Glass Fiber Reinforced Concrete (GFRC)
Glass fiber reinforced concrete, also known as GFRC or GRC, is a type of fiber-reinforced concrete. Glass fiber concretes are mainly used in exterior building façade panels and as architectural precast concrete.
Glass-fiber-reinforced concrete architectural panels have the general appearance of pre-cast concrete panels, but differ in several significant ways. For example, the GFRC panels, on average, weigh substantially less than pre-cast concrete panels due to their reduced thickness. Their low weight decreases loads superimposed on the building’s structural components making construction of the building frame more economical.
Glass fiber-reinforced concrete consists of high-strength glass fiber embedded in a concrete matrix. In this form, both fibers and matrix retain their physical and chemical identities, while offering a synergistic combination of properties that cannot be achieved with either of the components acting alone. In general, fibers are the principal load-carrying members, while the surrounding matrix keeps them in the desired locations and orientation, acting as a load transfer medium between the fibers and protecting them from environmental damage. The fibers provide reinforcement for the matrix and other useful functions in fiber-reinforced composite materials. Glass fibers can be incorporated into a matrix either in continuous or discontinuous (chopped) lengths.
*** Toughness: GFRC doesn't crack easily-it can be cut without chipping.
*** Surface finish: Because it is sprayed on, the surface has no bugholes or voids.
*** Reinforcement: Since GFRC is reinforced internally, there is no need for other kinds of reinforcement, which can be difficult to place into complex shapes.
*** Lighter weight: With GFRC, concrete can be cast in thinner sections and is therefore as much as 75% lighter than similar pieces cast with traditional concrete