Fracture processes of hybrid fiber-reinforced mortar

J. S. Lawler*, T. Wilhelm, D. Zampini, S. P. Shah

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

94 Scopus citations


Subregion Scanning Computer Vision (SSCV), a digital image based method for measuring surface deformation is used to examine the role of the fibers in the fracture process of mortars reinforced with hybrid blends of microfiber (less than 22 μm in diameter) and macrofiber (500 μm in diameter). Closely-spaced microfibers interact with cracks at the microstructural level and hamper the widening of coalesced microcracks, thus encouraging the growth of multiple cracks. The microfibers improved pre-peak mechanical performance and strength by delaying the formation of a through-specimen macrocrack. Macrofibers were most effective at bridging macrocracks and imparting ductility to the composite due to their geometry and greater length. Compared to mortar reinforced with a single fiber type, an increase in strength and toughness was seen with a blend of steel macrofibers and either steel or PVA microfibers. Finally, based on the crack topography observed, the reduction in water permeability of cracked mortar achieved with hybrid fiber-reinforcement, measured directly in a parallel study, was governed by multiple crack development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)197-208
Number of pages12
JournalMaterials and Structures/Materiaux et Constructions
Issue number257
StatePublished - Apr 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanics of Materials


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