Structural Testing for Validating Reinforced AAC Design Provisions in the U.S.


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Title: Structural Testing for Validating Reinforced AAC Design Provisions in the U.S.

Author(s): F. H. Fouad and J. Dembowski

Publication: Special Publication

Volume: 226


Appears on pages(s): 29-44

Keywords: autoclaved aerated concrete; floor panel; lintel; reinforced; wall panel

Date: 3/1/2005

Autoclaved aerated concrete (AAC) is a lightweight uniform cellular material, first developed in Sweden in 1929. Since that time, plain and reinforced AAC building components have been widely used in Europe and other parts of the world. Until recently, however, AAC was relatively unknown to the United States precast construction market. Today, AAC prefabricated elements are gaining rapid acceptance in the United States due primarily to increasing energy cost, environmental concerns, and the ease of construction using AAC elements. Although AAC is a well-recognized building material in Europe, very little research work has been done on U.S.-produced AAC products. The primary objective of this work was to study the structural behavior of U.S.-made reinforced AAC elements. The laboratory test program included most commonly used reinforced AAC elements: floor panels, lintels, and wall panels. Two U.S. manufacturers supplied the AAC elements. Floor panels and lintels were tested in bending, whereas the wall panels were tested under axial or eccentric loading. The ultimate load capacity, cracking, deflection, and failure mode were observed and recorded for each test. The results provide a database that will be used to refine the analytical methods for the structural design of reinforced AAC elements. This information is needed to enhance AAC design methodologies and lay the foundation for establishing AAC as a reliable engineered construction material in the U.S.