Modification of Existing Prestressed Girder Cross-Sections for the Optimal Structural Use of Ultra-High Performance Concrete

The first stage of implementing UHPC into the bridge inventory in many States will likely be to use it in place of HPC in standard prestressed I-girders. These standard I-girders were designed for use with certain strengths of concrete, and are not structurally optimized for the high compressive strength and useable tensile capacity of UHPC. Research to date has demonstrated that the material characteristics of UHPC are well suited for use in precast bridge components, but that existing component cross-sections cast with UHPC exhibit excessively large reserve capacities. The leap between common prestressed girder designs and designs that are fully optimized for the properties of UHPC may be too great for many State Departments of Transportation. As such, an intermediate step wherein the bridge owner can become acquainted with the advanced properties of UHPC while still utilizing a familiar structural shape is necessary. This intermediate step also is valuable to other links in the supply chain (i.e., designer, fabricator, erector) as it will allow this traditionally risk averse industry to experience an advancement in the state-of-the-art without incurring what they perceive to be excessive risks. Therefore, the purpose of this research program is to investigate existing bridge girder cross-sections to determine which are best suited to modification for use with UHPC. This analytical study considers factors including structural efficiency in flexure, structural efficiency in shear, pre- and post-tensioning, popularity of the underlying structural form, and ease of existing girder shape modification to achieve desired form.


    • English


    • Status: Completed
    • Sponsor Organizations:

      Federal Highway Administration

      Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center
      6300 Georgetown Pike
      McLean, VA  United States  22101
    • Project Managers:

      Graybeal, Benjamin

    • Performing Organizations:

      Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg

      Virginia Tech Transportation Institute
      3500 Transportation Research Plaza
      Blacksburg, VA  United States  24061
    • Principal Investigators:

      Sotelino, E

      Roberts-Wollmann, Carin

      Cousins, Thomas

    • Start Date: 20060000
    • Expected Completion Date: 0
    • Actual Completion Date: 20090000
    • Source Data: RiP Project 15269

    Subject/Index Terms

    Filing Info

    • Accession Number: 01462772
    • Record Type: Research project
    • Source Agency: Federal Highway Administration
    • Files: RiP, USDOT
    • Created Date: Jan 3 2013 2:10PM