This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?

Welcome to Scribd! Start your free trial and access books, documents and more.Find out more

Engineering Failure Analysis xxx (2008) xxx–xxx

Contents lists available at ScienceDirect

**Engineering Failure Analysis
**

journal homepage: www.elsevier.com/locate/engfailanal

**Failure analysis of transmission towers
**

F. Albermani a,*, S. Kitipornchai b, R.W.K. Chan b

a b

The University of Queensland, School of Engineering, St. Lucia QLD 4072, Brisbane, Australia City University of Hong Kong, Building and Construction Department, Hong Kong

a r t i c l e

i n f o

a b s t r a c t

This paper advocates the use of nonlinear methodology for structural failure analysis. This approach is used for structural failure prediction rather than forensic analysis. Failure prediction has been conﬁrmed by the expensive full-scale testing of a new transmission tower design that collapsed during the test. Using this approach, tower designs can be easily modiﬁed and upgraded, which results in substantial savings in time and resources. Crown Copyright Ó 2008 Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Article history: Received 11 October 2008 Accepted 16 October 2008 Available online xxxx Keywords: Buckling Structural failure Finite element analysis

1. Introduction Overhead transmission lines play an important role in the operation of a reliable electrical power system. Transmission towers are vital components of the lines, and accurate prediction of tower failure is very important for the reliability and safety of the transmission system. Fig. 1 shows a collapsed transmission tower; when such failure takes place, it is usually a cascading failure involving a number of adjacent towers along the line. Repair is very costly, in the order of one million dollars per kilometre of the line, leaving aside other costs associated with power disruption and litigation. A substantial number of tower failures happen around the world, but they usually occur in remote areas with no loss of life and thus escape media attention. Latticed transmission towers are constructed using eccentrically connected angle section members. Proof-loading or the full-scale testing of towers has traditionally formed an integral part of tower design. Stress calculations for the tower are normally obtained from a linear elastic analysis, whereby members are assumed to be axially loaded and in the majority of cases to have pinned connections. In practice, such conditions do not exist and members are detailed to minimize bending stresses. Despite this, results from full-scale tower testing often indicate that the bending stresses in members could be as high as the axial stresses. A comparison of data from full-scale tests with predicted results using the current practice indicates that the behaviour of transmission towers under complex load conditions cannot be consistently predicted with present techniques. Furthermore, the available test data show considerable discrepancies between member forces computed from linear elastic truss analysis and measured values from full-scale tests. The paper describes a nonlinear analytical technique of predicting the transmission tower failure. The technique can be used to verify new tower designs and reduce or eliminate the need for full-scale tower testing. The method has been calibrated with results from full-scale tower tests with good accuracy both in terms of the failure load and the failure mode. The technique was recently used to predict the catastrophic failure of a new tower design. When a full-scale test of this tower was conducted, the tower experienced full collapse in close agreement with the nonlinear analysis predictions.

* Corresponding author. E-mail address: f.albermani@uq.edu.au (F. Albermani). 1350-6307/$ - see front matter Crown Copyright Ó 2008 Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. doi:10.1016/j.engfailanal.2008.10.001

Please cite this article in press as: Albermani F et al., Failure analysis of transmission towers, Eng Fail Anal (2008), doi:10.1016/j.engfailanal.2008.10.001

Fig. 2. Eng Fail Anal (2008). Failure analysis of transmission towers.. Single equation yield surfaces for angle structural sections.10.1016/j. General thin-walled beam-column element.001 . Please cite this article in press as: Albermani F et al. / Engineering Failure Analysis xxx (2008) xxx–xxx Fig. A case of transmission tower failure.ARTICLE IN PRESS 2 F. Fig. 1.2008. Albermani et al.engfailanal. 3. doi:10.

