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The main component of steel and steel-concrete composite bridges investigated
in this book is structural steel. Understanding the material behavior of
the steel is quite important for designing and finite element modeling of the
bridges. As a material composition, steel contains iron, a small percentage of
carbon and manganese, impurities such as sulfur and phosphorus, and some
alloying elements that are added to improve the properties of the finished
steel such as copper, silicon, nickel, chromium, molybdenum, vanadium,
columbium, and zirconium. The strength of the steel increases as the carbon
content increases, but some other properties like ductility and weldability
decrease. Steel used for bridges can be classified as carbon steels, which come
with yield stresses up to 275 N/mm2; high-strength steels, which cover
steels having yield stresses up to 390 N/mm2; heat-treated carbon steels,
which cover steels having yield stresses greater than 390 N/mm2; and
weathering steels, which have improved resistance to corrosion. Steels used
for bridges should have main properties including strength, ductility, fracture
toughness, weldability, weather resistance, and residual stresses. These
properties are briefly highlighted in the coming sections.
2.2.2 Steel Stresses
In the United States, the specifications for plate and rolled shape steels used
for bridges are covered by the ASTM A709 [2.1] and AASHTO M270
[1.23, 1.24]. Table 2.1 shows the applicable AASHTO and ASTM standards
for steel product categories, while Table 2.2 provides an overview of the
various steel grades covered by the ASTM A709 [2.1]. The number in the grade
designation indicates the nominal yield strength in ksi (1 ksi is
equal to 6.895 MPa). The A709M specification is the metric version of
A709. According to ASTM, grade 36 and 50 steels have yield stresses of
36 and 50 ksi (248 and 344 MPa, respectively). Grade 50 steel is commonly
used for primary bridge members, which can be painted or galvanized in service.
Grade 50W steel is a weathering steel that has the same strength as
grade 50 steel, but it has enhanced atmospheric corrosion resistance. The
enhanced corrosion resistance was achieved by adding different combinations
of copper, chromium, and nickel to the grade 50 chemistry. Grade
100 and 100W steels are high-strength steels having a yield stress of 100
ksi (689 MPa), if quenched and tempered. It is common that engineers specify
the use of grade 100 and 100W steels for highly stressed parts of the bridge
such as bearing components. High-performance steel (HPS) has enhanced
weldability and toughness compared to grade 100 steel. The properties of
HPS can be achieved by lowering the percentage of carbon in the steel
chemistry. Since carbon is traditionally one of the primary strengthening
elements in steel, the composition of other alloying elements must be more
precisely controlled to meet the required strength and compensate for the
reduced carbon content. Using HPS allows for increasing the span length
of bridges. Grade 100W steels are the same as grade 100 steels but with
enhanced weldability and toughness.
Cables and wires used in bridges in the United States are either strands,
which are covered by ASTM A586 [2.7], or ropes, which are covered by
ASTM A603 [2.8]. Cables and wires are constructed from individual
cold-drawn wires that are spirally wound around a wire core. The commonly
used nominal diameters are between 1/2 (12.7 mm) and 4 in.
(101.6 mm) depending on the intended application. The capacities of the
cables and wires are defined as the minimum breaking strength that depends
on the nominal diameter of the cables or wires. Cables and wires are used as
tension members in bridges. Because relative deformation between the individual
wires will affect elongation, strands and ropes are preloaded to about
55% of the breaking strength after manufacturing to seat the wires and
stabilize the deformation response. Following preloading, the axial deformation
becomes linear and predictable based on an effective modulus for the
wire bundles. A bridge rope has an elastic modulus of 20,000 ksi
(138,000 MPa). The elastic modulus of a bridge strand is 24,000 ksi
(165,000 MPa). Seven-wire steel strands (tendon) are commonly used for
prestressed concrete bridge decks. They are also used as cable stays, hangers,
and posttensioning members. They consist of seven individual cold-drawn
round wires spirally wounded to form a strand with nominal diameters
between 0.25. (6.4 mm) and 0.60 in. (15.2 mm). Two grades are available
(250 and 270) where the grade indicates the tensile strength of the wires (fpu). The
net cross-sectional area of the seven-wire strand (area of the individual
wires) should be used in all calculations, and prestress losses should be
accounted for, either by measurements or based on specified values in current
codes of practice. Mechanical properties of seven-wire strands are measured
from tensile coupon tests. The tensile strength is calculated by dividing
the breaking load by the net cross-sectional area of the seven-wire strand.
Compared to structural steels, strands do not exhibit a yield plateau, and
there is a gradual rounding of the stress-strain curve beyond the proportional
limit. The yield stress in this case may be calculated as the stress at the 0.1%
strain offset line (f0.1). Strands are loaded provided that they do not reach the
yield stress. AASHTO [1.23, 1.24] defines the yield strength as fpy0.90fpu.
