Development of a double-tee flange connection using shape memory alloy rods
|Published in:||PCI Journal, November 2020, n. 6, v. 65|
This study investigated the out-of-plane shear performance of a newly developed shape memory alloy (SMA) connector and a commonly used shear/alignment connector. The innovation lies in developing a durable and easily installed and maintained flange-to-flange connector between precast concrete double-tee members. The proposed connector consists of a superelastic SMA curved bolt inserted into a duct that is then cast into the precast concrete member. Two types of sealant materials were used: polyurethane elastomeric sealant and nonshrink cementitious grout. The shear/alignment and SMA connectors were tested under monotonic vertical shear. The tests were conducted on 4 ft × 4 ft × 4 in. (1.2 m × 1.2 m × 100 mm) slab specimens. The resulting capacities and associated damage were summarized. Higher stiffness and lower ductility were observed for the SMA connector with nonshrink grout compared with the shear/alignment connector with polyurethane elastomeric sealant. The average stiffnesses of the SMA and shear/alignment connector specimens were 116,681 lb/in. (20,434 kN/m) and 31,300 lb/in. (5481 kN/m), respectively. The ductility of the SMA connector was improved when using polyurethane elastomeric sealant; however, more tests should be done to confirm this behavior. The SMA rod was reused in several tests through reheating of the SMA element. The shear/alignment connector cannot be reused.
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