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Design of Steel Cable-stayed Bridge with Low Height Towers

Tomoo TOMODA
General Manager, NIPPON
KOEI CO., LTD., Tokyo,
JAPAN

Hidenori TAKAHASHI
Senior Researcher, Port and
Airport Research Institute,
Yokosuka, JAPAN

a6139@n-koei.co.jp

takahasi-h@pari.go.jp

Hiroshi NAKAGAWA
Director, Yokohama Research
and Engineering Office for
Port and Airport, Yokohama,
JAPAN
nakagawa-h83ab@pa.ktr.mlit.go.jp

Yozo FUJINO
Professor, University of
Tokyo, Tokyo, JAPAN
fujino@civil.t.u-tokyo.ac.jp.

Hiroshi KATSUCHI
Professor, Yokohama
National University,
Yokohama, JAPAN
katsuchi@ynu.ac.jp

Summary
A large cable-stayed bridge with low height towers is planned crossing a canal near one of the
major airports in Japan. As a result of the low towers and since the angle between girder axis and
cable is small, the increase of deflection of stiffening girder becomes a design issue for earthquake
and wind resistance performance. In addition, there is the issue of soil-liquefaction during
earthquake because the bridge is located in a reclaimed soft ground area. In order to solve these
issues, structural stability of the main structure was confirmed by FE analysis. For wind resistance
performance, the behavior of the bridge was examined by wind tunnel experiment, and for
earthquake-resistance performance of the basement, the movement of the tower foundations was
checked by 2-D dynamic effective stress analysis of the ground.
Keywords: Cable-stayed Bridge; Low height towers; Ultimate strength; Earthquake resistance
performance; Wind resistance performance; Soil liquefaction.

1.

Introduction

The proposed cable-stayed bridge planned at a harbor adjacent to a major airport in Japan has low
towers compared to ordinary cable-stayed bridges due to aviation control restriction by the airport.
The structure overview of this bridge is shown in Figures 1 and 2, and Table 1. It is planned to be a

1,035.0m (95.0+135.0+575.0+135.0+95.0m)
Aviation control restriction

Composite floor

Sea route 47.0m

P1

P2

Composite floor
95.5m

L/2 point

P3

Reclaimed
land

L/4 point

P4

P5

P6

P4

Fig. 1: General view of cable-stayed Bridge (planned)


Table 1: Structure specifications (planned)
26,000
1,400
Sidewalk
Fairing

23,200
Roadway

Protective fence

1,400

1,400

3,000

1,600
5,800

14,400

5,800
(Unit: mm)

Fig. 2: Detail of stiffening girder (planned)

Items
Bridge type
Bridge length (Span length L)
Tower height
Girder type
Superstructure Tower type
Cable system
Pier type
Substructure
Foundation
type

Specifications
5 spans cable-stayed bridge
1,035m (L=575.0m)
95.5m (clearance 47.0m)
Flat 3 cells box girder (steel)
A-shaped form (steel)
Multi-cable system (Fan type)
RC hollow pier (P1,P2,P5,P6)
Pire foundation (P1,P6)
Pneumatic caisson (P2-P5)

large cable-stayed bridge with 575.0 m span length and 47.0 m clearance needed to cross the route.
Its unusual proportion of tower height above the girder to the main span length is 1:11, because the
towers are located in the restricted area of the airport. There was concern about degradation of
seismic and wind-resistance performance since the vertical supporting effect of cable is reduced due
to low towers, and deflection of the stiffening girder is larger than the cable-stayed bridge of the
standard tower height. There was also concern about decrease of the safety against overall buckling
since the axial force of stiffening girder increases. Furthermore, foundation movement due to
liquefied and laterally spreading soils by a large-scale earthquake can be predicted because the
towers and piers will be constructed on soft ground reclaimed land.
In order to solve these bridge design issues, we studied placing the intermediate supports of the side
span to decrease deflection of main span, employed multi-cable system using parallel wire strands
and the main structure by High Performance Steels in Japan, and confirmed ultimate strength by
elasto-plastic FE analysis. In addition, for wind resistance stability, the wind-resistance behavior of
the cable-stayed bridge with low height towers was verified by executing of wind tunnel experiment
using a girder section model and full aeroelastic bridge model. For foundation movement due to
liquefied and laterally spreading soils by a large-scale earthquake, seismic performance of the
foundation was confirmed by 2-D dynamic effective stress analysis of the ground. In this paper, we
report some technical issues and the solutions of this bridge found in the early stages of planning.

2.

