Graduate Research Assistant
A research is underway in the University of Texas at Arlington to carry out a load testing evaluation of two in-service FRP strengthened bridges. It is a research which focuses on ascertaining the long term behavior (durability) of the CFRP after exposure to the environment for a prolonged period of time. Also, the research plans on compare the performance of a representative girder repaired with CFRP and one that is not repaired with CFRP to see the effectiveness of the strengthening procedure.
The research will have three phases. The first phase is the instrumentation and load testing of the selected bridge and collection of data for the analysis of the bridge performance. The feasibility of advanced technology like wireless sensing or optical sensing methods are being studied for the collection of data in the bridge site. The load testing will involve placing pre weighed trucks of specific load on various positions along the bridge to evaluate the performance of the bridge. The figure shows the tentative instrumentation plan.
The data from the bridge site will be collected and a finite element model of the whole bridge will be generated in nonlinear Finite element software ABAQUS. A comparison of the load testing data and modeling results will be carried out.