A characteristic feature of bridges made using cantilever concreting technology is their excessive deflections, which are a result of rheological processes in concrete and prestressing steel. These deflections can be caused by the destruction of the material, e.g. concrete cracking, as well as the changing of the static scheme of the bridge structure, such as the subsidence of supports. The final result of a structure’s operation is changes in its grade line, which in this paper are considered as the deflection line of a bridge’s span.
The purpose of the paper is to determine the participation of a structure’s rotation over supports in the deformation of the span with the largest length. The authors proposed an algorithm for determining the deflection function and rotation angles, which were obtained on the basis of changes in the curvature of the beam. It is characterised by an accurate mapping of the rheological processes that occur in the bridge, which is calculated on the basis of the changes of the grade line obtained from geodetic measurements on site.
The paper proposes a general geometric indicator of the box cross-section cantilever, which is calculated for the construction phase, and a different indicator for the operation phase. They can be used for comparative analyses of various bridges. The analysis of deflections in cantilever bridges during the operation phase of their longest spans indicates that there is a significant influence of the angles of rotation over the supports. In the paper, such a group of bridges is qualified as unstable, in which the static scheme changes from a determinate cantilever state (the construction phase) into a multi-span system with different span lengths (the operation phase).