Design of steel cable-stayed bridge

2.1
Static structure analysis
The proportions (the ratio of tower height to the main span length) of this cable-stayed bridge are
determined by the condition of bridge construction area. Because tower height above the girder is
low, the angle between girder axis and cable is small, so the effect of the vertical support of the
stiffening girders decreases, and deflection for live load (vertical deformation) increases. In addition,
the axial force of the stiffening girders increases, buckling of the stiffening girder is an issue for the
design. Therefore, the entire static analysis using 3-D frame model was executed. Then cable layout
that met the solution of those issues and cross-sections of the main structure were decided by
calculating the cross-sectional force of member of permanent load such as dead load, live load,
influence of temperature change, wind load.
First, deflection for live load was confirmed by placing the intermediate supports (P2, P5) of the
side span, decreasing in vertical deformation of center span. Next, by multistage placing of parallel
wire strands, elastic modulus of which is higher than stranded rope or spiral rope, as two
vertical cable plane fan system, deflection for live load is satisfied with allowable value of
deflection (span L / 400 = 1438 mm) according to design criteria [1]. A comparison table of cable
layout is shown in Table 2. For the stiffening girder cross section, considering weight saving and
high torsional rigidity, steel members were determined as flat three-cell box-girder section to avoid
Table 2: Comparison table of cable layout
CASE 1:4 cable planes (fan type)

Sketch

P1

P2

P3

Parallel wire strands

Layout
Cost
Review

10 cables of 4 vertical planes


Cost ratio:1.03
1) Economy is no good.
2) Wind-resistance performance
is no good.

CASE 2:2 cable planes (fan type)

P1

P2

P3

Parallel wire strands

20 cables of 2 vertical planes


Cost ratio:1.00
1) Economy is good.
2) Wind-resistance performance
is superior to others.

CASE 3:4 cable planes (harp type)

P1

P2

P3

Parallel wire strands

11 cables of 4 vertical planes


Cost ratio:1.15
1) Economy is bad.
2) Wind-resistance performance
is no good.

local buckling. Also, steel-concrete composite


Loading
(D+L+PS)
floor is adopted in the stiffening girders of the
condition
D: Dead load, L: live load, PS: Prestress force
side span as the function of the counterweight
1st eigenvalue = 2.59
in order to reduce the negative reaction of the
end support with fully loaded in center span.
For the towers, considering reduction of impact
on the port facilities adjacent to this bridge by
Buckling length
compact size of foundation and aesthetic design P1 P2 P3
P4
P5 P6
le = 33.0m
of the entire bridge, an A-shaped form with
Fig. 3: Elasto-plastic buckling analysis results
small lower part is adopted. The cross-section
of tower columns and cross beams are designed
(1) Stiffening girder yielding
(=1.109
=1.109)

as steel members to improve the earthquakeresistance performance in soft ground.


For the overall buckling in the stiffening girder
and the tower resisting axial force and bending (2) Cable yielding
( =1.273)
=1.273
moment, buckling mode was calculated as
shown in Figure 3 by elasto-plastic buckling
analysis applying effective buckling length
method (Ef method). The safety of the cross(3) Ultimate load ( =1.273)
section is ensured by calculating the buckling
=1.279
strength using buckling length of each member.
Furthermore, as shown in Figure 4, elastoplastic FE analysis was conducted using the
D+L+PS+SD2+
D+L
Load: D+L+PS+SD (foundations displacement)
+ (D+L)
entire model by calculating yield load and
Fig. 4: Elasto-plastic FE analysis results
ultimate strength of the whole structure of
bridge to check the validity of buckling design of Ef method.
From these studies, even for a cable-stayed bridge that has low towers, it was found that the issue in
deflection for live load could be solved by placing the intermediate supports of the side span and
multi-cable placement of parallel wire strands. The safety to overall buckling could be also
confirmed when the axial force of girder increases by horizontal component of cable.
2.2
Seismic analysis
In Japan, a number of civil engineering structures such as bridges and port facilities have been
damaged by the 1995 Great Hanshin Earthquake that occurred in Kobe and nearby cities. Hence,
earthquake performance of this bridge was confirmed by 3-D non-linear time history response
analysis. A waveform of the scenario earthquake taking into account the ground property of the
location point was used as target waveform in addition to the seismic waveforms (L1: middle scale
earthquake, L2: large-scale earthquake) which are big earthquake ever to strike in Japan [1]. In
addition, the inspection by analysis method (dynamic substructure method) that takes into account
the dynamic interaction of foundation and soil was executed because the towers and piers will be
constructed on the soft ground of reclaimed land.
From the results of 3-D non-linear time history response analysis, sectional force of the towers at
L2 earthquake (perpendicular direction to the bridge axis) is greater than the sectional force by the
entire static analysis. Hence, High Performance Steels (yield point = 500N/mm2) are adopted in the
base of the towers and corners of the crossbeams, where the sectional force is large because the
steel thickness of cross section members was equal to or greater than 100 mm by using
conventional steel. In addition, the response of the dynamic substructure method with the waveform
of the scenario earthquake as the target is small compared to the time history response analysis as
shown in Figure 5. This confirmed that the generated stress of the member is equal to or less than
the allowable value.
In addition, from soft ground analysis during earthquake as shown in the next section, the
foundation of the tower P4 has been found to move about 32 cm on the route (to the center of the
span) according to liquefied and laterally spreading soils at L2 earthquake. As a countermeasure,
cable anchor mechanism where cable tension after L2 earthquake can be readjusted, was adopted by
studying the adjustment amount of cable prestressing. This aims to equalize the distribution of the

