Experimental Protocol to Determine the Chloride Threshold Value for Corrosion in Samples Taken from Reinforced Concrete Structures
Angst, Ueli M.
- Journal Article
Rights / licenseCreative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported
The aging of reinforced concrete infrastructure in developed countries imposes an urgent need for methods to reliably assess the condition of these structures. Corrosion of the embedded reinforcing steel is the most frequent cause for degradation. While it is well known that the ability of a structure to withstand corrosion depends strongly on factors such as the materials used or the age, it is common practice to rely on threshold values stipulated in standards or textbooks. These threshold values for corrosion initiation (Ccrit) are independent of the actual properties of a certain structure, which clearly limits the accuracy of condition assessments and service life predictions. The practice of using tabulated values can be traced to the lack of reliable methods to determine Ccrit on-site and in the laboratory. Here, an experimental protocol to determine Ccrit for individual engineering structures or structural members is presented. A number of reinforced concrete samples are taken from structures and laboratory corrosion testing is performed. The main advantage of this method is that it ensures real conditions concerning parameters that are well known to greatly influence Ccrit, such as the steel-concrete interface, which cannot be representatively mimicked in laboratory-produced samples. At the same time, the accelerated corrosion test in the laboratory permits the reliable determination of Ccrit prior to corrosion initiation on the tested structure; this is a major advantage over all common condition assessment methods that only permit estimating the conditions for corrosion after initiation, i.e., when the structure is already damaged. The protocol yields the statistical distribution of Ccrit for the tested structure. This serves as a basis for probabilistic prediction models for the remaining time to corrosion, which is needed for maintenance planning. This method can potentially be used in material testing of civil infrastructures, similar to established methods used for mechanical testing Show more
Journal / seriesJournal of Visualized Experiments
Pages / Article No.
SubjectEngineering; Issue 126; Corrosion; chlorides; chloride threshold; critical chloride content; infrastructure; concrete; reinforcing steel; durability; service life
Organisational unit09593 - Angst, Ueli (SNF-Professur)
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