Designing a bridge is a complex process involving numerous calculations, decisions, and design code checks. To overcome the time consuming process of hand designing a bridge, an automated design program was developed for research purposes. The program, RAMPS, is an automated finite element model construction and analysis tool recently developed by a team at Drexel University. This tool uses an Application Programming Interface between Matlab and Strand7 to automate the tedious model construction and analysis processes. Due to the automated nature of this finite element design program, it was critical that the design process was verified before it was used to carry out the proposed parametric study discussed above. The steel I-girder design component and load analysis performed by the program RAMPS was validated against AASHTO LRFD Bridge Design Specifications. To validate the program hand designs and ramps models were generated and were directly compared to check load analyses, section properties, flexural capacities, shear capacities, and the overall cross-sectional dimensions of the noncomposite girders. It was found that the RAMPS software successfully designs a girder to pass all AASHTO LRFD requirements checked, and would be able to handle any additional constraints or checks that might be necessary.
|Advisor:||Mertz, Dennis R.|
|School:||University of Delaware|
|Department:||Civil and Environmental Engineering|
|School Location:||United States -- Delaware|
|Source:||MAI 55/03M(E), Masters Abstracts International|
|Keywords:||Bridges, Dead load, Girders|
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