Moment of stiffening girder

-200,000 (kN m)

Dynamic substructure method

-600,000

response analysis

Moment of tower
Dynamic
substructure
method
response
analysis

413N/mm2
< y = 430N/mm2

-400,000
-200,000

Time history
response analysis

0.0
200,000
400,000
600,000

Time history response analysis

800,000
P1

P2

P3

P4

P5

P6

-1,316,000 kN m

498N/mm2
< y =
500N/mm2

-1,089,000 kN m

Fig. 5: Comparison study of time history response analysis and dynamic substructure method
bending moment of the stiffening girders, in order to reduce the sectional force that is added to the
superstructure by the residual displacement with laterally spreading soils.
From these analyses, even when the cable-stayed bridge with low height towers is built in soft
ground, it was found that cross-sectional thickness of tower could be designed economically by
adopting High Performance Steels. Even if the residual displacement of the foundation occurs by
laterally spreading soils during a large-scale earthquake, the soundness of a cable-stayed bridge
could be also confirmed by the readjustment of cable prestressing.
2.3

Soft ground analysis during earthquake

There is a possibility that a large residual displacement will occur with liquefied and laterally
spreading soils in addition to the large fluctuations of the foundation in an earthquake, because this
bridge will be constructed around the embankment of the reclaimed land. Therefore, 2-D dynamic
effective stress analysis by the finite element method for the ground including the tower and pier
foundation was executed with examination of the ground behavior in and after an earthquake, and
the earthquake-resistance performance of the foundation was studied.
Foundation type is planned as pneumatic caisson for the towers (P3, P4) and the piers (P2, P5), as
pile foundation for piers (P1, P6). Including these foundation, 2-D dynamic effective stress analysis
by the finite element method was executed. For convenience of analysis, the bridge was modeled in
two parts with the bridge center point as the boundary.
From the results of the 2-D dynamic analysis, it was found that large earth pressure during
earthquake will act on the foundation by soil liquefaction of reclaimed land behind the embankment
protection and the lower layer of alluvial silt for L2 earthquake [1]. Therefore reinforcement for
shear failure was executed at the
Table 3: Residual displacement of foundations
foundation where resistance is insufficient. Pier No.
P1
P2
P3
P4
P5
P6
The residual displacement at the crest of
Foundation
Pire
Pneumatic
caisson
Pire
foundation, shown in Table 3 and Figure 6, type
is large (about 32 cm) at the tower P4
Residual
15cm 31cm 8cm
32cm 3cm
-3cm
close to the embankment protection. Since displacement
this residual displacement seriously
P5
P4
P6
impacts on safety and soundness of
Caisson
Pire
Caisson
superstructure, countermeasures, such as
3cm
-3cm
32cm
increasing the movable amount of bearing
and structure of releasing internal stress,
had to be taken.
From these studies, in this bridge to be
built in soft ground, it was found that there
is a need to consider earth pressure and the
lateral movement of the foundation by soil
liquefaction during L2 earthquake.

Displacement direction

4m

2m

Fig. 6: Soil liquefaction at L2 earthquake

0m

-2m

3.

Wind tunnel test

3.1
Girder section model
The bridge is planned with sidewalks. A protective
fence of falling objects will be installed to prevent
objects dropping or pedestrians deviating off the
sidewalk. By this protective fence may reducing windresistance performance of the bridge. In addition, the
cable is placed densely around the girder for the low
towers. Therefore, wind tunnel experiment using a
girder section model of the cable-stayed bridge with
low height towers was executed and the influence of
Fig. 7: Girder section model (S=1:70)
cable and protective fence (h=2.0m) was examined.

Torsion response (deg)

