Interfacial behavior and debonding failures in FRP-strengthened concrete slabs

Walid Elsayed, Usama A. Ebead, Kenneth W. Neale

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)


It has been demonstrated, through laboratory investigations and various field projects, that the external bonding of fiber- reinforced polymer (FRP) laminates is an effective technique for the structural enhancement of reinforced concrete slabs. In such applications, failure is generally governed by debonding of the FRP laminate. Nevertheless, numerical simulations to date of FRP-strengthened slabs have usually been based on the assumption of full bond between the concrete and FRP. In this study, the interfacial behavior between the FRP laminates and the concrete substrate is accounted for by introducing appropriate bond-slip models for the interface in a nonlinear finite-element analysis of FRP-strengthened two-way slabs. The numerical model is capable of simulating slabs strengthened in shear or in flexure; it can be applied to arbitrary FRP configurations, and can also accommodate both passive as well as prestressed FRP strengthening schemes. Results are presented in terms of load-deflection relationships, ultimate load capacities, failure modes, and interfacial slip and stress distributions. When compared to test results reported in the literature, the analysis is shown to lead to excellent predictions in that, for the entire set of FRP-strengthened specimens considered, the average of the numerical-to-experimental load capacity ratios is 0.966, with a standard deviation of 0.066. Furthermore, in all cases when FRP debonding was observed experimentally, the analysis correctly predicted the mode of failure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)619-628
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Composites for Construction
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2007


  • Bonding
  • Concrete slabs
  • Fiber reinforced polymers
  • Finite element method
  • Interface shear
  • Rehabilitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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