Open Science Research Excellence

Open Science Index

Commenced in January 2007 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 96

Reduced Rule Based Fuzzy Logic Controlled Isolated Bidirectional Converter Operating in Extended Phase Shift Control for Bidirectional Energy Transfer

Bidirectional energy transfer capability with high efficiency and reduced cost is fast gaining prominence in the central part of a lot of power conversion systems in Direct Current (DC) microgrid. Preferably, under the economics constraints, these systems utilise a single high efficiency power electronics conversion system and a dual active bridge converter. In this paper, modeling and performance of Dual Active Bridge (DAB) converter with Extended Phase Shift (EPS) is evaluated with two batteries on both sides of DC bus and bidirectional energy transfer is facilitated and this is further compared with the Single Phase Shift (SPS) mode of operation. Optimum operating zone is identified through exhaustive simulations using MATLAB/Simulink and SimPowerSystem software. Reduced rules based fuzzy logic controller is implemented for closed loop control of DAB converter. The control logic enables the bidirectional energy transfer within the batteries even at lower duty ratios. Charging and discharging of batteries is supervised by the fuzzy logic controller. State of charge, current and voltage for both the batteries are plotted in the battery characteristics. Power characteristics of batteries are also obtained using MATLAB simulations.

Cascaded H-Bridge Five Level Inverter Based Selective Harmonic Eliminated Pulse Width Modulation for Harmonic Elimination

In this paper, selective harmonic elimination pulse width modulation technique is employed to eliminate lower order harmonics like third by determination of solving non-linear equations. The cascaded H-bridge five level inverter is driven by the Peripheral Interface Controlled (PIC) Microcontroller 16F877A. The performance of single phase cascaded H-bridge five level inverter with relevant to harmonics and a variety of switches with solar cell as its input source is simulated by employing MATLAB/Simulink. A hardware model is developed to verify the performance of the developed system.

Double Loop Control of H-Bridge DC Chopper Fed Permanent Magnet DC Motor Drives Using Low Cost Hardware
This paper presents the two loop proportional integral (PI) controller for speed control of permanent magnet DC motor (PMDC) motor drive with H-bridge DC chopper. PMDC motors are widely used in many applications because of having a good performance and it is easy to apply the speed control. The speed can be adjusted by using armature voltage control as it had only the armature circuit. H-bridge DC chopper circuit is used to obtain the desired speed in any direction. In this system, the two loop PI controller is designed by using pole-zero cancellation method. The speed and current controller gains are considered depending on the sampling frequency of the microcontroller. An Arduino IO package is used to implement the control algorithm. Both simulation and experimental results are presented to prove the correctness of the mathematical model.
Design and Production of Thin-Walled UHPFRC Footbridge

The paper presents design and production of thin-walled U-profile footbridge made of UHPFRC. The main structure of the bridge is one prefabricated shell structure made of UHPFRC with dispersed steel fibers without any conventional reinforcement. The span of the bridge structure is 10 m and the clear width of 1.5 m. The thickness of the UHPFRC shell structure oscillated in an interval of 30-45 mm. Several calculations were made during the bridge design and compared with the experiments. For the purpose of verifying the calculations, a segment of 1.5 m was first produced, followed by the whole footbridge for testing. After the load tests were done, the design was optimized to cast the final footbridge.

A Numerical Study on Semi-Active Control of a Bridge Deck under Seismic Excitation

