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Method of Bridge Deck Analysis

METHOD OF LATERAL LOAD DISTRIBUTION

Support
Type of Deck Plan Profile
Method Condition
of Analysis T- Box
Slab Straight Skew Curve Simple Contin.
Beam Girder
Effective Width
√ √ √ √
Method

Courbon’s Method √ √ √ √
Hendry Jaeger
Method
√ √ √ √ √

Method of Elastic √ √ √ √ √
Support

Distribution
Coefficient Method √ √ √ √ √
AASHTO Method
√ √ √ √ √

Grillage Analogy √ √ √ √ √ √ √ √
Finite Element
Method √ √ √ √ √ √ √ √
Effective Width Method of Lateral Load Distribution
• Load on the slab is borne by the strip parallel to the
supporting edges on the either side of the load. The
strip is called effective width of slab.

• Effective width of slab for a concentrated/patch load


is calculated by the following equation.
bef =  a (1-a/l) + b1
Where,
bef - Effective width of slab on which the loads acts
l - Effective span in case of simply supported slab and clear span in
case of continuous slab
a - Distance of center of gravity of load from nearer support
b1 - Width of concentration area of load (b1 = W + 2h )
 - Constant depending upon the ratio l'/l (see table for
value of )
l' - Width of slab
h - Thickness of wearing course
W- Contact width of wheel/track parallel to the width of
bridge
Effective Width of Slab • Effective should not exceed
the actual width of the
slab.

• When concentrated load is


bef =  a (1-a/l) + b1 close to the unsupported
edge of a slab, the
effective width shall not
Abutment Load
exceed the above value or
a half of the above value
plus the distance of the
River l load from the unsupported
edge.

b1 = W+2h • When effective widths for


two adjacent loads
overlap, in such cases the
resultant effective width
l΄ will be equal to the sum of
individual widths minus the
overlap.
For cantilever slab, effective width is measured
parallel to the supported edge and is calculated by
the following equation.

bef = 1.2a + b1

Where
bef - Effective width of slab on which the loads acts
a - Distance of center of gravity of load from the
face of the cantilever support
b1 - Breadth of concentration area of load (W+2h)
h - Thickness of wearing coat
W- Contact width of wheel/track parallel to support
of slab
Effective Width of
Cantilever Slab
• Effective width of cantilever
slab should less or equal to
one third length of cantilever
a slab

b1 bef = 1.2a + b1 • When load is placed one of


the two extreme ends of the
slab , the effective width
Support should not exceed the above
value nor should it exceed
half the above value plus the
Load
distance of the concentrated
load from the nearer
extreme end.
Example on Effective Width Method

Find live load on slab bridge for its unit width at mid span for the following
data
• Effective span of bridge = 8 m
• Width of kerb = 0.6 m
• Carriage Way = 7.5 m Track of 0.85 m width
• Live load = Class AA
• Thickness of wearing coat = 60 mm
• Depth of slab = 650 mm
a=4m

Effective width of a track 2.05 m L =8 m

bef =  a (1-a/l) + b1 = 6.17 m 1.2 m

a = 4 m,  = 2.6 for B/l = 1.1

b1 = 0.85 + 2 × 0.06 = 0.97 m


B =7.5 + 2× 0.6 m

4.28 m
Since the effective widths of tracks overlap, 2.05 m
find the modified width for two tracks. 1.625 m

bef mod = 4.28 m + 6.17/2 = 7.37 m 7.5 + 2× 0.6 m

LL per unit width of slab = 700/7.37 = 88.61 KN/m Positioning of track load
COURBON'S METHOD OF
LATERAL LOAD DISTRIBUTION

A very simple, popular and powerful method of lateral


load distribution applicable to simple T-beam and
Composite bridges.
In Courbon’s method, it is assumed that the transverse
profile of the bridge deck under loading remains straight.
Central load case P

Transverse profile of bridge
1 2 3 4
deck after the application of
central load and central I1 I2 I3 I4
moment
Central moment case
M

1 2 3 4
I1 I2 I3 I4
In Courbon’s method, load shared by each girder in
central region of bridge deck is found by
R1 = P I1 / ∑I ± M I1 h1 / ∑Ih2
R2 = P I2 / ∑I ± M I2 h2 / ∑Ih2
R3 = P I3 / ∑I ± M I3 h3 / ∑Ih2
R4 = P I4 / ∑I ± M I4 h4 / ∑Ih2

In end region i.e., 5.5m from the support, simple beam method is
employed for lateral load distribution.

