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Behavior of Reinforced Concrete Members Prone to Shear Deformations

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TECHNICAL PAPER

Deformations: Part IIEffect of Interfacial Bond Stress-Slip

by Suraphong Powanusorn and Joseph M. Bracci

Interfacial bond stress-slip between the concrete and longitudinal

reinforcement always occurs in reinforced concrete (RC) members.

For strength design purposes, the effect of interfacial bond stressslip does not have a significant effect on the overall strength of the

RC members with adequate reinforcement development length. The

results in a companion paper, however, showed that the direct

application of the Modified Compression Field Theory (MCFT) led

to an overestimation of the post-cracking stiffness of the RC bent

cap members. This may be attributed to the inadequate representation

of bond-slip using tension-stiffening in MCFT. Constitutive models

for bond-slip between the concrete and reinforcement available in

the literature are normally applied to RC members where flexural

deformations are dominant, but these may not be applicable to

shear-dominated RC members. A parametric study on the effect of

interfacial bond-slip modeling in shear-dominated RC members is

presented. Results from the analytical investigation are compared

with experimental results on RC bent caps. Based on this parametric

study, a new bond-slip model is proposed for RC members prone to

shear deformations with lumped longitudinal reinforcement.

the cantilevered end of the cap.

In a companion paper, Powanusorn and Bracci (2006)

presented an analytical investigation on the effect of

confinement due to transverse reinforcement on both

strength and deformation of RC bent caps specimens by

incorporating the effect of confinement into the Modified

Compression Field Theory (MCFT) (Vecchio and Collins

1986). Although excellent results were obtained for

predicting the strength, the proposed analytical model overestimated the post-cracking stiffness of the bent cap specimens.

Parametric studies showed that the overestimation was not

caused by changes in the constitutive relationship for

concrete that incorporated the effect of confinement. In fact,

INTRODUCTION

The behavior of shear-dominated reinforced concrete (RC)

members is different from the conventional RC members

where flexural deformations normally control the overall

response. One of the differences between flexural and sheardominated RC members is in distribution of the reinforcement

stresses. In flexural members, the stress in reinforcement

depends directly upon the bending moment at that particular

cross section and the assumption that plane sections remain

plane. In shear-dominated RC members, however, the stress

distribution may be nonlinear. Ferguson (1964) performed

an experimental program on RC cantilever bent caps with

short shear span-to-depth ratios similar to that shown in Fig. 1.

Because of the experimental setup, at the point of load

application, the bending moment diagram varies linearly

from zero to the maximum value at the centerline of column.

If the shear span-to-depth ratio is high, that is, if the member

deformations are controlled by flexural action, the recorded

stress or strain at the loading point should be negligible at all

stages of loading. However, Ferguson (1964) indicated for

members with short shear span-to-depth ratios that a considerable amount of reinforcement strain at the loading point

develops at higher load levels. This high magnitude of stress

at the point of zero bending moment was attributed to the

effect of interfacial bond stress-slip between the main flexural reinforcement and the surrounding concrete. Ferguson

(1964) also performed an experimental investigation on the

effect of the embedment length of main longitudinal reinforcement extending beyond the center of the applied load

location and concluded that an embedment length exceeding

ACI Structural Journal/September-October 2006

small shear span ratios.

ACI Structural Journal, V. 103, No. 5, September-October 2006.

MS No. 03-398 received March 26, 2006, and reviewed under Institute publication

policies. Copyright 2006, American Concrete Institute. All rights reserved, including

the making of copies unless permission is obtained from the copyright proprietors.

Pertinent discussion including authors closure, if any, will be published in the JulyAugust 2007 ACI Structural Journal if the discussion is received by March 1, 2007.

747

and Construction Co. Ltd. in Chachuengsao, Thailand. He received his PhD in civil

engineering from Texas A&M University, College Station, Tex.; his MS in civil

engineering from the University of New South Wales, Australia; and his BS from

Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand.

