Evaluation of fracture behavior of high-strength hydraulic concrete damaged by freeze-thaw cycle test

Xiangyi Zhu, Xudong Chen*, Yin Bai, Yingjie Ning, Wei Zhang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Citations (Scopus)


Hydraulic concrete structures in cold regions are vulnerable to freeze–thaw (FT) damage, which will affect the fracture performance of concrete structures. Hence, the fracture characteristics of high-strength hydraulic concrete subjected to different FT damage (0, 100, 200, 300, 400 FT cycles) are studied by experimental analysis and discrete element method (DEM) simulation. The results show that the FT damage has a significant weakening effect on the fracture characteristics of concrete beams. The elastic modulus E, critical crack length ac, fracture toughness KIc, fracture energy GF and critical crack tip opening displacement CTODc of concrete beams all show a linearly decreasing trend with the increase of the number of FT cycles. In addition, digital image correlation (DIC) and acoustic emission (AE) techniques are used to reveal the evolution law of internal cracks of FT damaged concrete beams under three-point flexural loads. On the basis of experimental research, the influence indexes of FT damage are introduced into DEM parameters, and a fracture model considering real aggregates is established, which can well predict the fracture behavior of concrete beams subjected to different FT cycles.

Original languageEnglish
Article number126346
JournalConstruction and Building Materials
Publication statusPublished - 28 Feb 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • DEM prediction model
  • DIC and AE techniques
  • FT cycles
  • Fracture characteristics
  • Influence indexes of FT damage

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