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Numerical and empirical modeling for the assessment of service life of RC structures in marine environment

Chen, X., Ming, Y., Fu, F. ORCID: 0000-0002-9176-8159 & Chen, P. (2022). Numerical and empirical modeling for the assessment of service life of RC structures in marine environment. International Journal of Concrete Structures and Materials, 16(11), doi: 10.1186/s40069-022-00504-0


The service life prediction of reinforced concrete (RC) structures in marine environment is essential in structural repair and health monitoring. In this paper, a numerical model for predicting the service life of reinforced concrete is first developed which considering the time-varying boundary of chloride concentration, critical chloride concentration and density of corrosion current. Based on the model, the effects of water cement ratio, reinforcement diameter, concrete cover thickness and critical chloride ion concentration on the service life and deterioration duration of RC structures are investigated. The key factors affecting the service life of reinforced concrete structures are determined. More importantly, based on regression analysis, a new simplified empirical model for predicting the service life of RC structures is also developed. It provides a fast assessment tool for practical engineers. Both the numerical model and empirical model are validated are suitable for practical engineering applications. The results show that with the increase of water cement ratio, the service life of reinforced concrete structure decreases exponentially. And with the increase of the thickness of the concrete cover, the service life, deterioration duration, and safety reserve increase linearly. However, the influence of the diameter of the reinforcing bar on the service life can be ignored.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit
Publisher Keywords: Service life prediction; RC structures; Chloride diffusion; Critical chloride value; Corrosion current density
Subjects: T Technology > TA Engineering (General). Civil engineering (General)
T Technology > TH Building construction
V Naval Science > VM Naval architecture. Shipbuilding. Marine engineering
Departments: School of Science & Technology > Engineering
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