Flexural Strengthening of Old Timber Floors with Laminated Carbon Fiber–Reinforced Polymers

Hugo C. Biscaia, Carlos Chastre, David Cruz, Noel Franco

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38 Citations (Scopus)


A set of three old suspended timber floors were flexurally strengthened with carbon fiber–reinforced polymer (CFRP) strips in order to investigate the effectiveness of externally bonding FRP to their soffits. The specimens were from an old building and 740-mm-wide bands were transferred to the laboratory in order to be tested in a four-point bending test. One specimen was tested with no strengthening system and the results obtained were used as reference values for comparison with the specimens that were externally bonded and reinforced (EBR) with CFRP strips. Two similar EBR systems were studied: (1) keeping both ends of the CFRP strips free of any restriction (traditional technique), and (2) embedding both ends of the CFRP strips into the timber, thus providing a bonding anchorage of the strips (new technique). The installation of the new strengthening system comprises the opening of holes in the timber and the creation of a transition curve between the holes and the timber surface. This transition curve allows a smooth transition of the CFRP laminate between the hole and the timber surface, thus avoiding stress concentrations in this area. After the opening of the holes, the resin is applied inside the hole and on the beam surface, and then the CFRP laminate is mounted. The load-carrying capacity of the specimens, the rupture modes, and the strains and bond stress distributions within the CFRP-to-timber interface are presented. A nonlinear numerical simulation of the specimens based on the midspan cross-sectional equilibrium is also presented. The results showed that the use of the new strengthening system enhances the performance of the specimens when compared with the traditional strengthening system.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)04016073
JournalJournal of composites for construction
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2017


  • Carbon fiber–reinforced polymer (CFRP)
  • Suspended floor
  • Timber
  • Mechanical testing


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