Flexural Creep Test Methodology

Creep tests were performed by applying a constant bending load on 150 x 150 x 600 mm notched pre-cracked specimens. The applied load and the crack opening evolution during the test were monitored. Figure 2 shows a general view of the creep test specimens. Full explanation of the creep test methodology, details about frame and components and dimensions specifications can be found in Arango’s PhD. Thesis [10] (in Spanish) and further publications [4].

A creep test consists basically on three main stages: pre-cracking stage: specimen pre-cracking up to a nominal crack opening value “CMODpn”; creep test stage: test on creep of pre-cracked specimens subjected to a creep stress level “Ic”; and final bending test stage: final test in flexure to failure on specimen after creep process.

As a multiple specimens setup in column was adopted, some aspects of the loading configuration required to be modified to ensure the column stability. In particular, the three point bending test proposed in [11] was adapted to a four point bending test as shown in Fig. 3. This change make it possible also to measure

General view of creep test specimens (overview -left- and column detail -right-)

Fig. 2 General view of creep test specimens (overview -left- and column detail -right-)

compressive strains by means of strain gauge located centred at the top face of the specimens. Accordingly, some changes in stress formulation were also realised, since the load configuration was changed.

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