The ASTM A370 [2.9] and the ASTM E8 [2.10] specifications cover
tensile coupon testing procedures for determining the material properties
of steel products. The main properties measured from a tensile coupon test
are the yield strength (fy), tensile strength (fu), Youngs modulus (Es), ultimate strain
at failure (eu), and full nonlinear stress-strain curve. The full
nonlinear stress-strain curve is known as the engineering stress-strain curve,
which can be measured by recording the load and elongation of an extensometer
during the tensile coupon test. Youngs modulus for steel can be
determined by predicting the slope of the elastic initial portion of the
stress-strain curve as shown in Figure 2.1. In the absence of the measured
engineering stress-strain curve, Youngs modulus for steel can be conservatively
taken as Es29,000-30,000 ksi (200,000-207,000 MPa) for structural
calculations for all structural steels used in bridge construction. The yield
strength of steel is determined by the 0.2% offset method. A line is plotted
parallel to the elastic part of the stress-strain curve below the proportional
limit with an x-axis offset of 0.2% (0.002) strain. The intersection of the offset
line with the stress-strain curve defines the yield strength. Figures 2.1
and 2.2 show the 0.2% offset method applied to steels without a definite
yield plateau and to steels that exhibit a yield plateau, respectively. For
the steels that exhibit a yield plateau, there is an upper yield point that is
greater than the yield strength. When yielding first occurs, there is typically
a slight drop in load before the steel plastically deforms along the yield
plateau (see Figure 2.2). Following the first yield, steels with fy_70 ksi
(483 MPa) undergo plastic deformation at a relatively constant load level
defining the yield plateau. The length of this plateau varies for different
steels, but approximately, est is around 10ey. Strain hardening begins at
the end of the plateau and continues until the maximum load is achieved
corresponding to the tensile strength fu. The slope of the stress-strain curve
constantly varies during strain hardening. The tangent slope of the curve at
the onset of strain hardening (Est) is often used for analysis of steel behavior at
high strain levels. Tensile coupon test results are usually presented by engineering
stress-strain curves where stress is calculated based on the undeformed
cross-sectional area of the specimen. As the specimen is loaded,
the cross-sectional area is constantly being reduced, which is known as necking
phenomena. The true stress at any given point can be calculated with
respect to the contracted area at that point in time. In nonlinear structural
analyses, true stress-strain curves should be used. Figure 2.3 shows typical
stress-strain curves for steels in the A709 [2.1] specification. Steels with
fy_70 ksi (483 MPa) show definite yield plateaus with similar ductility.
The HPS 100W steel does not have a clearly defined yield plateau and shows
slightly lower ductility compared to the lower-strength steels. The amount
of strain hardening decreases with increasing yield strength. The minimum
specified yield strength (fy) and tensile strength (fu) are shown in Table 2.4 for
steel grades included in the A709 specification. Plates with thickness up to
4 in. (101.6 mm) are available in all grades, except for 50S. Rolled shapes are
not available in the HPS grades. The shear yield stress (fyv) can be determined using
the von Mises yield criterion, which is commonly used to predict the
onset of yielding in steel subject to multiaxial states of stress as follows:
Live load
In the United States, the AASHTO [1.23] specifies vehicular live loading
on the roadways of bridges based on designated HL-93 load model consisting
of a combination of the design truck or design tandem and design lane
load. Each design lane under consideration shall be occupied by either the
design truck or tandem, coincident with the lane load. The weights and
spacings of axles and wheels for the design truck specified in AASHTO
are shown in Figure 3.9. A dynamic load allowance is considered for the
design truck load. The spacing between the two 145,000 N axles varies
between 4300 and 9000 mm to produce extreme force effects. It should
be noted that the total design force effect is also a function of load factor,
load modifier, load distribution, and dynamic load allowance. The design
tandem shall consist of a pair of 110,000 N axles spaced 1200 mm apart.
The transverse spacing of wheels shall be taken as 1800 mm. A dynamic load
allowance is also considered for the design tandem load. The design lane load
consists of a load of 9.3 N/mm uniformly distributed in the longitudinal
direction. Transversely, the design lane load is assumed to be distributed
over a 3000 mm width. The force effects from the design lane load are
not subject to a dynamic load allowance. The tire contact area of a wheel
consisting of one or two tires is assumed to be a single rectangle having a
width of 510 mm and a length of 250 mm. The tire pressure is assumed
to be uniformly distributed over the contact area. The extreme force effect
according to AASHTO [1.23] is taken as the
larger of the effect of the design tandem combined with the effect of the
design lane load or the effect of one design truck with the variable axle spacing
combined with the effect of the design lane load and for both negative
moment between points of contraflexure under a uniform load on all spans
and reaction at interior piers only; 90% of the effect of two design trucks
spaced a minimum P equal to the design wheel load (N). For the design

of deck overhangs with a cantilever, not exceeding 1800 mm from the centerline
of the exterior girder to the face of a structurally concrete railing, the
outside row of wheel loads may be replaced with a uniformly distributed line
load of 14.6 N/mm intensity, located 300 mm from the face of the railing.
To allow for dynamic effects, as specified in AASHTO, the static effects of
the design truck or tandem, other than centrifugal and braking forces, shall
be increased by the percentage specified in Table 3.3. For the dynamic load
allowance, the factor to be applied to the static load shall be taken as (1+IM/
100). The dynamic load allowance is not applied to pedestrian loads or the
design lane load.