The American Concrete Institute (ACI) has released the first comprehensive building code on the use of nonmetallic, glass fiber-reinforced polymer (GFRP) bars in structural concrete applications, which builds on an earlier steel reinforcement code and provides an alternative to the reinforcement’s applications.
The name of the code is ACI CODE-440.11-22: Building Code Requirements for Structural Concrete Reinforced with Glass Fiber-Reinforced Polymer (GFRP) Bars. It was developed through the work of ACI Committee 440, by a consensus process approved by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). It addresses structural systems, members, and connections, including cast-in-place, precast, non-prestressed, and composite construction.
GFRP reinforcement has been in use for decades as an alternative to steel reinforcement because of its non-corrosive, non-magnetic, and lightweight properties. This code represents a milestone for this technology, and mirrors ACI 318-19 with provisions for designing GFRP reinforced concrete beams, one-way and two-way slabs, columns, walls, connections, and foundations. Other model codes and standards can directly reference ACI CODE-440.11-22 for a widespread and responsible use of this important technology.
“What really sets this code apart is that it is dependent on ACI 318-19,” says Will Gold, past chair, ACI Committee 440. “With this new code, almost any structural element covered by ACI 318 can be designed using GFRP reinforcement instead of steel reinforcement. A great deal of new research and validation was required for the code to address elements, such as connections and columns. The hard work and efforts of many ACI Committee 440 members made development of this new code possible, and it represents a tremendous accomplishment by the committee.”
ACI Committee 440’s mission is to develop and report information on fiber reinforced polymer for internal and external reinforcement of concrete. Committee 440 has written and maintains several design guides, materials, and construction specifications, reports, and technical notes on the use of FRP in structural concrete applications.