• Freeze-Thaw Durability and Long-Term Performance Evaluation of Shotcrete in Cold Regions

      Qiao, Pizhong; Zhou, Zhidong (Center for Environmentally Sustainable Transportation in Cold Climates, 2017-12-31)
      This study’s aim was to evaluate the freeze-thaw durability of shotcrete in cold regions and predict its long-term performance. One benchmark mix design from the WSDOT was chosen to prepare samples for performance evaluation. Shotcrete specimens were conditioned in accordance with ASTM C666. The long-term freeze-thaw performance after certain cycles was evaluated using the dynamic modulus of elasticity test (ASTM C215), fracture energy test (RILEM 50-FMC), and X-ray CT microstructure imaging analysis. Probabilistic damage analysis was conducted to establish the relation between the durability life and the damage parameter for different probabilities of reliability using the three-parameter Weibull distribution model. The fracture energy test was found to be a more sensitive test method than the dynamic modulus of elasticity for screening material deterioration over time and for capturing accumulative material damage caused by rapid freeze-thaw action, because of smaller durability factors (degradation ratios) obtained from the fracture energy test. X-ray CT imaging analysis is capable of detecting microcracks that form and pore evolution in the aggregate and interface transition zone of conditioned samples. Moreover, the continuum damage mechanic-based model shows potential in predicting long-term material degradation and the service life of shotcrete.