Ageing and Fatigue Combined Effects on GFRP Grids
Many areas of Europe, especially Italy, Greece, Slovenia and other Balkan States, are generally associated with earthquakes. In the last two decades Fiber Reinforced Polymers (FRP) have gained an increasing interest, mostly for upgrading, retrofitting and repair of masonry and timber structures belonging to the architectural heritage. Recent researches demonstrated that masonry constructions or single structural elements are likely to be effectively repaired or enhanced in their mechanical properties using FRPs. The objective of the research presented in this paper is to study the long-term behavior of composite grids, made of E-CR glass fibers and epoxy-vinylester resin, subjected to harsh environmental factors including fatigue loading and ageing in aqueous solution. The paper presents new original test results on the relationship between the durability and the governing material properties of GFRP (Glass Fiber Reinforced Polymers) grids in terms of tensile strength and axial strains, using specimens cut off from GFRP grids before and after ageing in aqueous solution. The tensile strength of a GFRP grid was measured after conditioning in alkaline bath made by deionized water and Ca(OH)2, 0.16% in weight, solution. The reduction in terms of tensile strength and Young’s modulus of elasticity compared to unconditioned specimens is illustrated and discussed. This degradation indicated that extended service in alkaline environment under fatigue loads may produce reductions in the GFRP mechanical properties which should be considered in design, where cyclic loads and aggressive conditions are prevented in service life.
Angelo Di Tommaso, Prof. Cristina Gentilini and Giovanni Castellazzi
L. Calabrese et al., "Ageing and Fatigue Combined Effects on GFRP Grids", Key Engineering Materials, Vol. 747, pp. 525-532, 2017