CRF, FAU Engineers Explore Alternatives to Building Materials Following Surfside Collapse – WSVN 7News | Miami News, Weather, Sports
(WSVN) – In the wake of the Surfside collapse, structural engineers are committed to building better, safer buildings, and everything from ultra-strong concrete to more durable rebar is being tested right here in southern Florida. Kevin Ozebek of 7 has the 7 surveys tonight.
We pay a premium to live where we can feel the ocean breeze and hear the waves crashing outside our doors, but building next to salt water and air comes at a price.
Kevin Ozebek: “Are our buildings in South Florida more vulnerable to corrosion?
Atorod Azizinamini, professor of engineering at the CRF: “Yes, yes, it is more vulnerable.”
Atorod Azizinamini from Florida International University and Francisco Presuel-Moreno from Florida Atlantic University are two engineers specializing in corrosion control.
Francisco Presuel-Moreno, professor of engineering at FAU: “We have samples that have been here since the 1990s.”
Outside of Francisco Dania Beach’s lab, he’s got dozens of concrete and rebar samples right here.
Over time, you can see how the air and water in the oceans wreak havoc. Once the salt and moisture make their way through the porous concrete and reach the rebar, corrosion begins.
Francisco Presuel-Moreno: “The rebar is so corroded that the concrete has separated.
Corroded rebar produces chemicals which then degrade concrete and cause it to crack.
Most rebar is carbonate steel, but Francisco’s experiments show that there are better options.
Francisco Presuel-Moreno: “Stainless steel above, carbonate steel below.
Kevin Ozebek: “Now it’s a striking difference here. “
Francisco Presuel-Moreno: “That’s right, yes.”
Unfortunately, stainless steel rebar costs five times as much, although Francisco says concrete mixed with as little water as possible also significantly retards corrosion.
Francisco Presuel-Moreno: “If you have good concrete and a thick concrete cover, you can get structures that last 75 to 100 years before corrosion starts. “
Atorod Azizinamini: “This is the most unique way to try to detect corrosion.
At the CRF College of Engineering, Atorod is developing a device that analyzes magnetic fields. It can detect the corrosion of rebar inside concrete.
Atorod Azizinamini: “When you have lost steel, your magnetic field will change.”
But to fend off corrosion in the first place, Atorod is studying this.
Kevin Ozebek: “Does it look nothing like traditional concrete?
Atorod Azizinamini: “No, it’s not. “
This “super concrete” is mixed with little water, and it is loaded with fine strands of steel.
Kevin Ozebek: “Does that add tremendous strength to concrete?
Atorod Azizinamini: “It allows concrete to bend it without breaking it. “
This “super concrete” is also much less porous, so salt cannot easily penetrate it.
Atorod Azizinamini: “We used it in the bridge industry, but for some reason it didn’t find its place in the construction industry.
That’s double the price of standard concrete, but Atorod says it takes a lot less.
Atorod Azizinamini: “Using this type of material, we can renovate the building, and the building could be better than the original state.
Also, it could be used to construct only parts of a building, like foundations and balconies, because after witnessing the Surfside tragedy, better building has never been more important.
Atorod Azizinamini: “We need to review our building codes and all our practices and make changes. “
The two engineers say they would like to see buildings in South Florida inspected more often, and they say if you notice a crack in your building, don’t hesitate to hire an engineer who specializes in corrosion testing. .
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