The following conditions must be satisfied for the effective use of


Courbon’s method.

• The ratio of span to the width of bridge >2


• No. of transverse beams interconnecting
longitudinal beams should be at least 5 .
• Depth of transverse beam should be at least
0.75 times the depth of main beam.
Example on Courbon’s Method

Find load on girder 1, 2 and 3 from the following For Point Load
loading conditions. R1 = P I1 / ∑I + M I1 h1 / ∑Ih2
= 200/3 + 200/2 = 500/3 KN

P = 200 KN 10 KN/m R2 = P I2 / ∑I + M I2 h2 / ∑Ih2


= 200/3 + O = 200/3 KN

1 2 3 R3 = P I3 / ∑I - M I3 h3 / ∑Ih2
I I I Cross Section of Bridge = 200/3 - 200/2 = - 100/3 KN
1m 1m

10 KN/m For UDL


R1 = P I1 / ∑I + M I1 h1 / ∑Ih2
P = 200 KN = 10/3 + 0 = 10/3 KN for central region
=0 for end region
20 m Plan of Bridge
R2 = P I2 / ∑I + M I2 h2 / ∑Ih2
= 10/3 + 0 = 10/3 KN for central region
= 10 KN for end region

R3 = P I3 / ∑I + M I3 h3 / ∑Ih2
1 2 3
= 10/3 + 0 = 10/3 KN for central region
=0 for end region

End region is region up


to 5.5 m from support
SIMPLIFIED METHOD OF LATERAL
LOAD DISTRIBUTION

• Many simplified methods of bridge analysis are based on


the concept of characterizing parameter.
• Characterizing parameters give relationship of the
structural properties of grillages, orthotropic plate, semi
continuum plate in order that they may have the same
pattern of deflection when subjected to same pattern of
loads.
• These characterizing parameters are used as axes of
suitable design charts or tables. Having calculated the
values of the characterizing parameters involved, the value
of structural response concerned can be found without
performing any rigorous analysis.
Hendry-Jaeger Method of
Lateral Load Distribution
• One of the simplified methods for lateral load
distribution, which is based on the semi continum plate
theory. The method is applicable to n-girders bridges,
skew bridges and torsionally stiff bridges.
• In this method the actual structure is replaced by semi
continum plate and load is replaced by equivalent loads
lying on the girders
P H1 H2 H3

1 2 3 1 2 3

Bridge Cross Section Semi Continum Plate with


Equivalent Loads
• Load on each girder = ∑Distribution coefficient × Equivalent Loads
R1 = p11H1 + p12H2 + p13H3
R2 = p21H1 + p22H2 + p23H3
R3 = p31H1 + p32H2 + p33H3

• Distribution coefficient depends upon characterizing parameters ‘’ and ‘’ of


bridge deck.

 = 12/4 (L/h) 3 EIT / EI


 = 2/2 (h/L) CJ/ EIT
Where,
 - Measure of flexural rigidity of bridge deck
 - Measure of the torsional rigidity of bridge deck. For T-beam bridge with a nos. of cross beams, it is
usually permissible to employ the distribution coefficient for  = 
L - Span of bridge
h - Girder spacing
EI - Flexural rigidity of one longitudinal girder
EIT - Total flexural rigidity of transverse medium
For n number of cross beam EIT = nEIT
CJ - Torsional rigidity of longitudinal girder
n - Nos. of cross beam
• Distribution coefficients are found from Design graphs. Design
graphs are drawn against  and p for torsionally weak  = 0
and torsionally strong bridge  = 

For bridges having other torsional characterizing parameters,


distribution coefficients are found by interpolation

p = po + (p -po) [0.5/(3+0.5)]0.5


• Properties of distribution coefficients
pij = pji
pij = 1

• Distribution coefficient ‘p’ is taken same for calculating


different responses of bridge.
Example on Hendry-Jaeger Method
1. Convert bridge deck into semi
continum plate and loads into
Find load on girder 1, 2 and 3 for the equivalent loads on main girders
following bridge.
H1 = 1.586W H2 = 1.878W H3 = 0.536W

Take Span = 21m


No of cross beams = 7
I main girder = 0.4567 m4
I cross girder = 0.1738 m4
1 2 3

2. Find characterizing parameters  and 


W W W W  = 12/4 (L/h) 3 EIT / EI = 113
Where, L = 21 m, h = 3 m, EIT = E × 7 × 0.1738
0.4 m 1.8 m 1.7 m 1.8 m
EI = E × 0.4567
 = 2/2 ( h/L) CJ/EIT Take  = ∞

