American Society of Civil Engineers

Confederation Bridge Ice Force Monitoring

by Thomas Brown, (Department of Civil Engineering, Schulich School of Engineering, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada E-mail:

pp. 1-10, (doi:

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Document type: Conference Proceeding Paper
Part of: Structures Congress 2008: Crossing Borders
Abstract: This paper provides a summary of the ice force monitoring program and the results that have been obtained since Confederation Bridge opened in 1997. The paper summarizes the rationale for an ice force monitoring system, the objectives of the system, and describes the instrumentation and associated data acquisition system. Summaries of the results are then presented in the form of the observations related to the behaviour of the ice against the instrumented piers, the ice data that has been observed/measured and summarizes the statistics associated with these ice observations. These observations include information on the effectiveness of the conical piers in clearing ice and the forms of ice failure that have been observed. The paper describes the process by which ice loads are determined from the instrumentation data, and summarizes the results related to ice forces and pressures. Finally, the paper describes an extreme ice loading event.

ASCE Subject Headings:
Ice forces