Static Performances of Timber- and Bamboo-Concrete Composite Beams: A Critical Review of Experimental Results

Simret T. Deresa1, Jinjun Xu1, Cristoforo Demartino2, Giovanni Minafò3, *, Gaetano Camarda3
1 College of Civil Engineering, Nanjing Tech University, Nanjing 211816, P.R. China
2 Department of Energy, Environment, and Infrastructure Sciences, Zhejiang University-University of Illinois (ZJUI), Zhejiang University, Haining 314400, P.R. China
3 Department of Engineering, University of Palermo, Viale delle Scienze Ed.8, Palermo90128, Italy

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© 2021 Deresa et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Department of Engineering, University of Palermo, Viale delle Scienze Ed.8, Palermo 90128, Italy; E-mail:


The use of composite beams made with traditional concrete and bio-based materials (such as timber and bamboo) is a valuable solution to reduce the environmental impact of the building sector. Timber-Concrete Composite (TCC) beams have been used for decades in structural applications such as new buildings, refurbishment of old timber structures, and bridges. Recently, different researchers suggested composite beams based on engineered bamboo, commonly named Bamboo-Concrete Composite (BCC) beams. This study presents a systematic comparison of structural performances and connection behavior of TCC and BCC beams under short-term static load. TCCs beams are compared to BCC ones using similar shear connectors. The most important aspects of the two composite systems are compared: mechanical behavior of connectors and structural behaviors of full-scale composite beams (e.g., failure modes, connection stiffness, connection shear strength, ultimate load-carrying capacity, maximum deflection and composite efficiency). This comprehensive review indicates that BCC beams have similar or even better structural performances compared with TCC.

Keywords: Shear connectors, Timber-concrete, Bamboo-concrete, Mechanical properties, Bending performances, Failure modes.