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Mid-America Transportation Center

Repair of floorbeam-to-stringer connections affected by distortion-induced fatigue


Researchers

  • Principal Investigator: Caroline Bennett (crb@ku.edu 785-864-3235)
  • Co-Principal Investigator: Adolfo Matamoros (abm@ku.edu 785-864-3761)
  • Co-Principal Investigator: Stan Rolfe (crb@ku.edu 785-864-5250)
  • Project Status
    In Progress
    About this Project
    Brief Project Description & Background
    This project is aimed at developing retrofit techniques to mitigate distortion-induced fatigue in steel bridges utilizing floorbeam-stringer systems. Two large scale tests are proposed, in which various retrofits will be developed that are effective, inexpensive, practical, and minimize disruptions to the travelling public during installation. These tests will be further informed by highly-detailed finite element analyses.
    Research Objective
    The objective of this research is to develop and evaluate retrofits for distortion-induced fatigue in steel bridges that are effective, inexpensive, practical, and minimize disruptions to the travelling public during installation.
    Potential Benefits
    This research is anticipated to result in the development of retrofit techniques for floorbeam-stringer connections in steel bridges that are effective, inexpensive, practical, and minimize disruptions to the travelling public during installation. The benefit to this development is minimized inconvenience to the travelling public, decereased costs associated with fatigue repairs, and extended useable lives of existing steel bridges.
    Abstract
    Distortion-induced fatigue is a serious and costly problem facing the Nation's steel bridge infrastructure. Inexpensive, practical, and effective retrofit techniques are desperately needed for the repair of existing structures. One structural system that has repeatedly shown susceptibility to distortion-induced fatigue is the stringer-floorbeam system of bridge construction, wherein cracking is commonly encountered at the connection between floorbeams and stringers.

    Little research has been performed aimed at developing inexpensive, practical, and effective retrofit techniques for floorbeam-stringer connections. This proposal contains a roadmap for accomplishing exactly that. Therefore, the proposed research directly addresses the following US Strategic Goals: (1) Enhancing safety, (2) Improving the state of good repair, and (3) Improving environmental sustainability of the U.S. surface transportation system.

    The proposed research includes selection of details for study based upon feedback from regional DOTs. Two physical floorbeam-stringer specimens will be tested in distortion-induced fatigue, and various retrofit techniques developed through complimenting finite element analyses will be evaluated on the physical specimens. From prior experience, it is anticipated that multiple tests will be obtainable from a single specimen. Recommendations will be provided regarding the various retrofits developed.
    Project Amount
    $ 72,884