Title: Numerical and digital image correlation study of the flexural behavior of prestressed ultra-high-performance concrete beams made from locally available materials
Date Published: January - February 2024
Volume: 69
Issue: 1
Page Numbers: 22 - 39
Authors: Wei Sun, Brad D. Weldon, Michael J. McGinnis, and Ruinian Jiang

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This paper presents finite element simulations of the flexural behavior of three prestressed ultra-high-performance concrete (UHPC) beams based on the concrete damaged plasticity model (CDPM) available within Abaqus. A novel numerical model that applies the prestressing force through surface traction is proposed. The flexural deformation of the prestressed UHPC beams is simulated from the application of the prestressing force through failure under flexural loading. Material properties were measured and informed values for CDPM input parameters. The model was compared with four-point loading tests previously conducted to study the flexural behavior of large-scale prestressed UHPC beams. Digital image correlation (DIC), supplemented with traditional sensors, was used during the test to monitor behavior. The primary results based on the numerical modeling are as follows:

  • The model is validated to accurately simulate the flexural behavior of prestressed UHPC beams, both in global deflection and local strain.
  • The prestressing process, including camber deformations, is effectively simulated.
  • The new approach to apply prestressing force in the model can be applied in scenarios requiring large prestressing forces.
  • The numerical results are also validated through comparison with DIC results.

The new numerical modeling approach will be effective for guiding experimental studies and design of prestressed UHPC beam elements.