The desire for sustainability has propelled innovation in structural engineering for much of the 21st century. Implement sustainable design without sacrificing the structural integrity of a building is important. The timber-concrete composite (TCC) floor system is an alternative floor system that offers superior sustainability and quick installation compared to other composite floors. TCC is comprised of a reinforced concrete slab connected to timber plate/beams by shear connectors that transfer the internal forces through the shear flow. To resist bending forces the reinforced concrete slab experiences the majority of compression stress and the timber plate/beam experience the majority of tension stress. Compared to an equivalent all-concrete section the TCC system has similar strength and stiffness as well as reduced weight.
Wood-concrete composite slab floors provide a promising solution for achieving long spans and shallow wood-based floor systems for large and tall wood buildings. In comparison with conventional wood floor systems, such long span and heavy floors have a lower fundamental natural frequency, which challenges the floor vibration controlled design. A laboratory study, including subjective evaluation and measurement of the natural frequencies and one-kN static deflections, was conducted on wood-concrete composite floors. Method of calculation of the composite bending stiffness of the wood-concrete composite floor is proposed. The design criterion for human comfort was derived from the subjective evaluation results using the calculated fundamental natural frequency and 1 kN static deflection of one meter wide strip of the composite floor. The equation to directly determine the vibration controlled spans from the stiffness and mass was derived. Limited verification was performed. Further verification is needed when more field wood-concrete composite floors become available.
Project contact is Luca Sorelli at Université Laval
This project aims to develop a new precast wood / concrete floor system that can push the span limits in multi-storey wood buildings. The multidisciplinary methodology includes a finite element analysis technique using the “DDuctileTCS” software developed at CIRCERB, shear tests on connections, bending tests of the composite beam and an extension of technical standards for the design of composite structures. This project will develop solutions to optimize the composite action and vibration of long-span precast and mixed floors. The methodology consists of: (i) analysis of systems and optimization of shapes by numerical finite element techniques; (ii) connection shear tests; (iii) proof of concept on a prototype beam in the laboratory.
Concrete is the most widely used construction material in the world. This material causes formation and release of CO2 and high energy consumption during manufacturing. One way to decrease concrete consumption negative consequences is to replace it with lower needed primary energy materials, like timber. The engineered wood products such as laminated veneer lumber (LVL)...
CLT-concrete composite floor systems are a solution for timber buildings with a long-span floor. It yields a reduction of carbon footprint and even eco-friendly structure at the end of its service life. This study will evaluate the structural performance of notched connectors in the CLT-concrete composite floor, comprised of the serviceability stiffness, maximum load, and behavior at failure. The parameters of the test plan are the loaded edge length, the notch depth, the concrete thickness, and the screw length. Other secondary variables are also assessed, such as different loading sequences, speed of test, and timber moisture content. Experimental results prove that the performance of the connector depends significantly but not linearly on the notch depth and the length of the loaded edge. The connector with a deeper notch and a shorter heel will be stiffer and more robust, but it also tends to have a brittle rupture. The test results also help validate a solution for deconstructable connector systems. A nonlinear finite element model of the connector is built and validated versus the experimental results. It yields reasonably good predictions in terms of resistance and can capture the load-slip relationship.
Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers - Construction Materials
DOI link: https://doi.org/10.1680/jstbu.171.9.661
As the only renewable construction material, and owing to the superior specific stiffnesses and strengths of the different species, timber has been used in major load bearing applications for thousands of years. The advent of waterproof adhesives during World War II and recent advances in manufacturing have combined to exploit the ease of forming and machining this material, leading to various forms of engineered timber including glulam, laminated veneer lumber (LVL) and cross-laminated timber (CLT). Manufactured in lightweight modules that are easily transported, then quickly craned into position and connected to produce eye-catching structures, engineered timber provides cost-effective alternatives (with minimal numbers and complexity of connections) to conventional materials for rapid construction of affordable residential and office spaces in busy city centres.
As part of its research work on wood buildings, FPInnovations has recently launched a Design Guide for Timber-Concrete Composite Floors in Canada. This technique, far from being new, could prove to be a cost-competitive solution for floors with longer-span since the mechanical properties of the two materials act in complementarity. Timber-concrete systems consist of two distinct layers, a timber layer and a concrete layer (on top), joined together by shear connectors. The properties of both materials are then better exploited since tension forces from bending are mainly resisted by the timber, while compression forces from bending are resisted by the concrete. This guide, which contains numerous illustrations and formulas to help users better plan their projects, addresses many aspects of the design of timber-concrete composite floors, for example shear connection systems, ultimate limit state design, vibration and fire resistance of floors, and much more.
For the design of timber-concrete composite (TCC) elements with notches, the slip modulus Kser represents an important property of the connection. In this paper available research results were gathered and further experimental tests were carried out in order to define the slip modulus of a notched connection. Therefore experimental...
Due to the increasing environmental awareness, the transition pace to renewable materials has increased, and the use of timber in construction is no exception. However, using timber in high rise building applications comes with structural challenges, e.g dynamic issues originating from timber being lightweight compared to conventional building materials. Some of the structural challenges with timber can be resolved by the implementation of Timber Concrete Composites (TCC), which increases the effective bending stiffness by adding a concrete layer connected to the underlying timber floor. Furthermore, the higher self-weight of concrete contributes to improved dynamic performance.
Despite the fact that the TCC floor is a versatile and quite common structural design solution in Europe, the TCC knowledge in the Swedish construction industry is limited. The main scope of the thesis is to raise this knowledge of TCC by studying the structural behavior and develop applicable design methods. Both analytical design methods and FE-modelling are addressed. The content is limited to TCC floors with a 5-layer Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT) section, with use of notches or screws as shear connectors.
In CLT design, the Gamma method is commonly used and applicable to a CLT layup up to 5 layers. This method can, by a slight modification, be applicable for TCC sections with a 5-layer CLT as well. The concrete layer on top is regarded as an additional longitudinal layer, flexibly connected to the CLT section. The Equivalent gamma method and the Extended gamma method are two modified versions of the conventional Gamma method, valid for TCC floors with 5-layer CLT sections. Each method determines the effective bending stiffness accurately, compared to FE-modelling and laboratory test results. The Extended gamma method has a more solid theoretical base compared to the Equivalent gamma method, and is considered the recommended design method. The simplified methodology of the Equivalent gamma method is theoretically questionable, hence its recommended use is for preliminary calculations only.
The following concluding remarks can be drawn from the analysis of the structural behavior of TCC floors:
- The shear connectors should be concentrated to areas of high shear flow, i.e. close to support, for optimal structural performance.
- An increased ratio of timber in the longitudinal, load-bearing direction of the CLT section increases the effective bending stiffness of the TCC.
- The concrete layer increases the effective bending stiffness due to the high Young's modulus. However, the high density of concrete entails a thin concrete layer thickness to achieve a light-weight and structural efficient TCC system, and the decisive optimisation factor is the ratio of mass-to-effective bending stiffness, m/EI.