1 2 3
3. Find load on each girder
0.75 m 3m 3m 0.75 m = ∑Distribution coefficient × Eq. Loads
R1 = p11H1 + p12H2 + p13H3 = 1.355 W
R2 = p21H1 + p22H2 + p23H3 = 1.347 W
R3 = p31H1 + p32H2 + p33H3 = 1.298 W

Where ,
p11 = 0.365, p12 = 0.325, p13 = 0.310
p21 = 0.325, p22 = 0.350, p23 = 0.325
P31 = 0.310, p32 = 0.325, p33 = 0.365
Distribution Coefficient Method
• Distribution coefficient method is a simplified method of
bridge deck analysis based on orthotropic plate theory
• In this method distribution coefficients are used to
distribute the load and determine responses of bridge deck.
• Distribution coefficient depends on flexural and torsional
characterizing parameters of bridge deck.

I – Flexural moment of inertia of a main girder


IT – Flexural moment of inertia of a cross girder
J – Torsional moment of inertia of a main girder
JT – Torsional moment of inertia of a cross girder
S – Spacing of main girders
P - Spacing of cross girders
• For accuracy of distribution coefficient, bridge deck is
converted into a plate with eight segments/ nine
reference stations and distribution coefficient
coefficients are found for these reference stations.
Actual Bridge Deck Orthotropic Plate
B

-b -3b/4 –b/2 –b/4 0 b/4 b/2 3b/4 b


1 S 2 3
2b=(n-2 )S + Iex./Iint. S

P
2a
L
• To determine distribution coefficients graphs drawn
against flexural characterizing parameter (θ) and load
positions are used. Such graphs have been drawn for
torsionally weak ( =0) and torsionally strong ( =1)
bridge deck.
For intermediate value of ‘ ’ interpolation is made to
determine the distribution coefficients.
K = K0+(K1-K0) 

• After having the distribution coefficients, bridge responses


are calculated as follows
M x = 1.1 K' M x,mean
Where,
M x,mean - Mean or average longitudinal moment found by considering the load to
be equally divided in all the beam
K' - Moment distribution coefficient; K' = ∑KW/∑W
W - Load transferred at standard position
Example on Distribution Coefficient Method
Find the maximum bending moment due to class A live load at mid span for the following bridge.
Span of bridge – 21 m, Carriage way – 7.5 m
No. of longitudinal girders – 3 Girder spacing – 3 m
Width of bridge – 9 m No. of cross beams – 7
Spacing of cross beams – 3.5 m Moment of inertia of a m. girder – 0.457 m4
Moment of inertia of a cr. beam – 0.174 m4 Tor. moment of inertia of a m. girder – 0.0272 m4
Tor. moment of inertia of a cr. beam – 0.0178 m4

1. Convert bridge deck into orthotropic plate 2 Calculate Characterizing Parameters


1.125 × 8 m

-b -3b/4 –b/2 –b/4 0 b/4 b/2 3b/4 b

2b = 9 m

2a =21 m
3. Find distribution coefficient for required value of ‘α’

Load Reference Station


Position -b -3/4b -b/2 -b/4 0 b/4 b/2 3/4b b
-b 3.54 2.94 2.22 1.57 0.89 0.33 -0.28 -0.80 -1.34
0.667b -3/4b 2.94 2.45 1.92 1.44 0.95 0.49 0.03 -0.37 -0.80
-b/2 2.22 1.92 1.61 1.29 0.98 0.70 0.36 0.03 -0.28
-b/4 1.57 1.44 1.29 1.18 1.05 0.89 0.70 0.49 0.33
0 0.89 0.95 0.98 1.05 1.09 1.05 0.98 0.95 0.89
b/4 0.33 0.49 0.70 0.89 1.05 1.18 1.29 1.44 1.57
0.667b b/2 -0.28 0.03 0.36 0.70 0.98 1.29 1.61 1.92 2.22
3/4b -0.80 -0.37 0.03 0.49 0.95 1.44 1.92 2.45 2.94
b -1.34 -0.80 -0.28 0.33 0.89 1.57 2.22 2.94 3.54
4. Calculate mean value of distribution coefficient and find
BM
W W W W
1.125 × 8 m

