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Analysis of TAKOMA NAROWS bridge failure.
Types of bridge failure. Suspension bridges (description). TAKOMA NAROWS bridge failure. Solutions.
Used For Long Spans!
Suspension bridges are amazing, wonderful structures. They appear almost fragile, viewed from a distance. Yet, they are very strong and nowadays are the world's longest bridge type. Typical Lengths for spans of this type range from: 2,000 to 7,000 ft
They All Move!
Because they are relatively light and flexible, suspension bridges are all susceptible to
wind. They vibrate and move, both vertically (up and down) and laterally (sideways). The challenge for the bridge engineer is to keep this motion within safe limits.
The most vulnerable part of a suspension bridge is the suspended roadway, or deck.
Do you have gephyrophobia?
TAKOMA NARROWS Bridge
The Damage. “Why” Did Galloping Gertie Collapse??? Design Lessons of gertie’s failure.
During the collapse, the main suspension cables were thrown violently
side to side, twisted, and tossed 100 feet into the air. They slipped from their positions in the cable saddles atop each tower. And, they fell hard on the approach spans.
The violent collapse broke many suspender cables. Some were lost, some severely damaged, and some undamaged. Their only value now was as scrap metal.
due to torsion and bending stresses, the floor system had sections that were bent and overstressed and was destroyed.
View from below the deck at buckled steel beams WSDOT
The loss of the center section, followed by the dropping of the side spans, caused substantial damage
The collapse of the center span caused partial sheering of rivets that attached the towers to the tops of the piers.
How could the most "modern" suspension bridge,
with the most advanced design, suffer catastrophic failure in a relatively “light wind”?
What was the weakness design points? What was the failure mechanism?
Questions that need answers…
Vortex induced vibration:
When fixed in a fluid stream. bluff (nonstreamlined) bodies generate detached or separated flow over substantial parts over their surfaces: that is, the flow lines do not follow the contours of the body, but brake away at some points. At some critical Reynolds number two thin layers – often termed the free shear layers—from the lee of the body interact nonlinearly with each other in the body wake to produce a regular periodic array of vortices (concentrations of rotating fluid particles) termed the Strouhal vortices.
The frequency of the shedding vortices over a fixed (restrained) body is often termed the Strouhal frequency (fs) and follows the relation:
fs D =S U
: is U the : Dis the cross -flow velocity . frontal dimension
: is the Strouhal number ( nearly constant ) appropriate to the body in q u e sti n . o I th e o ri i a l Ta ko m a N a rro w s b ri g e = 8 ft n g n d D
S = 0.11
⇒ f s = 1Hz
The destructive mechanism at the Tacoma Narrows:
The frequency observed for the final destructive oscillation is f=0.2Hz, the wind speed at that time was 42mph.
f ≠ fs
it can be concluded that the "vortex shedding" was not the cause of collapse.
A research by Scanlan and Tomko demonstrated that the catastrophic mode was :
“a single degree of freedom torsional flutter due to complex separated flow.”
+ 2ζ α ωα α + ωα 2α .I = F ( α , α ) α
I : Moment of inertia ζ α : Damping ratio ωα : Natural frequency
The excitation force was characterized as an aerodynamic self excitation effect that caused a negative damping of the system.
α : Angle of twist
F (α , α ) =
A2α + A3α
(linearly self excited form)
The excitation force is written in this form:
* α * F (α , α ) = ϕU 2 2 B 2 kA2 ( B ) + K 2 . A3 α U U :wind velocity B :Deck width ω :circular frequency of oscillation (K = B.ω )
* * A2 , A3 are aerodynamic (flutter) coefficient.
it's an oscillating motion in which 2 or more modes of oscillation usually bending and torsion are combined. As wind velocity increases, a critical value is reached, which triggers the flutter motion. it is characterized by a rapid buildup of amplitude with little or no flutter wind speed augmentation. Note: the flutter speed will be reduced if the wind velocity vector is inclined to the plane or the bridge deck, which may occur as a result of turbulence and gustiness of the wind.
5o change in the vertical wind angle reduction of critical speed from 100mph to 50mph.
The destructive oscillation of the takoma bridge produced a flutter wake (not a Karman vortex street).That action finally brought the bridge down, occurred in a fundamental antisymetric torsion mode.