UNR Research Projects

On-Going Projects

1st-Cycle Projects (2016-grant)

  • Identify the Risk Factors That Contribute To Fatalities and Serious Injuries and Implement Evidence-Based Risk Elimination and Mitigation Strategies:  In this project, available data on bridge construction site safety will be compiled and interpreted to provide quantitative data supporting that ABC improves safety through avoidance/reduction of number of accidents/crashes and associated costs. This project will be carried out through collaborative efforts between UNR, FIU, and ISU.
  • Innovative Foundation Alternative for High Speed Rail Application:  The objectives of this project include; development and validation of innovative foundation systems for HSR applications, detailed finite element modeling; and NL FE analysis to investigate the seismic response of HSR bridges with innovative foundations. This is a joint project between FIU and UNR, with FIU focusing on the component modeling and UNR on incorporation into the bridge system.
  • More Choices For Connecting Prefabricated Bridge Elements and Systems (PBES):  The objectives of this study are; to collect and select potential alternative materials (e.g. polymer concrete) to replace UHPC in PBES connections; characterize the material and mechanical properties of selected alternatives; and conduct large-scale testing to study the response of the alternative materials as used in structural ABC applications.

3rd-Cycle Projects (2013-grant)

  • Analytical Investigations and Design Implications of Seismic Response of a Two-Span ABC Bridge System:  Extensive computer simulation of the seismic behavior of a 2-span bridge model is conducted to first determine the analytical modeling method that best replicates the shake test results.  The model is then utilized to determine important parameters and develop ABC seismic design guidelines based on the findings.
  • Durable UHPC Columns with High-Strength Steel:  This study aims at providing the basic knowledge needed to optimize the design of full prefabricated bridge columns using UHPC and high-strength steel under combined axial and lateral loading. Large-scale tests will be conducted to verify the seismic performance of the novel UHPC columns.

2nd-Cycle Projects (2013-grant)

  • Shake Table Studies of a Bridge System with ABC Connections ABC connections for prefabricated members are particularly critical in moderate and high seismic zones because earthquake forces place high demand on inelastic deformation of adjoining columns. Structural integrity of the bridge has to be maintained by capacity-protected connections that experience little or no damage. The overall objective of the proposed study is to investigate the seismic performance of a large-scale bridge system that integrates some of the more promising ABC connections that have been proof tested as individual components.

Completed Projects

1st-Cycle Projects (2013-grant)

  • Evaluation of Seismic Performance of Bridge Columns with Couplers and Development of Design Guidelines:  The overall objective of this study was to compile and interpret data on seismic performance of different types of couplers and establish characteristic column plastic hinge behavior for different coupler types. The study further categorized the couplers with respect to their seismic performance. The results of the study were transformed into draft design guidelines for possible adoption by AASHTO.
  • Behavior and Design of Precast Bridge Cap Beams with Pocket Connections:  The main objective of this study was to compile and interpret data on seismic performance of cap beams with pocket connections and identify behavior, design, detailing, and construction considerations for successful implementation of this category of connections. The results of the study were transformed into design guidelines for possible adoption by AASHTO.
  • Development and Seismic Evaluation of Pier Systems with Pocket Connections and UHPC Columns:  The overall objective of this study was to develop and evaluate resilient bridge piers consisting of prefabricated columns and cap beams subjected to simulated earthquake loading on shake tables. The post-earthquake damage is minimized by using prestressing CFRP tendons to control residual displacements and plastic hinge damage by using ECC and UHPC.