Joseph M. Bracci is a Professor and Head of the Construction, Geotechnical, and

Structural Engineering Division in the Zachry Department of Civil Engineering at

Texas A&M University. He received his PhD from the State University of New York at

Buffalo, Buffalo, N.Y. His research interests include experimental testing, analytical

modeling, and performance-based design of structures.

of load as the analytical predictions on the load-displacement

diagrams were virtually the same before the first reinforcement

yielding for models with and without confinement. The effect

of the base curves for the confined and unconfined concrete

stress-strain relationships in compression (Mander et al. 1988)

model and Hognestad parabola (Vecchio and Collins 1982)

respectively, on the predicted load-deformation was also

negligible.

Despite the large number of parameters affecting the

constitutive model of RC elements, two likely sources of

discrepancies that led to an underestimation of the RC bent

cap deformations were identified: (1) shrinkage of the concrete;

and (2) interfacial bond slip between the concrete and

reinforcing steel. Parametric studies (Powanusorn and Bracci

2003), using the ACI 209-78 model (Baant and Wittmann

1982), on the effect of shrinkage showed that uniform

member shrinkage caused a reduction in the predicted

cracking strength of the RC bent cap members and a slight

shift to the right of the predicted the predicted load-deformation

behavior, which improved the correlation of the simulated

response to the experimental results as shown in Fig. 2. The

incorporation of concrete shrinkage, as expected, had negligible

influence on the ultimate strength, as predicted strengths of

a RC bent cap member with and without shrinkage were

uniform shrinkage better correlated with the experimental

results, the slope of the predicted post-cracking loaddeformation curve remained unchanged, regardless of the

magnitude of shrinkage strains used in the parametric

studies. Therefore, it was concluded that the effect of

shrinkage was not the real physical reason behind the too stiff

post-cracking response of the proposed constitutive relationship.

Under the context of the MCFT, the effect of cracking

in RC members in the principal tensile direction is

handled by decreasing the tensile stress according to the

constitutive relationship of concrete in tension. It was

experimentally determined, however, that the post-peak

tensile stress-strain relationship of concrete in RC members

is generally much higher than that of unreinforced concrete

(Hordijk 1991; Vecchio and Collins 1982). This effect is

called tension-stiffening, which is generally acknowledged to

be attributed to the interfacial bond stress between the

concrete and reinforcing steel. Therefore, it can be concluded

that the effect of interfacial bond stress-slip is implicitly

taken into account by a tension-stiffening model (Rots

1988). For RC members with well-distributed reinforcement,

the average post-cracking tensile stress-strain behavior of

concrete can be modeled as follows (Collins and Mitchell 1987)

f cr

t = -------------------------, t > cr

1 + 500 t

(1)

cr is the concrete cracking strain associated with the

cracking stress, fcr (fcr is assumed to be equal to 0.33 f c ,

where f c is the uniaxial compressive strength of concrete at

28 days). For RC members such as bent caps with concentrated

longitudinal reinforcement, however, the effect of local

748

approach used by tension-stiffening may cause large errors

in numerical simulations (Rots 1988).

RESEARCH SIGNIFICANCE

The results in a companion paper (Powanusorn and Bracci

2006) showed that the direct application of the MCFT led to

an overestimation of the post-cracking stiffness of the RC

bent cap members. This paper shows that the overestimation

is caused by the use of tension stiffening to implicitly take

into account the interfacial slip between the concrete and

reinforcement. Although the use of bond-slip constitutive

models proposed in the available literature leads to an

improvement on the load-deformation behavior, the postcracking stiffness of the RC bent cap specimens remains

somewhat overestimated. Based on a parametric study by

curve-fitting the overall response from 16 bent cap test

specimens, a new bond-slip relationship is proposed for

members with lumped reinforcement and that are prone to

shear deformations (small shear span-depth ratios).

FEM MODEL FOR REINFORCED CONCRETE

BENT CAPS USING EXPLICIT BOND-SLIP MODEL

To justify the proposition by Rots (1988), parametric studies

on the effect of interfacial bond-slip were performed in this

work. In this approach, the effect of bond-slip was modeled

explicitly through the use of nonlinear spring elements using

the program ABAQUS. Early research on finite element

method (FEM) modeling of RC members by Ngo and Scordelis

(1967) adopted the same approach to take into account the

effect of slip between the concrete and reinforcing steel. In

essence, this method separates the concrete and reinforcing

steel elements through the use of different nodes, even

though the nodes may share the same geometric locations at the

interfacial zone. Fictitious spring elements were then assigned

to simulate the effect of interfacial normal contact and

tangential slip as shown in Fig. 3. The stiffness normal to the

interface represents the dowel action between concrete and

reinforcing steel (Rots 1988), while the stiffness parallel to

the interface represents the interfacial slip.