This study investigates the benefits of implementing the semi-active devices in relation to passive viscous damping in the context of seismically isolated bridge structures. Since the intrinsically nonlinear nature of semi-active devices prevents the direct evaluation of Laplace transforms, frequency response functions are compiled from the computed time history response to sinusoidal and pulse-like seismic excitation. A simple semi-active control policy is used in regard to passive linear viscous damping and an optimal non-causal semi-active control strategy. The control strategy requires optimization. Euler-Lagrange equations are solved numerically during this procedure. The optimal closed-loop performance is evaluated for an idealized controllable dash-pot. A simplified single-degree-of-freedom model of an isolated bridge is used as numerical example. Two bridge cases are investigated. These cases are; bridge deck without the isolation bearing and bridge deck with the isolation bearing. To compare the performances of the passive and semi-active control cases, frequency dependent acceleration, velocity and displacement response transmissibility ratios Ta(w), Tv(w), and Td(w) are defined. To fully investigate the behavior of the structure subjected to the sinusoidal and pulse type excitations, different damping levels are considered. Numerical results showed that, under the effect of external excitation, bridge deck with semi-active control showed better structural performance than the passive bridge deck case.

Studying the Effect of Froude Number and Densimetric Froude Number on Local Scours around Circular Bridge Piers

A very large percentage of bridge failures are attributed to scouring around bridge piers and this directly influences public safety. Experiments are carried out in a 12-m long rectangular open channel flume made of transparent tempered glass. A 300 mm thick bed made up of sand particles is leveled horizontally to create the test bed and a 50 mm hollow plastic cylinder is used as a model bridge pier. Tests are carried out with varying flow depths and velocities. Data points of various scour parameters such as scour depth, width, and length are collected based on different flow conditions and visual observations of changes in the stream bed downstream the bridge pier are also made as the scour progresses. Result shows that all three major flow characteristics (flow depth, Froude number and densimetric Froude number) have one way or other affect the scour profile.

Performance of Bridge Approach Slabs in Bridge Construction: A Case Study
Long-term differential settlement between the bridge structure and the bridge embankment typically results in an abrupt grade change, causing driver discomfort, impairing driver safety, and exerting a potentially excessive impact traffic loading on the abutment. This paper has analysed a case of study showing the effect of an approaching slab realized in a bridge constructed at Tirane-Elbasan Motorway. The layer thickness under the slab is modeled as homogenous, the slab is a reinforced concrete structure and over that the asphaltic layers take place. Analysis indicates that reinforced concrete approaching slab distributes the stresses quite uniformly into the road fill layers and settlements varies in a range less than 2.50 cm in the total slab length of 6.00 m with a maximum slope of 1/240. Results taken from analytical analysis are compared with topographic measurements done on field and they carry great similarities.
Development of a Value Evaluation Model of Highway Box-Girder Bridge
Taiwan’s infrastructure is gradually deteriorating, while resources for maintenance and replacement are increasingly limited, raising the urgent need for methods for maintaining existing infrastructure within constrained budgets. Infrastructure value evaluation is used to enhance the efficiency of infrastructure maintenance work, allowing administrators to quickly assess the maintenance needs and performance by observing variation in infrastructure value. This research establishes a value evaluation model for Taiwan’s highway box girder bridges. The operating mechanism and process of the model are illustrated in a practical case.
Tensile Test of Corroded Strand and Maintenance of Corroded Prestressed Concrete Girders

National bridge inventory in Korea shows that the number of old prestressed concrete (PSC) bridgeover 30 years of service life is rapidly increasing. Recently tendon corrosion is one of the most critical issues in the maintenance of PSC bridges. In this paper, mechanical properties of corroded strands, which were removed from old bridges, were evaluated using tensile test. In the result, the equations to express the mechanical behavior of corroded strand were derived and compared to existing equation. For the decision of tendon replacement, it is necessary to evaluate the effect of corrosion level on strength and ductility of the structure. Considerations on analysis of PSC girders were introduced, and decision making on tendon replacement was also proposed.

Dynamic Response Analyses for Human-Induced Lateral Vibration on Congested Pedestrian Bridges

In this paper, a lateral walking design force per person is proposed and compared with Imperial College test results. Numerical simulations considering the proposed walking design force which is incorporated into the neural-oscillator model are carried out placing much emphasis on the synchronization (the lock-in phenomenon) for a pedestrian bridge model with the span length of 50 m. Numerical analyses are also conducted for an existing pedestrian suspension bridge. As compared with full scale measurements for this suspension bridge, it is confirmed that the analytical method based on the neural-oscillator model might be one of the useful ways to explain the synchronization (the lock-in phenomenon) of pedestrians being on the bridge.