-b -3b/4 –b/2 –b/4 0 b/4 b/2 3b/4 b

0.98W 0.398W 0.622W 0.866W 0.4W 0.734W

K' = ∑KW/∑W
= 1.25 for girder 1
= 1.02 for girder 2
= 0.73 for girder 3

BM due to class A load at mid of girder 1 = 1.1 × 1.25 × 3820/3 KN-m


BM due to class A load at mid of girder 2 = 1.1 × 1.02 × 3820/3 KN-m
Transverse Bending Moment by
Distribution Coefficient Method
• Maximum transverse bending moment occurs at the mid span at the
center of transverse section when the eccentricity of load in
transverse section of bridge is least and the load acts at the mid
span of bridge.
• In distribution coefficient method, transverse bending moment is
found by Massonnet formula .
• As per Massonnet formula, transverse BM per unit width is equal to
My = ∑n rn b sin(u/2a) sin(nx/2a)
Where
n - Distribution coefficient similar to K
rn – load factor
rn = P/a sin nπu/2a for wheeled load
rn = 4p0/nπ sin nπu/2a sin nπc/2a for tracked load
x - Distance from support to the section, where 'My' is required
P - Wheeled load acting at distance 'u' from support
p0 - Intensity of tracked load
2c - Length of tracked load
n - number of term of series
u - distance of load from the left support
• Transverse bending moment per unit width, when x = a and
taking first three terms of Massonet Formula, My is equal to

For wheeled load


My = Pb/a × [1 sinu/2a -3 sin3u/2a +5 sin5u/2a ]

For tracked load having length 2c


My = 4p0b/ × [ 1 sinc/2a +1/3 3 sin3c/2a + 1/5 5 sin5c/2a ]

• To determine distribution coefficients, graphs drawn


against flexural characterizing parameter (θ) and load
positions are used. Such graphs have been drawn for
torsionally weak ( =0) and torsionally strong ( =1)
bridge deck.
For intermediate value of ‘ ’ interpolation is made to
determine the distribution coefficients.
  =  0+( 1-  0) 
Approximate distribution of TBM along transverse and
longitudinal direction of bridge

100%
80% 80%

Transverse Section

-b -3b/4 –b/2 –b/4 0 b/4 b/2 3b/4 b

100%
75% 75%

Longitudinal Section

2a 5/3a 4/3a a 2/3a a/3 0


Example on Transverse BM by 1. Convert bridge deck into orthotropic plate
and place live load with minimum eccentricity
Distribution Coefficient Method W W
0 0.471b
1.09 m × 8
Find maximum transverse BM due live load
in cross beam at mid span of bridge for the
following data. -b -3b/4 –b/2 –b/4 0 b/4 b/2 3b/4 b

• Span of bridge = 16 m 2. Find Transverse BM


• Width of bridge = 8.7 m
• Live load = Class AA track load My = 4p0b/ × [ 1 sinc/2a +1/3 3 sin3c/2a + 1/5 5 sin5c/2a ]
• Spacing of cross beams = 4m = 71 KN-m/m
• Flexural Ch. Parameter ‘ϴ’ = 0.3 Total TBM = 71 × spacing of cr. beam = 284 KN-m
• Torsional Ch. Parameter ‘α’ = 0.026
Where,
p0 = 350/3.6 KN/m, c = 3.6/2 m , 2a = 16 m, b = 8.7/2 m
W W
Load position at

2.05 m

for ‘0’ ∑
ref. st. 0 b/4 b/2 0.471b

1
2.5 m
2 3 1   0.2674
1.85 m 2.5 m 1.85m
3   0.1006

5   0.0500
Lateral Load Distribution in Through Truss Bridge ILD of reaction
For Track Loading
Lever Arm Method of a truss
p

1
• Construct ILD of reaction of a truss.

• In the case of track load, place the L


track load [maintaining clear cover] in p – intensity of track load
such a way so that product of the A– area of influence line diagram
intensity of track load and area of ILD under track load
occupied by track load (p × A) is
maximum.
For wheeled Loading
• In the case of wheeled load, place the
wheel loads [maintaining clear cover] W W W W
in such a way so that summation of
the product of loads and respective 1
ordinates of ILD (∑Wy) is maximum.
L
W- magnitude of wheel load
y- ordinate of ILD under load
Method of Elastic Supports
A very simple, and powerful method to analyze girder for live load in simply supported T-
beam bridges when Courbon’s Method is not effective. Significant transverse deformation of
bridge deck occurs when span/width ratio of bridge becomes less than 2 and nos of cross
beams becomes less than 5. In this situation it is right to analyze bridge deck considering
slab as a continuous beam on elastic support.
B
0 1 2
d

