This massive concrete infrastructure deterioration problem calls for a radical change of the current limit state design philosophy, which is concerned mainly with the safety and serviceability of newly-built concrete structures, to the design and management of performance of concrete structures over their entire life span, a technology that is commonly referred to as “Life-Cycle Maintenance”. Prof Dai’s research focuses on the development and use of innovative materials and structural systems for effective life-cycle based performance maintenance and improved sustainability of concrete infrastructures. The main research activities include:
(1) Fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) composites for repair and strengthening of existing concrete structures and for corrosion-free new construction;
(2) Multiple functional (waterproofing, corrosion-prevention, self-cleaning and energy saving) surface coatings for preventive maintenance of concrete structures;
(3) Ultrahigh performance fiber-reinforced cementitious composites (UHP-FRCC) for repair/retrofit of existing concrete structures and for new construction to minimize the maintenance need;
(4) Geopolymer technologies for low-carbon construction and recycling wastes to value-added construction materials; and
(5) Durability, deterioration prediction and corrosion-prevention/repair of concrete structures exposed to marine environments.