Things engineers need to consider before building a bridge
Some of the most massive and expansive engineering projects in history have involved building bridges. Although the general physics of bridge-building have been established for quite some time, every bridge presents complicated factors that must be taken into consideration while building a bridge. Some of these factors involve the geology of the surrounding area; the amount of traffic expected, whether, construction materials, etc. Sometimes, these factors are miscalculated, or something occurs that the engineers didn’t expect, thus resulting in the bridge collapsing (ED GRABIANOWSKI, 10 Reasons Why Bridges Collapse, 2016).
To avoid the bridge from collapsing it has become one of the top priorities of building a strong and sturdy bridge when it comes to building infrastructure. Hence, engineers who design these bridges must completely understand what is expected from the bridge, which includes the complexities of the site and other needs. To design a bridge that is not only safe but long-lasting as well, engineers need to consider a couple of things mentioned below:
One of the most important steps when it comes to designing a bridge is to understand the requirements of the bridge. Without having proper understanding and knowledge, all the bridge building techniques that are used to build a bridge might turn out to be a waste. For example, if the engineer doesn’t understand the purpose of bridge, then the design could be completely irrelevant to the purpose of the bridge. If the engineer was just told that the bridge is required to cross a water body, they could design the bridge for a train. However, if the bridge is just required for pedestrians and bicyclists, it would likely be over-designed and unnecessarily expensive. Hence, for a design to be suitable, efficient and economical, the engineer should first fully understand the problem before designing.
Values for the load on a bridge are dependent on the use and location of the bridge. Mostly, engineers consider three types of loads; dead loads, live loads and environmental loads:
- Dead loads: These loads include the weight of the bridge itself, plus any other permanent object affixed to the bridge. These fixtures can involve toll booths, highway signs, guardrails, gates or any other concrete road surface.
- Live loads: These loads are temporary loads that act on the bridge. These loads can vary from cars, trains, truck, pedestrian, etc.
- Environmental loads: These are temporary loads that act on a bridge due to whether or other environmental influences. These include wind from hurricanes, tornadoes; snow, earthquakes, etc. Rainwater collecting might also be a factor is proper drainage is not provided.
Owing to these factors, it is important that the engineer who is building a bridge has plenty of knowledge and experience, in order to avoid any accidents. There are many bridge building companies like ByggingUddemann that can help to build bridges.
“The above opinions are purely a reflection of the author’s point of view. They do not reflect the position of ByggingUddemann.”
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