Selection of Intensity Measure in Probabilistic Seismic Risk Assessment of a Turkish Railway Bridge

Fragility curve is an effective common used tool to determine the earthquake performance of structural and nonstructural components. Also, it is used to determine the nonlinear behavior of bridges. There are many historical bridges in the Turkish railway network; the earthquake performances of these bridges are needed to be investigated. To derive fragility curve Intensity measures (IMs) and Engineering demand parameters (EDP) are needed to be determined. And the relation between IMs and EDP are needed to be derived. In this study, a typical simply supported steel girder riveted railway bridge is studied. Fragility curves of this bridge are derived by two parameters lognormal distribution. Time history analyses are done for selected 60 real earthquake data to determine the relation between IMs and EDP. Moreover, efficiency, practicality, and sufficiency of three different IMs are discussed. PGA, Sa(0.2s) and Sa(1s), the most common used IMs parameters for fragility curve in the literature, are taken into consideration in terms of efficiency, practicality and sufficiency.

Improvement of Load Carrying Capacity of an RCC T-Beam Bridge Longitudinal Girder by Replacing Steel Bars with SMA Bars

An innovative three dimensional finite element model has beed developed and tested under two point loading system to examine the structural behavior of the longitudinal reinforced concrete Tee-beam bridge girder, reinforcing with steel and shape memory alloy bars respectively. 25% of steel bars are replaced with superelastic Shape Memory Alloy bars in this study. Finite element analysis is performed using ANSYS 11.0 program. Experimentally a model of steel reinforced girder has been casted and its load deflection responses are checked with ANSYS analysis. A comparison of load carrying capacity for the model between steel RC girder and the girder combined reinforcement with SMA and steel are also performed.

Finite Element Modeling of Stockbridge Damper and Vibration Analysis: Equivalent Cable Stiffness
Aeolian vibrations are the major cause for the failure of conductor cables. Using a Stockbridge damper reduces these vibrations and increases the life span of the conductor cable. Designing an efficient Stockbridge damper that suits the conductor cable requires a robust mathematical model with minimum assumptions. However it is not easy to analytically model the complex geometry of the messenger. Therefore an equivalent stiffness must be determined so that it can be used in the analytical model. This paper examines the bending stiffness of the cable and discusses the effect of this stiffness on the natural frequencies. The obtained equivalent stiffness compensates for the assumption of modeling the messenger as a rod. The results from the free vibration analysis of the analytical model with the equivalent stiffness is validated using the full scale finite element model of the Stockbridge damper.
Scour Depth Prediction around Bridge Piers Using Neuro-Fuzzy and Neural Network Approaches

The prediction of scour depth around bridge piers is frequently considered in river engineering. One of the key aspects in efficient and optimum bridge structure design is considered to be scour depth estimation around bridge piers. In this study, scour depth around bridge piers is estimated using two methods, namely the Adaptive Neuro-Fuzzy Inference System (ANFIS) and Artificial Neural Network (ANN). Therefore, the effective parameters in scour depth prediction are determined using the ANN and ANFIS methods via dimensional analysis, and subsequently, the parameters are predicted. In the current study, the methods’ performances are compared with the nonlinear regression (NLR) method. The results show that both methods presented in this study outperform existing methods. Moreover, using the ratio of pier length to flow depth, ratio of median diameter of particles to flow depth, ratio of pier width to flow depth, the Froude number and standard deviation of bed grain size parameters leads to optimal performance in scour depth estimation.

