I recently presented a paper titled “Practical Application of Transverse Load Redistribution in Reinforced Concrete Solid Slab Bridges” at the 9th conference on Short and Medium Span Bridges in Calgary.
The abstract of the paper is the following:
For an initial design or assessment of a reinforced concrete solid slab bridge, spreadsheet-based or hand calculations are typically used. The shear stress is compared to the shear capacity as prescribed by the code. The distributed loads result in a uniform shear stress at the support. Concentrated loads are less straightforward to take into account. It is known that transverse load redistribution occurs in slabs. To explore the topic of transverse load redistribution, experiments on elements subjected to a concentrated load close to the support were carried out. These elements had an increasing width, starting at 0.5 m and increasing with steps of 0.5 m up to 2.5 m, so that the effect of transverse load redistribution could be studied. The threshold effective width resulting from the experiments was then compared to load spreading methods, in order to give recommendations for the practical use with concentrated loads. It was found that the load spreading method as used in French practice is to be preferred. As compared to load spreading methods that were used previously, the French load spreading method results in smaller shear stresses at the support. This result allows for more economic designs and provides a better assessment tool.
The slides of the presentation are given below: