Chloride ingress into marine exposed concrete: A comparison of empirical- and physically- based models

Jaehwan Kim, William John McCarter, Benny Suryanto, Sreejith Nanukuttan, P. A. Muhammed Basheer, T. Malcolm Chrisp

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69 Citations (Scopus)
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In establishing the reliability of performance-related design methods for concrete – which are relevant for resistance against chloride-induced corrosion - long-term experience of local materials and practices and detailed knowledge of the ambient and local micro-climate are critical. Furthermore, in the development of analytical models for performance-based design, calibration against test data representative of actual conditions in practice is required. To this end, the current study presents results from full-scale, concrete pier-stems under long-term exposure to a marine environment with work focussing on XS2 (below mid-tide level) in which the concrete is regarded as fully saturated and XS3 (tidal, splash and spray) in which the concrete is in an unsaturated condition. These exposures represent zones where concrete structures are most susceptible to ionic ingress and deterioration. Chloride profiles and chloride transport behaviour are studied using both an empirical model (erfc function) and a physical model (ClinConc). The time dependency of surface chloride concentration (Cs) and apparent diffusivity (Da) were established for the empirical model whereas, in the ClinConc model (originally based on saturated concrete), two new environmental factors were introduced for the XS3 environmental exposure zone. Although the XS3 is considered as one environmental exposure zone according to BS EN 206-1:2013, the work has highlighted that even within this zone, significant changes in chloride ingress are evident. This study aims to update the parameters of both models for predicting the long term transport behaviour of concrete subjected to environmental exposure classes XS2 and XS3.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)133–145
Number of pages13
JournalCement and Concrete Composites
Early online date8 Jun 2016
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2016


  • concrete
  • full-scale testing
  • marine environment
  • modelling
  • durability
  • performance


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