IIT Hyderabad develops affordable ultra-high performance fiber reinforced concrete for bridges and other infrastructure applications

UHPFRC Team (LR) Mr Chandrashekhar, Prof Surya & others

  • UHPFRC (Ultra-High Performance Fiber Reinforced Concrete) developed at IITH offers a compressive strength of 150 MPa and a direct tensile strength of 8 MPa.
  • The cost of UHPRC is made affordable by optimizing fiber dosage and replacing expensive fine aggregates with cheaper, locally available aggregates.
  • The cost of UHPC developed at the IITH is approximately half the cost of commercially available proprietary products.
  • UHPFRC compound can be used in a variety of applications, such as bridges, long span structural beams, columns and offshore structures where durability is a major concern.
  • Several full-size post-tensioned UHPC bridge girders were tested to understand the shear behavior.
  • Design guidelines are being developed for practicing design engineers which will promote and increase confidence in using UHPFRC for various infrastructure applications in India.

Professor S Suriya PrakashCASTCON Lab, Department of Civil Engineering and its research group have developed affordable special ultra-high performance fiber reinforced concrete (UHPFRC) using locally available materials like cement, fly ash, river sand, slag from blast furnace crushed granulate, micro-silica, water, steel fibers, polypropylene fibers and high range water reducing agent (HRWRA).

The cost of UHPRC is reduced and made affordable by reducing the amount of cement, fibers and replacing expensive fine aggregate with cheaper locally available aggregate through proper grading. The composition combines the best characteristics of self-compacting concrete (SCC), fiber-reinforced concrete (FRC) and high-performance concrete (HPC). The cost of UHPC developed at the IITH is approximately half the cost of commercially available proprietary products.

UHPC, developed at IITH for prestressing applications, gives a cubic compressive strength of 150 MPa and a straight tensile strength of 8.0 MPa. Several full-scale post-tensioned UHPFRC concrete bridge girders were tested to understand the shear behavior. Test results show that providing minimum web shear reinforcement ratio and adequate dosage of steel fibers leads to better serviceability, ultimate strength and stiffness of bridge girders. The overall cost of UHPC girders in bridge applications can be further reduced by providing a minimum web shear reinforcement of 0.6% and a hybrid fiber volume mix of approximately 1.0%.

To compliment Prof Suriya and his team on results, Prof BS Murty, Director, IITH, said: “A strong and sustainable infrastructure is essential for the holistic development of any nation. Developing building materials with improved strength using locally available raw materials is a commendable step towards realizing our dream of Aatma Nirbhar Bharat. I am sure that such an innovation will not only benefit local development in terms of economical and efficient infrastructure, but will extend its advantage to the infrastructure sector globally”.

Building on the uniqueness of UHPFRC, Prof. S Suriya Prakash, CASTCON Lab and Mr. Chandrashekhar Lakavath, Researcher, Department of Civil Engineering, IITH, said, “The goal is to develop ultra- affordable performance using locally available products. materials and make a thorough categorization of materials to understand the behavior of UHPFRC in compression, tension, rupture and direct shear. Several full-size UHPFRC bridge girders were tested. The results of our tests yielded more in-depth information on the shear behavior of prestressed bridge girders, which will be used to develop design guidelines for practicing engineers. Our research should increase confidence in the use of UHPFRC in India for various infrastructure applications.”

Prof. S Suriya Prakash and his team have worked extensively on various industry relevant research and development of innovative solutions including the use of FRP glass rebar, lightweight precast concrete panels, FRP carbon and Ultra-High Performance Fiber Reinforced Concrete (UHPC) based reinforcement solutions for infrastructure applications.


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