Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Report this comment to a moderator

Please fill in the form below if you think a comment is unsuitable. Your comments will be sent to our moderator for review.
By submitting your information you agree to our Privacy and Cookies Policy

Report comment to moderator

Required fields.

Headline

Exclusive | Collapsed Italy bridge investigators find corrosion on main stay cables

Comment

It now seems quite possible that the principal reason behind this catastrophic failure was the designer's decision, 50 years ago, to use steel tie bars clad in concrete as the bridge's main tension members. This was essentially a cable stayed bridge design in which the steel tension cables were wrapped in concrete instead of paint (or a similar corrosion resisting medium). The concrete wrapping provided no structural benefit to the bridge and instead went on to prevent the ready inspection and maintenance of the main steel strength members it enclosed. Concrete is excellent for compressive loads but useless in tension. Steel is excellent for tensile and compressive loads but needs a protective coating to prevent corrosion. Also it seems that there was also no redundancy in the structure - a single member failure could lead to total collapse. These are significant design failings in my view.

Posted date

21 August, 2018

Posted time

4:47 pm

required
required
required
required