, the authors
concluded that the more efficient technique is the treatment
with sandblasting (3), followed by the treatment with a steel
brush (2), the chipped surface (4) and the casting without
treatment (1), respectively in descending order of efficiency.
2.6.2. Adhesive bond
The shear strength by adhesion may be defined as the
transference of stress between two sections, throughout the
connection between their constituent materials. With regard to
concrete layers with different ages, the adhesion is mainly
granted by the chemical bonding between the new concrete
and the existing one. The created connection shall be similar to
the one of aggregate-cement, where a bond between the new
and the old concrete matrix occurs.
The roughness and the class of concrete, which are usually
parameters considered in shear stress calculation, are two of
the main connection influencers.
The maximum value of adhesion is achieved at values of
slip about 0,02 to 0,05mm. In fact, the adhesive bond is a rigid
type of connection. This feature is the main difference between
this mechanism and friction or dowel action.
2.6.3. Dowel Action
Dowel action occurs when a steel bar in a crack is
subjected to a shear displacement. If there is sufficient cover
on the reinforcing bar, a complex triaxial state of stress occurs
in the adjacent concrete to the bar (Figure 4). The ultimate
resistance of this mechanism results essentially in yielding of
the steel due to bending.

Figure 4 Dowel action common representation [2]
According to Cavaco [11], the shear strength of dowel
action can be approached based on the analogy of a laterally
loaded beam on a cohesive soil.
Often, the crack associated to this mechanism generates
tensile forces in the reinforcement bars, due to external actions
or friction effect. The interaction of tensile forces and bending
leads to a reduction of the maximum possible dowel action.
2.6.4. Friction
The mechanism of shear friction develops with the
appearance of the first cracks and the consequent slip between
interfaces. The friction force is a function of the normal force
across the joint. To analyze and quantify this mechanism, one
may use the shear friction model, original developed by
Birkeland and Birkeland [8], or the aggregate interlock model,
developed by Walraven and Reinhardt [20].
Both models are based on the same principle: when two
crack surfaces are forced to slide each other, a separation will
occur. This separation causes the reinforcement to be stressed
in tension, and thus a resisting compression force is developed.
Thus, the shear will be resisted by friction between the two
materials. The compression may be also due to an external
force.
2.6.5. Final Considerations
As shown before, the shear mechanism can be described as
a combination of various effects:
The adhesion is the first mechanism to be developed. The
maximum shear strength is achieved at reduced values of
slip. After this initial slip a considerable decrease of
strength occurs.
Likewise, the friction due to external compression forces
starts to develop with the beginning of the slip. Then, a
gradually increase occurs.
On the other hand, the friction due to the reinforcement
bars requires higher slips to start developing. This

s
High local stresses
Crack
EventuedSpalling
of Concrete Corner
B. Casal 5



mechanism starts approximately after the failing of
adhesion.
The contribution of each mechanism (adhesion and
friction) depends mainly on the amount of transversal
reinforcement. Recent studies indicate that the maximum
shear strength is given by adhesion when <0,005.
With the increase of slip, the reinforcement bars will be
also subjected to bending. Thus, the contribution of dowel
action will take place.
The interaction of friction and dowel action depends
essentially on the interface roughness, the expected slip
and the anchorage of the reinforcement. Friction will
prevail if a roughened surface and a good reinforcement
anchorage is provided. In this case, the reinforcement is
considerable tensioned, and the effect of dowel action is
reduced. On the contrary, the dowel action will be de
dominant effect.
3. Codes approach
In this chapter, an overall appreciation of the main codes
shear connection expressions will be presented.
3.1. Model Code 1990 (MC90)
In this design code [6], the mechanism of shear transfer
along a concrete-to-concrete interface is represented by the
mechanism of friction and dowel action.
Friction
The shear resistance of an interface due to concrete friction
may be evaluated by means of the following expressions:
SmoothInterface
]u,d
= u,4u
cd
(3.1)
RoughInterface

