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Flexural Behavior of Pultruded GFRP Deck Panels with Snap-Fit Connections


Medium: journal article
Language(s): English
Published in: International Journal of Structural Stability and Dynamics, , n. 2, v. 18
Page(s): 1850019
DOI: 10.1142/s0219455418500190

This paper presents experimental, analytical and numerical investigations about the flexural behavior of glass fiber reinforced polymer (GFRP) pultruded panels for footbridge decks. The analyzed panels, made of isophthalic polyester and E-glass fibers, comprise a multicellular thin-walled cross-section with panel-to-panel vertical snap-fit connections at their lateral edges. As part of a comprehensive study about the mechanical and structural behavior of this type of footbridge decks, the experimental study presented here addresses: (i) the mechanical characterization of the laminated material, and (ii) the quasi-static flexural behavior of the panels for both service and failure conditions. The experimental data obtained is used to validate and assess the accuracy of three-dimensional shell finite element (FE) models and analytical formulae. Particular focus is given to the serviceability and failure performance of the panels, in terms of their deformability and susceptibility to buckling phenomena, respectively. Regarding the serviceability behavior, the results obtained in this study demonstrate the importance of duly specifying the shear coefficient of the multicellular cross-section on Timoshenko beam theory, in order to obtain accurate deflection predictions. In terms of failure performance, both the flexural tests and the analytical formulae indicate that the local buckling of the compressive flanges seems to have triggered the collapse of the tested panels, thus limiting their load carrying capacity. The geometrically nonlinear FE analyses allowed understanding in further depth the ultimate behavior of the panels, providing further insights about their failure mechanisms.

Structurae cannot make the full text of this publication available at this time. The full text can be accessed through the publisher via the DOI: 10.1142/s0219455418500190.
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