Biaxial tension fatigue response of concrete

Kolluru V. Subramaniam, Surendra P. Shah

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Concrete structures such as rigid airport pavements are subjected to repeated high-amplitude loads resulting from passing aircraft. The resulting stress-state in concrete is a biaxial combination of compression and tension. It is of interest to understand the response of plain concrete to such loading conditions, which will enable development of realistic material models for implementation in mechanistic pavement design procedures. The objective of this work is to characterize the quasi-static and low-cycle fatigue response of concrete subjected to biaxial stresses in the biaxial tension region, where the principal tensile stress is larger than or equal in magnitude when compared with the principal compressive stress. An experimental investigation of material behavior in the biaxial tension region is conducted. The experimental setup consists of the following test configurations: (a) notched concrete beams tested in three-point bend configuration, and (b) hollow concrete cylinders subjected to torsion. Failure of concrete in the biaxial tension region is shown to be a local phenomenon under quasi-static and fatigue loading, wherein the specimen fails owing to a single crack. The crack propagation is studied using the equivalent elastic crack concept. It is observed that the crack growth rate in constant amplitude fatigue loading exhibits a two-phase process: a deceleration phase followed by an acceleration stage. The crack growth in the acceleration stage is shown to follow Paris law. The model parameters obtained from uniaxial fatigue tests are shown to be sufficient for predicting the considered biaxial fatigue response.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)617-623
Number of pages7
JournalCement and Concrete Composites
Issue number6
StatePublished - Aug 2003


  • Biaxial
  • Concrete
  • Fatigue
  • Fracture
  • High-amplitude
  • Paris law
  • Tension
  • Torsion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Building and Construction
  • General Materials Science


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