• Three dimensional finite element analysis of decked precast, prestressed concrete girder bridges

      Chaudhury, Sanjay (2004-08)
      The speed of construction has become the key issue for bridges. This is especially true in cold regions like Alaska, where you face a very short summer season. The speed of construction can be expedited by connections. As there are advantages in connections there are also disadvantages. One of the primary advantages of the connectors is that it makes the load transfer mechanism very efficient. However everything comes for a price. Maintenance of connections is very difficult. Routine inspections are to be made to ensure proper functioning of the system. This becomes a very important factor in Alaska where extreme winter conditions exists. Another issue is that the current connector design is based on an empirical approach. A rational design method is needed. In this study an effort has been made to find the presence of ISD on the live load distribution factor for single lane loading. Using ABAQUS CAE, 3D finite element (FE) models have been developed and analyzed with different parameters. By varying the parameters, different distribution factors corresponding to the reaction, strains (flexure and shear) as well as the forces originating from the connectors are evaluated and compared. This paper provides a basis for future connector design.