Fatigue analysis of long-span suspension bridges under multiple loading: Case study

Z. W. Chen, You Lin Xu, Yong Xia, Q. Li, K. Y. Wong

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

75 Citations (Scopus)


Long-span suspension bridges are often subject to multiple types of dynamic loads, especially those located in wind-prone regions and carrying both trains and road vehicles. Fatigue assessment shall be performed to ensure the safety and functionality of the bridges. This paper proposes a framework for fatigue analysis of a long-span suspension bridge under multiple loading by integrating computer simulation with structural health monitoring system. By taking the Tsing Ma Bridge in Hong Kong as an example, a computationally efficient engineering approach is first proposed for dynamic stress analysis of the bridge under railway, highway and wind loading. The fatigue-critical locations are then determined for key bridge components, and databases of the dynamic stress responses at the critical locations are established. The time histories of dynamic stresses induced by individual loading during the design life of the bridge are generated based on the databases. The corresponding stress time histories due to the combined action of multiple loading are also compiled. Finally, fatigue analysis is performed to compute the cumulative fatigue damage over the design life of 120 years. The results indicate that it is necessary to consider the combined effect of multiple loading in the fatigue analysis of long-span suspension bridges.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3246-3256
Number of pages11
JournalEngineering Structures
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2011


  • Dynamic stress
  • Fatigue
  • Highway loading
  • Railway loading
  • Structural health monitoring
  • Suspension bridges
  • Wind loading

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering


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