Date of Award


Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Civil Engineering (MS)

College, School or Department Name

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering


Theresa Marie Ahlborn


Ultra-high performance fiber reinforced concrete (UHPFRC) has arisen from the implementation of a variety of concrete engineering and materials science concepts developed over the last century. This material offers superior strength, serviceability, and durability over its conventional counterparts. One of the most important differences for UHPFRC over other concrete materials is its ability to resist fracture through the use of randomly dispersed discontinuous fibers and improvements to the fiber-matrix bond. Of particular interest is the materials ability to achieve higher loads after first crack, as well as its high fracture toughness. In this research, a study of the fracture behavior of UHPFRC with steel fibers was conducted to look at the effect of several parameters related to the fracture behavior and to develop a fracture model based on a non-linear curve fit of the data. To determine this, a series of three-point bending tests were performed on various single edge notched prisms (SENPs). Compression tests were also performed for quality assurance. Testing was conducted on specimens of different cross-sections, span/depth (S/D) ratios, curing regimes, ages, and fiber contents. By comparing the results from prisms of different sizes this study examines the weakening mechanism due to the size effect. Furthermore, by employing the concept of fracture energy it was possible to obtain a comparison of the fracture toughness and ductility. The model was determined based on a fit to P-w fracture curves, which was cross referenced for comparability to the results. Once obtained the model was then compared to the models proposed by the AFGC in the 2003 and to the ACI 544 model for conventional fiber reinforced concretes.