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  • Author: Anssi Laaksonen x
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This paper studies restraint moments developing in simple-span precast, prestressed beams made continuous. Methods of evaluating restraint moments produced by creep and differential shrinkage are presented. Shrinkage and creep properties of composite structures, beam and deck parts were tested and compared to values defined according to Eurocode models. Finally, the restraint moments were calculated with both material models for the two-span parking deck structure. The study confirmed the findings of previous studies: that the methods that are used overestimate the negative restraint moment produced by differential shrinkage.


In concrete beam bridges, the end diaphragm at the end of the bridge is a common structural component that connects the main beams and transfers the beam loads to the bridge bearings. In integral bridges the end diaphragm also retains the soil of embankments due to the absence of abutments. Cracking of the front surface on the end diaphragm has been detected in post-tensioned beam bridges in Finland and Sweden. Presumably the post-tensioning of the bridge and the shaping and detailing of the connection of the end diaphragm and main beam have an effect on cracking tendency. The aim of this study is to examine the structural behaviour and the cracking potential of end diaphragms using linear analysis of the post-tensioned bridge and to find measures to prevent the cracking.

The observations collected through field surveys are compared to results of linear FE analysis to clarify the cause of the cracking. The verification of model is performed by comparison of patterns of cracking observed in field surveys and the distribution of maximum tensile stresses in the FE model. With model variations, the effectiveness of measures for the prevention of cracking are observed.


Imposed and restrained deformations cause stresses in continuous concrete bridges, and in analyses of the superstructure these stresses are usually reduced to some degree due to creep and cracking of concrete. This study examines cracking and redistribution of stresses in a bridge superstructure under the loads and load combinations used in the original bridge design. The subject of this study is a three-span post-tensioned continuous concrete cantilever beam bridge. The bridge was analysed with non-linear calculation utilising the general force method and moment-curvature relationships. The analysis yielded the bending stiffness of the post-tensioned bridge superstructure as a function of bridge length under different loads. It was discovered that the secondary moment from prestressing force increased as the bending stiffness of the central span decreased due to cracking under external loads, which is not normally considered in design. The bending moment effects of linear temperature difference and support settlement decreased as expected as the superstructure bending stiffness decreased. The analysis provided new information on the effects of secondary moment from the prestressing force and on the difference between the cracked state and the linear elastic analysis of the concrete bridge superstructure.