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Ayala Boulevard, Ermita, Manila


Tech IV

And Post-Tensioning
Gonzales, Mark Daniel L.. (BSA – 4B)

Archt. Sonny Alcantara

It involves the application of forced or forces tending
to bend and compress a concrete structure or
structural element in ordered counteractive bending
which results from loading.

What is the Difference between PRE-

Regular Concrete beam only supports a load by
developing compressive stresses at the top, but since the concrete cannot resist the tension
at the bottom, it cracks there. Reinforcing steel bars in the Regular Concrete are placed
within this tension zone to resist the tension and control the cracking.

In pre-stressed, the forced applied is the tensioning or stretching of the steel component which
usually in the form of high tensile strands, wires or bars.

There are two types of PRE-STRESSED Concrete and these are PRE-TENSIONING and POST-TENSIONING.

Pre-tensioning is accomplished by stressing wires or strands, called tendons, to predetermined
amount by stretching them between two anchorages prior to placing concrete.

Prestressed, pre-tensioned, tendons are tensioned by a jack without any concrete. Then, concrete is
poured, allowed to set and bond, at which time the ends are cut and the beam becomes instantly
stressed by the tendons. Service loads can then be applied.

After concrete has hardened, the tendons are released by cutting them at the anchorages. The
tendons tend to regain their original length by shortening and in this process transfer through bond a
compressive stress to the concrete. The tendons are usually stressed by the use of hydraulic jacks. The
stress in tendons is maintained during the placing and curing of concrete by anchoring the ends of
the tendons to abutments that may be as much as 200m apart. The abutments and other formwork
used in this procedure are called prestressing bench or bed.

Characteristics of Pre – Tensioning

1. Difficult to perform at site. Only done in precast yards.

2. There is greater loss of prestress due to shrinkage of concrete.
3. Concrete and steel tendons are in direct contact. So any moisture that slips through cracks in
concrete will cause corrosion in steel.
4. Tendons can only be straight, harped or circular.
5. Since the compressive forces are transferred over a certain length of bond, they are less prone
to anchorage failure.

Prestressed, post-tensioned, tendons are tensioned by a jack after the concrete has already cured
(but a duct is installed such that the concrete is unbonded to the prestressing), at which time the
tendons are tensioned by means of a
hydraulic jack, and the beam becomes
stressed. Grout may or may not then infill the
ducts. Grouting should typically be performed,
to minimize the chance of a single tendon
rupture causing catastrophic failure of the
member. Service loads can then be applied.

Post-tensioning minimizes losses in prestress that

are a result of concrete shrinkage. The only prestress loss due to shrinkage would come as a result of
duct grout shrinkage. In addition, for pre-tensioned beams.

In post-tensioning it is necessary to use some types of device to attach or anchor the ends of the
tendons to the concrete section. These devices are usually referred to as end anchorages. There are
a large number of patents for different types of anchorages. They may also differ n the details of
construction. Some of the popular methods are:

1. Freyssinet system
2. Magnel system
3. Leonhardt system
4. Lee-McCall system
5. Gifford-Udall system

Characteristics of POST-TENSIONING

1. Can be performed at the project site as well as at precast yards.

2. There is relatively less loss of prestress due to concrete shrinkage as at the time of prestressing
concerete has already been cured.
3. Corrosion of steel is less as compared to pre-tensioning.
4. There is more flexibility in design. The prestressing tendons can be configured to almost any
shape. As per requirements the tendons may be bonded or unbonded.
5. They are more prone to anchorage failure as the compressive forces are transferred at the
beam ends. Hence compressive stresses are concentrated.

Whose better? Pre-Tensioning or Post-Tensioning

Both have benefits which differ by application. Generally pretensioning is best if you are fabricating
modular precast units while post tensioning gives greater flexibility in onsite pours and typically allows
for more efficient placement of the reinforcing.