Finite Element Analysis of UHPC Beams with Transverse Openings

  • Mohammad Sadegh Barkhordari (Amirkabir University of Technology)
  • Akram Jawdhari (Purdue University Northwest)


Ultra-high-performance concrete (UHPC), a cementitious material with extraordinary mechanical properties is becoming increasingly used in civil engineering projects. Recent research has investigated the flexural and shear performance of members constructed fully or partially with UHPC. To facilitate the passage of pipes and ducts needed for essential services (e.g. electricity, HVAC, internet), beams and girders are oftentimes constructed with transverse openings. Such openings disrupt the internal force flow, cause stress concentrations, and might affect the load carrying and deformation capacities. This study develops a robust three-dimensional (3D) finite element (FE) model to study the behavior of UHPC beams with transverse openings. The model was able to replicate the load deflection curves, capture various behavioral aspects, and predict the peak load with a maximum difference of 7%. Furthermore, it successfully simulated all failure modes, particularly the shear diagonal cracking around the opening corners which is typically encountered in beams with openings and oftentimes difficult to predict numerically. The validated model will be used in a parametric analysis studying the effects of various key parameters and establishing a large database to assist in developing simple design tools for predicting the capacity of UHPC beams with openings and presenting recommendations for opening location, shape, and size, and reinforcement techniques in the opening vicinity.

Keywords: UHPC, beams, openings, RPC, shear, UHPFRC, finite element, ANSYS

How to Cite:

Barkhordari, M. S. & Jawdhari, A., (2023) “Finite Element Analysis of UHPC Beams with Transverse Openings”, International Interactive Symposium on Ultra-High Performance Concrete 3(1): 79. doi:

Rights: © 2023 The Author(s). All rights reserved.

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Published on
04 Jun 2023
Peer Reviewed