In general, both the normal and tangential stiffness of the

spring element should be correctly identified. The effect of

the dowel action between the concrete and reinforcing steel,

however, is complicated and highly variable. Pruijssers (1988)

indicated that experimental results on the effect of dowel

action is relatively scattered and can vary by several orders

of magnitude. Research in the past on FEM modeling of the

interfacial bond-slip effect on the overall performance of RC

members usually assumed that the stiffness in the direction

normal to the slip interface was perfectly rigid (Rots 1988).

This assumption was also used in this research. Therefore,

only the effect of tangential slip was considered in the

explicit bond-slip models in this work.

The mechanical properties of the spring elements are crucial

to simulate the slip between the concrete and reinforcement

interface. Eligehausen et al. (1983) conducted an experimental

program to determine a constitutive model for interfacial slip

between the concrete and reinforcement. They concluded

that the bond stress-slip under monotonic loading depends

on several factors such as bar diameters, type and rib area

of deformed bars adopted, concrete strength, restraining

reinforcement, confinement, loading rate, and positions of

bars during casting. These results served as the basis for the

modeling of the concrete-reinforcement interface and were

ACI Structural Journal/September-October 2006

modeling as follows

s 0.4

= max ---- , s < s 1

s 1

= max, s 1 < s < s 2

( max f )

- ( s s 2 ), s 2 < s < s 3

= max -----------------------( s3 s2 )

(2)

= f , s > s3

where is the calculated bond stress (MPa); s is the interfacial

slip between the concrete and reinforcement (mm); max is

the maximum bond stress = 2.5 f c (Mpa); f is the bond

stress at failure = 0.4max (MPa); s1, s2, s3 are constants = 1.0,

3.0, and 10.5 mm, respectively. Figure 4 shows the bond

stress-interfacial slip model proposed by the CEB-FIB

model code (1990).

Shima et al. (1987) performed experimental studies on

bond between reinforcing steel and concrete. They concluded

that the bond stress-slip relationship generally depends on

the boundary conditions and should not be regarded as a

unique material property. However, when the effect of strain

in the reinforcement is additionally incorporated to form a bond

stress as a function of the slip and strain in the reinforcement,

a unique relation was found and can be treated as a material

property. The bond stress-slip-strain relationship proposed

by Shima et al. (1987) is

3

0.73 ( ln ( 1 + 5S ) ) f c

= ------------------------------------------------5

1 + 10

(3)

749

where is the calculated bond stress (MPa); S is a nondimensionalized parameter (= 1000s/D); s is displacement of the

bars at the concerned point measured relative to a fixed point

in the concrete (not interfacial slip between concrete and

reinforcing bar) (mm); D is the bar diameter (mm); and is

the reinforcement strain.

Shima et al. (1987) also concluded that the bond stressslip relationship only exists under the limited condition of

sufficient bar embedment. The bond stress-slip relationship

in this case can be represented as

2

---

3

40S

= 0.9 f c 1 e

0.6

(4)

Figure 5 shows the bond stress-slip model proposed by

Shima et al. (1987).

For sake of comparison, two-dimensional FEM analyses

of the RC bent caps tested by Young et al. (2002) were

performed using both the implicit bond model (tensionstiffening) and explicit bond model between the concrete

and the main longitudinal reinforcement using the spring

elements as defined in Eq. (2) and (4). Because the bent cap

specimens typically have skin reinforcement, interfacial slip

can also occur between the concrete and this skin reinforcement.

However, the amount of skin reinforcement is relatively

small and the slip between the concrete and skin reinforcement

should not significantly affect the overall load-deformation

response. Therefore, the skin reinforcement was neglected in

this work.

