Project Narrative Essay

957 words - 4 pages

Current Research Status
Traffic hazard, coupled with aging and vulnerable infrastructure, pose the potential for damage and loss of resource. Precast prestressed concrete girder bridges appeared as a mean by which more efficient designs can be achieved. They offer many advantages such as the ease of construction and a relatively high durability. The prestressed girders are usually precast of site and transported for erection before pouring composite decks. As a result, full continuity between the girders has generally been sacrificed for the sake of ease of construction. Traditionally bridge deck joints have gabs of 1-3 inches under operating conditions (LADOTD, 2002). These gabs within the ...view middle of the document...

According to Lam (2011), expansion joints have not performed up to design expectations, in particular, during winter operations which has compromised the durability of many of these structures. Water leakage over time has caused premature corrosion damage at girder ends and in the supporting pier structures below (see Figure 1). In addition, there is a high risk of span separation for multiple-simple-span bridges due to earthquakes or floods and water surges during hurricanes. Accordingly, there is a need for reducing or eliminating expansion joints in bridge decks for thousands of bridges in the United States that are constructed as simple spans (Saber and Aleti, 2012). To alleviate these problems, continuity detail can be used to cover the gabs between every two adjacent deck ends (Okeil and Cai, 2009, 2011). Such continuity with precast, prestressed girders permits the elimination of maintenance costs associated with bridge deck joints and deck drainage onto the substructures, in addition to improving the appearance and the riding qualities these bridges. Several projects have been executed, adopting this continuity detail, for instance, the new John James Audubon Bridge crossing the Mississippi River in Saint Francisville, LA. This continuity detail are not included in the current design standard used in Louisiana, which require long term monitoring of its performance and its impact on the whole bridge structure, especially, stresses/deformation at top and bottom reinforcement in the link-slab, girder interior ends (rotation) and bottom of girders at mid-span.
Okeil and Elsafy (2005) investigated the partial continuity in bridge systems with joint-less decks. The study, focused on the flexural design, show that joint-less deck systems can be efficiently used to eliminate or reduce the number of expansion joints by replacing them with a link-slab. Link-slabs are used on bridges with superstructures compromising simply supported precast pretensioned concrete girders, for instance, super T-girders or I-girders, and cast-in-situ reinforced concrete deck...

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