Shear behavior of spliced post-tensioned girders

Moore, Andrew Michael, 1984-
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By its nature a spliced girder must contain a number of post tensioning tendons throughout its length. The focus of the experimental program described in this dissertation is the evaluation of the strength and serviceability of post-tensioned girders loaded in shear, and, more specifically, how a post-tensioning duct located in the web of a girder affects the shear transfer mechanism of a bulb-tee cross-section. Due to the limited number of tests in the literature conducted on full-scale post-tensioned girders, eleven shear tests were performed on seven prestressed concrete bulb-tee girder specimens. Of these tests, ten were conducted on specimens that contained a post-tensioning duct within their web and additional pretensioning reinforcement in their bottom and top flanges. The remaining shear test was conducted on a control specimen that did not have a post-tensioning tendon but contained the same pretensioning reinforcement as the post-tensioned girder specimens. The behavioral characteristics of these eleven test specimens at service level shear forces and at their ultimate shear strengths were evaluated in regards to five primary experimental variables: (i) the presence of a post-tensioning duct, (ii) post-tensioning duct material (plastic or steel), (iii) web-width, (iv) duct diameter, and (v) the transverse reinforcement ratio. The findings of this experimental study are described in detail within this dissertation, but can be summarized by the following two points. (i) No differences were observed in the ultimate or service level shear behavior in girders containing plastic grouted ducts when compared to those containing steel grouted ducts and (ii) The current procedure of reducing the effective web width to account for the presence of a post-tensioning duct is ineffective because it addresses the incorrect shear transfer mechanism. A method that correctly addresses the reduction in shear strength due to the presence of a post-tensioning duct was developed and verified using the tests performed during this experimental program and tests reported in the literature.