]u,d
= u,4u
cd
2 3
(
cd
+p

)
1 3

(3.2)
As one can notice, the compressive strength of concrete,
the reinforcement ratio and the normal compressive stress due
to external actions are considered in the rough interface
expression. Nevertheless, the compressive stress is the only
parameter included in the smooth interface expression,
affected by a representative value of friction coefficient. In
fact, when the crack surface is very smooth, the crack opening
is minimum. As a consequence, the clamping of the crack due
to the stress of the reinforcement bars will not occur, which
invalidates the contribution of this effect in friction
development.
Dowel Action
Regarding the dowel action, the Model Code 1990 presents
the following design expression:
F
ud
=
1.30
y
Rd

b
2
[1 + (1,SF
2
) -1,SF
d

cd
_1 -_
c
sd
]
jd
]
2

(3.3)
The calculation of the first term is based on the analogy of
a beam on a cohesive soil, as shown before. The second term
represents the reduction of the dowel action due to tensile
forces and bending generated in the reinforcement.

Ultimate Limit State of Shear Joints

This document presents also a section covering the general
design of reinforced concrete interfaces. When a more specific
model is not available and service limit state aspects are not
governing, the following expression is recommended:

Rd
=
ctd
+ (p
d
+
n
) < u,2S
cd
(3.4)
where and depend on the roughness category of the
interfaces.
3.2. Eurocode 2 (EC2)
The design of shear resistance at a concrete interface
present in Eurocode 2 [4] is based on the equation (3.4) of
MC90, and is given by:
:
Rd
= c
ctd
+
n
+p
sd
( sin + cos ) u,S f
cd
(3.5)
In this expression one can identify three different terms:
cf
ctd
: represents the influence of the adhesion. As shown
before, this contribution depends on the compressive
strength of concrete and shear plane characteristics.

n
: represents the external normal forces contribution.
This term depends on the surface roughness and is affected
by the factor
f
syd
(sin+cos) : expresses the reinforcement contribu-
tion to shear resistance due to friction and tensile stress. It
depends on the ratio of reinforcement, , the yield strength
of reinforcement, f
syd
, the roughness of the interface, , and
the bars inclination.
This document also shows that it is possible to include the
ordinary shear reinforcement in ratio . According to Cmara
[10], a field of compression struts will be present if one admit
that the reinforcement is mobilized to vertical shear. The
vertical component of compression struts is necessarily equal
to the reinforcement tensile stress. Thus, the interface will be
compressed increasing friction.
3.3. Model Code 2010 (MC10)
The Model Code 2010 [3] presents the shear strength
mechanism as a combination of three kinds of effects:
adhesion/mechanical interlocking, friction and dowel action.
The single mechanisms can be summarized and approached
with the following expressions:
Adhesion + friction

u,I
=
c
+ ( +k p

)
(3.6)
where k is interaction (effectiveness) factor.



Term 1 Term 2
6 B. Casal


Dowel Action
F
(s)
= F
0,mux
_
S
S
max
]
0,5
= k A
s
_
cc

_
S
S
max
]
0,5

(3.7)

Where:
S
max
is slip when F
0,Max
is reached: S
max
0.10-0.20 d
s

K~1.6 for circular cross-sections, C C50/60
Superposition of the different mechanisms
When superposing the different mechanisms the
interrelation of different effects has to be taken into account.
In fact, the reinforcement bars are normally subjected to an
interaction of tension and bending and the maximum
contribution of each mechanism occurs at different slips. Thus,
the ultimate shear stress can be described in an overall
approach as follows:

u
=
c
+(p k

+
n
) + p


cc

(3.8)

The contribution of each mechanism is considered by the
interaction factors k and . The value of these factors depends
on the roughness, expected slip as well as the anchorage of the
reinforcement.
Shear design
In addition to the requirements formulated before, this
document includes two more expressions to the design of
horizontal shear stress. For a generic interface between
concrete cast at different times, the design limit value should
be calculated as in EC2, by equation (3.5).
For retrofitting of structures the following expression is
more appropriate:
:
Rd
= u,u9k
c

ck
1 3
+(pk
d
+
n
) +
F
p_

cc
(3.9)
3.4. Eurocode 4 (EC4)
The Eurocode 4 [5] (EC4) covers building and civil
engineering works which use composite steel and concrete
construction. In these structures, fasteners and welding
connecting devices are normally employed to transmit the
longitudinal shear forces between the two materials. The most
commonly used device is the headed stud shear connector.
This type of connection is similar to the joint between two
concrete layers with transversal reinforcement bars. The
developed mechanism can be associated to the dowel action,
presented before.
The design shear resistance of a headed stud automatically
welded should be determined from:
P
Rd
(1)
=
u,8f
u

u
2
4

v

or
P
Rd
(2)
=
u,29u
2
f
ck
E
cm

v

(3.10)

