Carbon fiber reinforced polymer has been around for years and has been used in a variety of industries, including automotive, aerospace, athletics and medical. Carbon fiber is versatile, durable and strong, making it a popular tool for a wide range of industrial applications.
Using carbon fiber for structural reinforcement is a newly developed construction practice that certified applicators around the country are utilizing to better reinforce concrete structures. Carbon fiber has been widely used in the seismic retrofit and reinforcement of concrete structures because the technology of the polymer allows it to be adapted to complex structural shapes without affecting their original appearances and it’s 7-10 times stronger than steel.
Carbon fiber solutions, including structural reinforcement and carbon fiber wraps, can effectively fight against structures that are prone to corroding or collapsing, including:
- concrete columns
- concrete slabs
- concrete and masonry walls
- piers, docks and seawalls
- dams and bridges
- and beams!
We understand it can be intimidating to trust new technology, which is why we’ve laid out the five biggest benefits of carbon fiber solutions.
- Carbon fiber combats contraction and expansion
Buildings in cities like Indianapolis are exposed to dramatic temperature changes that can happen overnight and it can be difficult to prepare your building for it. Freezing and thawing cycles place strain on your building, causing repeated contraction and expansion that eventually leads to a decrease in structural strength. Carbon fiber can accommodate for contractions and expansions without losing its shape or support strength.
- Carbon fiber protects against pressure
Indiana weather also creates havoc for buildings due to changes in the soil underneath their foundations. Over time, freeze and thaw cycles can put extra pressure on lower-level walls that eventually lead to an unstable structure at risk for collapse. Carbon fiber’s high tensile strength keeps foundations and walls firm year-round.
- Carbon fiber is less messy and less structurally disruptive
To increase the strength of a building, a lot of intrusive digging and installation must occur to create space for support structures or strengthening systems. Compared to other processes, carbon fiber reinforcement requires no on-site fixed facilities, no wet operation and less site occupation, making it a cleaner, faster and quieter construction method.
- Carbon fiber is waterproof
Water and moisture can cause serious damage to a building when it isn’t properly protected from the elements. Below-ground levels of buildings, parking garages and other structures are especially at risk of water damage, which is where carbon fiber can become important. Since carbon fiber is waterproof, it can form a powerful barrier against wet elements and preserve the lifespan of any type of foundation.
- Carbon fiber helps save money and time
Depending on the environment, carbon fiber can last for 50 years, offering impressive, high performance against deterioration and corrosion that saves building owners money in the long run. Compared to cement and steel structural strengthening, carbon fiber is quicker to install and less labor intensive, which saves money and time. Carbon fiber’s low maintenance and durability also means it will be less likely to require future repairs and hold up for years to come.
With 85 years of experience providing excellent workmanship and quality masonry and concrete repair services to commercial buildings in Indianapolis and beyond, Robert Haines Co., Inc. strives to do whatever it takes to support the objectives of our clients. To better serve our customers and preserve the rich structural history of the city, we’ve expanded our services and made it our goal to master more innovative technology that will help us provide the exceptional results our customers deserve.