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Stair landing pans and rebar cover

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Does rebar need to be fully encased in concrete with clear cover on all sides to be considered effective in resisting flexural stress in a concrete supported slab?

 

I am checking calculations for a concrete filled pan stair landing and the detail has #3’s@9 welded to 1/8” thick plate in the direction of span. The 1/8” plate is considered as form deck and ignored in the capacity calculation but the rebar is considered as longitudinal reinforcing for a 2” thick concrete slab spanning 40”. The rebar is welded directly to the topside of the landing pan so concrete cannot get all around to fully develop the reinforcing. In ACI the information I can find about cover relates to protection of the steel from corrosion. I cannot find information relating to cover or lack of cover to strength.

 

I am used to stiffening the pan with angles and considering it as the structural support of the landing (dead and live) and the concrete fill as just a walking surface. From my perspective the condition noted above is somewhere between a reinforced concrete slab landing and a concrete filled pan landing. I just don’t know if it is an acceptable way of reinforcing a landing pan.

 

Any thoughts

 

David M. Watt, PE