Whichever is smaller, with:
= u,2 _
h
SC
u
+1] foi S
h
SC
u
4
(3.11)

= 1 foi
h
SC
u
> 4
(3.12)

Despite the similarity between this connection and the
dowel action, the comparison of parameters is still complex.
3.5. Comparison of models
In this section, a comparison of the results obtained
through the mentioned formulations will be presented. Class
C25/30 concrete and class A400 steel were used as reference
materials in the performed analysis. Additionally, the
compression caused by normal forces across the interface was
assumed equal to zero.
Initially, both the results obtained through the expression
included in EC2, equation (3.5), and obtained through the
expression included in MC90 for the dowel action, equation
(3.3), will be assessed. Moreover, the new design expression
presented in MC10, equation (3.8), will also be considered in
this assessment.
The shear stress values depending on may be displayed if
some adjustments were made in the expression of MC90, in
which the result is shown as a force. Thus, the following
simplification is suggested:
:
Rd
=
4

[1 + (1,SF
2
) -1,SF _
d

cd
_
1 -_
o
sd

d
_
2
(3.13)
To equate the three expressions, the surface was
considered very smooth/smooth in order to adopt comparable
factors in the expressions of EC2 and MC10, respectively. The
values of paramaters can be seen in Table 1.
MC10 EC2 MC90
Smooth Very Smooth Dowel Action
k
c
0 c 0.25 e (mm) 2
k 0 0.5
b
(mm) 16

f
1.4

c
0.4
0.5
Table 1 Values of parameters
The obtained results are presented in Figure 5:

Figure 5 Comparison between EC2 and MC10 expressions for smooth
surface and MC90 expression for dowel action
0,00
0,50
1,00
1,50
2,00
2,50
3,00
3,50
0,000 0,005 0,010 0,015
v
r
d

-
s
h
e
a
r

s
t
r
e
s
s

(
M
p
a
)

EC2 - Very smooth surface


MC10 - Smooth surface
MC90 - Dowel Action
Adhesion Friction Dowel Action
B. Casal 7



As one can notice, the shear resistance values obtained
through the expression of EC2 is significantly higher than
those obtained through the expressions of MC90 and MC10.
Furthermore, the lines associated to MC90 and MC10 present
approximate v
rd
values, varying in a similar configuration. On
the one hand, a contribution of the dowel action alone may be
assumed if a smooth surface is considered in the new
expression of MC10. On the other hand, a participation of the
adhesive bond and the friction is included even if a very
smooth surface is considered.
Under this scope, another analysis that one may find
interesting is to compare the expressions of EC2 and MC10
when the interface is classified as rough. Thus, the parameters
were assigned with the following values:
MC10 EC2
High pressure water jetting Very smotth
k
c
2.3
c
0.5 c 0,25
k 0.5 0.8 0,5

f
0.9
Table 2 Values of parameters
The obtained results are presented in Figure 6.

Figure 6 - Comparison between EC2 and MC10 expressions for rough
surface
As it can be seen, the values obtained through the
expression of MC10 are slightly more conservative than those
obtained through the expression of EC2. However, one may
disregard the small differences and conclude that the two
mechanisms considered in the expression of MC10 (friction
and dowel action) and based on k and
f
values lead to results
similar to those of the EC2 that simply regard friction. Also,
the results of both expressions are identical when =0, which
indicates a similar accounting of adhesive effect. When the
reinforcement ratio is zero (=0), the shear resistance is
around 0,6 MPa.
Finally, the expression of EC4, equation (3.15) which is
mainly used in the design of composite steel and concrete
structures, will be compared to the expressions of EC2 and
MC10. Regarding the stud connectors in composite cross
sections, one may notice similarities between the mechanical
behavior of these connectors and the mechanical behavior of
dowels. For comparison purposes, the results obtained through
the expression of EC4 shall provide shear stresses depending
on reinforcement ratio:
:
Rd
(1)
=
u,8f
u

v

:
Rd
(2)
=
u,29 f
ck
E
cm
4

v


(3.14)
The parameters of expressions of EC2 and MC10 adopted
the values presented in Table 1. The obtained results are
presented in Figure 7.

