Abutment Scour in Cohesive Materials

Scour at bridges founded on cohesive soils is a very complex phenomenon that is not completely understood. Conventional approaches to scour prediction were developed from laboratory experiments in cohesionless materials. Even though the depth of scour in a cohesive soil may ultimately reach the same depth as it would in a cohesionless soil, the time rate of scour is significant for the cohesive soil. While ultimate scour in sand may only take a few hours or possibly days, it may take years or even centuries to reach the same depth in a cohesive soil. There is a need for research to investigate the time rate of scour in cohesive materials. Better prediction methodologies will allow bridge designers to design cost effective bridge foundations for bridges founded on clay soils. Too often, bridges are over-designed due to the lack of adequate guidance, wasting highway infrastructure funds. National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) Project 24-15, "Complex Pier Scour and Contraction Scour in Cohesive Soils" studied pier and contraction scour and resulted in the development of methods for the analysis and prediction of complex pier and contraction scour in cohesive soils. NCHRP Project 24-15 resulted in significant advances in the prediction of pier and contraction scour in cohesive soils and in the development of the SRICOS method (Scour Rate In Cohesive Soils) and a new apparatus called the EF (Erosion Function Apparatus). NCHRP Project 24-15 . Due to limited funds at the time of project initiation, the study of bridge abutments founded on cohesive soils was not addressed under Project 24-15. There is a need for prediction methodologies similar to those developed under Project 24-15 for estimating the time rate of scour at bridge abutments founded on clay soils. The objective of this research is to develop a methodology for the prediction of abutment scour in cohesive soils consistent with the methodology developed for pier and contraction scour prediction developed under NCHRP Project 24-15


  • English


  • Status: Completed
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 24-15(2)

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590

    American Association of State Highway & Transportation Officials

    444 North Capitol Street, NW, Suite 225
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    National Cooperative Highway Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001
  • Project Managers:

    Reynaud, David

  • Performing Organizations:

    Texas A&M Research Foundation, College Station

    Texas A&M University
    College Station, TX  United States  77843
  • Principal Investigators:

    Briaud, Jean-Louis

  • Start Date: 20040625
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 20100930
  • Source Data: RiP Project 38807

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01549301
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 24-15(2)
  • Files: TRB, RiP
  • Created Date: Dec 31 2014 1:00AM