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Smart Textiles for Strengthening of Structures

Gorski, Marcin Gorski ; Krzywon, R ; Dawczynski, S. ; Szojda , L ; Salvado, R. ; Velez, F. J. ; Lopes, C. ; Araújo, P.A. ; Castro-Gomes, J

Central European Journal of Engineering Vol. 6, Nº 1, pp. 548 - 553, December, 2016.

ISSN (print): 1896-1541
ISSN (online): 2081-9927

Journal Impact Factor: (in )

Digital Object Identifier: 10.1515/eng-2016-0074

Abstract
This paper presents results of mechanical tests on a prototype of an innovative structural strengthening in form of self-monitoring fabric. Smart textile employs carbon fibers conductivity for measuring strains while monitoring changes of electric resistance under increasing load. A general solution was tested in a series of calibrating tests on strengthening of small size concrete slabs. Promising results of simple specimen, has encouraged the research team to perform the next tests using mastered carbon fibre reinforced fabric. Main tests were performed on natural scale RC beam. Smart textile proved its efficiency in both: strengthening and monitoring of strains during load increase. New strengthening proposal was given 10% increase of loading capacity and the readings of strain changes were similar to those obtained in classical methods. In order to calibrate the prototype and to define range limits of solution usability, textile sensor was tested in areas of large deformations (timber beam) and as well as very small strains (bridge bearing block). In both cases, the prototype demonstrated excellent performance in the range of importance for structural engineering. This paper also presents an example of use of the smart strengthening in situ, in a real life conditions.