10. Linear.engfailanal. doi:10. The technique accounts for both geometric and material nonlinearity. geometric and deformation stiffness matrices are used to describe the behaviour of a general thin-walled beam-column element in an updated Lagrangian framework (Fig.. Failure analysis of transmission towers. / Engineering Failure Analysis xxx (2008) xxx–xxx 3 2. The buckling of structural members can be detected during load application.2008.ARTICLE IN PRESS F. including secondary (nominal) bracing members. The material nonlinearity accounts for the effect of combined stresses on the plastiﬁcation of the element cross-section. Please cite this article in press as: Albermani F et al.2]. All of the members in the tower are modelled in the analysis. Stress-resultant yield Fig. The geometric nonlinearity accounts for the effects of the accumulated stresses on the structural stiffness of the elements and the effect of the continuing changes in the geometry as the applied load is increased. the tower is modelled as an assembly of beam-column and truss elements. Eng Fail Anal (2008). The formex algebra approach is used for the automatic generation of data necessary for the analysis [4]. A lumped plasticity approach coupled with the concept of a yield surface in force space is adopted for modelling the material nonlinearity [3]. This approach greatly reduces the number of elements required for accurate modelling of the nonlinear structural response [1. 4. 2). Albermani et al. Nonlinear analysis In the proposed nonlinear analysis technique.1016/j.001 . Isometric view of the generated tower model.

7 À872.10. at each of which several iterations are performed to satisfy equilibrium. doi:10. Failure prediction of a new tower design We were asked to conduct a nonlinear analysis of a new tower design for a 275 kV double circuit transmission line. ranging from line stringing to double circuit angle termination with full wind load. 1 2 3 4 5 Wind Description Single circuit stringing Double circuit stringing 90° Deviation with full transverse wind Double circuit line termination with full transverse wind Double circuit angle termination with full transverse wind Full transverse wind Transverse (kN) 409. front and right views of the generated tower model. These conditions account for various aspects of loading expected during the tower operation. Eng Fail Anal (2008).4 À162.1 À162.ARTICLE IN PRESS 4 F.8 = 1737. Case No. 5.5 1613 (+824.2008.1 0 Please cite this article in press as: Albermani F et al. Table 1 Speciﬁed load cases for full-scale test of the tower.3) 912. Albermani et al.8 = 1030.4 À296.3 0 Vertical (kN) À725. The described numerical simulation technique has been used to analyse self-supporting and guyed towers under various static load conditions [6. Top. Some of the towers modelled have subsequently been tested to failure. 3) and a lumped plasticity approach are used for this purpose [3].5 0 À952.8 = 2437.1016/j.7].engfailanal.5 (+824. Loads are applied in small increments. Failure analysis of transmission towers.6 382. The analysis incorporates an incremental-iterative predictor–corrector solution strategy. bolt slippage and differential support settlement [5]. 3. and the structural geometry is constantly updated. Fig.001 .3) 824. / Engineering Failure Analysis xxx (2008) xxx–xxx surfaces (Fig.8) 205.8 Longitudinal (kN) À246. The predicted failure loads and failure modes have been in good agreement with those obtained from tests. The analysis can also incorporate nonlinear effects due to joint ﬂexibility.1 À685. The solution method is equipped with a number of numerical strategies that enable the prediction of buckling or instability and tracing of the nonlinear load–deﬂection path.9 À382..5 (+824. The aim of the analysis was to predict the tower response under ﬁve static load conditions speciﬁed by the client.

which represents the ratio of the applied load during the analysis to the speciﬁed ultimate design load for the particular load case. Geometric and material nonlinear analysis of the tower was conducted under each of the ﬁve speciﬁed load conditions. 6. k.2.0. Nonlinear analysis shows that the design is adequate under load conditions 1–4. When k = 1.. The model is shown in Fig. Eng Fail Anal (2008). the self-weight was applied ﬁrst. The nonlinear analysis revealed that the tower would collapse at a load factor of k = 0.ARTICLE IN PRESS F. L and V shown in Fig. Please cite this article in press as: Albermani F et al. with the tower reaching an ultimate load factor k of between 1. This load condition presented a serious problem. The load is described in terms of a load factor.1016/j. The location used to monitor the displacement is at the tip of the right earth-wire arm indicated as ER in Fig. The predicted tower response under each load condition is presented in terms of a load–displacement curve. 4 indicating the transverse.001 . A summary of these conditions is presented in Table 1. the tower is subjected to the full speciﬁed ultimate design load shown in Table 1. longitudinal and vertical directions respectively. followed by incremental application of the speciﬁed load until the tower reached its ultimate capacity under that particular condition. 4.2008. which would lead to buckling of the main diag- Fig. The self-weight of the tower was 615 kN. 6. TER. where T. Load–deﬂection curve at ER in the transverse direction. under load case 5. / Engineering Failure Analysis xxx (2008) xxx–xxx 5 The design was for a self-supporting lattice tower with a 14 Â 14 m square base and a height of 73 m from the ground. A ﬁnite element model with 5244 degrees-of-freedom simulating the tower was generated to account for every single member in the tower. Albermani et al. The collapse would be initiated by the elastic buckling of a hip bracing member (a nominal bracing type) at the lower part of the tower. 7. Under each condition. Failure analysis of transmission towers. The loading tree for condition 5 is shown in Fig.96.06 and around 1. 4 and 5. All members in the tower were structural steel angle sections with grades of 250 or 345 MPa. Loading tree for load case 5.10. doi:10. Fig.engfailanal.

