Condition monitoring of reinforced concrete structures at risk from reinforcement corrosion

The corrosion of reinforced concrete structures is a major issue in the UK and worldwide, both structurally and from a maintenance management aspect. Damage induced by the corrosion of the steel can dramatically reduce the designed service life of the structure through loss of bond between the steel and concrete, or from localised loss of section of the corroding rebars. Failure to manage the maintenance of reinforced concrete may result in the premature replacement of the structure or in extreme cases, structural failure. Avoiding such scenarios can be aided through improved detection and monitoring of corrosion in concrete. In addition, combining this with a condition management tool, capable of benchmarking, index testing and prioritising areas of the concrete structure(s) for remedial action, would provide robust facilities management techniques for structural assets. This paper suggests how the results of a novel non-destructive corrosion detection technique, currently being developed, could be incorporated into a condition-monitoring tool for the facilities management of structures. The development of protocols based on laboratory and field data enable the formation of a condition-monitoring tool forming part of a longterm maintenance strategy for estate owners and managers.