Reinforced concrete beams under drop-weight impact loads

Ian M. May, Yi Chen, D. Roger, J. Owen, Y. T. Feng, Philip J. Thiele

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    38 Citations (Scopus)


    This paper describes the results of an investigation into high mass-low velocity impact behaviour of reinforced concrete beams. Tests have been conducted on fifteen 2.7 m or 1.5 m span beams under drop-weight loads. A high-speed video camera has been used at rates of up to 4,500 frames per second in order to record the crack formation, propagation, particle spallation and scabbing. In some tests the strain in the reinforcement has been recorded using "Durham" strain gauged bars, a technique developed by Scott and Marchand (2000) in which the strain gauges are embedded in the bars, so that the strains in the reinforcement can be recorded without affecting the bond between the concrete and the reinforcement. The impact force acting on the beams has been measured using a load cell placed within the impactor. A high-speed data logging system has been used to record the impact load, strains, accelerations, etc., so that time histories can be obtained. This research has led to the development of computational techniques based on combined continuum/discontinuum methods (finite/discrete element methods) to permit the simulation of impact loaded reinforced concrete beams. The implementation has been within the software package ELFEN (2004). Beams, similar to those tested, have been analysed using ELFEN a good agreement has been obtained for both the load-time histories and the crack patterns.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)79-90
    Number of pages12
    JournalComputers and Concrete
    Issue number2-3
    Publication statusPublished - Apr 2006


    • Drop-weight
    • Impact testing
    • Numerical modelling
    • RC beams


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