Extreme Bridge Loads

Full Session with Abstracts

340050-9 - Optimal Use of High-Performance Fiber-Reinforced Concrete and Superelastic Alloys for Improved Seismic Performance

Friday, April 20
1:30 PM - 5:00 PM
Location: 102

In conventional seismic bridge design, the columns are the energy dissipative members. This results in excessive damage to the columns through yielding, rupture and buckling of the rebar, and cracking, crushing and spalling of the concrete. Additionally, the permanent deformations resulting from this damage render the entire bridge structure dysfunctional in the aftermath of an earthquake negatively impacting the relief and recovery efforts. In this study, the use of high-performance fiber-reinforced concrete (HPFRC) and superelastic alloys (SEAs) in bridge columns is investigated to mitigate the damage and reduce or eliminate the permanent deformations. The HPFRC studied in this research uses synthetic fibers in a mortar base and has high ductility in tension and high energy absorption characteristics under cyclic loading. The SEAs are Cu-based and show strain recovery (pseudo-yielding) behavior up to approximately 12% strain. A series of tests have been conducted by the same authors in a previous study where bridge columns with a HPFRC tube, a concrete core and Cu-based SEAs as the plastic hinge reinforcement was investigated. The results indicated that the use of an HPFRC tube is as efficient as making the entire cross-section from HPFRC. Similarly, it was shown that with different amounts of steel rebar replacement in the plastic hinge region, Cu-based SEAs could effectively be used to compromise between reducing permanent deformation and increasing energy dissipation. In this study, first computational models of this bridge column concept is created and validated using the experimental data. Then, a parametric study is conducted to determine the optimal parameters of the design including the thickness of the HPFRC tube, the mechanical properties of the HPFRC, and the amount steel rebar replacement in the plastic hinge region. Both HPFRC and SEAs are considerably more expensive compared to their conventional counterparts (concrete and steel). Therefore, this study sheds light on the most influential parameters and how they could be optimized to achieve the best seismic performance for a given column configuration.

Bora Gencturk

Assistant Professor
University of Southern California

Dr. Bora Gencturk is an Assistant Professor in the Sonny Astani Civil and Environmental Engineering Department at the University of Southern California (USC). He obtained his Ph.D. and M.S. degrees from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and his B.S. degree from Bogazici University (Istanbul, Turkey). Prior to joining USC, he was an assistant professor at the University of Houston for five years (2011-2016). Dr. Gencturk’s technical interests are in the broad fields of extreme event resilience and sustainability of civil infrastructure. He has received both young investigator awards given by the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF): Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) and Broadening Participation Research Initiation Grant in Engineering (BRIGE). He has produced over 40 refereed journal papers, three book chapters, six research reports, and more than 40 conference papers. He teaches courses on mechanical behavior of materials, structural dynamics, earthquake engineering and structural reliability. He is a member of ASCE, the American Concrete Institute, and the Earthquake Engineering Research Institute.


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340050-9 - Optimal Use of High-Performance Fiber-Reinforced Concrete and Superelastic Alloys for Improved Seismic Performance

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