Comparison of Analysis Models of Highway and Railway Bridges Loads and Load Combinations

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Addis Ababa University


Ethiopian engineers have good experience of highway bridge design. Currently railway bridges are necessary due to new railroad route projects in Ethiopia. It is absolutely necessary to bring the well developed knowledge of the engineers on Highway Bridge to Railway Bridge engineering because Railway Bridge needs careful design and detailing. The work presented in this thesis compares the loading model and load combinations of Highway Bridge and railway bridges. Fatigue loads, serviceability requirements, their respective design philosophy, and related topics are briefly presented. Simply supported two lanes Highway Bridge (LRFD Method) and a double track Railway Bridge (ASD Method) of 30m span each are used as design examples. The design examples are neither complete nor optimum. The main sources of these loading conditions are AASHTO LRFD Specification and AREMA MRE 2010. Beside these codes, various theories and design books, thesis works, and journals on both types of bridges are used to enrich as well as disclose clearly the fundamental codes’ intention, explanatory figures and diagrams. The comparison mainly focuses on loads for fixed bridges, such loads as live load, centrifugal force, lateral force due to wind load, longitudinal force and impact. Key words: Railway Bridge, Highway Bridge, design philosophy, loads, load combinations, fatigue



Railway Bridge; Highway Bridge; Design Philosoph; Loads; Load Combinations; Fatigue