Fracture properties of concrete containing expanded polystyrene aggregate replacement

Matthew Trussoni, Carol DiLaurenzio Hays, Ronald F. Zollo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Research has shown that expanded polystyrene (EPS) aggregate replacement changes the failure mode of concrete in compression by exhibiting a more ductile dissipation of load during failure. Fracture mechanics are applied in this report to study the behavior of concrete containing EPS aggregate that replaces a volume portion of the normalweight fine aggregate. The fracture energy, critical stress intensity factor, and characteristic length of EPS concrete and normalweight concrete (NWC) is experimentally determined. The two types of tests used to determine these properties are the three-point-bend test and a wedge-splitting test. The conclusions demonstrate that EPS aggregate replacement increases fracture surface areas and the size of the fracture process zone, thus creating a more dispersed cracking pattern. The resulting failure mode allows the concrete to absorb more energy and maintain load after reaching peak load.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)549-557
Number of pages9
JournalACI Materials Journal
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Expanded polystyrene (EPS) concrete
  • Fracture properties
  • Threepoint-bend test
  • Wedge-splitting test

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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