The threat of terrorist attack against civil infrastructure in the US and other countries has led to the need to better understand the response of structures and structural components to an impulsive air blast overpressure. One scenario that is present in many cities is delivery trucks entering basement or street level loading/unloading areas. A bomb present in one of these delivery trucks could cause considerable damage to the floor slab (and consequently the building) above the blast by causing a vertical uplift, a condition that the slab was not designed to resist. Traditional methods to retrofit floor slabs to resist an upwards blast pressure require that additional tension sustaining reinforcing bars (rebars) be placed near the slab upper surface. This reinforcing method is costly, difficult to produce, and adds additional weight to the overall structure in building retrofit situations. Another approach to reinforcing the slab is to bond light-weight, high strength fiber composite material to the slab upper surface as a means of resisting the tensile forces from the slab upward motion. This paper presents results from an effort to simulate the response of a reinforced concrete floor slab with a fiber composite retrofit subjected to a blast overpressure. The simulations were performed using the Weidlinger Associates’ FLEX [1] finite element code for structural response calculations. The MAZ [2] computational fluid dynamics code was used to generate blast pressure. This paper will discuss the modeling effort used to predict the response of fiber composite retrofitted slabs and compare the computational analysis to test results1.

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