Nonlinear FE Analyses of RC Bridge Frame Corners, Based on Fracture Mechanics
Journal article, 1998

Reinforced concrete frame corners were analyzed using the nonlinear finite-element method and fracture mechanics. The objective of the study was to determine whether the reinforcement detailing in frame bridges could be simplified, with preserved structural safety, by splicing the reinforcement within the frame corner. A constitutive model for concrete, based on nonlinear fracture mechanics and plasticity, was used. An interface model was used to account for slip between the reinforcement and surrounding concrete. Analysis of previously tested frame specimens, with both spliced and unspliced corner reinforcement, was used to study the overall behavior of the frames; more detailed analysis of only the frame corner regions was used to study the influence of the reinforcement splices. The analyses were found to reflect the mechanical behavior of the specimens, and are in good agreement with the test results. The analysis results support, together with the test results, the idea that it would be feasible to splice all reinforcement in a portal frame bridge within the corner regions.



finite element method

fracture mechanics



structural safety


structural analysis

frame corner



Mario Plos

Chalmers, Department of Structural Engineering, Concrete Structures

Kent Gylltoft

Chalmers, Department of Structural Engineering, Concrete Structures

Journal of Bridge Engineering

1084-0702 (ISSN)

Vol. 3 4 204-209

Subject Categories

Construction Management

Reliability and Maintenance

Other Civil Engineering

Building Technologies

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