Transverse seismic response of continuous steelconcrete composite bridges exhibiting dual load path

E. Tubaldi, M. Barbato, A. Dall'Asta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


Multi-span steel-concrete composite (SCC) bridges are very sensitive to earthquake loading. Extensive damage may occur not only in the substructures (piers), which are expected to yield, but also in the other components (e.g., deck, abutments) involved in carrying the seismic loads. Current seismic codes allow the design of regular bridges by means of linear elastic analysis based on inelastic design spectra. In bridges with superstructure transverse motion restrained at the abutments, a dual load path behavior is observed. The sequential yielding of the piers can lead to a substantial change in the stiffness distribution. Thus, force distributions and displacement demand can significantly differ from linear elastic analysis predictions. The objectives of this study are assessing the influence of piers-deck stiffness ratio and of soilstructure interaction effects on the seismic behavior of continuous SCC bridges with dual load path, and evaluating the suitability of linear elastic analysis in predicting the actual seismic behavior of these bridges. Parametric analysis results are presented and discussed for a common bridge typology. The response dependence on the parameters is studied by nonlinear multi-record incremental dynamic analysis (IDA). Comparisons are made with linear time history analysis results. The results presented suggest that simplified linear elastic analysis based on inelastic design spectra could produce very inaccurate estimates of the structural behavior of SCC bridges with dual load path.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)21-41
Number of pages21
JournalEarthquake and Structures
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2010


  • abutments (bridge)
  • bridges
  • composite bridges
  • concretes
  • dynamic analysis
  • finite element method
  • loads (forces)
  • piers
  • seismic design
  • seismic response
  • seismology
  • soil structure interactions
  • steel bridges
  • stiffness
  • nonlinear finite element method
  • seismic behavior
  • soil-Structure Interaction effects
  • steel concrete composite structures
  • steel-concrete composite
  • steel-concrete composite bridges
  • transverse seismic response
  • incremental dynamic analysis
  • structural design


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