Over 60% highly transparent quasi-solid-state dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs) with dimension of 50x50 cm2 were fabricated via inkjet printing process using nanocomposite inks as raw materials and tested under outdoor illumination conditions. The cells were electrically characterized, and their possible application to the shell of greenhouses was also examined. The panel design was in Z-interconnection, where the working electrode was inkjet printed on one conductive glass and the counter electrode on a second glass in a sandwich configuration. Silver current collective fingers were printed on the glasses to make the internal electrical connections. In that case, the adjacent cells were connected in series via silver fingers and finally insulated using a UV curing resin to protect them from the corrosive (I-/I3-) redox couple of the electrolyte.
The growth and expansion of the industrial facilities comes proportional to the market increasing demand of products and services. Furthermore, raw material producers such as oil companies usually undergo massive revamping projects to maintain a synchronized supply. These revamping projects are usually delivered through challenging construction projects held and associated with daily site risks related to the construction process. Henceforth, a case study related to these risks and corresponding on-spot corrective measurements has been made on a certain number of construction project contractors at Kuwait Oil Company (KOC) to derive the benefits and overall effectiveness of the on-spot corrective measurements during the construction phase of a project, and how would the same help in avoiding major incidents, ensuring a smooth, cost effective and on time delivery of the project. Findings of this case study shall have an added value to the overall risk management process by minimizing the daily site risks that may affect the project lead time, resulting in an undisturbed on-site construction process.
The new progressive method of 3D metal printing SLM (Selective Laser Melting) is increasingly expanded into the normal operation. As a result, greater demands are placed on the surface quality of the parts produced in this way. The article deals with research of selected finishing methods (tumbling, face milling, sandblasting, shot peening and brushing) and their impact on the final surface roughness. The 20 x 20 x 7 mm produced specimens using SLM additive technology on the Renishaw AM400 were subjected to testing of these finishing methods by adjusting various parameters. Surface parameters of roughness Sa, Sz were chosen as the evaluation criteria and profile parameters Ra, Rz were used as additional measurements. Optical measurement of surface roughness was performed on Alicona Infinite Focus 5. An experiment conducted to optimize the surface roughness revealed, as expected, that the best roughness parameters were achieved through a face milling operation. Tumbling is particularly suitable for 3D printing components, as tumbling media are able to reach even complex shapes and, after changing to polishing bodies, achieve a high surface gloss. Surface quality after tumbling depends on the process time. Other methods with satisfactory results are shot peening and tumbling, which should be the focus of further research.
The aim of the present study is to investigate the changes in the mechanical properties of mortars including additions of Condensed Silica Fume (CSF), Hydrated Lime (CH) or both at various amounts (5% to 15% of cement replacement) and high water ratios (w/b) (0.4 to 0.7). The physical and mechanical changes in the mixes were evaluated using non-destructive tests (Ultrasonic Pulse Velocity (UPV)) and destructive tests (crushing tests) on 28 day-long specimens consecutively, in order to assess CSF and CH replacement rate influence on the mechanical and physical properties of the mortars, as well as CSF-CH pre-mixing on the improvement of these properties. A significant improvement of the mechanical properties of the CSF, CSF-CH mortars, has been noted. CSF-CH mixes showed the best improvements exceeding 50% improvement, showing the sizable pozzolanic reaction contribution to the specimen strength development. UPV tests have shown increased velocities for CSF and CSH mixes, however no proportional evolution with compressive strengths could be noted. The results of the study show that CSF-CH addition could represent a suitable solution to significantly increase the mechanical properties of mortars.
This paper comprises an experimental investigation into the structural performance of cold formed steel (CFS) and timber board composite floor systems. The tests include a series of small-scale pushout tests and full-scale bending tests carried out using a refined loading system to simulate uniformly distributed constant load. The influence of connection details (screw spacing and adhesives) on floor performance was investigated. The results are then compared to predictions from relevant existing models for composite floor systems. The results of this research demonstrate the significant benefits of considering the composite action of the boards in floor design. Depending on connection detail, an increase in flexural stiffness of up to 40% was observed in the floor system, when compared to designing joists individually.
