Thermomechanical properties of a new small-scale reinforced concrete thermo-active pile for centrifuge testing

A. Minto*, A. K. Leung, D. Vitali, J. A. Knappett

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

5 Citations (Scopus)


The use of thermo-active geo-structures has been recognised to be a suitable engineering solution that can reduce carbon emissions from civil infrastructure. Physical modelling in a geotechnical centrifuge has been increasingly used to study the beahviour of this kind of geo-structures and their interaction with the surrounding soil under cyclic heating/cooling loads. Previous studies have been limited by the choice of materials used to model thermo-active geo-structures (such as aluminium and conventional concrete), due to inaccurate scaling of the thermal properties and the inability to capture the quasi-brittleness and strength properties of reinforced concrete (RC) due to improper scaling of aggregate sizes. This paper aims to develop a new thermally-enhanced plaster-based model concrete which can realistically reproduce both the thermal and mechanical properties that are representative of concrete at prototype scale. The new model concrete, combined with steel wire reinforcement (i.e. geometrically scaled reinforcing bars and stirrups), was then used to create 1:20 scaled RC thermo-active piles. Effects of temperature on their thermomechanical behaviour, including the coefficient of thermal expansion, moment capacity and flexural stiffness, were investigated. The suitability of using the newly-developed RC thermo-active piles for future centrifuge testing is discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEnergy Geotechnics
Subtitle of host publicationproceedings of the 1st International conference on energy geotechnics, ICEGT 2016, Kiel, Germany, 29-31 August 2016
EditorsFrank Wuttke, Sebastian Bauer, Marcelo Sanchez
Place of PublicationLeiden
PublisherCRC Press
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781315315249
ISBN (Print)9781138032996
Publication statusPublished - 8 Aug 2016
Externally publishedYes
Event1st International Conference on Energy Geotechnics - Auditorium Maximum (Audimax) of Kiel University, Kiel, Germany
Duration: 29 Aug 201631 Aug 2016
Conference number: 1st


Conference1st International Conference on Energy Geotechnics
Abbreviated titleICEGT 2016
Internet address


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