Carbon Fiber Renforcement

Carbon fiber reinforced polymer (CFRP) can be used to strengthen reinforced concrete columns, beams, joists and walls. The Loma Prieta earthquakes in San Francisco in 1989 and the Northridge earthquake in Los Angeles in 1994 required large-scale seismic strengthening of bridges and buildings throughout California. A technique that was just beginning to be used at the time, carbon fiber fabric epoxy bonded to the exterior of structural concrete members, proved  to be a valuable tool in this effort. Over the past 20 years,  structural composite applications have been perfected and adapted for use in strengthening projects around the world.

 

Carbon fiber has very high tensile strength and is also very lightweight. When bonded to the exterior of a concrete column, beam, or slab, it can add significant strength without adding weight that would increase the load on foundations and other structural members. The composite material is called fiber-reinforced plastic (FRP). Structural composite reinforcements are easy to apply and can be used on any size or shape of structural member. Traditional techniques for strengthening, such as adding concrete and reinforcing steel around the outside of a structural member (often with shotcrete), external post-tensioning, or adding structural steel supports (shoring) often are more expensive due to the extra work to get everything into place. The primary reason to use this technique is to add strength to an existing structure. In some cases, it might be used on new construction, although at this time that is usually only in response to some sort of design or construction error. In appropriate applications, FRP strengthening can be 30% to 50% less expensive than traditional strengthening due to the ease of installation. Carbon fiber is used in strengthening due to a change in the structure's use, corrosion repair, or construction defects.

 
 
Key Benefits
 
  • Light Weight

  • Quick Installation

  • High Tensile Value

  • Reduced Construction Cost

  • Durability

  • Non-Evasive

  • ACI Approved

  • ICBO Approved

  • Non-toxic

  • Design Build Solution

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