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STAGED CONSTRUCTION ANALYSIS OF SEGMENTAL PRESTRESSED CONCRETE CABLE STAYED BRIDGES

Hassan I. Hegab (1) , Osama M. Tawfik (2) , Mohammed T. Nemir (3) , and Hesham E. Nour Eldeen (4)

ABSTRACT

Construction of prestressed concrete cable stayed bridges involves major changes in configuration of the structure together with the applied loads. This arises from addition deck segments and stay cables to the partially constructed structure, in addition to adding or removing temporary prestressing force, and stay pretensioning forces. The final stresses and deformation of the completed bridge are highly dependent on the construction procedure. Judging the performance of cable stayed bridges during their service time after the application of subsequent loads, such as super imposed dead load, live loads, wind load, or any other kind of loads is highly related to the construction method. The objective of this research is to perform a full static geometric nonlinear analysis of prestressed concrete cable-stayed bridges constructed by cantilevering method. The analysis extends to involve the construction phase and the service life phase of the bridge as well. Furthermore, the analysis spots on the effect of the construction method on the final behaviour of the bridge.

Keywords: Cable Stayed Bridges, Cantilevering Method , Finite Element, Geometric Nonlinear Analysis , Prestressing ,Pylon Shortening , Stage Analysis .

1. INTRODUCTION

Construction procedures are of primary importance in determining the state of stresses and deformations in cable stayed bridges. Generally, construction of cable stayed bridges progresses by the cantilevering method (7,9,10,11) . During cantilevering, sequence of segments and stays are added to the structure. In addition to that, stay forces and prestressing forces are added to or removed from the structure. The main purpose of this research is to perform a full static geometric nonlinear analysis of prestressed concrete cable-stayed bridges constructed by cantilevering method. With regard to the construction phase, the analysis is carried out through all the construction steps due to the application of construction loads. Subsequently, for the service life phase, the analysis is re-performed due to the application of subsequent loads. This final behaviour of the bridge is achieved through the superposition of the two phases. Furthermore, to highlight the effect of the construction method on the final behaviour of the bridge, one stage construction of the bridge is imaginary assumed and performed.

  • 1 Professor of Structural Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Ain Shams University.

  • 2 Professor of Structural Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Menoufia University.

  • 3 Associate Professor of Structural Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Menoufia University.

  • 4 Bridge Engineer, Dar Al-Handasah Consultants, Saudi Arabia, hesham.nour@dargroup.com.

2.

ANALYSIS STRATEGY

For purposes of analysis during construction, the analysis is performed along the

chronological construction steps. At the beginning of each construction step, any

element, load, prestressing force, and/or stay cable pretensioning force are added to or

removed from the structure and a full geometric nonlinear finite element analysis is

proceeded. At each construction phase, the reference geometry of the bridge is the

deformed shape resulting from the previous step. Consequently, only the new added

or removed loads are to be considered. The straining actions and deformations at the

end of any construction phase may be obtained by applying the superposition

principle of the phase under consideration together with all the earlier ones. Applying

the superposition will not violate the concept of the geometric nonlinearity as long as

the resulting stresses developed in the structural elements do not exceed the elastic

limit, which is a common practice in designing of cable stayed bridges.

Completing the structural analysis of the bridge in the construction phase, the analysis

of the service life phase ought to commence. In this phase, with regard to the

construction loads, the resulting stresses are estimated via the superposition of all the

construction steps. These construction loads include self weight of the structural

elements, stays initial pretensioning forces, prestressing forces and any other loads

induced during the construction. On the other hand, the stresses due subsequent loads

that apply on the bridge after the closure may be obtained through the geometric

nonlinear analysis of the completed bridge. These subsequent loads comprise super

imposed dead load, live loads, stay tuning and any further prestressing forces. The

final stresses induced in the bridge are finally calculated via applying the

superposition of the construction loads analysis with the subsequent loads analysis.

  • 3. GEOMETRIC NONLINEAR ANALYSIS

The structural behaviour of cable-stayed bridges is believed to be nonlinear. This is

due to three main reasons of nonlinearity, namely; large displacements, P-delta effect,

and sag of the stay cables. During the cantilevering process, the displacements are

remarkably high. This leads to the fact that during cantilevering cable stayed bridges

are considered highly geometric nonlinear. Earlier investigations prove that geometric

nonlinearity may increase the vertical displacements by 25% more than the

straightforward elastic linear analysis (5,9) .

  • 4. FINITE ELEMENT FORMULATION

    • 4.1 Modelling of Deck and Pylons

The deck and pylons of the bridge are idealised to three-dimensional beam-column

elements. The applied beam-column element is a two-nodes element with seven

degrees of freedom at each node, three displacements, three rotations, and the warping

of the cross section (5,6,8,9) .

