, Volume 32, Issue 3, pp 300-314
Date: 11 Jun 2013

Nondestructive Monitoring of Ageing of Alkali Resistant Glass Fiber Reinforced Cement (GRC)

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Abstract

Glass fiber reinforced cement (GRC) is a composite material made of portland cement mortar and alkali resistant (AR) fibers. AR fibers are added to portland cement to give the material additional flexural strength and toughness. However, ageing deteriorates the fibers and as a result the improvement in the mechanical properties resulted from the fiber addition disappears as the structure becomes old. The aim of this paper is monitoring GRC ageing by nondestructive evaluation (NDE) techniques. Two different NDE techniques—(1) nonlinear impact resonant acoustic spectroscopy analysis and (2) propagating ultrasonic guided waves—are used for this purpose. Both techniques revealed a reduction of the nonlinear behavior in the GRC material with ageing. Specimens are then loaded to failure to obtain their strength and stiffness. Compared to the un-aged specimens, the aged specimens are found to exhibit more linear behavior, have more stiffness but less toughness. Finally, undisturbed fragments on the fracture surface from mechanical tests are inspected under the electron microscope, to understand the fundamental mechanisms that cause the change in the GRC behavior with ageing.