In the method of elastic support , load on girder is found by constructing influence


line diagram of reaction of girder using table made for Method of Elastic Supports.
Ordinate of Influence diagram depends on the parameter α = d3/6EIT ∆P
Usually α = 0.005 to 1.5
• Bridge with many cross beams α = 0.005
• Bridge with few or no cross beams α > 1
• Modern highway bridges α < 0.05

d = Span of transverse medium ( spacing of girder)


EIT = Flexural rigidity of transverse medium (slab and cr. beam) per unit length
∆P = Deflection of main girder from 1KN/m at the section of bridge, where lateral load
distribution is required
To use the Table of Method of Elastic Supports , value of ‘α’ for the considering
section of bridge is required. There are two tables. First table is to determine
ordinate of ILD of reaction of girder due to unit load and second table is to
determine ordinate of ILD of reaction of girder due to moment.

Table gives the reaction of girder due to unit load of its different position. For
the unit load lying on cantilever, load is converted into equivalent moment and
unit load applied on exterior girder . For reaction of girder due to equivalent
moment second table of Method of Elastic Supports is used.
First Table

No of Ordinate of ILD for different value of ‘α’


Support
span 0.005 0.01 0.02 0.05 0.1 0.5 1 1.5
n RPir

Second Table

No of Ordinate of ILD for different value of ‘α’


Support
span 0.005 0.01 0.02 0.05 0.1 0.5 1 1.5
n dRMi0
Draw ILD for reaction of girder ‘0’
Example on Method of Elastic Supports
P P
1.95 m 2.05 m
Find load on girder ‘0’ and ‘1’ from class AA

0.689
tracked load for the given bridge

0.3 59
0.59
Take, Span of bridge = 12 m, EIg = 1.02 × EIcr

0.1 91
P P
0.3 m

Y2
Y1
1.65 m 2.05 m

-0.0001

-0.1 92

-0.2 86
0 1 2 3 4 Draw ILD for reaction of girder ‘1’
1m 2m 2m 2m 2m 1m P P
B = 10 m 1.95 m 2.05 m

0.43 8

0.3 95

0.3 04

0.2 04
Select method of lateral load distribution.

0.1 01
Since l/B = 12/10 = 1.2 > 2, Courbon’s Method is not applicable.
So apply Method of Elastic Supports to find loads on girders.

Y4
Y3

-0.0 0 01

-0.0 52
Find characterizing parameter α = d3/6EIT ∆P = 0.005
Where, d = 2 m, ∆P at mid span = 5/384 × wl4/ EI = 5/384 × 1 × 124/ 1.02 EIT

Find IL ordinate of reaction for girder ‘o’ Find load on girder ‘0’ and ‘1’
RP00 = 0.59, RP01 = 0.395, RP02 = 0.191, RP03 = - 0.0001, RP04 = - 0.192 R0 = P(Y1+Y2)
RP0l = RP00 + RM00 = RP00 + dRM00 × dk/d = 0.59 + 0.216 × ½ = 0.698 R1 = P(Y3+Y4)
RP0r= RP04 + RM04 = RP04 + dRM40 × dk/d = - 0.192 - 0.188 × ½ = - 0.286

Find IL ordinate of reaction for girder ‘1’


RP10 = 0.395, RP11 = 0.304, RP12 = 0.204, RP13 = 0.101, RP14 = - 0.0001
RP1l = RP10 + RM10 = RP10 + dRM10 × dk/d = 0.395+ 0.087 × ½ = 0.438
RP1r= RP14 + RM14 = RP14 + dRM30 × dk/d = - 0.0001 - 0.104 × ½ = - 0.052
AASHTO Method of Bridge Deck Analysis
Principal factors, which affect the transverse distribution of bridge deck are

• Longitudinal and transverse flexural rigidities of the bridge


• Longitudinal and transverse torsional rigidities of the bridge
• Aspect ratio of plan form
• Type of design loading (e.g., udl, knife-edge, or truck load)
• Width of the load with respect to the bridge width
• Number of design loadings in the transverse direction
• Vehicle-edge distance

The AASHTO method groups all the above factors into a single D
value, which is usually developed by idealizing a bridge as an
orthotropic plate
AASHTO method is effective when the bridge
deck satisfy the following conditions

