A structure may require rehabilitation and strengthening due to upgrading of design standards, increased safety requirements, change in its function, loads can increase or higher building standards become required and the structure must be made compliant. In such scenarios appropriate method and material is a prerequisite to regaining their structural strength. One such method is the reinforcement by Fiber Reinforced Polymers in the form of thin laminates or fabrics.
It uses carbon fiber fabrics/ laminates on the surface of the concrete to form a composite that works in coordination with concrete to strengthen the component structure and improve its mechanical performance.
RELinforce™ by Reliance Composite Solutions comes with properties such as high tensile strength, high stiffness, high strength to weight ratio, high chemical resistance, temperature tolerance to excessive heat and low thermal expansion. It is applied in the form of a flexible fabric during installation, then saturated with a resin matrix, allowing it to harden to transform to a strong, unyielding material with a strength-to-weight ratio.
Constrofacilitator had a one-to-one conversation with the representative of Reliance Composite Solutions, wherein he shared insights on the features of the product, application, durability, projects and much more. Here are the excerpts of the interview.
1. What are the features of RELinforce™ range of products?
Relinforce™ just doesn’t repair degraded structures, but it makes the structures stronger even against harmful effects of seismic forces or further corrosion. Unlike traditional retrofit or reconstruction techniques that require demolition and reconstruction of part or whole failing structures, Carbon wrap goes right over the existing substrate, minimizing disruption during repair and saving significantly on installation time and costs. Its features includes;
- High strength with low weight
- Minimal change to structure’s shape, weight or appearance
- Corrosion resistance
- Thermal compatibility
- Flexible wrap allows tailoring to the desired shape
- Excellent fatigue behaviour
- Faster repair than conventional methods
- Welding and heavy equipment are not needed
- Minimal disruption and noise during preparation or installation
- Low total cost
2. Share insights on the areas of application of RELinforce™?
The foundation of a modern economy is a robust Infrastructure that mainly includes concrete and metal structures such as bridges, jetties, buildings, pipes etc. With excessive load, exposure to toxic environments & abuse, these structures get deteriorated with time. This creates an ultimate necessity for restoration to make the existing structural members safe. Strengthening of defective members is usually accomplished by the construction of external reinforced concrete or shotcrete jackets. An alternate technique involves the reinforcement by Fiber Reinforced Polymers (FRP) in the form of thin laminates or fabrics.
Relinforce™ product lines can be used to rehabilitate and strengthen the damaged or deficient concrete structures to take the designed loads with the use of carbon wrap technology. Relinforce™ system comprises high-strength carbon fabric fully saturated with an appropriate resin system to provide required additional strength to any damaged structure.
It is used in repair and rehabilitation of –
- Industrial infrastructure
- Bridges & Jetties
- Pipeline infrastructure
3. How durable are Relinforce™ Fibre Reinforced Polymer System?
Relinforce fiber reinforced polymer system is highly durable. It comprises of high-strength carbon fabric fully saturated with an appropriate resin system to work in any kind of chemical environment and to provide required additional strength to any damaged structure. It does not change its properties until it is affected by any physical abuse.
4. Discuss the end-to-end service offering process including design, materials and installation?
Relinforce™, the advanced composite materials brand from Reliance Industries Ltd., makes and utilizes
Carbon Fibre Reinforced Polymer (CFRP) composites in a wide range of customized applications for industry-specific clients. Our operations include designing, application & material development, manufacturing, installation & commissioning of state-of-the-art composite solutions.
We offer a wide range of materials and products from standard shapes/materials to the most challenging solutions, including custom fabrication and installation that can cater to the emerging needs of various industry segments.
The Material Engineering Center (MEC) and Application Development Center (ADC) are our key differentiators-
Material Engineering Center:
- Structural design & development
- Load path investigation for design
- Industrial design, new concepts in reinforcement
- Strengthening of metal/concrete pipes (with & without leak conditions & internal/external rehab)
- Strengthening of RCC columns/piles and steel beams/structures
- Strengthening of pre-stressed concrete beams
Application Development Center:
- Design and development of customize solutions as per client needs
- Replication of application from lab scale to actual site conditions
- Equipped with proper instruments and standards for requisite testing
- Team of experts having hands-on experience in handling various chemistries viz epoxy, vinyl ester, phenolic, polyester and other thermosets
5. What are the few landmarks projects executed with Relinforce™ Carbon Fibre Reinforced Polymer (CFRP) composites?
We have executed multiple projects across various industries.