Hybrid Stainless Steel Girder for Bridge Construction

The main object of this paper is to present the research results of the development of a hybrid stainless steel girder system for bridge construction undertaken at University of Ryukyu. In order to prevent the corrosion damage and reduce the fabrication costs, a hybrid stainless steel girder in bridge construction is developed, the stainless steel girder of which is stiffened and braced by structural carbon steel materials. It is verified analytically and experimentally that the ultimate strength of the hybrid stainless steel girder is equal to or greater than that of conventional carbon steel girder. The benefit of the life-cycle cost of the hybrid stainless steel girder is also shown.

Reinforced Concrete Bridge Deck Condition Assessment Methods Using Ground Penetrating Radar and Infrared Thermography

Reinforced concrete bridge deck condition assessments primarily use visual inspection methods, where an inspector looks for and records locations of cracks, potholes, efflorescence and other signs of probable deterioration. Sounding is another technique used to diagnose the condition of a bridge deck, however this method listens for damage within the subsurface as the surface is struck with a hammer or chain. Even though extensive procedures are in place for using these inspection techniques, neither one provides the inspector with a comprehensive understanding of the internal condition of a bridge deck – the location where damage originates from.  In order to make accurate estimates of repair locations and quantities, in addition to allocating the necessary funding, a total understanding of the deck’s deteriorated state is key. The research presented in this paper collected infrared thermography and ground penetrating radar data from reinforced concrete bridge decks without an asphalt overlay. These decks were of various ages and their condition varied from brand new, to in need of replacement. The goals of this work were to first verify that these nondestructive evaluation methods could identify similar areas of healthy and damaged concrete, and then to see if combining the results of both methods would provide a higher confidence than if the condition assessment was completed using only one method. The results from each method were presented as plan view color contour plots. The results from one of the decks assessed as a part of this research, including these plan view plots, are presented in this paper. Furthermore, in order to answer the interest of transportation agencies throughout the United States, this research developed a step-by-step guide which demonstrates how to collect and assess a bridge deck using these nondestructive evaluation methods. This guide addresses setup procedures on the deck during the day of data collection, system setups and settings for different bridge decks, data post-processing for each method, and data visualization and quantification.

A Case Study on Performance of Isolated Bridges under Near-Fault Ground Motion

This paper presents a numerical investigation on the seismic performance of a benchmark bridge with different optimal isolation systems under near fault ground motion. Usually, very large displacements make seismic isolation an unfeasible solution due to boundary conditions, especially in case of existing bridges or high risk seismic regions. Hence, near-fault ground motions are most likely to affect either structures with long natural period range like isolated structures or structures sensitive to velocity content such as viscously damped structures. The work is aimed at analyzing the seismic performance of a three-span continuous bridge designed with different isolation systems having different levels of damping. The case study was analyzed in different configurations including: (a) simply supported, (b) isolated with lead rubber bearings (LRBs), (c) isolated with rubber isolators and 10% classical damping (HDLRBs), and (d) isolated with rubber isolators and 70% supplemental damping ratio. Case (d) represents an alternative control strategy that combines the effect of seismic isolation with additional supplemental damping trying to take advantages from both solutions. The bridge is modeled in SAP2000 and solved by time history direct-integration analyses under a set of six recorded near-fault ground motions. In addition to this, a set of analysis under Italian code provided seismic action is also conducted, in order to evaluate the effectiveness of the suggested optimal control strategies under far field seismic action. Results of the analysis demonstrated that an isolated bridge equipped with HDLRBs and a total equivalent damping ratio of 70% represents a very effective design solution for both mitigation of displacement demand at the isolation level and base shear reduction in the piers also in case of near fault ground motion.

Experimental Study of Local Scour Depth around Cylindrical Bridge Pier

The failure of bridges due to excessive local scour during floods poses a challenging problem to hydraulic engineers. The failure of bridges piers is due to many reasons such as localized scour combined with general riverbed degradation. In this paper, we try to estimate the temporal variation of scour depth at nonuniform cylindrical bridge pier, by experimental work conducted in hydraulic laboratories of Gaziantep University Civil Engineering Department on a flume having dimensions of 8.3 m length, 0.8 m width and 0.9 m depth. The experiments will be carried on 20 cm depth of sediment layer having d50=0.4 mm. Three bridge pier shapes having different scaled models will be constructed in a 1.5m of test section in the channel.

