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Post-Fire Assessment of Concrete Tunnel Structures

Although concrete tunnel structures can lose strength and long-term durability due to fire, the literature on the remaining capacity of structures after fire events is very scattered, and no published post-fire inspection protocols specifically for concrete tunnel structures are available. This work aims to summarize and synthesize the current state of knowledge of the deleterious effects of fire on the residual condition of concrete tunnel structures and how the extent and degree of fire damage can be assessed. The scope of this work includes an extensive literature review, heat testing of some common tunnel elements, and residual strength testing of a tunnel wall panel. The literature review includes a review of published standards, technical reports, academic papers, and a survey of post-fire inspection practices at other state DOTs and transit organizations. Topics covered in the review include the residual mechanical properties of concrete, steel, and the concrete/steel bond after fire, the residual strength and stiffness of structural members after fire, existing inspection tools and methods for assessing concrete structures after fire, and repair methods for fire-damaged concrete structures. The outcomes of the heat testing are presented, including the setup of a radiant heating system (which does not use a flame), procurement of sample specimens for testing, thermal and physical testing of specimens, and evaluation of results. Lastly, based on the literature review and experimental testing, recommendations for future work are presented.
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