doi:10. Fig. Eng Fail Anal (2008). Fig. 8.2008.1016/j.001 . Full-scale intact tower at the testing station prior to test. Failure analysis of transmission towers. 9. 7 and the predicted deformed shape of the tower at collapse is shown in Fig. Once this member buckled. The predicted load–displacement curve under this load condition is shown in Fig. would buckle as well.engfailanal. / Engineering Failure Analysis xxx (2008) xxx–xxx onal bracing member in the second panel from the ground (compression axial force in this member is around 300 kN). the tower’s compression leg. Magniﬁed tower deﬂected shape at collapse under load case 5.. Albermani et al. Please cite this article in press as: Albermani F et al.10. 8. resulting in full collapse of the tower. which has a compression axial force of close to 5000 kN.ARTICLE IN PRESS 6 F.

Chan SL. Kitipornchai S. Peyrot AH. Please cite this article in press as: Albermani F et al. J Struct Eng ASCE 1994.engfailanal.12(1):28–36. Nonlinear analysis of transmission towers. Albermani F. Kitipornchai S. (b) tower collapsing during the test. Kitipornchai S. Given this accuracy. and for design upgrades and modiﬁcations.12(1):43–50. Albermani F. Albermani et al. The tower successfully passed the full-scale test under load conditions 1–4 (as predicted by the nonlinear analysis). The collapse took place as the load was incremented from 95% to 100% of the design ultimate load (nonlinear analysis predicted collapse at k = 0. Albermani F. 4. Eng Fail Anal (2008). 10 is a screen capture of the tower at the beginning of the test and during the collapse. Albermani F.7(1):1–10. Conclusion A nonlinear analysis technique for transmission tower structures has been presented in this paper. Thin-Walled Struct 2003. Kitipornchai S. 10. Albermani F. J Struct Eng ASCE 1990. Kitipornchai S.116(1):215–34. Effect of bolt slippage on the ultimate strength of latticed structures. 9 shows the intact tower erected at the testing station and Fig.96). Fig. but experienced a catastrophic collapse during the full-scale test under load condition 5.ARTICLE IN PRESS F.001 . the technique can be used for failure analysis and prediction. The proposed technique can be used to accurately predict structural failure. it was revealed to us then that a full-scale testing of the tower had been conducted two weeks previously. Kitipornchai S. Albermani F. Eng Struct 1990. Use of the technique will result in tremendous savings in resources. and will reduce the need for the full-scale testing that is customary in the transmission industry. Nonlinear analysis of thin-walled structures using least element/member. Int J Space Struct 1992. References [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] Albermani F. Formex formulation of transmission tower structures. / Engineering Failure Analysis xxx (2008) xxx–xxx 7 Fig. with our predictions conﬁrmed by the results of an expensive full-scale test. Int J Space Struct 1997. Video footage of the full-scale test was given to us that show the dramatic tower collapse during the test.41(2-3):167–77. Elasto-plastic large deformation analysis of thin-walled structures.10.1016/j. Failure analysis of transmission towers. When these results were reported to the client. Numerical Simulation of structural behaviour of transmission towers... Full-scale test of the tower under loading condition 5: (a) start of the test.2008.14(3):139–51.120(8):2281–7. Design veriﬁcation of guyed transmission tower using nonlinear analysis. Eng Struct 1992. doi:10. The footage is in close agreement with the collapse scenario predicted by the nonlinear analysis.

Are you sure?

This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?

We've moved you to where you read on your other device.

Get the full title to continue

Get the full title to continue listening from where you left off, or restart the preview.

scribd