Year of Publication


Document Type





Civil Engineering

First Advisor

Issam Elias Harik


Fiber reinforced polymer (FRP) composites have been increasingly used inconcrete construction. This research focused on the behavior of concrete columnsreinforced with FRP bars, or prestressed with FRP tendons. The methodology was basedthe ultimate strength approach where stress and strain compatibility conditions andmaterial constitutive laws were applied.Axial strength-moment (P-M) interaction relations of reinforced or prestressedconcrete columns with FRP, a linearly-elastic material, were examined. The analyticalresults identified the possibility of premature compression and/or brittle-tension failureoccurring in FRP reinforced and prestressed concrete columns where sudden andexplosive type failures were expected. These failures were related to the rupture of FRPrebars or tendons in compression and/or in tension prior to concrete reaching its ultimatestrain and strength. The study also concluded that brittle-tension failure was more likelyto occur due to the low ultimate tensile strain of FRP bars or tendons as compared to steel.In addition, the failures were more prevalent when long term effects such as creep andshrinkage of concrete, and creep rupture of FRP were considered. Barring FRP failure,concrete columns reinforced with FRP, in some instances, gained significant momentresistance. As expected the strength interaction of slender steel or FRP reinforcedconcrete columns were dependent more on column length rather than material differencesbetween steel and FRP.Current ACI minimum reinforcement ratio for steel (pmin) reinforced concretecolumns may not be adequate for use in FRP reinforced concrete columns. Design aidswere developed in this study to determine the minimum reinforcement ratio (pf,min)required for rectangular reinforced concrete columns by averting brittle-tension failure toa failure controlled by concrete crushing which in nature was a less catastrophic and moregradual type failure. The proposed method using pf,min enabled the analysis of FRPreinforced concrete columns to be carried out in a manner similar to steel reinforcedconcrete columns since similar provisions in ACI 318 were consistently used indeveloping these aids. The design aids produced accurate estimates of pf,min. Whencreep and shrinkage effects of concrete were considered, conservative pf,min values wereobtained in order to preserve an adequate margin of safety due to their unpredictability.