Corrosion of steel reinforcement is the main pathology threatening the durability of civil engineering structures. Today, structures are mainly monitored by means of periodic visual inspections or even auscultation (corrosion potentials, ultrasonic measurements, core sampling, etc…), which are not very satisfactory. There is therefore a need for instrumentation capable of detecting the initiation and location of corrosion of reinforcement in concrete and ensuring long-term monitoring (several decades or more). In the context of Civil Engineering (CE) structures, Optical Frequency-Domain Reflectometry (OFDR) appears to be a suitable metrological solution because of its centimetre resolution and measurement range (70 metres in the standard version, i.e. several thousand measurement points along an optical fibre).
Content of work: The aim will be to adapt the design of this fibre optic sensor (FOS) to increase its durability and then to verify its applicability in the laboratory. Initially, the person recruited on a fixed-term research contract will be asked to work on the durability of the connexion between the optical fibre and the armature. Two different methods are envisaged: plasma torch spraying of ceramic powders and sol-gel. Both of these processes prevent the galvanic coupling because they involve insulating materials (ceramics) and are already deployed in industry in various civil and military fields. Secondly, test specimens equipped with the FOS will be tested in the laboratory according to classic civil engineering situations, i.e. localised corrosion (pitting induced by exposure to chloride ions) and uniform corrosion (generalised corrosion induced by carbonation of the embedding concrete). OFDR acquisitions will be carried out periodically over time in parallel with conventional metrology (potential, etc.).