Girders and pylons of cable-stayed bridges experience P-Delta behaviour due to the

interaction of large bending moments with high compressive axial forces. To account

for this P-delta effect, the elastic stiffness matrix [ K

E

]

is modified by a geometric

stiffness matrix [ K

G

]

to get the tangent stiffness matrix [

K

T

]

,

[

K

T

]

= K + K

E

[

][

G

]

[1]

Moreover, the analysis is carried out in an iterative procedure to account for the large

displacements developed in cable-stayed bridges due to their inherent slenderness

(5,6,9) . In this investigation, Newton-Raphson iterative procedure is performed in

anticipation of reaching an acceptable tolerance.

The applied elastic stiffness matrix takes into account the linear torsional-flexural

interaction, while the geometric stiffness matrix takes into account the nonlinear

torsional-flexural interaction together with the P-delta effect. These two matrices are

originally derived by M. Nemir (8) for open sections and developed by H. Nour Eldeen

to adopt the behaviour of box sections (9) . The same matrices are applied by H. Hegab

et al .(5,6) for the nonlinear analysis of cable-stayed bridges with box section decks.

  • 4.2 Implementation for Prestressing Force

The authenticity and relevance of the analysis of a prestressed concrete member rests,

first and foremost, on the appropriate modelling of the tendon. Several different

modelling schemes are used to represent prestressing tendons.

In this investigation, prestressing tendons are modelled using a discrete modelling

scheme (3) . In this scheme the tendon is modelled with a truss element connected to the

beam-column element through rigid links as shown in Fig. 1.

tendon element rigid link rigid link beam-column elemnent i e i j j e
tendon element
rigid link
rigid link
beam-column elemnent
i e i
j
j
e

Fig. 1: Tendon idealization

In this modelling scheme, there is an implicit interaction between the deformation of

the hosting concrete segment and the force in the tendon, irrespective of the cause of

deformation.

With regard to the losses prestressing forces, they are estimated in a separate spread

sheet. In this investigation only the friction losses, which constitute the major part of

the total losses, anchorage slippage, and elastic shortening are accounted for. This

estimation is essentially extracted from the AASHTO (1) and the ACI-318M (2) .

  • 4.3 Stay Cable Modelling

Whereas the exact analysis of a cable element shows that cable element sags into

catenary shape due to its self weight, it can be idealised to a straight element using an

equivalent modulus of elasticity. This concept of analysis was firstly introduced by

Ernst and has been verified by several other investigators (5,6,9,10,11) . The equivalent

modulus of elasticity

E

eq

is given by:

E =

eq

E

1 + 

(

w L

c

h

)

2

(

T

i

+

T

f

)

AE

24 T

i

2

2

T

f

[2]

where,

E is the modulus of elasticity of the cable material,

 

w

c

is the own weight of the cable,

L

h

is the horizontal projection of the cable,

A is the cross-sectional area of the cable,

T is the initial tensile force in the cable during the load increment,

i

and

T

f

is the final tensile force in the cable during the load increment.

Based on the concept of equivalent modulus of elasticity, stays are idealised to truss

elements. Consequently, the stiffness matrix in local coordinates for the truss element

is given by (5,6,9) :

 
 

AE

eq

1

1

 

K =

  • L 1

   

1

[3]

where,

E

eq

is the equivalent modulus of elasticity defined by Eq. 2.

  • 5. COMPUTER PROGRAM

The applied technique of solution is based on using the sparse nature of equations in a

direct solution technique by the elimination method. This method was originally

presented by Davies, and applied by Nemir (8) , Hegab et al (5,6) and Nour Eldeen (9) .

Based on this technique, and applying the derived mathematical algorithms and

models, a computer program is designed. This computer program is named as “Bridge

Construction” and it is capable to perform a full nonlinear geometric nonlinear

construction analysis of all structures in general and cable stayed bridges in particular.

The main concept of the designed computer code is shown in Fig. 2.

  • 6. NUMERICAL APPLICATION

For the sake of numerical studies, a quite long span cable stayed bridge is chosen. The

general arrangement of the bridge is shown on Fig. 3. The bridge is analysed applying

the finite element formulation presented hereinbefore and using the designed

computer program to perform the analyses.

  • 6.1. Bridge Construction Method

Simultaneously with the construction of the pylon (P3), the two side spans (P1 – P2)

and (P3 – P5) are segmentally erected. The two side spans are erected with a

cantilever of 16 metres length beyond P2 and P4, respectively.

A pier table of seventy five metres length over P3 is segmentally erected on

scaffolding supported on the two pylon legs. Upon the prestressing of the pier table

tendons, two erection frames are assembled at the ends of the pier table.

