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Coordinating, Developing, and Delivering Highway Transportation Innovations

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Publication Number:  FHWA-HRT-18-036    Date:  March 2018
Publication Number: FHWA-HRT-18-036
Date: March 2018


Properties and Behavior of UHPC-Class Materials

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Ultra-high performance concrete (UHPC) is an advanced construction material that can positively influence the future of the highway infrastructure. Since 2001, the Federal Highway Administration has been at the forefront of developing UHPC-based solutions for pressing challenges. The growing usage of UHPC across the U.S. highway infrastructure has focused attention on the need for common assessment of the basic performance measures often associated with UHPCs. This study provides significantly enhanced breadth of knowledge relative to FHWA’s early work on this topic, as published in FHWA-HRT-06-103. By assessing properties for multiple UHPCs, FHWA is providing needed answers while also delivering a framework for future UHPC property assessments.

Cheryl Allen Richter, P.E., Ph.D.
Director, Office of Infrastructure
Research and Development


This document is disseminated under the sponsorship of the U.S. Department of Transportation in the interest of information exchange. The U.S. Government assumes no liability for the use of the information contained in this document.

The U.S. Government does not endorse products or manufacturers. Trademarks or manufacturers’ names appear in this report only because they are considered essential to the objective of the document.

Quality Assurance Statement

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) provides high-quality information to serve Government, industry, and the public in a manner that promotes public understanding. Standards and policies are used to ensure and maximize the quality, objectivity, utility, and integrity of its information. FHWA periodically reviews quality issues and adjusts its programs and processes to ensure continuous quality improvement.


Technical Report Documentation Page

1. Report No.


2. Government Accession No.


3 Recipient's Catalog No.


4. Title and Subtitle

Properties and Behavior of UHPC-Class Materials

5. Report Date

March 2018

6. Performing Organization Code


7. Author(s)

Zachary B. Haber, Igor De la Varga, Benjamin A. Graybeal, Brian Nakashoji, and Rafic El-Helou

8. Performing Organization Report No.


9. Performing Organization Name and Address

Office of Infrastructure Research & Development
Federal Highway Administration
6300 Georgetown Pike
McLean, VA 22101-2296

10. Work Unit No. (TRAIS)


11. Contract or Grant No.


12. Sponsoring Agency Name and Address

Office of Infrastructure Research & Development
Federal Highway Administration
6300 Georgetown Pike
McLean, VA 22101-2296

13. Type of Report and Period Covered

Final Report: 2014-2017

14. Sponsoring Agency Code


15. Supplementary Notes

The document content was prepared by Zachary Haber of FHWA, Igor De la Varga of SES Group and Associates, LLC under laboratory support contract DTFH61-13-D-00007, Brian Nakashoji of PSI, Inc., under laboratory support contract DTFH61-10-D-00017. Content was also prepared by Benjamin Graybeal of FHWA who leads the FHWA Structural Concrete Research Program. Portions of this report were prepared under laboratory support contract DTFH61-16-D-00033 Finally, Rafic El-Helou, a National Research Council Post-Doctoral Fellow, assisted with the research effort.

16. Abstract

Ultra-high performance concrete (UHPC) is being adopted for a variety of different bridge construction and rehabilitation applications. In North America, the most popular application of UHPC in bridge construction is for field-cast closure pours between adjacent prefabricated bridge elements, which are employed in many accelerated bridge construction (ABC) projects; this application has proven to be a common entry point for many bridge owners. As the demand for this innovative class of materials increases, so will the need for knowledge regarding the material properties and material characteristics. To fill this knowledge gap, researchers at Federal Highway Administration’s (FHWA’s) Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center (TFHRC) executed an experimental study on six different commercially-available materials being marketed as “UHPC-class”. The goal of the research was to provide the bridge engineering community with a more comprehensive set of properties for this class of materials, which in turn could facilitate broader use within the sector. The UHPC-class materials were evaluated using 14 different ASTM, AASHTO, or FHWA-TFHRC-developed test methods. Results indicate that these materials behave similarly with respect to some performance measures such as compressive strength, tensile strength, and durability, but vary with respect to others such as dimensional stability, bond to precast concrete, and compressive creep.

17. Key Words

UHPC, Ultra-high performance fiber-reinforced concrete, cementitious composite, bridge engineering, accelerated bridge construction, durability, mechanical properties, bond.

18. Distribution Statement

No restrictions

19. Security Classification
(of this report)


20. Security Classification
(of this page)


21. No. of Pages


22. Price


Form DOT F 1700.7 (8-72) Reproduction of completed page authorized




Federal Highway Administration | 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE | Washington, DC 20590 | 202-366-4000
Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center | 6300 Georgetown Pike | McLean, VA | 22101