RILEM PhD Course
26 – 30 September 2022
The purpose of the course was to provide participants with a fundamental and practical understanding on condition assessment of concrete structures and concrete repair and service life extension methods.
A large number of concrete structures are deteriorating, often prematurely, and need remedial measures to reinstate their safety and/or serviceability. Consequently, the need for repair and protection has grown considerably in recent years. While costs associated with repair of deteriorating concrete structures can be substantial, costs resulting from poorly designed or executed repairs may be even higher. The technical and economical success of repair projects depends on a range of factors, including a proper condition assessment of the structure, design and execution of remedial measures, and design and implementation of maintenance strategies.
For reinforced concrete structures, the main durability problem is corrosion of the reinforcement, resulting from the ingress of chloride ions or carbon dioxide and the subsequent depassivation of the steel. Other causes for concrete deterioration and damage include construction defects, structural loading, chemical attack (ASR, sulphate attack, acid attack) and fire damage. At the beginning of any repair project, a systematic condition assessment of the structure needs to be carried out to identify the cause(s) of deterioration and the extent of damage. The course informed about concrete deterioration mechanisms, on-site evaluation techniques, the principles of diagnostic testing (strategies, test methods and interpretation of results), and concrete repair strategies.
Repair methods need to be designed with consideration for the anticipated or desired remaining service life of the structure. A distinction must be made between repairs intended to stop deterioration fully and those merely aimed at slowing down deterioration processes for a limited period of time. During the course relevant repair methods for damaged concrete structures were discussed, focussing on design methods, application principles and limitations.
The scope of relevant repair methods included the application of penetrating corrosion inhibitors and surface coatings, temporary electrochemical techniques, cathodic protection systems, bonded overlays (patch repairs), and crack injection.
The course was presented through formal lectures, laboratory demonstrations and hands–on exercises, as well as site visits. Lectures were presented by international leaders in the respective field, supported by repair material suppliers, and practicing engineers.
The cost for attending was EUR 400 for international PhD students. Students who participate in the PhD course are eligible to receive free RILEM membership of 3 years. Terms and conditions apply. For further enquiries, contact the course convener.
In cooperation with RILEM (International Union of Laboratories and Experts in Construction Materials, Systems and Structures).