The last two centuries have witnessed rapid growth in construction materials technology which enables structural engineers to achieve economy, safety, and functionality of structures built to meet public needs. GFRP reinforcement is the most advanced and innovative construction solution we have produced so far.
Composite materials are the combination of high strength, high stiffness fibers and lightweight, corrosion-resistant polymers. The mechanical properties of composites are superior to either of their constituents. These materials were initially developed in the 1960s to meet the performance challenges faced by the aerospace industry.
The composite materials designed with high-performance fibers were expensive. Serious efforts were made in the 1970s to lower the cost of composites while maintaining or improving the quality of the material. FRP manufacturers put great emphasis on cost reduction so that the construction industry could use these materials as a cost-effective alternative to traditional materials.
The continuously dropping cost of implementing composite materials and the need for rehabilitating or replacing structurally deficient concrete structures have been driving the construction industry to use composites for complex civil engineering applications.
Following the growth in research and growing use of composites in sensitive environments, the conservative infrastructure construction industry is now widely accepting composites as the material of the future. Pultrusion process is the manufacturing method used to produce high-quality GFRP reinforcement and other composite products of varying structural shapes and properties.
So far as highway infrastructure is concerned, various GFRP structural systems have been developed and implemented in many projects. New construction and rehabilitation of the existing structures with bridge decks are some of the common applications of GFRP reinforcement. Considering the need for rehabilitating structurally deficient structures, a considerable amount of attention has been given to bridge decks in the past few years.
As compared to traditional steel, GFRP materials offer inherent advantages in terms of corrosion-resistance and strength which is ideal for bridge rehabilitation applications. Lightweight bridge decks provide structural engineers with an opportunity to reduce dead load and carry out rapid replacement activities.
A large number of GFRP decks are already in service and several others are under development and installation process. The continuous development of application guidelines and design standards will further lead to a widespread use of these modern construction products.
It is difficult to ensure success when a new product is launched in a well-entrenched marketplace. However, GFRP reinforcement and other composite products have created their demand quickly due to their inherent properties and outstanding results.
TUF-BAR works hard develop composite materials into sustainable construction materials. As a leading manufacturer of GFRP fiberglass rebar in North America, our objective is to enable the construction industry to build corrosion-free, durable, and cost-effective concrete structures. Contact us for more information!