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What is the purpose of setting minimum amount of longitudinal steel areas for columns?

In some design codes it specifies that the area of longitudinal steel reinforcement should be not less than a certain percentage of the sectional area of column. Firstly, the limitation of steel ratio for columns helps to guard against potential failure in tension. Tension may be induced in columns during the design life of the concrete structures. For instance, tension is induced in columns in case there is uneven settlement of the building foundation, or upper floors above the column are totally unloaded while the floors below the column are severely loaded. Secondly, owing to the effect of creep and shrinkage, there will be a redistribution of loads between concrete and steel reinforcement. Consequently, the steel reinforcement may yield easily in case a lower limit of steel area is not established.

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Why are longer tension lap lengths designed at the corners and at the top of concrete structures?

In BS8110 for reinforced concrete design, it states that longer tension lap lengths have to be provided at the top of concrete members. The reason behind this is that the amount of compaction of the top of concrete members during concrete placing is more likely to be less than the remaining concrete sections. Moreover, owing to the possible effect of segregation and bleeding, the upper layer of concrete section tends to be of lower strength when compared with other locations.

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Does longitudinal steel serve as an enhancement of shear strength?

In addition to shear resistance provided by shear reinforcement, shear forces in a concrete section is also resisted by concrete compression force (compressive forces enhances higher shear strength), dowel actions and aggregate interlocking. The presence of longitudinal steel contributes to the enhancement of shear strength of concrete section in the following ways:

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Why does lap length generally greater than anchorage length?

In some structural codes, the lap length of reinforcement is simplified to be a certain percentage (e.g. 25%) higher than the anchorage length. This requirement is to cater for stress concentrations at the end of lap bars.

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Why is tension anchorage length generally longer than compression anchorage length?

Tension anchorage length of steel reinforcement in concrete depends on bond strength. When steel reinforcement is anchored to concrete and is subjected to compressive forces, the resistance is provided by the bond strength between concrete and steel and the bearing pressure at the reinforcement end.

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