Effect of Stirrup Corrosion on Concrete Confinement Strength

This study investigated how the concrete confinement strength and axial load carrying capacity of reinforced concrete columns are affected by corrosion damage to the stirrups. A total of small-scale 12 test specimens were cast for evaluating the effect of stirrup corrosion on confinement strength of concrete. The results of this study show that the stirrup corrosion alone dramatically decreases the axial load carrying capacity of corroded reinforced concrete columns. Recommendations were presented for improved inspection practices which will allow estimating concrete confinement strength of corrosion-damaged reinforced concrete bridge columns.

Bridgeless Boost Power Factor Correction Rectifier with Hold-Up Time Extension Circuit
A bridgeless boost (BLB) power factor correction (PFC) rectifier with hold-up time extension circuit is proposed in this paper. A full bridge rectifier is widely used in the front end of the ac/dc converter. Since the shortcomings of the full bridge rectifier, the bridgeless rectifier is developed. A BLB rectifier topology is utilized with the hold-up time extension circuit. Unlike the traditional hold-up time extension circuit, the proposed extension scheme uses fewer active switches to achieve a longer hold-up time. Simulation results are presented to verify the converter performance.
Tuned Mass Damper Effects of Stationary People on Structural Damping of Footbridge Due to Dynamic Interaction in Vertical Motion
It is known that stationary human occupants act as dynamic mass-spring-damper systems and can change the modal properties of civil engineering structures. This paper describes the full scale measurement to explain the tuned mass damper effects of stationary people on structural damping of footbridge with center span length of 33 m. A human body can be represented by a lumped system consisting of masses, springs, and dashpots. Complex eigenvalue calculation is also conducted by using ISO5982:1981 human model (two degree of freedom system). Based on experimental and analytical results for the footbridge with the stationary people in the standing position, it is demonstrated that stationary people behave as a tuned mass damper and that ISO5982:1981 human model can explain the structural damping characteristics measured in the field.
Response of a Bridge Crane during an Earthquake
During an earthquake, a bridge crane may be subjected to multiple impacts between crane wheels and rail. In order to model such phenomena, a time-history dynamic analysis with a multi-scale approach is performed. The high frequency aspect of the impacts between wheels and rails is taken into account by a Lagrange explicit event-capturing algorithm based on a velocity-impulse formulation to resolve contacts and impacts. An implicit temporal scheme is used for the rest of the structure. The numerical coupling between the implicit and the explicit schemes is achieved with a heterogeneous asynchronous time-integrator.
Operation Planning of Concrete Box Girder Bridge by 4D CAD Visualization Techniques

Visual simulation has emerged as a key planning tool in built environment because it enables architects, engineers and project managers to visualize construction process evolution before the project actual commences. This provides an efficient technology for reducing time and cost through planning and controlling resources, machines and materials. With the development of infrastructure projects and the massive civil constructions such as bridges, urban tunnels and highways as well as sensitivity of their construction operations, it is very necessary to apply proper planning methods. Implementation of visual techniques into management of construction projects can provide a fundamental foundation for projects with massive activities and duplicate items. So, the purpose of this paper is to develop visual simulation management techniques for infrastructure projects such as highways bridges by the use of Four-Dimensional Computer-Aided design Models. This project simulates operational assembly-line for Box-Girder Concrete Bridges which it would be able to optimize the sequence and interaction of project activities and on the other hand, it would minimize any unintended conflicts prior to project start. In this paper, after introducing the various planning methods by building information model and concrete bridges in highways, an executive case study is demonstrated and then a visual technique (4D CAD) will be applied for the case. In the final step, the user feedback for interacting by this system evaluated according to six criteria.