Figure 7 - Comparison between EC2, MC10 and EC4 expressions
As it can be observed, one may notice a clear deviation
between the results related to EC4 and the results related to the
remaining codes. On the one hand, the values obtained through
the EC4 are significantly higher than those obtained through
MC10, denoting a certain deviation from the dowel action
behavior. On the other hand, the shear resistance values
obtained through EC2 and EC4 display obvious similarities.
For reduced reinforcement ratios and as expected, the
resistance of the stud connector is lower, since the expression
of EC2 considers the adhesive bond contribution between the
two concrete layers. The studied situation shows that the
expression of EC2 is more conservative for reinforcement
ratios higher than 0.7 %. Thus, one may conclude that the
results obtained through EC4 models are similar to those
obtained through EC2 considering concrete layers with
different ages and a very smooth surface.
4. Shear Effect Evaluation and Applications

To improve the load capacity of a composite element, a
good connection between the two materials shall be ensured.
Thus, it is important to calculate the shear force in a
connection, given by the variation of normal stresses on the
cross section. To assess the distribution of these stresses, an
analysis of elements with linear and non-linear elastic
behavior is presented below.
In a cross section with a linear elastic behavior, horizontal
shear stress depends on the bending moment in any part of the
element and it may be calculated through the following
expression:
= v
2
S
0,1
I
1
b

(4.1)
In a cracked element, the cross section is assumed to
display a non-linear elastic behavior. The axial tensile strength
of concrete may be disregarded in these cases. In the region
between the innermost reinforcement and the axial
0,00
0,50
1,00
1,50
2,00
2,50
3,00
3,50
4,00
4,50
5,00
0,000 0,005 0,010 0,015
v
r
d

-
S
h
e
a
r

s
t
r
e
s
s

(
M
p
a
)

EC2 - Rough surface


MC10 - High pressure water jetting
Vrd limite (EC2 e MC10)
0,00
0,50
1,00
1,50
2,00
2,50
3,00
3,50
0,000 0,005 0,010 0,015
v
r
d

-
S
h
e
a
r

s
t
r
e
s
s

(
M
p
a
)

EC2 - Very smooth surface


EC4 - Headed stud
MC10 - Smooth surface
8 B. Casal


compression stress in concrete, the horizontal shear stress is
given by:
=
v
2
zb

(4.2)
However, in most of the repairing practical cases,
reinforcement is included in the new layer, being the old and
the new reinforcement the bound of the connection. In these
cases:
=
v
2
zb

(4.3)
Where is the ratio of the longitudinal force in the new
concrete area and the total longitudinal force either in the
compression or tension zone, both calculated for the
considered section. In case of the new concrete is being
subjected to axial tensile stresses, is calculated by:
=
A
S1
A
S1
+ A
S0

(4.4)
When the cross section of the new concrete is being
compressed, two situations may be considered. If all the
compression is applied in the new concrete, is equal to 1. If
the compression is distributed over both concrete layers,
shall be calculated by the ratio of compressions, i.e. using an
expression analogous to the previous one. This procedure may
be avoided when assuming all the compression applied in the
new concrete, resulting in a conservative assessment.

Two case studies, in which the shear effects were assessed,
will be presented next. These case studies refer to the Funchal
Centrum enterprise structure, in which several structural
interventions were carried out in order to provide the
requirements for Dolce Vita Shopping Mall.
4.1. Slab Reinforcement by adding a new concrete layer
The first case study refers to a slab reinforcement whose
imposed loads are intended to be increased from 5 KN/m
2
to
10 KN/m
2
. For this purpose, it was casted an extra concrete
layer of 0.08 m thick. The binding device was improved by
using a U shape steel connector.

