Assessment of load transfer and load distribution in bridges utilizing FRP panels

Danielle D. Kleinhans, John J. Myers, Antonio Nanni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


A primary means of demonstrating the feasibility and effectiveness of fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) composite bridge materials is via in situ bridge load testing. For this study, the prescribed or assumed design factors for each of the study bridges were compared to those exhibited by the performance of the bridge. Specifically, the wheel load distribution factors and impact factors as defined by AASHTO were considered in order to assess the load transfer and distribution in structures utilizing FRP panels. The in situ testing configurations for the study bridges are outlined, including the truck and instrumentation placement to obtain the desired information. Furthermore, comparisons were drawn between the design values for deflection and those experienced by the structures during testing. It was found that although the deflections exhibited by the bridges were well within the design limits, further research is needed to be able to prescribe bridge design factors for FRP panels.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)545-552
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Composites for Construction
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2007


  • Bridge design
  • Bridges, composite
  • Fiber reinforced polymers
  • Impact loads
  • In situ tests
  • Load distribution
  • Load transfer
  • Panels

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Computational Mechanics


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