Fig 2: Main concept of “Bridge c onstruction” computer code
Fig 2: Main concept of “Bridge c onstruction” computer code
Fig 2: Main concept of “Bridge c onstruction” computer code

Fig 2: Main concept of “Bridge construction” computer code

Henceforward, a typical balanced cantilever erection commences. Each cycle consists

of the following main activities:

  • 1. Advancing the erection frame.

  • 2. Heavy lifting up, gluing, and fixing the stayed segment of three metres long into its design level.

  • 3. Applying temporary prestressing bars.

  • 4. Installation and pretensioning of the stay cable to its design pretensioning force.

  • 5. Advancing the erection frame.

  • 6. Heavy lifting up, gluing, and fixing the un-stayed segment into its design level.

  • 7. Applying temporary prestressing bars.

Coming to the last stay, i.e. stay No 33, one untypical cycle is required. This cycle

include the following main activities:

  • 1. Advancing the erection frame.

  • 2. Heavy lifting up, gluing, and fixing the stayed segment into its design level.

  • 3. Applying temporary prestressing bars.

  • 4. Dismantle of the two erection frames.

After that the closure procedure commences. The level of the end of the stayed

cantilevers is to be adjusted to suit the level of the end of the cantilever of the

approach span. This procedure should be carried out at both left and right sides.

Closure segments are to be cast-in-place on the two sides. Getting the required

strength, continuity prestressing tendons are prestressed. Consequently, all temporary

prestressing bars are removed.

Subsequent to the prestressing of the continuity tendons, installation of parapets and

median and accordingly pavement works are commenced. Figure 4 illustrates

schematically the construction sequence of the bridge.
schematically the construction sequence of the bridge.
Henceforward, a typical balanced cantilever erection commences. Each cycle consists of the following main activities: 1.

Fig 3: General arrangement of the bridge and cross section of the deck

6.2.

One stage Analysis

In this analysis case, the bridge is assumed to be factitiously constructed in one stage.

However, this assumption is quite far from reality, it helps as a reference to show how

far that the construction method affects the structural behaviour of the bridge.

The bridge is analysed due permanent applied load (henceforth it will be abbreviated

as PAL). This PAL consists of the combination of self weight, super imposed dead

load, prestressing forces (henceforth they will be abbreviated as SW, SDL, and PS),

and the pretensioning forces induced in the stays.

  • 6.3. Staged Construction Analysis

Once more the bridge is re-analysed. This time, the actual construction stages

described in article 6.1 are applied. For the comparison aspects, the analysis is re-

performed due to PAL.

6.2. One stage Analysis In this analysis case, the bridge is assumed to be factitiously cons

Fig. 4-a: Construction Sequence

Fig. 4-b: Construction Sequence (continued). 6.4. Comparisons Between The Two Different Analyses The following categorised numerical

Fig. 4-b: Construction Sequence (continued).

  • 6.4. Comparisons Between The Two Different Analyses

The following categorised numerical comparisons are organised. The comparisons are

performed between the two cases of analyses as mentioned hereinbefore, namely; one

stage geometric nonlinear analysis versus staged construction geometric nonlinear

analysis. The comparisons are derived with regard to deck vertical deflections, deck

normal stresses, stay forces, and pylon elastic shortening.

  • 6.3.1 Comparison of Deck Vertical Deflection

This comparison highlights how far the construction method strongly affects the

vertical displacement along the deck. Moreover, the construction method affects the

deformed shape configuration of the bridge. This effect is very remarkable within the

distance possessing high deflection values where it goes to an increase of 280% at 220

m apart from the pylon. Fig. 5.b shows the details of this comparison.

A) General arangement -300 -250 -200 -150 -100 -50 0 50 one stage analysis staged construction
A) General arangement
-300
-250
-200
-150
-100
-50
0
50
one stage analysis
staged construction analysis
100
0
-300
-250
-200
-150
-100
-50
0
-100
-200
-300
-400
B)
Comparison of vertical deflection
Vl. displ. mm

Fig 5: Comparison of vertical displacement

  • 6.3.2 Comparison of Deck Normal Stresses

This comparison denotes that while the construction method effect preserves the

configuration of the normal stress distribution along the deck, it redistributes the

normal stress along the deck. On the side span, construction method effect tends to

increase the top fibres stress and decrease the bottom fibres stress. This redistribution

reaches its maximum effect on the top fibres by an increase of 40% at the side pier

location. In contrast, it reaches its maximum effect on the bottom fibres by a reduction

of 28% at 7 m apart from the side piers. With regard to the main span, construction

effect tends to reduce the top fibres stress and increase the bottom fibres stress within

almost the half span near to the side pier. This redistribution reaches its maximum

effect on the bottom fibres by an increase of 212% at a distance of 172.5 measured

from the pylon. In contrast, it reaches its maximum effect on the top fibres by a

reduction of 29% only at a distance of 192.5 measured from the pylon. Within the half

of the main span near to the pylon, construction method effect tends to redistribute the

normal stresses by increasing the top fibres stresses against decreasing the bottom

fibres stress. This redistribution reaches its maximum effect at 46.5 m apart from the

pylon with an increase of 39% at the top fibres accompanied with a reduction of 34%

at the bottom fibres. Figures 6.b and c show the details of this comparison.

