Title page for ETD etd-102998-190256

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Pyc, Wioleta Agata
Author's Email Address wpyc@vt.edu
URN etd-102998-190256
Title Field Performance of Epoxy-Coated Reinforcing Steel in Virginia Bridge Decks
Degree PhD
Department Civil Engineering
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Weyers, Richard E. Committee Chair
Cousins, Thomas E. Committee Member
Dillard, John G. Committee Member
Duke, John C. Jr. Committee Member
Sprinkel, Michael M. Committee Member
Wightman, James P. Committee Member
  • adhesion
  • concrete
  • bridge decks
  • epoxy-coated reinforcement (ECR)
Date of Defense 1998-09-04
Availability unrestricted

Wioleta A. Pyc


The corrosion protection performance of epoxy-coated reinforcing steel (ECR) was evaluated in 18 concrete bridge decks in Virginia in 1997. The decks were 2 to 20 years old at the time of the investigation. The concrete bridge deck inspections included crack survey and cover depth determination in the right traffic lane. Maximum of 12 cores with the top reinforcement randomly located in the lowest 12th percentile cover depth and 3 cores with the truss bars were drilled from each bridge deck. The concrete core evaluation included visual examination and determination of carbonation depth, moisture content, absorption, percent saturation and chloride content at 13 mm depth. Rapid chloride permeability test was also performed for the surface and base concrete on samples obtained from cores containing truss bars. The ECR inspection consisted of visual examination and damage evaluation, coating thickness and adhesion determination. The condition of the steel underneath the epoxy coating was also evaluated.

Adhesion loss of the epoxy coating to the steel surface was detected for 4 years old bridge decks. The epoxy coating had debonded from the reinforcing bar before the chloride arrival. Visible signs of a possibility of a corrosion process underneath the coating suggest that ECR will not provide any or little additional service life for concrete bridge decks in comparison to black steel. Other systems, which will provide longer protection with a higher degree of reliability against chloride induced corrosion of steel in concrete, should be considered.

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