The FEM mesh, applied loading, and boundary conditions

of the RC bent cap model are shown in Fig. 1 and 6. In the

implicit bond model, the post-cracking stress-strain relationship

of concrete in the longitudinal reinforcement region, as

shown in Fig. 6(a), is modeled using Eq. (1).

Three major changes were made for the explicit bond

model: (1) change of the node numbering system along the

concrete-reinforcement interface; (2) introduction of spring

elements; and (3) change of concrete constitutive model in

principal tension directions. Because the effect of interfacial

bond-slip is now taken into account by an explicit bond slip

model, only tension-softening of concrete after cracking

was considered. Therefore, the post-cracking stress-strain

relationship of concrete in tension as proposed by Hordjik

(1991) was used for all concrete elements, as shown in Fig. 6(b).

This expression is described by the tensile stress-crack width

relationship of concrete as given by

w 3

w

-----t = 1 + c 1 ------ exp c 2 ------

f cr

w c

w c

(5)

3

w

------ ( 1 + c 1 ) exp ( c 2 )

wc

to post-cracking stress-strain curve.

750

stress (wc = 5.14GF /fcr); GF is the fracture energy of concrete

required to create a unit area of stress free crack, which is

equal to the area under the tensile stress and crack width

(GF = 0.000025fcr) curve; w is the crack opening associated

with the concrete is tension; and c1 and c2 are the material

constants which equal 3.0 and 6.93, respectively. The crack

opening displacement (w) is a product of the cracking strain

and the length of the localized zone, which is equal to the

characteristic length of the element in the FEM application.

Cracking strain is obtained from the concept of decomposition

of the total strain into the concrete elastic strain and cracking

strain as shown in Fig. 7.

Because stiffness and stress for spring elements in

ABAQUS are calculated on the basis of relative displacement

between two connecting nodes, the application of the CEB-

ACI Structural Journal/September-October 2006

element. However, slip in the Shima et al. (1987) model is

defined as the slip of reinforcement measured relative to a

fixed point in the concrete. Therefore, a separate FEM code

was developed specifically for this purpose. The program is

capable of performing a nonlinear analysis for two-dimensional

RC membranes subjected to in-plane loading using the

proposed constitutive relationship with the introduction of

spring elements where stiffness and stress are defined solely

by the displacement (or strain) of the reinforcement.

For concrete in compression, the confined model in the

companion paper by Powanusorn and Bracci (2006) is used

along with the same assumptions of the MCFT.

Results using CEB-FIP Model Code (1990)

and Shima et al. (1987) bond-slip model

Figure 8 shows the comparison between the predicted

load-deformation curves for RC bent cap Specimens 1A, 1B,

2A, and 2B (Young et al. 2002 and Bracci et al. 2000) using

the implicit (tension-stiffening) model and explicit CEB-FIP

(1990) and Shima et al. (1987) models for the interfacial

bond-slip between the concrete and reinforcement. The

figure shows that the use of an explicit bond model yields

superior results beyond the first cracking compared with the

implicit bond model as the simulated response of RC bent

caps consistently lies closer to the experimental response.

The difference in the predicted member strength for cracking,

first yielding of the longitudinal reinforcement, and ultimate

for the implicit and explicit bond models is insignificant.

However, the predicted post-cracking stiffness of the explicit

bond models better correlates with the experimental results.

PROPOSED BOND-SLIP MODEL

Results in the previous sections show that the application

of the CEB-FIP and Shima et al. bond-slip models led to

the RC bent cap specimens. The predicted first cracking and

ultimate strengths of the RC bent caps were also in good

agreement with the results obtained in the experimental

program. In addition, the incorporation of the explicit bondslip model between the concrete and reinforcement led to a

similar post-cracking stiffness. In spite of this, the

predicted post-cracking deformations remained somewhat

underestimated, as shown in Fig. 8. The CEB-FIP model for

the concrete and reinforcement interface was derived based

on pull-out tests of a single bar in a concrete block. Therefore,

the direct application of the model may not be representative of

the interfacial slip between the concrete and longitudinal

reinforcing steel in typical RC bent caps where multiple

numbers of large diameter reinforcing steel are concentrated

for bending resistance. Following an argument proposed by

Shima et al. (1987), the bond stress-slip relationship only

exists under limited conditions with sufficient embedment.

