Fatigue behavior of welded T-joints with a CHS brace and CFCHS chord under axial loading in the brace

Ke Wang, Le-Wei Tong, Jun Zhu, Xiao Ling Zhao, Fidelis R Mashiri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)


The welded truss composed of circular hollow section (CHS) braces and concrete-filled circular hollow-section (CFCHS) chords is a new kind of structural system that has been increasingly applied in large span arch bridges in China. It is necessary to have a good knowledge of fatigue strength of the welded CHS-to-CFCHS joints for the design of this kind of composite bridge. This paper reports on a series of tests on welded CHS-to-CFCHS T-joints subjected to axial cyclic fatigue loading in the brace. Eleven joints were designed to investigate various influence factors such as different nondimensional geometric parameters of circular hollow sections and different concrete strength grades. The quality of welds connecting brace and chord members were examined using the magnetic particle and radiographic inspection methods. The conditions of hot spot stress at both the crown and saddle positions in brace and chord members were determined by means of linear and nonlinear extrapolation methods. During the fatigue testing process, the number of cycles relating to several stages of failure, the crack initiation positions, crack propagation patterns, and the final failure modes were recorded. Fatigue strength of the CHS-to-CFCHS T-joints was compared with that of CHS-to-CHS T-joints. It is concluded that the CHS-to-CFCHS T-joints have a much lower stress concentration factor and consequently have better fatigue strength than the CHS-to-CHS T-joints, when both kinds of joints have the same nondimensional geometrical parameters and same nominal stresses on the brace. The Srhs-Nf curves in the Comite International pour le Developpement et l?Etude de la Construction Tubulaire guidelines used for CHS-to-CHS joints are not appropriate for the reliable fatigue assessment of CHS-to-CFCHS T-joints based on the current test data.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)142 - 152
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Bridge Engineering
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2013

Cite this