Alkali-silica reaction (ASR) in cement is a major contributor to failure of cement structures around the world, causing increased repair costs and possible rebuild expenses. Alkali levels are indicative of the potential for ASR and are therefore measured and quantified. A linear correlation relating cement alkali concentration measured by X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy (XRF) and peak ratio measured by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) is developed. Regression analysis of plots correlating alkali content measured by FTIR absorption band (750 cm-1/923 cm-1) ratio versus equivalent alkali (Na2O)e (%Na2O + 0.658 % K2O) quantified by XRF show linear correlation coefficient, R2, of 0.97. Results of this investigation are discussed in terms of microstructural disorder coefficient Cd which is a reactivity criterion for ASR-susceptible aggregates proposed by Bachiorrini . XRF is a popular technique for alkali quantification but FTIR is faster, safer, and less expensive technique compared to XRF. Portable instrumentation is available for both techniques but FTIR systems are less expensive.
In cold-formed steel (CFS) construction, bolted connections without washers for either oversized or slotted holes may significantly expedite the installation process and lower the cost. However, the North American Specification (AISI S100, 2007) for the Design of Cold-Formed Steel Structural Members requires washers to be installed in bolted connections with oversized or slotted holes. A research project (Phase 1) sponsored by American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) was recently completed at the University of North Texas (UNT) that investigated the performance and strength of bolted CFS connections with oversized and slotted holes without using washers. The research presented in this thesis is the Phase 2 project in which the bolted CFS connections were studied in a broader respect in terms of the failure mechanism, the material thickness, and the hole configurations. Single shear and double shear connections without washers using oversized holes, oversized combined with standard or slotted holes were experimentally examined. Combined with Phase 1 results, the Phase 2 gives a comprehensive evaluation of the behavior and strength of bolted CFS connections with oversized and slotted holes without using washers. Revisions to the existing AISI North American Specification requirements for bolted connections are proposed to account for the reduction in the connection strength caused by the oversized and slotted hole configurations without washers. Specific LRFD and LSD resistance factors and ASD safety factors for different hole configurations in terms of the new proposed methods were presented.
This research presents the results on an experimental investigation to identify the effect of polyphosphoric acid (PPA) on aging characteristics of an asphalt binder. Addition of PPA to asphalt binders is said to improve performance of flexible pavements. Asphalt binder PG 64-22 in modified and unmodified conditions was subjected to aging in the laboratory using a regular oven and also simulated short term aging using rolling thin film oven (RTFO) test. Aging experiments were conducted to analyze the extent of oxidation in terms of changes in molecular structure of the asphalt binder. These changes were appraised using Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy, dynamic shear rheometer (DSR), and epifluorescence microscopy tests. FTIR was used to determine the changes in major bands with addition of PPA. Stiffness and viscoelastic behaviors of asphalts were determined from the DSR test. The stiffness is measured by calculating the shear modulus, G* and the viscoelastic behavior is measured by calculating the phase angle, sin δ. Epifluorescence microscopy is a tool used to study properties of organic or inorganic substances. The morphological characteristics of PPA modified asphalt samples were observed through epifluorescence microscopy. Epifluorescence microscopy reveals the polymer phase distribution in the asphalt binders. Results of this investigation show PPA addition to asphalt binders improve G*/sin δ characteristics of asphalt binders. In addition, presence of PPA in polymer containing asphalt did not adversely affect aging of the binders.
The mechanical properties of a polymer represent the critical characteristics to be considered when determining the applications for it. The same polymer processed with different methods can exhibit different mechanical properties. The purpose of this study is to investigate the difference in mechanical properties of the selected polymers caused by different processing techniques and conditions. Three polymers were studied, including low density polyethylene (LDPE), polypropylene (PP), and NEXPRENE® 1287A. Samples were processed with injection molding and compression molding under different processing condition. Tensile and DMA tests were performed on these samples. The acquired data of strain at break from the tensile tests and storage modulus from the DMA were utilized to calculate brittleness. Calculated brittleness values were used to perform analysis of variance (ANOVA) to investigate the statistical significance of the processing technique and condition. It was found that different processing techniques affect the brittleness significantly. The processing technique is the major factor affecting brittleness of PP and NEXPRENE, and the processing temperature is the major factor affecting brittleness of LDPE.