Consequently, it could be hypothesized that the embedment

of main longitudinal reinforcement may be adequate for

developing the full strength of the reinforcement, but

inadequate for ensuring the bond stress-slip relationship to

exist. In addition, the effect of shear cracking in members

with small shear span ratios, as with RC bent caps, may

somewhat deteriorate the bond-slip stiffness. Therefore,

parametric studies were performed to determine an appropriate

bond-slip model to correlate with the response of the same

16 RC bent cap specimens. The study showed that the slope

of the post-cracking load-deformation curve of the RC bent

caps depends upon the initial slope of the bond stress-slip

model. Based on curve fitting, the following constitutive

relationship for the bond stress-slip between the concrete and

reinforcement interface was determined

ACI Structural Journal/September-October 2006

751

s

= max ---- , s < s 2

s2

(6)

( max f )

- ( s s 2 ) , s 2 < s < s 3 = f , s > s3

= max -----------------------( s3 s2 )

Essentially, the curve is a modification of the CEB-FIP

model by decreasing the initial slope. Figure 9 shows the

bond stress-slip curve proposed for the RC bent caps.

Figure 10 shows the comparison between the experimental

results and simulated response of the RC bent caps using the

implicit bond model, explicit CEB-FIP bond model, explicit

Shima et al. (1987) bond model, and the proposed model.

The figure clearly indicates that the proposed bond-slip

model leads to a better improvement in the prediction of the

load-deformation response of the RC bent cap specimens

prone to shear deformations.

In a companion paper by Powanusorn and Bracci (2006),

the direct application of the MCFT using an implicit bondslip model for the concrete and reinforcement interface

through tension-stiffening led to an overestimation of postcracking stiffness in RC members prone to shear deformations,

regardless of the incorporation of confinement due to the

transverse reinforcement. The overestimation of stiffness led

to the underestimation of deformation, which is related to the

overall member cracking and magnitude of crack widths

under loading, particularly at service loading. Parametric

studies showed that the overestimation was not caused by a

change in the constitutive relationship of concrete that

incorporates the effect of confinement. In fact, the effect of

confinement was only mobilized at higher levels of load as

the analytical predictions of the load-displacement response

were virtually the same before the first reinforcement yielding

for models with and without confinement. The effect of the

base curves for the confined and unconfined concrete stressstrain relationships in compression (Mander et al. [1988]

model and Hognestad parabola [Vecchio and Collins 1982],

respectively) on the predicted load-deformation was also

negligible. Additional parametric studies on the effect of

shrinkage through a pre-strain concept led to better correlation

with experimental behavior. However, it did not provide the

correct mechanism as the slope of the load-deformation

relationship after initial cracking remained unchanged.

A remedy to improve the analytical model was proposed

in this paper by the direct incorporation of an interfacial

bond-slip representation between the concrete and the main

longitudinal reinforcing steel. It was shown that, by using

explicit bond-link element models to simulate the interface

between the concrete and reinforcement, the analytical

prediction of the load-deformation relationship was

improved as the stiffness, particularly in the post-cracking

752

However, numerical simulations of the explicit bond-link

elements using the bond stress-slip relationships normally

proposed in the literature did not lead to significant

improvements in the predicted load-deformation response

in the RC bent caps, as opposed to its good performance

when flexural deformations are predominant. Better results

were obtained by decreasing the initial stiffness of the bond

stress-slip relationship as proposed in this work. In reality,

the decrease in bond stress-slip stiffness for the concretereinforcement interface in RC bent caps may be justified

because most experiments on interfacial bond-slip between

the concrete and reinforcing steel were conducted using pullout tests of a single bar in a block of concrete. For RC bent

cap applications, multiple numbers of large diameter

reinforcing bars are typically arranged in a single layer or

possibly multiple layers. The effect of early splitting cracks

between the bars may somewhat alter the bond-slip stiffness.

In addition, the effect of inclined cracks due to the shear

action in RC bent caps can also lead to bond stiffness

deterioration. Experimental results reported in the literature

also show large differences in bond stress-slip relationships.

