Recycling glass fiber reinforced polymer (GFRP) composite materials has been proven to be challenging due to their high mechanical performance and high resistance to harsh chemical and thermal conditions. This work discusses the efforts made in the past to mechanically process GFRP waste materials by cutting them into large-sized (cm scale) pieces, as opposed to pulverization, for use in concrete mixtures. These pieces can be classified into two main categories—coarse aggregate and discrete reinforcement, here referred to as “needles.” The results from all the studies show that using GFRP coarse aggregate leads to significant reductions in the compressive strength and tensile strength of concrete. However, GFRP needles lead to sizable increases in the energy absorption capacity of concrete. In addition, if the glass fibers are longitudinally aligned within the needles, these elements can substantially increase the tensile strength of concrete. Processing GFRP waste into needles requires less energy and time than that for producing GFRP coarse aggregate. Also, compared to pulverized GFRP waste, which consists of broken and separate particles of glass and resin that at best can be used as low-quality fillers, GFRP needles are high strength composite elements.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited