Structural health monitoring method for curved concrete bridge box girders

Branko Glišić, Daniele Posenato, Daniele Inaudi, Angelo Figini

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Curved concrete bridge girders have very complex internal forces, stress and strain distribution. As a consequence of their shape, not only the usual bending moments and shear forces are generated, but also important torsion moments are created. These moments "rotate" the axes of principal tensional stresses increasing the risk of cracking. Post-tensioning can prevent the cracks, but the added compression forces introduced in different directions increase the complexity of stress and strain fields. Therefore, the curved post-tensioned concrete girders must be particularly designed and carefully constructed. However, the real structural behavior should be verified, and risks and uncertainties related to structural design and quality of construction minimized. Structural health monitoring is a natural solution for these issues. Structural health monitoring method, based on the use of fiber optic interferometric technology including long-gage sensors and inclinometers, is presented in this paper. A 36 meters long curved post-tensioned bridge box girder is equipped with so-called parallel and so-called crossed sensor topologies, and inclinometers, in order to monitor axial strain, both horizontal and vertical curvature changes, torsion, average shear strain and rotations in both vertical plans. Important parts of structure life such as construction, post-tensioning and first years of service are registered, analyzed and presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number693204
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes
EventSensors and Smart Structures Technologies for Civil, Mechanical, and Aerospace Systems 2008 - San Diego, CA, United States
Duration: Mar 10 2008Mar 13 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications


  • Curved concrete bridge
  • Fiber optic inclinometer
  • Fiber optic sensors
  • Post-tensioned box girder
  • Structural health monitoring


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