Reliability Levels of Reinforced Concrete Bridges Obtained by Mixing Approaches

Reinforced concrete bridges designed by code are intended to achieve target reliability levels adequate for the geographical environment where the code is applicable. Several methods can be used to estimate such reliability levels. Many of them require the establishment of an explicit limit state function (LSF). When such LSF is not available as a close-form expression, the simulation techniques are often employed. The simulation methods are computing intensive and time consuming. Note that if the reliability of real bridges designed by code is of interest, numerical schemes, the finite element method (FEM) or computational mechanics could be required. In these cases, it can be quite difficult (or impossible) to establish a close-form of the LSF, and the simulation techniques may be necessary to compute reliability levels. To overcome the need for a large number of simulations when no explicit LSF is available, the point estimate method (PEM) could be considered as an alternative. It has the advantage that only the probabilistic moments of the random variables are required. However, in the PEM, fitting of the resulting moments of the LSF to a probability density function (PDF) is needed. In the present study, a very simple alternative which allows the assessment of the reliability levels when no explicit LSF is available and without the need of extensive simulations is employed. The alternative includes the use of the PEM, and its applicability is shown by assessing reliability levels of reinforced concrete bridges in Mexico when a numerical scheme is required. Comparisons with results by using the Monte Carlo simulation (MCS) technique are included. To overcome the problem of approximating the probabilistic moments from the PEM to a PDF, a well-known distribution is employed. The approach mixes the PEM and other classic reliability method (first order reliability method, FORM). The results in the present study are in good agreement whit those computed with the MCS. Therefore, the alternative of mixing the reliability methods is a very valuable option to determine reliability levels when no close form of the LSF is available, or if numerical schemes, the FEM or computational mechanics are employed.

Estimating Bridge Deterioration for Small Data Sets Using Regression and Markov Models

The primary approach for estimating bridge deterioration uses Markov-chain models and regression analysis. Traditional Markov models have problems in estimating the required transition probabilities when a small sample size is used. Often, reliable bridge data have not been taken over large periods, thus large data sets may not be available. This study presents an important change to the traditional approach by using the Small Data Method to estimate transition probabilities. The results illustrate that the Small Data Method and traditional approach both provide similar estimates; however, the former method provides results that are more conservative. That is, Small Data Method provided slightly lower than expected bridge condition ratings compared with the traditional approach. Considering that bridges are critical infrastructures, the Small Data Method, which uses more information and provides more conservative estimates, may be more appropriate when the available sample size is small. In addition, regression analysis was used to calculate bridge deterioration. Condition ratings were determined for bridge groups, and the best regression model was selected for each group. The results obtained were very similar to those obtained when using Markov chains; however, it is desirable to use more data for better results.