Headed stud shear connections are widely used in the junction or embedded zone of hybrid girder to achieve whole composite action with continuity that can sustain steel-concrete interfacial tensile and shear forces. In Japan, Japan Road Association (JRA) specifications are used for hybrid girder design that utilizes very low level of stud capacity than those of American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC) specifications, Japan Society of Civil Engineers (JSCE) specifications and EURO code. As low design shear strength is considered in design of connections, the time dependent shear behavior due to sustained external loading is not considered, even not fully studied. In this study, a finite element approach was used to evaluate the time dependent shear behavior for headed studs used as connections at the junction. This study clarified, how the sustained loading distinctively impacted on changing the interfacial shear of connections with time which was sensitive to lodging history, positions of flanges, neighboring studs, position of prestress bar and reinforcing bar, concrete strength, etc. and also identified a shear influence area. Stud strength was also confirmed through pushout tests. The outcome obtained from the study may provide an important basis and reference data in designing connections of hybrid girders with enhanced stud capacity with due consideration of their long-term shear behavior.
Seismic isolation can be used as a retrofit method for historical buildings with the advantage that minimum intervention on super-structure is required. However, selection of isolation devices depends on weight and stiffness of upper structure. In this study, two buildings are considered for analyses to evaluate the applicability of this retrofitting methodology. Both buildings are located at Akita prefecture in the north part of Japan. One building is a wooden structure that corresponds to the old council meeting hall of Noshiro city. The second building is a brick masonry structure that was used as house of a foreign mining engineer and it is located at Ani town. Ambient vibration measurements were performed on both buildings to estimate their dynamic characteristics. Then, target period of vibration of isolated systems is selected as 3 seconds is selected to estimate required stiffness of isolation devices. For wooden structure, which is a light construction, it was found that natural rubber isolators in combination with friction bearings are suitable for seismic isolation. In case of masonry building elastomeric isolator can be used for its seismic isolation. Lumped mass systems are used for seismic response analysis and it is verified in both cases that seismic isolation can be used as retrofitting method of historical construction. However, in the case of the light building, most of the weight corresponds to the reinforced concrete slab that is required to install isolation devices.
This paper deals with the performance of semi-light weight concrete, prepared by using wood ash pellets as coarse aggregates which were improved by partial replacement of cement with alccofine. Alccofine is a mineral admixture which contains high glass content obtained through the process of controlled granulation. This is finer than cement which carries its own pozzolanic property. Therefore, cement could be replaced by alccofine as 0%, 5%, 10%, 15%, 20%, 25%, 30%, 35%, 40%, 45%, 50%, 55%, 60%, 65%, and 70% to enhance the strength and durability properties of concrete. High range water reducing admixtures (HRWA) were used in these mixes which were dosed up to 1.5% weight of the total cementitious content (alccofine & cement). It also develops the weaker transition zone into more impermeable layer. Specimens were subjected in both the accelerated curing method as well as conventional curing method. Experimental results were compared and reported, in that the maximum compressive strength of 32.6 MPa was achieved on 28th day with 30% replacement level in a density of 2200 kg/m3 to a conventional curing, while in the accelerated curing, maximum compressive strength was achieved at 40% replacement level. Rapid chloride penetration test (RCPT) output results for the conventional curing method at 0% and 70% give 3296.7 and 545.6 coulombs.
Rubberwood is a crucial commercial timber in Southern Thailand. All processes in a rubberwood production depend on the knowledge and expertise of the technicians, especially the drying process. This research aims to develop an empirical model for drying kinetics in rubberwood. During the experiment, the temperature of the hot air and the average air flow velocity were kept at 80-100 °C and 1.75 m/s, respectively. The moisture content in the samples was determined less than 12% in the achievement of drying basis. The drying kinetic was simulated using an empirical solver. The experimental results illustrated that the moisture content was reduced whereas the drying temperature and time were increased. The coefficient of the moisture ratio between the empirical and the experimental model was tested with three statistical parameters, R-square (R²), Root Mean Square Error (RMSE) and Chi-square (χ²) to predict the accuracy of the parameters. The experimental moisture ratio had a good fit with the empirical model. Additionally, the results indicated that the drying of rubberwood using the Henderson and Pabis model revealed the suitable level of agreement. The result presented an excellent estimation (R² = 0.9963) for the moisture movement compared to the other models. Therefore, the empirical results were valid and can be implemented in the future experiments.