Figure 8 U shape steel connector
The slab is supported by 0.90 m diameter circular columns,
in a 8,10 m 8,10 m grid. In span areas there is a 0.22 m
thickness, while an enlargement of the column head provides a
0.35 m thick slab on supports. Each enlargement occurs in an
area of 3,00x3,00 m
2
. Class C30/37 concrete and class
A500NR steel reinforcement were used. By using these data,
an approximate numerical model was performed.
In this case, the analysis of the constructive process and
the loads action on the structure play a major role as it allows
the assessment of the evolution of the stress distribution on the
course of time. On the first phase before any action takes
place, the structure is loaded with its Self-Weight (SW), Other
Permanent Loads (OPL) and Imposed Loads (IL). On the
second phase the OPL and the IP are withdrawn. On the third
phase the new concrete layer is added to the slab and waits
until it cures. On the fourth phase the OPL and the higher IL
are added. Due to the mentioned above its verifiable that only
on phase four the concrete acquires the resistant capacity,
forming a piece composed of two materials. From this analysis
and in the first instance it can be concluded that the shear
stress on the interface of the two materials only results from
the stress originated by the OPL and the IL.
However the behavior of the materials in the course of
time must be considered, particularly the concrete creep. Over
time the stress distribution will drive away from the one
existent on the end of the building process and will approach
the monolithic behavior. Thus it is possible to accept the
reinforced slab as being concreted all at once, disregarding the
influence of the building process. This assumption is
conservative and facilitates the process of security check.
In the first instance, there is the need to determine whether
it will be necessary to perform the reinforcement, in which
areas and with which reinforcement bars. Thus, the resistant
stress shall be calculated by the equation (3.5) by isolating the
term related to adhesion (=0 e
n
=0). Adopting c=0.45 and
=0.7:
:
Rd
udcso
= u,6u Npa
(4.5)
Whit this value, the maximum shear force supported by
adhesion can be estimated. With =0.48, V
Rd
is calculated by
equation (4.3), as follows:
I
Rd
udcso
= 4SS KNm
(4.6)
Adopting a circular surface concentric with columns, one
can estimate the radius from which the horizontal shear is
resisted by adhesion:
(N
sd
- i
2
p
sd
) 2i = v
Ed
adcso

(4.7)
Regarding the numerical model, N
sd
=1810 KN.
Considering a fundamental load combination, one can
calculate r 0,71m. This value represents a very small
reinforcement area. In practice, it makes no sense a procedure
in such a reduced space. Thus, a superior area was adopted,
with a 1,25m radius. In this new surface an average shear force
of V
Ed
=449 KN/m was calculated, which leads to
v
Edi
=0,68Mpa. Therefore, a reinforcement ratio can be
estimated disregarding the contribution of adhesion (c=0):
:
Rd
= p
sd
( sin +cos ) (4.8)
A value of =0.00223 was calculated, which leads to a
transversal reinforcement area of A
s
=95.3cm
2
. Adopting
12mm bars, a solution of 44 connectors is reached.
To rectify the longitudinal bars interruption, 4 ribbons with
double reinforcement were adopted near the column. Thus, a
concentration of horizontal shear in these ribbons will take
Newconcretelayer
Longitudinal reinforcement
Transversal
reinforcement
Old concretelayer
Epoxidicgrout
B. Casal 9



place, which requires a superior reinforcement ratio. The final
configuration is present in figure x

Figure 9 Final configuration
4.2. Construction of a new slab: slab-wall connection
In the same building - Dolce Vita Funchal - the cinema
halls were occupying a particularly section that was required
to be disabled. To take full advantage of the free space, a new
intermediate slab was designed, with an area of approximately
80mx20m. The adopted solution included a connection
between the new slab and the containing wall.
This connection involves a previous opening of a 3 to 4 cm
breach in the wall. Then, a drilling of 25 cm depth is made and
the dowel is placed and sealed with an epoxy grout.
This structure is similar to the previous one: a 0.22m thick
concrete slab, with a 0.35 thick enlargement of the column
head. The slab is supported by 1.0 m diameter circular
columns, in a 8,10 m 8,10 m grid and a 4,05 m peripheral
span. Once again, an approximate numerical model was
performed.
Using a static analysis, an average value of shear at the
edge of the slab of 16 KN/m was obtained. To estimate the
required reinforcement ratio, three possible mechanisms were
considered.
Dowel Action
The first mechanism is based on the development of an
eventual crack in the connection area between the wall and the
slab Figure 10.

