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Bridge Engineering

What is shock transmission unit in bridges?

Shock transmission unit is basically a device connecting separate structural units. It is characterized by its ability to transmit short-term impact forces between connecting structures while permitting long-term movements between the structures.

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Why are coatings sometimes provided at the back faces of abutments?

There are different views on the necessity of the application of protective coatings (may be in the form of two coats of paint) to the back faces of bridge abutment. The main purpose of this coating serves to provide waterproofing effect to the back faces of abutments. By reducing the seepage of water through the concrete, the amount of dirty materials accumulating on the surface of concrete would be significantly decreased.

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Why are precast concrete piers seldom used in seismic region?

The use of precast concrete elements enhances faster construction when compared with cast-in-situ method. Moreover, it enhances high quality of piers because of stringent control at fabrication yards. The environmental impact is reduced especially for bridges constructed near waterways. In particular, for emergency repair of bridges owing to bridge collapse by earthquake and vehicular collision, fast construction of damaged bridge is of utmost importance to reduce the economic cost of bridge users.

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What are the differences among Warren Truss, Howe Truss and Pratt Truss?

A truss is a simple structure whose members are subject to axial compression and tension only and but not bending moment. The most common truss types are Warren truss, Pratt truss and Howe truss.

Warren truss contains a series of isosceles triangles or equilateral triangles. To increase the span length of the truss bridge, verticals are added for Warren Truss.

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What are the characteristics of Vierendeel girder?

The Vierendeel girder design is sometimes adopted in the design of footbridges. In traditional truss design, triangular shape of truss is normally used because the shape cannot be changed without altering the length of its members. By applying loads only to the joints of trusses, the members of truss are only subjected to a uniform tensile or compressive stress across their cross sections because their lines of action pass through a common hinged joint.

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