Strengthening of concrete structures with ultra high performance fiber reinforced concrete (UHPFRC): A critical review

Yitao Huang*, Steffen Grunewald, Erik Schlangen, Mladena Lukovic

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

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Ultra-High Performance Fiber-Reinforced Concrete (UHPFRC) is, due to its superior mechanical properties and low permeability, a promising material for the restoration and improvement of the mechanical resistance and durability of existing Reinforced Concrete (RC) structures. This paper reviews the strengthening applications of UHPFRC in flexure, shear and punching shear, with a focus on shear performance of hybrid structures and the UHPFRC-concrete interface behavior which is governing the response of the hybrid beams. Holistic review approach is adopted considering not only structural behaviour of hybrid UHPFRC-concrete beams at the macro-scale, but also parameters governing the interface behaviour between concrete and UHPFRC at the meso- and micro-scale. Current analytical and numerical methods to predict the shear or punching shear capacity of RC structures strengthened with UHPFRC are reviewed and critically analyzed. Furthermore, the frequently overlooked role of interface, the effects of bonding technique, moisture exchange between the two materials, differential shrinkage and the role of coupled environmental and mechanical loads are discussed. It is observed that although extensive research work has been conducted to study the performance of hybrid UHPFRC-concrete structures, poor understanding of the behavior at the interface between concrete and UHPFRC, the role of thermal and hygral gradients and stress concentration for premature debonding, and the lack of reliable models and design codes impede the wide application of UHPFRC.
Original languageEnglish
Article number127398
Number of pages20
JournalConstruction and Building Materials
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • Ultra-high performance fiber-reinforced concrete (UHPFRC)
  • Strengthening
  • UHPFRC hybrid concrete structures
  • Interface performance
  • Modelling
  • Design codes


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