Whole building energy simulation models are widely used for predicting future energy consumption, performance diagnosis and optimum control. Black box building energy modeling approach has been heavily studied in the past decade. The thermal response of a building can also be modeled using a network of interconnected resistors (R) and capacitors (C) at each node called R-C network. In this study, a model building, Case 600, as described in the “Standard Method of Test for the Evaluation of Building Energy Analysis Computer Program”, ASHRAE standard 140, is studied along with a 3R2C thermal network model and the ASHRAE clear sky solar radiation model. Although building an energy model involves two important parts of building component i.e., the envelope and internal mass, the effect of building internal mass is not considered in this study. All the characteristic parameters of the building envelope are evaluated as on Case 600. Finally, monthly building energy consumption from the thermal network model is compared with a simple-box energy model within reasonable accuracy. From the results, 0.6-9.4% variation of monthly energy consumption is observed because of the south-facing windows.
There is little published research about the influence of execution methods on structural behavior. Structural analysis is typically based on a constructed building, considering the actions of all forces under which it was designed. However, during construction, execution loads do not match those designed, and in some cases the loads begin to act when the concrete has not yet reached its maximum strength. Changes to structural element support conditions may occur, resulting in unforeseen alterations to the structure’s behavior. Shoring is an example of a construction process that, if executed improperly, will directly influence the structural performance, and may result in unpredicted cracks and displacements. The NBR 14931/2004 standard, which guides the execution of reinforced concrete structures, mentions that shoring must be executed in a way that avoids unpredicted loads and that it may be removed after previous analysis of the structure’s behavior by the professional responsible for the structure’s design. Differences in structural behavior are reduced for small spans. It is important to qualify and quantify how the incorrect placement of shores can compromise a structure’s safety. The results of this research allowed a more precise acknowledgment of the relationship between spans and loads, for which the influence of execution processes can be considerable, and reinforced that civil engineering practice must be performed with the presence of a qualified professional, respecting existing standards’ guidelines.
While the use of cast-in-place concrete for an airfield and highway pavement overlay is very common, the application of precast concrete elements is very limited today. The main reasons consist of high production costs and complex structural behavior. Despite that, several precast concrete systems have been developed and tested with the aim to provide a system with rapid construction. The contribution deals with the reinforcement design of a hexagonal element developed for a proposed airfield pavement system. The sub-base course of the system is composed of compacted recycled concrete aggregates and fiber reinforced concrete with recycled aggregates place on top of it. The selected element belongs to a group of precast concrete elements which are being considered for the construction of a surface course. Both high costs of full-scale experiments and the need to investigate various elements force to simulate their behavior in a numerical analysis software by using finite element method instead of performing expensive experiments. The simulation of the selected element was conducted on a nonlinear model in order to obtain such results which could fully compensate results from experiments. The main objective was to design reinforcement of the precast concrete element subject to quasi-static loading from airplanes with respect to geometrical imperfections, manufacturing imperfections, tensile stress in reinforcement, compressive stress in concrete and crack width. The obtained findings demonstrate that the position and the presence of imperfection in a pavement highly affect the stress distribution in the precast concrete element. The precast concrete element should be heavily reinforced to fulfill all the demands. Using under-reinforced concrete elements would lead to the formation of wide cracks and cracks permanently open.
The paper presents a methodology for real-time structural health monitoring and geophysical applications. The key elements of the system are a high performance MIMO RADAR sensor, an optical camera and a dedicated set of software algorithms encompassing interferometry, tomography and photogrammetry. The MIMO Radar sensor proposed in this work, provides an extremely high sensitivity to displacements making the system able to react to tiny deformations (up to tens of microns) with a time scale which spans from milliseconds to hours. The MIMO feature of the system makes the system capable of providing a set of two-dimensional images of the observed scene, each mapped on the azimuth-range directions with noticeably resolution in both the dimensions and with an outstanding repetition rate. The back-scattered energy, which is distributed in the 3D space, is projected on a 2D plane, where each pixel has as coordinates the Line-Of-Sight distance and the cross-range azimuthal angle. At the same time, the high performing processing unit allows to sense the observed scene with remarkable refresh periods (up to milliseconds), thus opening the way for combined static and dynamic structural health monitoring. Thanks to the smart TX/RX antenna array layout, the MIMO data can be processed through a tomographic approach to reconstruct the three-dimensional map of the observed scene. This 3D point cloud is then accurately mapped on a 2D digital optical image through photogrammetric techniques, allowing for easy and straightforward interpretations of the measurements. Once the three-dimensional image is reconstructed, a 'repeat-pass' interferometric approach is exploited to provide the user of the system with high frequency three-dimensional motion/vibration estimation of each point of the reconstructed image. At this stage, the methodology leverages consolidated atmospheric correction algorithms to provide reliable displacement and vibration measurements.