3.0
Modeling of cable and protective fence for the part of
Girder
center span of the stiffening girder which is connected
Girder+Cable (L/2 point)
largely to wind-resistance performance were executed
Girder+Cable (L/4 point)
(scale 1:70). The model is shown in Figure 7. The
Girder+Protective fence
2.0
extent of the influence by the cables was settled at the
Urf = 69.3m/s
same level to girder height (3 m) according to the
results of a preliminary experiment. Protective fence
Fairing type: primal type
is 2.0 m height and about 30% solidity ratio. Wind
Protective fence : h=2.0m
1.0
tunnel experiment was executed at wind tunnel for
structures in Yokohama National University (test
section: 1.8 m height, 1.8 m width).
Relation between torsional maximum amplitude and
0.0
wind speed (reduced velocity) is shown in Figure 8.
0
20
40
60
80
100
Wind speed (m/s)
Vortex induced vibration has not been identified
regardless of the presence or absence of cables or
Fig. 8: Torsion of girder and wind speed
protective fence. However, for torsional flutter
(smooth flow)
vibration, critical flutter wind speed tended to be low
due to the effect by cables and protective fence. The
Case 3: Both sides of bridge
extent of the influence tended to be the largest in
Case 2: One side of bridge
when protective fence has been installed, and to be
Case 1: Sidewalk part
larger in span L/4, in which many cables are placed.
Wind direction (Sidewalk side)
Because critical flutter wind speed of divergent
vibration is close with reference wind speed (Urf =
69.3 m/s) of torsional flutter vibration when protective P1 P2 P3
P4
P5 P6
fence has been installed, fairing shape is changed (to
Case 3: Both sides of bridge
angle modernized type) to improve wind-resistance
performance.
Fig. 9: Setting range of protective fence

3.2
Full aeroelastic model
It was intended that the installation range of protective
fence will be determined according to the usage of
pedestrians after the bridge is opened to traffic.

However, the influence to wind-resistance


performance that depends on the installation range
was verified by full aeroelastic bridge model
experiment (scale 1:150) using the elastic model.
From the experiment results of girder section model,
cross section shape of the girder was settled as
"fairing of angle modernized type + protective fence
(h = 2.0 m)". Installation range of protective fence and
wind direction is shown in Figure 9.
Wind tunnel experiment was executed at full span
Fig. 10: Full aeroelastic model (S=1:150)

Vertical response (mm)

wind tunnel (test section 1.9 m height, 16.0 m width) in


500
the University of Tokyo. Smooth flow and turbulent
Case 1: Sidewalk part
flow (turbulent intensity 11.0%) were used [2]. The
Case 2: One side of bridge
400
model is shown in Figure 10.
Case 3: Both side of bridge
Relation between vertical amplitude of the stiffening
300
girders in the center span and wind speed (reduced
Fairing type:
velocity) is shown in Figure 11. It indicates that there is
angle modernized type
200
no restriction by the installation range of protective
Protective fence : h=2.0m
fence since the influence by the installation range of
protective fence is small and both smooth flow and
100
turbulent flow are satisfied with prescribed windresistance performance. However, at full aeroelastic
0
bridge model, vortex induced vibration (8-9 m/s wind
0
20
40
60
80
100
speed, about 400 mm half amplitude) was confirmed,
Wind speed (m/s)
and torsional flutter vibration which affects windFig. 11: Torsion of girder and wind
resistance performance (more than 70 m/s wind speed)
speed (smooth flow)
was not confirmed. For vortex induced vibration
confirmed by full aeroelastic bridge model tests, we have verified by stress calculation that impact
does not occur to the structure itself since amplitude is small.
From these wind tunnel experiments, it was found that even if a protective fence is installed in the
girder that cable is closely placed, wind-resistance performance is confirmed by the aerodynamics
measures of fairing.

4.

Conclusion

(i) Deflection for live load in cable-stayed bridge with low-height towers can be satisfied with the
design allowable limit of deflection [1] by placing the intermediate supports of the side span
and multi-cable placement of parallel wire strands as two vertical cable plane fan system.
(ii) For the overall buckling in the stiffening girders where axial force and bending moment are high
compared to ordinary cable-stayed bridges, it was verified that safety on buckling resistance of the
bridge can be ensured by a design utilizing elasto-plastic buckling analysis applying effective
buckling length method (Ef method).
(iii) It was found that soil liquefaction during expected earthquake would generate large earth
pressure on the foundation, and residual displacement would occur to the foundation by laterally
spreading of reclaimed soil. However, it is possible to ensure the soundness of this cable-stayed
bridge after a large-scale earthquake by the readjustment of cable prestressing.
(iv) For torsional flutter vibration, wind tunnel experiment confirmed that critical flutter wind speed
tended to be low due to the effect by densely placed cables and protective fence. As a
countermeasure, by reviewing the fairing shape of the stiffening girders it was confirmed that such
vortex induced vibration, which affects adversely to the structure itself or torsional flutter vibration
which becomes problem on wind-resistance performance, does not occur.

5.

References

[1]
[2]

Japan Road Association, SPECIFICATION FOR HIGHWAY BRIDGES 2002.


Yasuaki Ito, Yozo Fujino, Hiroshi Katuchi, Hidenori Takahasi, Hiroshi Nakagawa, Tomoo
Tomoda, Tomonori Kawabe Study on wind-resistance behavior of cable-stayed bridge
with low height towers by full aeroelastic bridge model, Proceedings of the 22nd National
Symposium on Wind Engineering, 2012, pp.275-280