Structural health monitoring oriented finite element model of Tsing Ma bridge tower

Qing Guo Fei, You Lin Xu, Chi Lun Ng, K. Y. Wong, W. Y. Chan, K. L. Man

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

45 Citations (Scopus)


The modeling, updating and validation of a structural health monitoring oriented finite element model (FEM) of the Tsing Ma suspension bridge towers are presented in this paper. The portal-type bridge tower is composed of two hollow reinforced concrete legs and four deep pre-stressed cross-beams with a steel truss cast in the concrete of each cross-beam to form a narrow corridor for access between two legs. Except that steel trusses are modeled by beam elements, all structural components are modeled by solid elements to facilitate local damage detection, in particular at member joints. The established tower model is then updated using sensitivity-based model updating method taking the natural frequencies identified from field measurement data as reference. Furthermore, a two-level validation criterion is proposed and implemented to examine the replication performance of the updated finite element model of the bridge tower in terms of (1) natural frequencies in higher modes of vibration and (2) dynamic characteristics of the tower-cable system. The validation results show that a good replication of dynamic characteristics is achieved by the updated tower model when compared to the field measurement results. Finally, stress distribution and concentration of the bridge tower are investigated through nonlinear static analysis of the tower-cable system.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)647-668
Number of pages22
JournalInternational Journal of Structural Stability and Dynamics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2007


  • Finite element model
  • Model updating
  • Structural health monitoring
  • Suspension bridge tower
  • Validation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Ocean Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Applied Mathematics


Dive into the research topics of 'Structural health monitoring oriented finite element model of Tsing Ma bridge tower'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this