Telescopic Front Fork (TFF) used in two wheelers, mainly motorcycle, is made from high strength steel, and is manufactured by high frequency induction welding process wherein hot rolled and pickled coils are used as input raw material for rolling of hollow tubes followed by heat treatment, surface treatment, cold drawing, tempering, etc. The final application demands superior quality TFF tubes w.r.t. surface finish and dimensional tolerances. This paper presents the investigation of two different types of failure of fork during operation. The investigation consists of visual inspection, chemical analysis, characterization of microstructure, and energy dispersive spectroscopy. In this paper, comprehensive investigations of two failed tube samples were investigated. In case of Sample #1, the result revealed that there was a pre-existing crack, known as hook crack, which leads to the cracking of the tube. Metallographic examination exhibited that during field operation the pre-existing hook crack was surfaced out leading to crack in the pipe. In case of Sample #2, presence of internal oxidation with decarburised grains inside the material indicates origin of the defect from slab stage.
This paper presents the design application and reinforcement detailing of 15 storied reinforced concrete shear wall-frame structure based on linear static analysis. Databases are generated for section sizes based on automated structural optimization method utilizing Active-set Algorithm in MATLAB platform. The design constraints of allowable section sizes, capacity criteria and seismic provisions for static loads, combination of gravity and lateral loads are checked and determined based on ASCE 7-10 documents and ACI 318-14 design provision. The result of this study illustrates the efficiency of proposed method, and is expected to provide a useful reference in designing of RC shear wall-frame structures.
This paper presents the results of an experimental investigation carried out to evaluate the effects of partial replacement of cement and fine aggregate with industrial waste by-products on concrete strength properties. The Grey Taguchi approach has been used to optimize the mix proportions for desired properties. In this research work, a ternary combination of industrial waste by-products has been used. The experiments have been designed using Taguchi's L9 orthogonal array with four factors having three levels each. The cement was partially replaced by ladle furnace slag (LFS), fly ash (FA) and copper slag (CS) at 10%, 25% and 40% level and fine aggregate (sand) was partially replaced with electric arc furnace slag (EAFS), iron slag (IS) and glass powder (GP) at 20%, 30% and 40% level. Three water to binder ratios, fixed at 0.40, 0.44 and 0.48, were used, and the curing age was fixed at 7, 28 and 90 days. Thus, a series of nine experiments was conducted on the specimens for water to binder ratios of 0.40, 0.44 and 0.48 at 7, 28 and 90 days of the water curing regime. It is evident from the investigations that Grey Taguchi approach for optimization helps in identifying the factors affecting the final outcomes, i.e. compressive strength and split tensile strength of concrete. For the materials and a range of parameters used in this research, the present study has established optimum mixes in terms of strength properties. The best possible levels of mix proportions were determined for maximization through compressive and splitting tensile strength. To verify the results, the optimal mix was produced and tested. The mixture results in higher compressive strength and split tensile strength than other mixes. The compressive strength and split tensile strength of optimal mixtures are also compared with the control concrete mixtures. The results show that compressive strength and split tensile strength of concrete made with partial replacement of cement and fine aggregate is more than control concrete at all ages and w/c ratios. Based on the overall observations, it can be recommended that industrial waste by-products in ternary combinations can effectively be utilized as partial replacements of cement and fine aggregates in all concrete applications.
