Redistribution of longitudinal moments in straight, continuous concrete slab – steel girder composite bridges Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • The effect of loading and geometric parameters on the transverse and longitudinal redistribution of moments in continuous composite bridges, comprising a concrete slab on parallel steel girders, is investigated with the nonlinear finite element method. Fifty bridges are analyzed over their entire range of loading up to failure, and their moment redistribution factors are determined and compared with the relevant predictions of the Canadian Highway Bridge Design Code (CHBDC) and the AASHTO LRFD Bridge Design Specifications. The parameters studied included truck position along the bridge, number of loaded lanes, bridge width, number of girders, slab thickness, degree of composite action, and presence of diaphragms. The study reveals that among the preceding parameters only the number of loaded lanes and the bridge width significantly affect transverse redistribution of moments at ultimate limit state (ULS). However, most of the preceding parameters affect longitudinal redistribution at ULS. Finally, it is demonstrated that plastic analysis of composite multi-girder continuous bridges, treated as an equivalent beam, provides a reasonable estimate of their longitudinal moment redistribution capacity at ULS. It is demonstrated that the actual load-carrying capacity of a composite bridge may be more than 50% higher than that predicted by the CHBDC or AASHTO code. Such higher predicted capacity may obviate the need for retrofit in some cases.Key words: analysis, bridge, composite, concrete, distribution, finite element, inelastic, load, steel.

publication date

  • April 1, 2006