Cost effectiveness of reinforcement alternatives for a concrete water chlorination tank

Adel Younis, Usama Ebead, Prannoy Suraneni, Antonio Nanni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Reinforced concrete tanks in water/wastewater treatment plants are susceptible to severe corrosion due to aggressive exposure conditions resulting from the application of certain treatment chemicals and methods. Non-corrosive materials, such as stainless steel or fiber reinforced polymer (FRP), may be attractive alternative reinforcement options for such concrete structures. However, the high initial cost of such materials imposes constraints on their use, although such thinking ignores improvements in long-term concrete durability. The current paper addresses the use of non-corrosive reinforcement in a concrete water chlorination tank using life-cycle cost analysis (LCCA) that aims to evaluate the cost effectiveness of different reinforcement alternatives. A comparison was established between four concrete reinforcing materials, namely, black steel, epoxy coated steel, stainless steel, and glass-FRP (GFRP) through a 100-year analysis period. The results of this study suggest that the use of non-corrosive reinforcement helps achieve a considerable long-term cost saving. LCCA showed that GFRP becomes more economical than black steel in 35 years following construction. The net present cost (NPC) obtained for the GFRP-reinforced concrete was approximately 43% lower than that of the black steel reinforced concrete. The use of stainless steel also had a potential advantage but was less cost-effective than GFRP, with a 50-year payback period and an NPC 25% lower than that of the conventional design. Epoxy coated steel also showed a long-term cost benefit when compared to black steel, with approximately 11% reduction in NPC and 15-year extension in the service life. Sensitivity analyses were performed to assess the effects of the analysis period, discount rate, construction costs, concrete strength, and the use of supplementary cementitious materials on the LCCA outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number100992
JournalJournal of Building Engineering
StatePublished - Jan 2020


  • Corrosion
  • GFRP reinforcement
  • Life-cycle cost analysis
  • Stainless steel reinforcement
  • Sustainable concrete

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Architecture
  • Building and Construction
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Mechanics of Materials


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