This research presents the results on an experimental investigation to identify the effects of rebar temperature, fly ash and water to cement ratio on concrete porosity in continuously reinforced concrete pavements (CRCP). Samples were cast and analyzed using pullout tests. Water to cement ratio (w/c) and rebar temperature had a significant influence on the rebar-concrete bond strength. The 28-day shear strength measurements showed an increase in rebar-concrete bond strength as the water to cement ratio (w/c) was reduced from 0.50 to 0.40 for both fly ash containing and non fly ash control samples. There was a reduction in the peak pullout load as the rebar surface temperature increased from 77o F to 150o F for the cast samples. A heated rebar experiment was performed simulating a rebar exposed to hot summer days and the rebar cooling curves were plotted for the rebar temperatures of 180o F - 120o F. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy was performed to show the moisture content of cement samples at the rebar-concrete interface. Mercury intrusion porosimetry test results on one batch of samples were used for pore size distribution analysis. An in-depth analysis of the morphological characteristics of the rebar-concrete interface and the observation of pores using the scanning electron microscope (SEM) was done.
In this research, monotonic and cyclic tests on cold-formed steel shear walls sheathed with steel sheets on one side were conducted to (1) verify the published nominal shear strength for 18-mil and 27-mil steel sheets; and (2) investigate the behavior of 6-ft. wide shear walls with multiple steel sheets. In objective 1: this research confirms the discrepancy existed in the published nominal strength of 27-mil sheets discovered by the previous project and verified the published nominal strength of 18 mil sheet for the wind design in AISI S213. The project also finds disagreement on the nominal strength of 18-mil sheets for seismic design, which is 29.0% higher than the published values. The research investigated 6-ft. wide shear wall with four framing and sheathing configurations. Configuration C, which used detailing, could provide the highest shear strength, compared to Configurations A and B. Meanwhile, the shear strength and stiffness of 2-ft. wide and 4-ft. wide wall can be improved by using the seismic detailing.
In the cold-formed steel construction, the oriented strand board is a common material for shear wall sheathing. an OSB is made by using wood chips as raw materials that undergo high temperature pressing to create a multi-larger structure material. Due to the OSB having a high strength in shear, it is an important material used in the construction field. the thesis is trying to verify published nominal shear strength in AISI-213-07 in the first part. This objective has two parts: the first part is to verify nominal shear strength (Rn) for wind and other in-plane loads for shear wall. the second part is to verify nominal shear strength (Rn) for seismic and other in-plane loads for shear wall. Secondly, the thesis verifies the design deflection equation for nominal shear strength of CFS shear walls with OSB sheathing. the test specimens were divided into eight groups which trying to verify the design deflection equation that was published in AISI-213-07 standard.
Currently, ASHRAE has determined the zone method and modified zone method are appropriate calculation methods for materials with a high difference in conductivity, such as cold-formed steel (CFS) walls. Because there is currently no standard U-Factor calculation method for CFS walls, designers and code officials alike tend to resort to the zone method. However, the zone method is restricted to larger span assemblies because the zone factor coefficient is 2.0. This tends to overestimate the amount of surface area influenced by CFS. The modified zone method is restricted to C-shaped stud, clear wall assemblies with framing factors between 9 and 15%. The objective of the research is to narrow the gap of knowledge by re-examining the modified zone method in order to more accurately determine R-Values and U-Factors for CFS wall assemblies with whole wall framing factor percentages of 22% and above.
Due to the accelerated growth in digital music distribution, it becomes easy to modify, intercept, and distribute material illegally. To overcome the urgent need for copyright protection against piracy, several audio watermarking schemes have been proposed and implemented. These digital audio watermarking schemes have the purpose of embedding inaudible information within the host file to cover copyright and authentication issues. This thesis proposes an audio watermarking model using MATLAB® and Simulink® software for 1K and 2K fast Fourier transform (FFT) lengths. The watermark insertion process is performed in the frequency domain to guarantee the imperceptibility of the watermark to the human auditory system. Additionally, the proposed audio watermarking model was implemented in a Cyclone® II FPGA device from Altera® using the Altera® DSP Builder tool and MATLAB/Simulink® software. To evaluate the performance of the proposed audio watermarking scheme, effectiveness and fidelity performance tests were conducted for the proposed software and hardware-in-the-loop based audio watermarking model.