Some even suggest that the bond stress-slip relationship

should not be treated as a unique material property. Based on

a parametric study by curve-fitting the overall response from

16 bent cap test specimens, a new bond-slip relationship is

proposed for members with lumped reinforcement and that

are prone to shear deformations. Results show that the

proposed model better correlates with the experimental loaddeformation response in the 16 RC bent cap test specimens,

while still providing an accurate prediction of member strength.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

Funding for this research was provided by the National Science Foundation

under Grant No. CMS. 9733959, the Texas Department of Transportation

(Project 0-1851), and the Department of Civil Engineering of Texas A&M

University, College Station, Tex. This support is gratefully acknowledged. Any

opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this

material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the view of

the sponsors.

REFERENCES

Baant, Z. P., and Wittmann, W., 1982, Creep and Shrinkage in Concrete

Structures, John Wiley & Sons, New York, 374 pp.

Bracci, J. M.; Keating, P. B.; and Hueste, M. B. D., 2000, Cracking in

RC Bent Caps, Research Report 1851-1, Texas Transportation Institute,

Texas A&M University, College Station, Tex.

Collins, M. P., and Mitchell, D., 1987, Prestressed Concrete Basics,

Canadian Prestressed Concrete Institute, Ottawa, Canada.

Committee Euro-International du Beton, 1990, CEB-FIP Model Code,

Laussanne, Switzerland.

Eligehausen, R.; Popov, E.; and Bertero, V. V., 1983, Local Bond

Stress-Slip Relationships of Deformed Bars under Generalized Excitation,

UCB/EERC Report 83-23, Earthquake Engineering Research Center,

University of California at Berkeley, Berkeley, Calif.

Ferguson, P. M., 1964, Design Criteria for Overhanging Ends of Bent

Caps, Research Report No. 52-1F, Center for Highway Research, University

of Texas at Austin, Austin, Tex.

Hordijk, D. A., 1991, Local Approach to Fatigue of Concrete, PhD

dissertation, Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands.

Mander, J. B.; Priestley, M. J. N.; and Park, R., 1988, Theoretical

Stress-Strain Model for Confined Concrete, Journal of Structural

Engineering, ASCE, V. 114, No. 8, pp. 1804-1826.

Ngo, D., and Scordelis, A. C., 1967, Finite Element Analysis of Reinforced

Concrete Beams, ACI JOURNAL, Proceedings V. 64, No. 3, Mar., pp. 152-163.

Powanusorn, S., and Bracci, J. M., 2003. Effect of Confinement in Shear

Dominated Reinforced Concrete Elements, Technical Report CDCI-03-01,

Center of Design and Construction Integration, Texas A&M University,

College Station, Tex.

Powanusorn, S., and Bracci, J. M., 2006, Behavior of Reinforced

Concrete Members Prone to Shear Deformations: Part IEffect of Confinement, ACI Structural Journal, V. 103, No. 5, Sept.-Oct., pp. 736-746.

Pruijssers, A. F., 1988, Aggregate Interlock and Dowel Action under

Monotonic and Cyclic Loading, PhD dissertation, Delft University of

Technology, The Netherlands.

Rots, J. G., 1988, Computational Modeling of Concrete Structures,

PhD dissertation, Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands.

Shima, H.; Chou, L. L.; and Okamura, H., 1987, Micro and Macro

Models for Bond in Reinforced Concrete, Journal of the Faculty of Engineering, the University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan, V. 39, No. 2, pp. 133-194.

Vecchio, F. J., and Collins, M. P., 1982, The Response of Reinforced

Concrete to In-Plane Shear and Normal Stresses, Publication No. 82-03,

Department of Civil Engineering, University of Toronto, Toronto,

Ontario, Canada.

Vecchio, F. J., and Collins, M. P., 1986, The Modified Compression

Field Theory for Reinforced Concrete Elements Subjected to Shear, ACI

JOURNAL, Proceedings V. 83, No. 2, Mar.-Apr., pp. 219-231.

Young, B. S.; Bracci, J. M.; Keating, P. B.; and Hueste, M. B. D., 2002,

Cracking in Reinforced Concrete Bent Caps, ACI Structural Journal, V. 99,

No. 4, July-Aug., pp. 488-498.

753

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