Fatigue Verification of a Composite Railway Bridge Detail Based on Testing

The fatigue design practice for railway bridges according to European Eurocode is of general nature and developed to cover a large number of possible load and structure configurations. As the design procedure takes into account a wide range of parameters and uncertainties, usually it gives safe-sided results. Especially in case of residual life-time assessment of existing bridges but also in cases where the detail geometry is not in accordance with standard geometries from Eurocode, the code-based verification does not lead to satisfactory results. As a more accurate method a reality-based fatigue assessment is presented - including monitoring and testing. The main aspects of this method are demonstrated with an example: In the framework of a European research project fatigue tests on a composite bridge detail were performed. The investigated detail belongs to a 4-span twin girder composite railway bridge designed in 1994. The connection between main girder and diagonal bracing shows unfavorable characteristics in regard to fatigue resistance. It was therefore selected to conduct a fatigue verification based on testing. For this purpose 1:1 test specimens were designed and subjected to cyclic loading. The experimental results, analysis of the damage behaviour and comparison to common design practice are presented. The contribution gives a brief survey on the fatigue design according to European Eurocode - also highlighting its limitations. It is aimed at a better understanding of different approaches to fatigue verification. Emphasis is put on consequences of detailing and execution in regard to fatigue resistance.


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  • Accession Number: 01684207
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Oct 3 2018 3:49PM