A) General arangement -300 -250 -200 -150 -100 -50 0 50 one stage analysis staged construction
A) General arangement
-300
-250
-200
-150
-100
-50
0
50
one stage analysis
staged construction analysis
5
0
-300
-250
-200
-150
-100
-50
0
-5
-10
B) Construction effect on top fibres stress
-15
one stage analysis
staged construction analysis
0
-300
-250
-200
-150
-100
-50
0
-5
-10
-15
-20
C) Construction effect on bottom fibres stresss
Normal stress MPa
Normal stress MPa

Fig 6: Comparison of deck normal stress

  • 6.3.3 Comparison of Cable Forces

With regard to the cable force point, the comparison denotes that the general trend is

that the cable forces of the stays near to the pylon are reduced due to the construction

method effect. This reduction reaches 14% at S3. In contrast with this, accounting for

the construction method effect increases the cable forces for the stays apart from the

pylon. This increase reaches 20% at S30. Fig. 7 illustrates this comparison.

  • 6.3.4 Comparison of Pylon Elastic Shortening

Table2 shows the elastic shortening of the pylon resulting from the two different

methods of analysis. This comparison shows that the construction effect has a

negligible effect on the pylon elastic shortening.

25 27 9 19 29 1 3 5 7 11 13 15 17 21 23 31
25
27
9
19
29
1
3
5
7
11
13
15
17
21
23
31
33
6000
one stage analysis
staged construction analysis
Stay Force KN
0
1000
2000
3000
4000
5000

Stay No.

Fig 7: Comparison of cable forces

 

Analysis method

Table 2: Elastic shortening of the pylon Pylon elastic shortening mm

 

44

One stage analysis Staged construction analysis

45

  • 7. CONCLUSIONS AND SUGGESTIONS FOR FUTURE STUDIES

The following conclusions can be extracted from the present investigation:

1.

Construction method has a significant effect on the developed displacements, stresses as well as stay cable forces.

  • 2. Construction method has a negligible effect on the pylon elastic shortening.

With respect to areas of further research the following points should be considered:

  • 1. Research to account for the time dependent factors such as creep, shrinkage, and aging of concrete together with time dependent losses in the prestressing forces are suggested.

  • 2. Researches to include the different methods of construction rather than the cantilevering method will help to have a wide understanding for the effect of construction on the final behaviour of the bridge.

  • 3. Numerical studies for different bridge configurations will assist to judge the necessity of performing the staged construction analysis.

REFERENCES

  • 1. "The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO)".

  • 2. "The Building Code Requirements for Structural Concrete (ACI 318M-95) "

  • 3. Bijan, O. Alami, "Structural Modelling of Post tensioned members", Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE, Vol. 126, No. 2, pp. 157-162, February, 2000.

  • 4. Gimsing, N. J., “Cable Supported Bridges-Concept and Design”, A Wiley- Interscience, New York, 1983.

  • 5. Hegab, H., Tawfik, O., Nemir, M. T., and Nour El-deen, H., " Geometric Nonlinearity of Single-Plane Cable-Stayed Bridges During Cantilevering", Egyptian Society of Engineers, Bridge Engineering Conference, March 2000, Sharm Elsheikh, Egypt, pp. 567-578, Vol. 1.

  • 6. Hegab, H., Tawfik, O., Nemir, M. T., and Nour El-deen, H., "Nonlinear Torsional and Warping Analysis of Single-Plane Cable-Stayed Bridges", Egyptian Society of Engineers, Bridge Engineering Conference, March 2000, Sharm Elsheikh, Egypt, pp. 579-590, Vol. 1.

  • 7. Mathivat, J., "The Cantilever Construction of Prestressed Concrete Bridges", A Wiley Intersience Publication, New York, 1983.

  • 8. Nemir, M.T., "Finite Element Stability Analysis of Thin-Walled Steel Structures", Ph.D. Thesis, University of Salford, U.K, 1985.

  • 9. Nour El-deen, H., "Finite Element Analysis of Single Plane Cable-Stayed Bridges under Construction by Cantilevering Method", M.Sc. Thesis, University of Menoufia, 1997.

    • 10. Podolny, W., Scalzi, J. B., "Construction and Design of Cable-Stayed Bridges, Second Edition", John Wiley & Sons, 1986.

    • 11. Troitsky, M. S., "Cable-Stayed Bridges - Second Edition", Van Nostrtand Reinhold, 1988.