Cracks greatly impact the durability of concrete structures due to their influence on the migration of chloride ions and the corrosion process of steel bars. This study investigates the effects of transverse cracks on chloride diffusion and the corrosion behavior of two types of steel bars (low carbon steel and corrosion resistant steel) in fly ash concrete with 1 kg/m3 solution-polymerized super absorbent polymer. Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy was used to monitor the chloride-induced corrosion behavior of steel bars in concrete. The chloride profile around cracks was tested via chemical titration. The corrosion products diffusion area was photographed and measured to evaluate the influences of cracks on the corrosion degree of steel bars. Transverse cracks greatly influence the chloride ion transport. When their width is less than 0.15 mm, cracks exert little influence on both chloride diffusion and steel corrosion. When the crack width exceeds 0.15 mm, the chloride ion transmission coefficient is significantly improved and steel corrosion is accelerated. However, when the crack width exceeds 0.20 mm, this effect is gradually weakened. Based on the experimental data, a quantitative relationship between the crack width and the chloride ion transmission coefficient in electric acceleration was established.
Keywords: EIS; chloride diffusion coefficient; crack width; electrochemical impedance spectroscopy; reinforced concrete.