• The width is constant


• The support conditions are closely equivalent to line supports
• The skew angle does not exceed 200
• In the case of curved in plan bridges, L2/bR is smaller than 1
• A solid or voided slab bridge is of uniform depth across the
cross section
• The total flexural rigidity of the transverse cross section
remains the same for at least the central 50% of each span
• For slab on girder bridges there are at least four girders,
equally spaced and of equal flexural rigidity
• For slab on girder bridges having an overhanging deck slab, the
overhang does not exceed 60% of the spacing between girders
and also is not more than 1.8m
Live-load Longitudinal Bending Moment

• Obtain an initial D value from table according to the bridge type and number of
design lanes in the bridge.
• Calculate the initial load fraction S/D where S= the actual girder spacing in the case
of slab on girder bridges or the spacing of webs in the case of voided slab or 1m in
case of solid slabs.
• Treating the bridge as a one-dimensional beam, obtain bending moment due to the
design loading.
• Multiply the moment obtained in step 3 by (S/D)(1+I) to obtain the initial live load
moments. The reduction factor for multilane loading is implicit in the D values and
should not be applied again.
• Calculate α and θ (Modified D type method)
• Calculate μ from one of the following expression
μ = (We -11)/2 ≤ 1 where, We - Design lane
• Corresponding to the values of α and θ, obtain values of D separately for external
and internal portions along with the value of Cf from the relevant charts.
• Obtain the final value of D, separately for external and internal portions by
= D (1+ μ Cf/ /100)
• For each of the external and internal portions, obtain the final live load design
moments by multiplying the live load moments due to one line of wheels or half
lane loads as obtained in step 3 by (S/D)(1+I) .
Longitudinal Shear Force

• Select the D value accordance with the type of bridge and the
number of design lanes in the bridge.
• Calculate the load fraction S/D, where S= the actual girder spacing
in the case of slab on girder bridges or the spacing of webs in the
case of voided slabs and cellular structures or 1m in the cased of
solid slabs.
• Treating the bridge as a one dimensional beam , obtain shear
force due to one line of wheels of the truck or one half of the lane
loading .
• Multiply the shears obtained in step 3 by (S/D)(1+I)
Analysis of Multispan and
Variable Section Bridges
Steel plate girder bridges have markedly varying moments of inertia at
different parts along the span because of changes in the dimensions of
flanges and web plates.
Similarly in continuous RCC Girder Bridge haunches are provided to check
the shear and negative moment.

Provision of hunches and change in moment of inertia is associated with large


local increases in flexural rigidity, which make to reconsider lateral load
distribution and further analysis of bridge deck.
• The line of contraflexure remains reasonably straight and parallel to
the support when all the lanes are loaded.
• When fewer lanes are loaded, the line curls toward the intermediate
support but only in the regions where the intensity of longitudinal
moments is expected to be small.
• For the bridge loaded for max negative moment over a support, the
line of contraflexure curls away from the intermediate supports as
the no. of loaded lanes is reduced. It is found that the straight
portions of the line of contraflexure are at substantially the same
places as the point of contraflexure in beams of constant cross
section.
• Lateral load distribution in multispan/variable section bridge deck is
carried out by replacing bridge into conceptual bridge with
equivalent spans.

• Equivalent span is span between the Lines of contraflexure which is


assumed to be replaced by a straight simple support parallel to the
actual support or span between the real support and the
contraflexure line.

• It is noted that the equivalent spans are to be used only for obtaining
the transverse distribution effects. The equivalent span basically
affects only the characterizing parameter.
In Hendry Jaeger Method

In Distribution Coefficient Method


• If one replaces the negative moment region of a multispan bridge by a
conceptual bridge, the result will be a higher than actual estimate.
For the positive moment, results of conceptual bridge is a closer
representation of the actual.

• It is sufficiently accurate to determine the position of contraflexure


under udl rather than under vehicle loading.
It was found that in most cases the equivalent spans under vehicle
loads were smaller than those under the udl. Nevertheless, the
variation was found to be small being always less than 8%
Error in estimating the equivalent span by udl diminishes as the
length of the span increases.

• Alternative procedure to determine equivalent span

0.2(l1+l2) 0.2(l3+l2)
0.8l1 0.8l2 0.8l3

l1 l2 l3
• In lateral load distribution, for positive moment region it is sufficiently accurate
to assume a mean and uniform value of the longitudinal flexural rigidity in
variable section.

• For the negative moment regions, however it is prudent to calculate a


constant longitudinal flexural rigidity by applying the condition as shown in fig.
Contraflexure line

Equivalent Section, where


deflection at tip is same as in
the real section