American Society of Civil Engineers


Lessons Learned from the Damaged Huilan Interchange in the 2008 Wenchuan Earthquake


by Zhiguo Sun, (Lecturer, Institute of Road and Bridge Engineering, Dalian Maritime Univ., Dalian 116026, People’s Republic of China. E-mail: szg_1999_1999@163.com), Dongsheng Wang, (corresponding author), (Professor, Institute of Road and Bridge Engineering, Dalian Maritime Univ., Dalian 116026, People’s Republic of China. E-mail: dswang@dlmu.edu.cn), Xun Guo, (Professor, Institute of Engineering Mechanics, China Earthquake Administration, Harbin 150080, People’s Republic of China. E-mail: guoxun@iem.ac.cn), Bingjun Si, (Associate Professor, School of Civil & Hydraulic Engineering, Dalian Univ. of Technology, Dalian 116024, People’s Republic of China. E-mail: sibingjun@yahoo.com.cn), and Yi Huo, (Graduate student, Institute of Road and Bridge Engineering, Dalian Maritime Univ., Dalian 116026, People’s Republic of China. E-mail: huoyigood@163.com)

Journal of Bridge Engineering, Vol. 17, No. 1, January/February 2012, pp. 15-24, (doi:  http://dx.doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)BE.1943-5592.0000210)

     Access full text
     Purchase Subscription
     Permissions for Reuse  

Document type: Journal Paper
Abstract: A disastrous earthquake struck Wenchuan in China’s Sichuan province in 2008 and caused heavy casualties and structural damage to bridges and buildings. One of the two severely earthquake-damaged curved bridges in China, the Huilan interchange, had been carefully studied, including postearthquake investigation and identification of the cause of failure for this bridge. The Huilan interchange, constructed in 2004 in Mianzhu City, consisted of a viaduct and four horizontally circular ramp bridges with continuous box girders. Field investigations found that the seismic damage to the ramp bridges was especially heavy, one or two short piers in all, but one of the ramp bridges experienced severe failure, and the box girders over the failed piers were fractured. Other piers of the ramp bridges suffered minor-to-moderate damage, including concrete cover spalling, concrete cracking, and slippage damage of the rubber bearings. The viaduct suffered only slight damage, including slippage damage of the rubber bearings and pounding damage of the superstructure. The seismic performance of the bridge was evaluated by finite-element modeling and compared with field observations. It was found that the bearing on top of the shortest pier, Pier 1, was damaged first. Then, the seismic action was concentrated on the next shortest pier, Pier 2, which had the largest flexural stiffness. Pier 2 first yielded in flexure, and, as the lateral displacement increased, the ultimate response of this pier was dominated by its shear capacity, and it eventually failed in flexure-shear mode.


ASCE Subject Headings:
Highway bridges
Curvature
Interchanges
Earthquakes
Seismic analysis
Shear failures
Piers
China

Author Keywords:
Curved bridge
Huilan interchange
Wenchuan earthquake
Post-earthquake investigation
Seismic analysis
Flexural-shear failure of the pier