Field Testing of Integral Abutments, Interim Report, HR-399, 1998

(1998) Field Testing of Integral Abutments, Interim Report, HR-399, 1998. Transportation, Department of


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Integral abutment bridges are constructed without an expansion joint in the superstructure of the bridge; therefore, the bridge girders, deck, abutment diaphragms, and abutments are monolithically constructed. The abutment piles in an integral abutment bridge are vertically orientated, and they are embedded into the pile cap. When this type of a bridge experiences thermal expansion or contraction, horizontal displacements are induced at the top of the abutment piles. The flexibility of the abutment piles eliminates the need to provide an expansion joint at the inside face to the abutments: Integral abutment bridge construction has been used in Iowa and other states for many years. This research is evaluating the performance of integral abutment bridges by investigating thermally induced displacements, strains, and temperatures in two Iowa bridges. Each bridge has a skewed alignment, contains five prestressed concrete girders that support a 30-ft wide roadway for three spans, and involves a water crossing. The bridges will be monitored for about two years. For each bridge, an instrumentation package includes measurement devices and hardware and software support systems. The measurement devices are displacement transducers, strain gages, and thermocouples. The hardware and software systems include a data-logger; multiplexers; directline telephone service and computer terminal modem; direct-line electrical power; lap-top computer; and an assortment of computer programs for monitoring, transmitting, and management of the data. Instrumentation has been installed on a bridge located in Guthrie County, and similar instrumentation is currently being installed on a bridge located in Story County. Preliminary test results for the bridge located in Guthrie County have revealed that temperature changes of the bridge deck and girders induce both longitudinal and transverse displacements of the abutments and significant flexural strains in the abutment piles. For an average temperature range of 73° F for the superstructure concrete in the bridge located in Guthrie County, the change in the bridge length was about 1 118 in. and the maximum, strong-axis, flexural-strain range for one of the abutment piles was about 400 micro-strains, which corresponds to a stress range of about 11,600 psi.

Item Type: Departmental Report
Keywords: Abutments, Bridge abutments, Bridge superstructures, Field tests, Jointless bridges
Subjects: Transportation
Transportation > Bridges and tunnels
Transportation > Research
Transportation > Design and Construction
ID Code: 21767
Deposited By: Iowa DOT Library
Deposited On: 04 Mar 2016 20:48
Last Modified: 04 Mar 2016 20:48