Construction engineering of steel tub-girder bridge systems for skew effects
Jimenez Chong, Juan Manuel
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The torsional rigidity of tub-girder makes them ideal for use in curved bridges. The use on skewed support applications by bridge designers is limited as the behavior is complex and requires the use of advanced analysis tools. In consequence, a simplified analysis method to account for the effects of skew on tub-girder twist rotations and internal torques and how these affect the internal component forces was proposed. The combined effects of skew and curvature are studied by examining the results for analysis with different levels of sophistication for 18 representative bridges. The data generated constitutes the first systematic study on a large set of curved and skewed tub-girder bridges using consistent, refined 3D FEA models to model construction forces and deformations. Comparisons of the simplified analysis method to the refined 3D FEA analysis display the limitations of the simplified analysis and present potential sources of error. Furthermore, the results from the 3D FEA helped identify interactions between components and, therefore, an improved simplified procedure was proposed to account for the effects of the resulting increased stresses. In addition, the bridge erection procedures are discussed and specific examples illustrating the calculation of the fit-up forces is presented. These findings provided additional tools for the analysis process and erection engineering to account for the effects of skew. Lastly, further research needs considering the analysis of additional loading conditions and construction procedures are described.