Passive resonant vibration absorbers are among the most widely used dynamic control systems in civil engineering. They typically consist in a single-degree-of-freedom mechanical appendage of the main structure, tuned to one structural target mode through frequency and damping optimization. One classical scheme is the pendulum absorber, whose mass is constrained to move along a curved trajectory and is damped by viscous dashpots. Even though the principle is well known, the search for improved arrangements is still under way. In recent years this investigation inspired a type of bidirectional pendulum absorber (BPA), consisting of a mass constrained to move along an optimal three-dimensional (3D) concave surface. For such a BPA, the surface principal curvatures are designed to ensure a bidirectional tuning of the absorber to both principal modes of the main structure, while damping is produced either by horizontal viscous dashpots or by vertical friction dashpots, connecting the BPA to the main structure. In this paper, a variant of BPA is proposed, where damping originates from the variable tangential friction force which develops between the pendulum mass and the 3D surface as a result of a spatially-varying friction coefficient pattern. Namely, a friction coefficient is proposed that varies along the pendulum surface in proportion to the modulus of the 3D surface gradient. With such an assumption, the dissipative model of the absorber can be proven to be nonlinear homogeneous in the small displacement domain. The resulting homogeneous BPA (HBPA) has a fundamental advantage over conventional friction-type absorbers, because its equivalent damping ratio results independent on the amplitude of oscillations, and therefore its optimal performance does not depend on the excitation level. On the other hand, the HBPA is more compact than viscously damped BPAs because it does not need the installation of dampers. This paper presents the analytical model of the HBPA and an optimal methodology for its design. Numerical simulations of single- and multi-story building structures under wind and earthquake loads are presented to compare the HBPA with classical viscously damped BPAs. It is shown that the HBPA is a promising alternative to existing BPA types and that homogeneous tangential friction is an effective means to realize systems provided with amplitude-independent damping.
Nowadays construction industry is developing means to incorporate waste products in concrete to ensure sustainability. To meet the need of construction industry, a synthetic aggregate was developed using optimized technique called compression moulding press technique. The manufactured aggregate comprises mixture of plastic, waste which acts as binder, together with by-product waste which acts as fillers. The physical properties and microstructures of the inert materials and the manufactured aggregate were examined and compared with the conventional available aggregates. The outcomes suggest that the developed aggregate has potential to be used as substitution of conventional aggregate due to its less weight and water absorption. The microstructure analysis confirmed the efficiency of the manufacturing process where the final product has the same mixture of binder and filler.
For any country in the world, it has become a priority to protect the critical infrastructure from looming risks of terrorism. In any infrastructure system, the structural elements like lower floors, exterior columns, walls etc. are key elements which are the most susceptible to damage due to blast load. The present study revisits the state of art review of the design and analysis of reinforced concrete panels subjected to blast loading. Various aspects in association with blast loading on structure, i.e. estimation of blast load, experimental works carried out previously, the numerical simulation tools, various material models, etc. are considered for exploring the current practices adopted worldwide. Discussion on various parametric studies to investigate the effect of reinforcement ratios, thickness of slab, different charge weight and standoff distance is also made. It was observed that for the simulation of blast load, CONWEP blast function or equivalent numerical equations were successfully employed by many researchers. The study of literature indicates that the researches were carried out using experimental works and numerical simulation using well known generalized finite element methods, i.e. LS-DYNA, ABAQUS, AUTODYN. Many researchers recommended to use concrete damage model to represent concrete and plastic kinematic material model to represent steel under action of blast loads for most of the numerical simulations. Most of the studies reveal that the increase reinforcement ratio, thickness of slab, standoff distance was resulted in better blast resistance performance of reinforced concrete panel. The study summarizes the various research results and appends the present state of knowledge for the structures exposed to blast loading.
The tall windmill towers are designed as monopole tower or lattice tower. In the present research, a 125-meter high hybrid tower which is a combination of lattice and monopole type is proposed. The response of hybrid tower is compared with conventional monopole tower. The towers were analyzed in finite element method software considering nonlinear seismic time history load. The synthetic seismic time history for different soil is derived using the SeismoARTIF software. From the present research, it is concluded that, in the hybrid tower, we are not getting resonance condition. The base shear is less in hybrid tower compared to monopole tower for different soil conditions.
