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Title: Numerical Investigation on Mechanical Splices for GFRP Reinforcing Bars

Author(s): Nafiseh Kiani, Steven Nolan, and Antonio Nanni

Publication: Symposium Paper

Volume: 356


Appears on pages(s): 36-45

Keywords: GFRP bars; mechanical splice; swaged coupler; finite element model

DOI: 10.14359/51737244

Date: 10/1/2022

A common challenge in reinforced concrete construction is the need to connect bars of finite length to provide reinforcement continuity. Lap and mechanical splices are common methods that have been used to make continuous reinforcement. Lap splicing may cause additional congestion making concrete consolidation difficult. Mechanical splices are used when lap splicing is not practical. Different types of mechanical splices are commercially available for steel bars. For the case of GFRP reinforcement, mechanical splices are very useful in staged construction because the reinforcement cannot either be bent at the site or there is insufficient space for lap splicing. Mechanical splices for GFRP bars, however, must account for the low transverse stiffness and strength of the bars. For these reasons, only certain mechanical splices are practical for GFRP bars and careful consideration must be given to their installation and effectiveness. In this study, a commercially available swaged coupler was selected to investigate the behavior of spliced GFRP bars. Expected performance was numerically evaluated using a Finite Element (FE) model to develop a framework for test validation. The FE model was calibrated with a laboratory test to compare the results. The coupler’s length, the bar’s tensile strength, and the slip between the coupler and the bar were investigated. The outcome of this study allows for the definition of an efficient test campaign.