Damage assessment in reinforced concrete flexural members using modal strain energy based method

Wahalathantri, Buddhi Lankananda (2012) Damage assessment in reinforced concrete flexural members using modal strain energy based method. PhD thesis, Queensland University of Technology.


Damage assessment (damage detection, localization and quantification) in structures and appropriate retrofitting will enable the safe and efficient function of the structures. In this context, many Vibration Based Damage Identification Techniques (VBDIT) have emerged with potential for accurate damage assessment. VBDITs have achieved significant research interest in recent years, mainly due to their non-destructive nature and ability to assess inaccessible and invisible damage locations. Damage Index (DI) methods are also vibration based, but they are not based on the structural model. DI methods are fast and inexpensive compared to the model-based methods and have the ability to automate the damage detection process. DI method analyses the change in vibration response of the structure between two states so that the damage can be identified. Extensive research has been carried out to apply the DI method to assess damage in steel structures. Comparatively, there has been very little research interest in the use of DI methods to assess damage in Reinforced Concrete (RC) structures due to the complexity of simulating the predominant damage type, the flexural crack. Flexural cracks in RC beams distribute non- linearly and propagate along all directions. Secondary cracks extend more rapidly along the longitudinal and transverse directions of a RC structure than propagation of existing cracks in the depth direction due to stress distribution caused by the tensile reinforcement. Simplified damage simulation techniques (such as reductions in the modulus or section depth or use of rotational spring elements) that have been extensively used with research on steel structures, cannot be applied to simulate flexural cracks in RC elements. This highlights a big gap in knowledge and as a consequence VBDITs have not been successfully applied to damage assessment in RC structures. This research will address the above gap in knowledge and will develop and apply a modal strain energy based DI method to assess damage in RC flexural members.

Firstly, this research evaluated different damage simulation techniques and recommended an appropriate technique to simulate the post cracking behaviour of RC structures. The ABAQUS finite element package was used throughout the study with properly validated material models. The damaged plasticity model was recommended as the method which can correctly simulate the post cracking behaviour of RC structures and was used in the rest of this study. Four different forms of Modal Strain Energy based Damage Indices (MSEDIs) were proposed to improve the damage assessment capability by minimising the numbers and intensities of false alarms. The developed MSEDIs were then used to automate the damage detection process by incorporating programmable algorithms. The developed algorithms have the ability to identify common issues associated with the vibration properties such as mode shifting and phase change. To minimise the effect of noise on the DI calculation process, this research proposed a sequential order of curve fitting technique. Finally, a statistical based damage assessment scheme was proposed to enhance the reliability of the damage assessment results. The proposed techniques were applied to locate damage in RC beams and slabs on girder bridge model to demonstrate their accuracy and efficiency.

The outcomes of this research will make a significant contribution to the technical knowledge of VBDIT and will enhance the accuracy of damage assessment in RC structures. The application of the research findings to RC flexural members will enable their safe and efficient performance.

Impact and interest:

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

Full-text downloads:

933 since deposited on 30 Apr 2013
194 in the past twelve months

Full-text downloads displays the total number of times this work’s files (e.g., a PDF) have been downloaded from QUT ePrints as well as the number of downloads in the previous 365 days. The count includes downloads for all files if a work has more than one.

ID Code: 59509
Item Type: QUT Thesis (PhD)
Supervisor: Thambiratnam, David, Chan, Tommy H.T., & Fawzia, Sabrina
Additional Information: Buddhi Wahalathantri's PhD thesis has been examined by two external examiners. Both examiners recommended the thesis for an outstanding thesis award.
Keywords: modal strain energy based method, reinforced concrete, flexural members, flexural cracks, damage assessment, damage detection, damage localization, damaged plasticity model, damage index method, vibration based damage identification technique, structural health monitoring, MATLAB based program
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Civil Engineering & Built Environment
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Institution: Queensland University of Technology
Deposited On: 30 Apr 2013 00:11
Last Modified: 03 Sep 2015 05:25

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page