Finite-Element Modeling of Hybrid Composite Beam Bridge in Virginia: Tides Mill Stream Bridge

Yi, Haozhe, Civil Engineering - School of Engineering and Applied Science, University of Virginia
Gomez, Jose, Civil & Env Engr, University of Virginia

The Hybrid Composite Beam (HCB), an innovative composite shell/reinforced concrete beam, was used as part of the replacement of the superstructure of the Tides Mill Stream Bridge on Route 205 in Colonial Beach, Virginia. A series of load tests were conducted on the completed replacement structure in order to validate the design assumptions and to characterize the overall structural response of the bridge. A detailed finite element model of the bridge was developed in order to further understand the behavior of this unique bridge. Finite element modeling has been widely used to conduct structural analysis on bridges for many years. However, because of the novelty of the HCB, finite element modeling has only been used in limited analyses on HCB bridges (Myers, 2015). This study aimed to develop a rational finite element model to simulate the behavior of the Tides Mill Stream Bridge under static and dynamic loads. Results from a laboratory study conducted at Virginia Tech (Ahsan, 2012) were used to calibrate a finite element model of the HCB beam. A three beam/concrete deck bridge system, also tested at Virginia Tech, was used to calibrate a finite element model of the tested bridge system. A full finite element model of the Tides Mill Stream Bridge was developed. Results from field testing conducted on the completed Tides Mill Stream Bridge, by the University of Virginia, were used as benchmarks to adjust the full finite element bridge model. The proposed finite element model developed in this study was able to predict the behavior of the Tides Mill Stream Bridge with acceptable accuracy. This finite element model can be used as a reference for future analyses on the Tides Mill Stream Bridge.

MS (Master of Science)
Hybrid Composite Beam Bridge, Finite-Element Modeling
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