Ruptured Prestressing Cables from a Viaduct
During the construction of a prestressed concrete viaduct, several 12.2 mm diam wires ruptured after tensioning but before the channels were grouted. They were made of heat treated prestressed concrete steel St 145/160. While the wire bundles, each containing over 100 wires, were being drawn into the channels they were repeatedly pulled over the sharp edges of square section guide blocks. The fractures were initiated at these chafe zones. It was concluded that the chafing of the wires on the edges of the guide blocks, particularly the resulting martensite formation, caused the wires to rupture.