An Analysis of Local and Combined (Global) Scours on Piers-on-Bank Bridges. The Chaven et al. article has been selected for the cover page of the journal Civil Engineering.
The research derives from the NCDOT funded DeepHyd project (Wenwu is the PI, Diemer, S-E Chen (CEEG) and Allan are co-PI's) (Shukla, Slocum and T. Chen) are supervised by Tang or Allan.
Abstract: This paper examines the scour problems related to piers-on-bank bridges resulting from frequently flooded and/or constricted waterways. While local scour problems for bridge piers in riverine channels have been addressed extensively in the literature, there have been few studies addressing piers-on-bank scour scenarios. A comprehensive three-dimensional finite element analysis using the element removal (ER) technique has been performed on a recently constructed bridge with an observable scour problem on multiple piers. The analysis is further extended to study the effect of “combined scour” or extensive erosion of soil between adjacent piles. Three different loading cases were considered in the study, and the results demonstrated that the effects of local and combined scours on bridge drilled shaft foundations can be significant under the combined actions of axial, lateral loads and bending moments. Specifically, the most critical case of combined scour is when maximum moment effect is applied to the piers. The results of this study show that the interaction of soil displacement fields between adjacent piles should be investigated for bridge crossings with piers-on-bank, with a high risk of flooding during the moderate-to-low probability of the occurrence of precipitation events, as they can increase the pile head displacements and the bending moments in the soil and result in the early failure of bridges.