Evaluation of the Fatigue Behavior of Bridge Decks with Precast Panels at Expansion Joints

Agnew, Lewis


In a previous Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) research project (0-4418), a new construction detail was developed for bridge decks at expansion joints. This new detail used precast, prestressed concrete (PC) panels as stay-in-place formwork for a 4-in. thick topping slab. The new detail forms an 8-in. composite slab that eliminates thickened end slab diaphragms at expansion joints.

The primary objective of this project was to evaluate the fatigue behavior of this new detail. Four full-scale specimens were designed and constructed and then subjected to various load histories. First, the specimens were subjected to service-level and design-level fatigue loads, and then a static overload test after 2 million cycles. After the static overload, the fatigue testing was continued to 5 million cycles, and the specimens were then tested to failure.

The research team concluded that the new PC panel for 0° skew bridge decks exhibited satisfactory fatigue response. No delamination was observed at the interface of the PC panel and CIP slab, and the measured response of the specimens did not deteriorate with increasing fatigue cycles.

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