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Federal Highway Administration Research and Technology
Coordinating, Developing, and Delivering Highway Transportation Innovations

Overview

 

Research and Development (R&D) Project Sites

Project Information
Project ID:   FHWA-PROJ-08-0045
Project Name:   Guidelines for the Load and Resistance Factor Design and Rating of Riveted and Bolted Gusset-Plate Connections for Steel Bridges
Project Status:   Completed
Start Date:  October 1, 2008
End Date:  April 30, 2013
Contact Information
Last Name:  Ocel
First Name:  Justin
Telephone:  202-493-3080
E-mail:  justin.ocel@dot.gov
Office:   Office of Infrastructure Research and Development
Team:   Bridge and Foundation Engineering Team [HRDI-40]
Program:   High-Performing Steel Bridge
Laboratory:   Structures Laboratory
Project detail
Roadmap/Focus area(s):   Infrastructure Research and Technology Strategic Plan and Roadmap
Project Description:   Recent failures of gusset plate bridge connections and the current national urgency to properly design and rate gusset truss connection points to the need for further analytical and experimental investigations to verify and/or modify existing procedures, and to provide guidance to the bridge engineers for the proper design and rating of riveted and bolted gusset-plated connections. In addition, the lack of uniformity and best practices in the design and load rating of gusset connections results in confusion, unknown safety hazards, and possibly unnecessary checks. There is a pressing urgency to develop safe guidelines and procedures to help bridge owners design and load rate steel bridge gusset connections. These guidelines must be verified to ensure that connections are not only properly designed and rated but most importantly without imposing unnecessary burdens. The new guidelines are expected to assure the safety of new and existing bridges and simplify design and rating to avoid unfavorable failure modes.
Goals:   Todevelop guidelines, specifications, and examples for the load and resistance factor design and rating of gusset connections.
Background Information:   This project was created specifically to address one of the National Transportation Safety Board's recommendations to the Federal Highway Administration and the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials after the conclusion of the I-35W collapse investigation.
Product Type:   Draft standard, specifications, or guidelines
Techbrief
Technical report
Test Methodology:   Full scale experimental and parametric finite element modeling
Other Information:   The study is jointly sponsored and funded by the Federal Highway Administration and the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials-sponsored National Cooperative Highway Research Program, which provided $500,000. The Federal Highway Administration covered the balance.
Expected Benefits:   More reliable design and load rating procedures of steel bridge gusset-plated connections founded in targeted experimental and analytical research, rather than extrapolation of data from similar details.
Deliverables: 1. Name: "Guidelines for the Load and Resistance Factor Design and Rating of Riveted and Bolted Gusset-Plate Connections for Steel Bridges"
Product Type(s): Technical report
Description: This report will document the methodology of the entire research project, including all the data, findings, and interpretations of those findings.
Publication URL(s):
http://www.trb.org/Publications/Blurbs/168923.aspx
2. Name: Ballot items for AASHTO Subcommittee on Bridges and Structures consideration
Product Type(s): Draft standard, specifications, or guidelines
Description: Ultimately, these recommendations should be integrated into the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials Bridge Design Specification and Manual for Bridge Evaluation so they can be used by bridge owners and consultants. The recommendations would be presented as a ballot item on which the technical committees could vote.
3. Name: WORKING TITLE - "TECHBRIEF: Guidelines for Design and Rating of Gusset-Plate Connections for Steel Truss Bridges"
Product Type(s): Techbrief
Description: This is an executive summary of the NCHRP WOD 197 report
FHWA Topics:   Roads and Bridges--Structures
TRT Terms:   Infrastructure
Bridges
Research
Load Factor
Gusset Plates
Steel Bridges
Truss Bridges
Buckling
FHWA Disciplines:   Structures
Subject Areas:   Bridges and other structures
Maintenance and Preservation
Research

 

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