Research Reports

Repair of Fatigued Steel Bridge Girders with Carbon Fiber Strips

Principal Investigator:

Carol K Shield, Jerome F Hajjar, Katsuyoshi Nozaka

December 2003

Report no. MnDOT 2004-02

Projects: Repair of Fatigued Steel Bridge Girders with Carbon Fiber Strips

Topics: Bridge design and sensing

This report investigates a method of repairing fatigued steel bridge girders using carbon fiber reinforced polymer (CFRP) strips. This type of repair would be used to prevent the propagation of cracks which could lead to failure of the bridge girders. The main advantages of using CFRP are it is lightweight and durable, resulting in ease of handling and maintenance. Therefore, it would not require the closing of traffic on the bridge during rehabilitation. Effective bond length was determined by a series of experimental tests with actual materials, as well as through the use of analytical equations. Finally, tests were conducted on full-scale cracked girders; the application of the CFRP strips to the steel girders resulted in significant strain reduction, except in the case of small cracks where it was difficult to clearly identify the benefits.

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