Figure 10 Slab-Wall connection: Dowel action mechanism
If the crack width e is enough to avoid the surface
contact between the two faces, the dowel action model can be
adopted. Thus, the calculations were performed based on
MC90, using equation (3.8) with the following parameters:

Rd
=1.3 e(mm) =2 f
cd
(MPa) =20

b
=12
s
=0 f
syd
=435

A value of =0.069% was obtained, which leads to a
transversal reinforcement area of A
s
=1.52cm
2
/m. These results
conduct to a distribution of 16//1.35m.
Friction
The second mechanism is based on the previous hypothesis
of crack opening, but with a small width. Thus, the contact
between the two faces is allowed and friction will occur.
To perform the calculations, equation (3.5) was used with
the following parameters:
v
Rd
(MPa) =0.073 =0.7 f
ctd
(MPa) =1.33
c =0
n
=0 f
syd
(MPa) =435
A value of =0.024% was obtained, which leads to a
transversal reinforcement area of A
s
=0.53 cm
2
/m.
When compared to the previous evaluation, one can notice
a smaller amount of reinforcement, as expected. In this
specific case, the difference between results of friction and
dowel action is about
1
/
3
. Accounting the friction effect in
design calculations appears to be a natural solution. In fact, it
is reasonable to admit the contact between the two faces of a
crack, even when cracking is present. However, the effect of
dowel action is more ductile than friction. Therefore, the
conservative adoption of dowel action model is understandable
due to the importance of this structural connection.
Friction II
The third mechanism is based on a Portland Cement
Association (PCA) document [7], where a reference to
American code ACI 318-02 [1] is made. In the design
examples section, a model of a beam supported by a pilaster is
described as follows:

Figure 11 Beam supported by a pilaster [7]
This example can be applied to the studied situation. In
this model it was only performed a qualitative analyze.
Because this mechanism has a wider contact area between the
interfaces, it is considered to be less conditioning then the
mechanisms presented before. In this example, it was clarified
the importance of making a gap in the wall for the slab
connection, despite the arduous construction process. It is
easily understandable that if the slab disconnects from the wall
between the different kinds of concrete, it is the concrete
beneath the slab that resists to the shear in the first instance.
This concrete will resist mostly to the service solicitations
until the shear stress is enough to break the connection of the
sloping plan with an approximately 20 angle.
Additional
Reinforcement
Ribbons
Crack
a
b
e
d
20
Potencial Crack
Plane
Pilaster
Bearing
Pad
W
a
l
l
Plan Elevation
10 B. Casal


5. Conclusions
Due to the diverse exposed literature and to the presented
practical applications, it is believed that this work has
contributed to clarify the following issues:

The amount of reinforcement bars that crosses the interface
and the roughness of the interface are two parameters of
main importance of the shearing mechanism. The shear
strength increases accordingly to the increase of the and
the roughness.
The concrete compressive strength, the cracking in the
interface and the external normal tensions are other very
important parameters. A higher class of concrete provides
increased shear strength, while the presence of cracks
causes a decrease of this resistance.
The shear mechanism can be presented as a combination of
three kinds of mechanisms: adhesion, friction and dowel
action.
Adhesion can be defined as the transfer of tension between
two sections by the linking of their materials. This
connection provides a rigid behavior.
The mechanism of shear friction develops with slip
between interfaces. The compression force necessary to
mobilize the friction may have origin in an exterior
compression or in a reinforcement bar.
The dowel action results essentially from the yielding of
the steel due to bending and is reduced when tensile
strength is associated.
The balance between friction and dowel action depends
mainly on the characteristics of the interface, the expected
deformation characteristics and the anchorage of the
reinforcement.
In the reinforcement design it is important to evaluate the
evolution of the building construction process and the load
actions.
The conservative adoption of dowel action instead of
friction in some design solutions is understandable due to
the superior connection ductility of dowel action.

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