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Fiber Reinforced Concrete (FRC) for Transportation Structures


Fiber Reinforced Concrete (FRC) is an old innovation that has been developing more recently with expanding and improved product lines and applications in different industries. Ultra High Performance Concrete (UHPC) may be considered as an extreme example of FRC and demonstrates that FRC has the potential to be a viable and effective solution for certain applications in highway structures.

In concrete mix design, minor changes to the mix can alter the properties of the plastic and or hardened mix significantly. For example adding small quantities of fibers could have a major impact on the resultant mix. Also there are different types of fibers such as steel, glass, carbon, basalt, polymeric (polypropylene, PVA, nylon) etc. Each type offers varieties of length, strength and other characteristics.

The purpose of this research is to establish a matrix of the following:

  1. The different types of available fibers and the properties of these fibers.

  2. The influence of each fiber and the quantities on the concrete characteristics

  3. Testing methods and procedures used for each characteristic

  4. Potential applications for each fiber type related to highway structures

  5. Design methodologies (both existing and required) where appropriate.


The objectives of this research is to develop a state-of-the-art report highlighting this innovative material properties and applicability to highway structures, potential design procedures and criteria, and potential specifications. Research should consider potential performance based specifications.


A project report highlighting the applications will encourage potential use where appropriate. This may also lead to a new AASHTO specification to facilitate the use of this innovative technology without risks. This innovative material will enhance the performance of highway structures and lower their life cycles costs.

The performance Specifications will be used in design build projects.

Related Research:

The literature search produced a few related studies however, the intent of this research is to comprehensively synthesize the available research, applications and specifications. This research should review and evaluate design for reliability and applicability to highway structures.

This research should explore potential performance specifications.


The research will involve the following tasks:

1. Literature Search:

a. Conduct national and international literature search on this topic to determine the available data on the use and performance of the different fibers. This search should include material specifications and acceptance tests methods and criteria.

b. Conduct national and international search to determine the available design procedures and specification and the overarching performance criteria.

c. Provide a database of completed highway related project applications

2. Review and evaluate potential design procedures, design criteria and potential specifications.

3. Develop recommendations for potential AASHTO specifications for FRC for service and strength applications.

4. Develop a Final Report.


The specifications developed by this research will be submitted to AASHTO COBS Technical Committee on Concrete for adoption.


This research may contribute to objectives 1, 4 and 6 of the AASHTO SCOBS prioritized strategic objectives: 1. Extend Bridge Service Life, 2. Assess Bridge Condition, 3. Maintain and Enhance a Knowledgeable Workforce, 4. Maintain and Enhance the AASHTO Specifications, 5. Accelerate Bridge Delivery and Construction, 6. Optimize Structural Systems, 7. Model and Manage Information Intelligently, and 8. Contribute to National Policy

Sponsoring Committee:AFF30, Concrete Bridges
Research Period:12 - 24 months
Research Priority:Medium
RNS Developer:Sam Fallaha, P. E.
Source Info:Committee members
Date Posted:12/29/2017
Date Modified:01/05/2018
Index Terms:Fiber reinforced concrete, Fibers, Test procedures, Materials tests, Mix design,
Cosponsoring Committees: 
Bridges and other structures

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