The additional relationships i.e., start-to-start, finish-to-finish, and start-to-finish, between activity in Precedence Diagram Method (PDM) provides a more flexible schedule than traditional Critical Path Method (CPM). But, changing the duration of critical activities in the PDM network will have an anomalous effect on the critical path and the project completion date. In this study, we classified the critical activities in two groups i.e., 1. activity on single critical path and 2. activity on multi-critical paths, and six classes i.e., normal, reverse, neutral, perverse, decrease-reverse and increase-normal, based on their effects on project duration in PDM. Furthermore, we determined the maximum float of time by which the duration each type of critical activities can be changed without effecting the project duration. This study would help the project manager to clearly understand the behavior of each critical activity on critical path, and he/she would be able to change the project duration by shortening or lengthening activities based on project budget and project deadline.
The present study evaluates the properties of class F fly ash as a replacement of natural materials in civil engineering construction industry. The low-lime flash similar to class F is the prime variety generated in India, although it has significantly smaller volumes of high-lime fly ash as compared to class C. The chemical and physical characterization of the sample is carried out with the number of experimental approaches in order to investigate all relevant features present in the samples. For chemical analysis, elementary quantitative results from point analysis and scanning electron microscopy (SEM)/dispersive spectroscopy (EDS) techniques were used to identify the element images of different fractions. The physical properties found very close to the range of common soils. Furthermore, the fly ash-based bricks were prepared by the same sample of class F fly ash and the results of compressive strength similar to that of Standard Clay Brick Grade 1 available in the local market of India.
The production of low cost and environmentally friendly products represents an important step for developing countries. Biomass is one of the largest renewable energy sources, and Serbia is among the top European countries in terms of the amount of available and unused biomass. Substituting cement with the ashes obtained by the combustion of biomass would reduce the negative impact of concrete industry on the environment and would provide a waste valorization by the reuse of this type of by-product in mortars and concretes manufacture. The study contains data on physical properties, chemical characteristics and pozzolanic properties of obtained biomass ashes: wheat straw ash and mixture of wheat and soya straw ash in Serbia, which were, later, used as supplementary cementitious materials in preparation of mortars. Experimental research of influence of biomass ashes on physical and mechanical properties of cement mortars was conducted. The results indicate that the biomass ashes can be successfully used in mortars as substitutes of cement without compromising their physical and mechanical performances.
Water hammer is a hydraulic transient problem which is commonly encountered in the penstocks of hydropower plants. The numerical model was developed to estimate the transient behavior of pressure waves in pipe systems. The computational algorithm was proposed to model the water hammer phenomenon in a pipe system with pump shutdown at midstream and sudden valve closure at downstream. To predict the pressure head and flow velocity as a function of time as a result of rapidly closing a valve and pump shutdown, two boundary conditions at the ends considering pump operation and valve control can be implemented as specified equations of the pressure head and flow velocity based on the characteristics method. It was shown that the effects of transient flow make it determine the needs for protection devices, such as surge tanks, surge relief valves, or air valves, at various points in the system against overpressure and low pressure. It produced reasonably good performance with the results of the proposed transient model for pipeline systems. The proposed numerical model can be used as an efficient tool for the safety assessment of hydropower plants due to water hammer.
Fibre reinforced concrete (FRC) has been widely used in industrial pavements and non-structural elements such as pipes, culverts, tunnels, and precast elements. The strengthening effect of fibres in the concrete matrix is achieved primarily due to the bridging effect of fibres at the crack interfaces. The workability of the concrete was reduced on addition of high percentages of steel fibres. The optimum percentage of addition of steel fibres varies with its aspect ratio. For this study, 1% addition of steel has resulted to be the optimum percentage for both Hooked and Crimped Steel Fibres and was added to the beam specimens. The fibres restrain efficiently the cracks and take up residual stresses beyond the cracking. In this sense, diagonal cracks are effectively stitched up by fibres crossing it. The failure of beams within the shear failure range changed from shear to flexure in the presence of sufficient steel fibre quantity. The shear strength is increased with the addition of steel fibres and had exceeded the enhancement obtained with the transverse reinforcement. However, such increase is not directly in proportion with the quantity of fibres used. Considering all the clarification made in the present experimental investigation, it is concluded that 1% of crimped steel fibres with an aspect ratio of 50 is the best type of steel fibres for replacement of transverse stirrups in high strength concrete beams when compared to the steel fibres with hooked ends.