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Steel-reinforced concrete structural components are often associated with significant maintenance costs as a result of reinforcement corrosion. To mitigate this problem, fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) bars have been used in place of traditional steel reinforcement for some applications. The non-ductile response of typical FRP bars is a concern, however. To overcome this problem, hybrid ductile FRP (HDFRP) bars have been developed for use in concrete flexural members with resulting ductility indices similar to sections reinforced with steel. In this study, five different HDFRP bar concepts are analyzed and compared in terms of ductility, stiffness, and relative cost. Of primary interest is the effect that the number of materials used in bar construction has on performance. Reinforced concrete beam and bridge deck applications are considered for analysis. It was found that all HDFRP-reinforced flexural members considered could meet code-specified strength and ductility requirements for steel-reinforced sections, although service load deflections were approximately twice that of steel-reinforced sections of the same depth. In general, ductility increased, and overall material cost decreased, as the bar material layers increased from 2 to 4. The 4-material continuous fiber bar approach was found to be most promising, with high ductility as well as relatively low cost.


Applied Mechanics | Structural Engineering


NOTICE IN COMPLIANCE WITH PUBLISHER POLICY: This is the final draft of an article published in Journal of Composite Materials, 48(6), (2014), available online at: