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Advances in Concrete Construction
  Volume 1, Number 3, October 2013 , pages 201-213

Service life prediction of a reinforced concrete bridge exposed to chloride induced deterioration
Vagelis G. Papadakis

    While recognizing the problem of reinforcement corrosion and premature structural deterioration of reinforced concrete (RC) structures as a combined effect of mechanical and environmental actions (carbonation, ingress of chlorides), emphasis is given on the effect of the latter, as most severe and unpredictable action. In this study, a simulation tool, based on proven predictive models utilizing principles of chemical and material engineering, for the estimation of concrete service life is applied on an existing reinforced concrete bridge (resund Link) located in a chloride environment. After a brief introduction to the structure of the models used, emphasis is given on the physicochemical processes in concrete leading to chloride induced corrosion of the embedded reinforcement. By taking under consideration the concrete, structural and environmental properties of the bridge investigated, an accurate prediction of its service life is taking place. It was observed that the proposed, and already used, relationship of service lifetime- cover is almost identical with a mean line between the lines derived from the minimum and maximum critical values considered for corrosion initiation. Thus, an excellent agreement with the project specifications is observed despite the different ways used to approach the problem. Furthermore, different scenarios of concrete cover failure, in the case when a coating is utilized, and extreme deicing salts attack are also investigated.
Key Words
    bridge; chloride attack; concrete; durability; failure scenarios; protective measures; service life
Vagelis G. Papadakis: Department of Environmental and Natural Resources Management, University of Patras, Seferi 2, GR-30100, Agrinio, Greece
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