By Ben Coxworth
Utilising tape to repair or reinforce concrete
structures may seem like a DIY fix-it joke, but that’s just what fibre
reinforced polymer (FRP) sheets are used for. Now, scientists have developed
what they say is a better FRP, that halves the number of people and amount of
time required for application.
Ordinarily, when FRP sheets are applied to cracked
or otherwise compromised concrete, a resin must be applied to the surface
first. Researchers at Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University say up to
six workers are typically required for the job.
They have developed ‘FasRaP’ – Fast Wrapping Fibre
Reinforced Polymer. It comprises a glass fibre-reinforced polymer wrap, which
is pre-coated with a proprietary adhesive resin that hardens only when exposed
to light. As a result, it can reportedly be applied by just three people, in
half the time required for conventional FRPs.
Additionally, because the resin is pre-applied to
the wrap under controlled conditions, they claim that the quality of
repairs/reinforcements should be more consistent and easier to assess.
industry-standard lab tests, a concrete pillar wrapped with FasRaP was found to
withstand an 80% higher load than a bare pillar – similar to strength figures
for traditional FRPs.
“Our invention allows companies to save on
manpower costs, increase efficiency and make structural reinforcement much
easier to execute,” says lead scientist, Assoc. Prof. Ng Kee Woei.
“This will help them meet future building standards and prolong the life
of older buildings and structures as Singapore and other urban cities
The university is now working to commercialise the
Information from Nanyang Technological University