Evaluation of Existing and New Test Configuration for Headed Shear Studs
Composite beams are frequently used in building, combining a steel beam with either a concrete-filled steel deck or solid concrete slab. To ensure proper composite action, shear connectors, typically in the form of headed shear studs, are utilized. Traditionally, the strength assessment of these headed shear studs is made using empirical design specifications that are based on push-out tests, which have been widely conducted and standardized over the years. However, the standardized push-out tests have short-comings, such as uneven slab bearing, slab buckling, questions regarding the distribution of load to each stud, etc. A study was conducted to evaluate and compare the existing push-out test setup with two alternative test setups. The study also aimed to examine the behavior of headed shear studs in composite beams having deck deeper the current allowable limit of 3 in., as specified by American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC) design specification. While the standard specification allows for steel decks with rib heights of up to 3 in., there are deck profiles deeper than 3 in. available in the market. Utilizing these deeper decks in composite beams offers several advantages, including faster and more cost-effective construction by reducing the number of beams required. This research therefore found that a major challenge in creating an alternative test setup involves eliminating moment at the interface between the concrete-filled steel deck and the steel beam. This moment leads to tension in the headed shear stud/stud group closest to the actuator, thus affecting the shear strength of the headed shear studs. Further, these headed shear studs have significant strength when used with 3.5 in. decks but further research is necessary.