Sticky Wrap Helps Reinforce Aging Structures

Combining glass fibers and a glue-like resin that only hardens when exposed to light, a team of scientists in Singapore has developed a wrapping material that can help preserve structural integrity of structures.

AsianScientist (Apr. 22, 2019) – Researchers at Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore, have announced their invention of a ready-to-stick wrap that can be used to rehabilitate aging infrastructure, including buildings and bridges, that may have developed issues such as cracks and delamination of concrete.

The researchers are calling their invention Fast Wrapping Fibre Reinforced Polymer (FasRaP) which is created using commercially available glass fibers, but includes a proprietary glue-like resin developed by NTU materials scientists. The resin will harden only when exposed to light, making it possible for it to be pre-applied in the factory and packaged into a roll of sticky wrap, similar to double-sided tape.

When brought to the work site, FasRaP can be applied directly on the wall or pillar. Only three workers are needed to complete the job, compared to FRPs currently available in the market which typically require a team of up to six workers to install, as the conventional resin needs to be manually applied on site.

Apart from halving the time and effort needed for installation, prefabricating FasRaP with resin glue in the factory also ensures consistency in quality since conditions can be better controlled and monitored compared to manual application of resin on-site.

In industry-standard blast tests and load tests, FasRaP has proven to be just as strong as other conventional techniques. Comparing a bare concrete pillar without reinforcement and a pillar wrapped with FasRaP, the tests show that the latter can withstand an additional 80 percent load.

“Our invention allows companies to save on manpower costs, increase efficiency and make structural reinforcement much easier to execute. This will help them to meet future building standards and prolong the life of older buildings and structures as Singapore and other urban cities age,” said Associate Professor Ng Kee Woei, lead project investigator from NTU’s School of Materials Science and Engineering.

The researchers are now working to commercialize their technology, which has intellectual property protection in the form of a technology disclosure filed through NTUitive, NTU’s commercialization and innovation company.


Source: Nanyang Technological University.
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