Bolted connectors with mechanical coupler embedded in concrete: Shear resistance under static load

Ivan Milicevic, Branko Milosavljevic, Marko Pavlovic, Milan Spremic

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Contemporary design and construction of steel-concrete composite structures employs the use of prefabricated concrete elements and demountable shear connectors in order to reduce the construction time and costs and enable dismantling of elements for their potential reuse at the end of life of buildings. Bolted shear connector with mechanical coupler is presented in this paper. The connector is assembled from mechanical coupler and rebar anchor, embedded in concrete, and steel bolt, used for connecting steel to concrete members. The behaviour and ultimate resistance of bolted connector with mechanical coupler in wide and narrow members were analysed based on push-out tests and FE analyses conducted in Abaqus software, with focus on concrete edge breakout and bolt shear failure modes. The effect of concrete strength, concrete edge distance and diameter and strength of bolts on failure modes and shear resistance was analysed. It was demonstrated that premature failure by breakout of concrete edge occurs when connectors are located 100 mm or closer from the edge in low-strength and normal-strength reinforced concrete. Furthermore, the paper presents a relatively simple model for hand calculation of concrete edge breakout resistance when bolted connectors with mechanical coupler are used. The model is based on the modification of prediction model used for cast-in and post-installed anchors loaded parallel to the edge, by implementing equivalent influence length of connector with variable diameter. Good agreement with test and FE results was obtained, thus confirming the validity of the proposed method.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)321-337
Number of pages17
JournalSteel and Composite Structures
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • steel-concrete composite structures
  • shear connectors
  • mechanical couplers
  • shear resistance
  • concrete edge breakout resistance
  • concrete edge breakout resistanc


Dive into the research topics of 'Bolted connectors with mechanical coupler embedded in concrete: Shear resistance under static load'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this