Knowledge of the tensile Young's modulus of concrete at early ages is important for estimating the risk of cracking due to restrained shrinkage and thermal contraction. However, most often, the tensile modulus is considered equal to the compressive modulus and is estimated empirically based on the measurements of compressive strength. To evaluate the validity of this approach, the tensile Young's moduli of 6 concrete and mortar mixtures are measured using a direct tension test. The results show that the tensile moduli are approximately 1.0-1.3-times larger than the compressive moduli within the material's first week of age. To enable a direct estimation of the tensile modulus of concrete, a simple three-phase composite model is developed based on random distributions of coarse aggregate, mortar, and air void phases. The model predictions show good agreement with experimental measurements of tensile modulus at early age.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Civil and Structural Engineering