Effect of temperature on modal variability for a curved concrete bridge
This paper presents the results of a study to determine the effect of temperature on modal variability on a curved post-tensioned box girder bridge with three continuous spans. The bridge has been monitored during the past 6 years using 16 accelerometers, 12 thermocouples and 6 tilt meters. Monitoring is based on normal vehicle loading. There is concern that changes due to temperature variations may mask changes due to structural damage. A thorough understanding of this uncertainty is necessary so that changes in vibration response resulting from damage can be discriminated from changes that are due to temperature variability. This paper presents the results of a study to evaluate the ambient vibration information over a full year period in which data was collected continuously. The effects of temperature change on the bridge's modal frequencies are analyzed and interpreted. This correlation between the natural frequencies and temperature is essential to establishing a structural health monitoring approach that can provide for indications that damage has occurred.
This paper was published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6174