American Society of Civil Engineers

Seismic Response and Vulnerability of Steel-Concrete Composite Bridges Accounting for Model Parameter Uncertainties

by E. Tubaldi, (Ph.D. Candidate, DACS, Dipartimento di Architettura Costruzione e Strutture, Università Politecnica delle Marche, Via Brecce Bianche, 60131, Ancona, Italy E-mail:, M. Barbato, (Assistant Professor, Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, Louisiana State University and A&M College, 3531 Patrick F. Taylor Hall, Baton, Rouge, Louisiana 70803, USA E-mail:, and A. Dall’Asta, (Professor, ProCAM, Dipartimento di Progettazione e Costruzione dell’Ambiente, University of Camerino, Viale della Rimembranza, 63100, Ascoli Piceno (AP), Italy E-mail:
Section: Concrete and Masonry Structures, pp. 1840-1851, (doi:

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Document type: Conference Proceeding Paper
Part of: Structures Congress 2010
Abstract: The performance of multi-span steel-concrete composite (SCC) bridges in recent seismic events has shown that these structures are very sensitive to earthquake loading. Extensive damage can occur not only in the substructures, which are expected to yield, but also in the components of the superstructure involved in transferring the seismic loads. Thus, proper evaluation of the seismic demand and capacity of each structural component involved in the seismic loads path is crucial to assess the fragility of these bridges. The objective of the paper is to investigate the seismic vulnerability of SCC bridges with dual load path accounting for model parameter uncertainty. A benchmark model of a three-span SCC bridge with relatively slender piers is considered for this purpose. Monte Carlo Simulation with Latin hypercube sampling is used to build a probabilistic model of the seismic demand and capacity at the different bridge components. This paper considers both uncertainties of the seismic action and of model parameters defining geometrical, mechanical, structural and inertial properties of the bridges considered. Comparison between the response variability induced by seismic input uncertainty and by model parameter uncertainty sheds light on the importance of accounting for the latter when evaluating the safety of the class of SCC bridges considered in this study.

ASCE Subject Headings:
Composite bridges
Seismic effects
Uncertainty principles