Strain monitoring of RC members strengthened with smart NSM FRP bars

Bo Wang, Jinguang Teng, Laura De Lorenzis, Li Min Zhou, Jinping Ou, Wei Jin, K. T. Lau

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

38 Citations (Scopus)


Fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) bars can be used as internal reinforcement for new reinforced concrete (RC) structures and as near-surface mounted (NSM) reinforcement for the strengthening of RC structures. The NSM method is an emerging strengthening technique for RC structures, where FRP bars are embedded into grooves cut in the cover of RC members. In both cases, strain monitoring of the FRP bars is desirable either for the investigation of the structural behavior or for the long-term health monitoring of the structure. This paper presents a study in which fiber-optic sensors were embedded into glass FRP (GFRP) bars to produce smart GFRP bars for NSM applications. The manufacturing process of the smart FRP bars is illustrated and their performance in tensile, bond and beam flexural tests is examined to assess the effectiveness of these smart FRP bars for achieving the dual purpose of structural strengthening and strain monitoring. On the basis of the test results, the advantages and limitations of fiber-optic sensors compared to electrical strain gages in the strain monitoring of NSM FRP bars are discussed. The bond and beam test results also confirm the effectiveness of the NSM method for the strengthening of RC structures.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1698-1711
Number of pages14
JournalConstruction and Building Materials
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2009


  • Beam tests
  • Fiber-optic sensors
  • Fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP)
  • Flexural strengthening
  • Near-surface mounted reinforcement
  • Pull-out tests
  • Structural health monitoring
  • Tensile tests

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Materials Science(all)


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