Reinforced Concrete

Definition - What does Reinforced Concrete mean?

Reinforced concrete is a composite material in which the concrete is embedded with reinforcement (usually steel reinforcing bars) to compensate for the concrete’s relatively low tensile strength and ductility. This allows reinforced concrete to be used in construction applications that would otherwise be unsuitable for plain concrete, such as long spans and thin shapes. This form of concrete is often used in trenchless applications for shoring and other reinforcement needs.

Other types of concrete reinforcement include pre-stressed wires and strands, welded fabrics and mats and various types of fibers.

Trenchlesspedia explains Reinforced Concrete

Reinforced concrete was pioneered by French gardener, Joseph Monier, and has since revolutionized the use of concrete in construction.

Plain Concrete is strong in compression but has negligible strength in tension. Therefore, the steel reinforcing bars (also called rebar) is placed in the tension zone of the concrete member. In addition to increasing the tensile strength, reinforcement can also be used to increase the shear strength of the member and control cracking due to shrinkage and temperature changes.

Factors that affect the strength of reinforced concrete include:

  • The compressive strength of the concrete mix
  • The tensile strength of the reinforcing steel
  • The bond strength between the rebar and the concrete
  • The durability of the concrete in the given environment.
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