Return to search

Non-destructive testing of masonry arch bridges

Stone masonry arch bridges form a critical part of the transportation system. Present methods of assessment are sometimes too conservative and a number of bridges fail the assessment even though they appear in good condition. Non-Destructive Testing can play a key role and three Non-Destructive techniques - radar, sonics and conductivity measurements- are proposed for bridge testing with the aim of obtaining structural dimensions, material characteristics and integrity information which would lead to a more accurate assessment of the structural conditions being made. After discussing problems and limitations with current analytical and load testing methods of assessment, a review of archetypal forms of bridge construction methods employed along the centuries ismade, showing that a greater variety of bridges than commonly believed, exists. The review also enables an Engineer to have some indication of construction type relating to the area, era and designer. The work then includes site work on two masonry bridges and laboratory experiments. On site, the three Non-Destructive Techniques mentioned were used for testing two Scottish stone masonry bridges (one with a brick arch ring) with the aim of obtaining information about the condition and nature of the materials in the fill, the internal configuration of the structure and the geometrical dimensions of the elements. Data from each technique were plotted in the form of cross-sectional tomographic maps and the results interpreted and compared. Limitations are also discussed. In the laboratory, experiments with radar were undertaken to calibrate the technique in controlled conditions and also, and more importantly, to obtain information about phenomena of signal behaviour and material properties as would be found in a masonry arch bridge. The findings served the purpose of aiding a better planning of radar surveys to be made and an improved understanding and interpretation of the radar data to be obtained.
Date January 1997
CreatorsColla, Camilla
PublisherUniversity of Edinburgh
Source SetsEthos UK
Detected LanguageEnglish
TypeElectronic Thesis or Dissertation

Page generated in 0.0021 seconds