The use of timber–concrete composite (TCC) bridges in the United States dates back to approximately 1924 when the first bridge was constructed. Since then a large number of bridges have been built, of which more than 1,400 remain in service. The oldest bridges still in service are now more than 84 years old and predominately consist of two different TCC systems. The first system is a slab-type system that includes a longitudinal nail-laminated deck composite with a concrete deck top layer. The second system is a stringer system that includes either sawn timber or glulam stringers supporting a concrete deck top layer. The records indicate that most of the TCC highway bridges were constructed during the period of 1930–1960. The study presented in this paper discusses the experience and per-formance of these bridge systems in the US. The analysis is based on a review of the relevant literature and databases complemented with field inspections conducted within various research projects. Along with this review, a historical overview of the codes and guidelines available for the design of TCC bridges in the US is also included. The analysis undertaken showed that TCC bridges are an effective and durable design alternative for highway bridges once they have shown a high performance level, in some situations after more than 80 years in service with a low maintenance level.
The growing diffusion of cross-laminated timber structures (CLT) has been accompanied by extensive research on the peculiar characteristics of this construction system, mainly concerning its economic and environmental benefits, lifecycle, structural design, resistance to seismic actions, fire protection, and energy efficiency. Nevertheless, some aspects have not yet been fully analysed. These include both the knowledge of noise protection that CLT systems are able to offer in relation to the possible applications and combinations of building elements, and the definition of calculation methods necessary to support the acoustic design. This review focuses on the main acoustic features of CLT systems and investigate on the results of the most relevant research aimed to provide key information on the application of acoustic modelling in CLT buildings. The vibro-acoustic behaviour of the basic component of this system and their interaction through the joints has been addressed, as well as the possible ways to manage acoustic information for calculation accuracy improvement by calibration with data from on-site measurements during the construction phase. This study further suggests the opportunity to improve measurement standards with specific reference curves for the bare CLT building elements, in order to compare different acoustic linings and assemblies on the same base. In addition, this study allows to identify some topics in the literature that are not yet fully clarified, providing some insights on possible future developments in research and for the optimization of these products.
Acoustic emission (AE) characteristics of full-hole bolt-bearing testing on structural compositelumbers (SCL) including laminated veneer lumber (LVL) and oriented strand lumber (OSL) were investigated. The main conclusion is that AE cumulative counts vs time curves of the tested SCL in this study can be characterized with three distinct regions in terms of AE count rates: Region I with a lower constant count rate, Region II with varied and increased count rates, and Region III with a higher constant count rate. Differences in AE count rates of these three regions occurred between LVL and OSL. Also, within each tested SCL, differences in AE count rates were observed among the three regions. These differences in terms of AE count rates between two tested SCL indicate that different types of wood-based composites might have different AE characteristics in terms of the count rate changes when they are subjected to increased bolt compression load. In other words, these differences in AE characteristics between the two tested materials suggest AE “signatures” do exist for SCL bolt connections.
Delamination and decay are common structural defects in old glued laminated timber (glulam) buildings, which, if left undetected, could cause severe structural damage. This paper presents a new damage detection method for glulam inspection based on moment analysis and wavelet transform (WT) of impact acoustic signals. Acoustic signals were collected from a glulam arch section removed from service through impact testing at various locations. The presence and positions of internal defects were preliminarily determined by applying time centroid and frequency centroid of the first moment. Acoustic signals were then decomposed by wavelet packet transform (WPT) and the energy of the sub-bands was calculated as characteristics of the response signals. The sub-bands of 0–375 Hz and 375–750 Hz were identified as the most discriminative features that are associated with decay and delamination and therefore are indicative of the presence of delamination or decay defects. A defect diagnosis algorithm was tested for its ability to identify internal decay and delamination in glulam. The results show that depth of delamination in a glulam member can be determined with reasonable accuracy.
Achieving sustainable development requires the decoupling of economic growth from the use of non-renewable resources. This depends on industry adopting unconventional approaches to production. This research explores the root causes of barriers to the adoption of such approaches in the construction industry, and applies a behavioural model to assess whether companies are hindered by capability, opportunity or motivation.
The long history of lowest-cost tendering in construction has led to a path-dependent lock-in to conventional market-driven objectives of cost and risk reduction; it is suggested that locked-in companies lack the commercial opportunity and hence motivation, rather than the capability, to adopt approaches perceived to increase cost or risk. Such companies will therefore tend to resist unconventional approaches, restricting the physical opportunity for other project participants. This theory is explored in a case study of first adoptions of cross-laminated timber (CLT) in UK projects, using a survey and series of semi-structured interviews.
The case study found that project contexts created market niches. This provided designers, who were motivated to use CLT, the opportunity to promote its use in the project. CLT was seen as key to successful resolution of project constraints, thereby providing motivation to other project participants to adopt the material.
Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers - Construction Materials
Cross-laminated timber has, in the last 6 years, been used for the first time to form shear walls and cores in multi-storey buildings of seven storeys or more. Such buildings can have low mass in comparison to conventional structural forms. This low mass means that, as cross-laminated timber is used for taller buildings still, their dynamic movement under wind load is likely to be a key design parameter. An understanding of dynamic lateral stiffness and damping, which has so far been insufficiently researched, will be vital to the effective design for wind-induced vibration. In this study, an ambient vibration method is used to identify the dynamic properties of a seven-storey cross-laminated timber building in situ. The random decrement method is used, along with the Ibrahim time domain method, to extract the modal properties of the structure from the acceleration measured under ambient conditions. The results show that this output-only modal analysis method can be used to extract modal information from such a building, and that information is compared with a simple structural model. Measurements on two occasions during construction show the effect of non-structural elements on the modal properties of the structure.
We model the dynamic behavior of laminated curved beams on the assumption that the different layers of such structures are perfectly bonded at the interface and can show different flexural rotations from one another. We formulate a mechanical theory and a finite element model accounting for bending, shear, warping and extensional deformation modes, as well as radial, tangential and rotary inertias. The main novelty of the proposed theory consists of a generalization of layer-wise displacement approaches available in literature to the dynamics of beams with finite curvature. The work includes some numerical results related to the free vibration of laminated arches and showing different support conditions and aspect ratios to establish comparisons with different theories in the literature. We observe that an accurate mechanical modeling of curved laminated beams is crucial for correct estimation of the eigenfrequencies and eigenmodes of such structures within a 1D framework.