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Title: Pretensioned Bent Caps to Improve Substructure Design and Performance

Author(s): Anna Birely

Publication: Web Session

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Issue:

Appears on pages(s):

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DOI:

Date: 10/24/2019

Abstract:
Precast bent caps can play a critical role in accelerated bridge construction by minimizing construction activities over roads or sensitive environmental habitats, providing increased worker safety, and accelerating commencement of superstructure construction. With appropriate connections and details, prestressed, pretensioned caps can offer improved performance over reinforced concrete caps, at the same time providing increased quality control during fabrication. Here, recommendations for the analysis, design, and construction of precast, pretensioned bent caps are drawn from findings of an experimental test program that included full-scale precast, prestressed bent caps. Flexural design recommendations focus on the introduction of dead load stress limits to ensure that cracks close upon full removal of live load. A case study illustrates how pretensioned bent caps can be utilized to optimize the design and performance of substructures, including a reduction in the number of columns to reduce the overall foundation cost of a project.