Seismic Performance Evaluation of Bridge Structures Using 3D Finite Element Methods in South Korea
This study described the seismic performance evaluation of bridge structures, located near Daegu metropolitan city in Korea. The structural design code or regulatory guidelines is focusing on the protection of brittle failure or collapse in bridges’ lifetime during an earthquake. This paper illustrated the procedure in terms of the safety evaluation of bridges using simple linear elastic 3D Finite Element (FE) model in ABAQUS platform. The design response spectra based on KBC 2009 were then developed, in order to understand the seismic behavior of bridge structures. Besides, the multiple directional earthquakes were applied and it revealed that the most dominated earthquake direction was transverse direction of the bridge. Also, the bridge structure under the compressive stress was more fragile than the tensile stress and the vertical direction of seismic ground motions was not significantly affected to the structural system.
Geotechnical Investigation of Soil Foundation for Ramps of Dawar El-Tawheed Bridge in Jizan City, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
The soil profile at site of the bridge project includes soft fine grained soil layer located between 5.0 m to 11.0 m in depth, it has high water content, low SPT no., and low bearing capacity. The clay layer induces high settlement due to surcharge application of earth embankment at ramp T1, ramp T2, and ramp T3 especially at heights from 9m right 3m. Calculated settlement for embankment heights less than 3m may be accepted regarding Saudi Code for soil and foundation. The soil and groundwater at the project site comprise high contents of sulfates and chlorides of high aggressively on concrete and steel bars, respectively. Regarding results of the study, it has been recommended to use stone column piles or new technology named PCC piles as soil improvement to improve the bearing capacity of the weak layer. The new technology is cast in-situ thin wall concrete pipe piles (PCC piles), it has economically advantageous and high workability. The technology can save time of implementation and cost of application is almost 30% of other types of piles.
Budget Optimization for Maintenance of Bridges in Egypt
Allocating limited budget to maintain bridge networks and selecting effective maintenance strategies for each bridge represent challenging tasks for maintenance managers and decision makers. In Egypt, bridges are continuously deteriorating. In many cases, maintenance works are performed due to user complaints. The objective of this paper is to develop a practical and reliable framework to manage the maintenance, repair, and rehabilitation (MR&R) activities of Bridges network considering performance and budget limits. The model solves an optimization problem that maximizes the average condition of the entire network given the limited available budget using Genetic Algorithm (GA). The framework contains bridge inventory, condition assessment, repair cost calculation, deterioration prediction, and maintenance optimization. The developed model takes into account multiple parameters including serviceability requirements, budget allocation, element importance on structural safety and serviceability, bridge impact on network, and traffic. A questionnaire is conducted to complete the research scope. The proposed model is implemented in software, which provides a friendly user interface. The framework provides a multi-year maintenance plan for the entire network for up to five years. A case study of ten bridges is presented to validate and test the proposed model with data collected from Transportation Authorities in Egypt. Different scenarios are presented. The results are reasonable, feasible and within acceptable domain.
State-Of-The Art Practices in Bridge Inspection
Government reports and published research have flagged and brought to public attention the deteriorating condition of a large percentage of bridges in Canada and the United States. With the increasing number of deteriorated bridges in the US, Canada, and around the globe, condition assessment techniques of concrete bridges are evolving. Investigation for bridges’ defects such as cracks, spalls, and delamination and their level of severity are the main objectives of condition assessment. Inspection and rehabilitation programs are being implemented to monitor and maintain deteriorated bridge infrastructure. This paper highlights the state-of-the art of current practices being performed for concrete bridge inspection. The information is gathered from the literature and through a distributed questionnaire. The current practices in concrete bridge inspection rely on the use of hummer sounding and chain dragging tests. Non-Destructive Testing (NDT) techniques are not being utilized fully in the process. Nonetheless, they are being partially utilized by the recommendation of the bridge inspector after conducting visual inspection. Lanes are usually closed during the performance of visual inspection and bridge inspection in general.
Harnessing Nigeria's Forestry Potential for Structural Applications: Structural Reliability of Nigerian Grown Opepe Timber
This study examined the structural reliability of the Nigerian grown Opepe timber as bridge beam material. The strength of a particular specie of timber depends so much on some factors such as soil and environment in which it is grown. The steps involved are collection of the Opepe timber samples, seasoning/preparation of the test specimens, determination of the strength properties/statistical analysis, development of a computer programme in FORTRAN language and finally structural reliability analysis using FORM 5 software. The result revealed that the Nigerian grown Opepe is a reliable and durable structural bridge beam material for span of 5000mm, depth of 400mm, breadth of 250mm and end bearing length of 150mm. The probabilities of failure in bending parallel to the grain, compression perpendicular to the grain, shear parallel to the grain and deflection are 1.61 x 10-7, 1.43 x 10-8, 1.93 x 10-4 and 1.51 x 10-15 respectively. The paper recommends establishment of Opepe plantation in various Local Government Areas in Nigeria for structural applications such as in bridges, railway sleepers, generation of income to the nation as well as creating employment for the numerous unemployed youths.
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