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Location of


Concrete cracks due to tension and (as a result)

reinforcement is required where flexure, axial loads, or
shrinkage effects cause tensile stresses.
An uniformly loaded, simply supported beam deflects
as shown in Fig. -7(a) and has the moment diagram
shown in Fig. 7(b). Because this beam is in positive
moment throughout, tensile flexural stresses and
cracks are developed along the bottom of the beam.
Longitudinal reinforcement is required to resist these
stresses and is placed close to the bottom side of the
beam, and because the moments are greatest at
midspan, more reinforcement is required at the
midspan than at the ends.
as shown in Fig. 7(c)

Figure -7 : Simply supported beam.

A cantilever beam develops negative moment throughout and

deflects as shown in Fig. -8 with the concave surface
downward, so that flexural tensions and cracks developon on
the top surface

Figure -8: Cantilever


Commonly, reinforced concrete beams are continuous over

several supports, and under gravity loads, they develop the
moment diagram and deflected shape shown in Fig.-9.
Again, reinforcement is needed on the tensile face of the beam,
which is at the top of the beam in the negative-moment regions
near the supports and at the bottom in the positive-moment
regions near the midspans.
Two possible arrangements of this reinforcement are shown in
Figs.-9(c) and Figs.-9(d).

Concrete Cover and Bar Spacing

It is necessary to have cover (concrete between the surface of the
slab or beam and the reinforcing bars) for four primary reasons :
1. To bond the reinforcement to the concrete so that the two
elements act together.
The efficiency of the bond increases as the cover increases. A
cover of at least one bardiameter is required for this purpose in
beams and columns. (See Chapter 8.)
2. To protect the reinforcement against corrosion. Depending on the
environment and the type of member, varying amounts of cover
ranging from to 3 in. are required (ACI Code Section 7.7). In
highly corrosive environments, such as slabs or bridges exposed
to deicing salts or ocean spray, the cover should be increased.
3. To protect the reinforcement from strength loss due to
overheating in the case of fire. The cover for fire protection is
specified in the local building code.
4. Additional cover sometimes is provided on the top of slabs,
particularly in garages and factories, so that abrasion and wear
due to traffic

Calculation of Effective Depth and Minimum

Web Width for a Given Bar Arrangement
The effective depth, d, of a beam is defined as the distance
from the extreme compression fiber to the centroid of the
longitudinal tensile reinforcement.

cover, 1.5 in
(ACI 7.7.1)

Larger of :
1 in (ACI 762)
1.33 diameter of
coarse aggregate ACI

Larger of :
bar diameter db (ACI 761)
1 in (ACI 761)
1.33 diameter of coarse
(ACI 332)