Advanced Steel Construction

Vol. 7, No. 3, pp. 220-238 (2011)



Yasser Sharifi

Department of Civil Engineering

Vali-e-Asr University of Rafsanjan, Rafsanjan, Iran

(Corresponding author: E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

Received: 17 August 2010; Revised: 31 December 2010; Accepted: 5 January 2010




View Article   Export Citation: Plain Text | RIS | Endnote


Deteriorated bridges are subjected to time-variant changes of resistance. Corrosion is one of the most important types of deterioration in steel bridges. The consequence is a reduction in safety of a bridge. Therefore, it is needed to evaluate procedures for an accurate prediction of the load-carrying capacity and reliability of corroded bridges, in order to make rational decisions about repair, renewal or rehabilitation. This paper presents a highway bridge reliability-based design formulation which accounts for pitting corrosion effects on steel box girder bridges. The study involves the idealization of pitting corrosion, development of resistance models for corroded steel box girders, development of load models, formulation of limit state function, development of reliability analysis method, and development of the time-dependent reliability for corroded steel girders. Numerical example illustrates the application of the proposed approach. The results of this study can be used for the better prediction of the service life of deteriorating steel box girder bridges and the development of optimal reliability-based maintenance strategies.



Bridges, Steel box girders, Pitting corrosion, Load-carrying capacity, Time-dependent reliability, Repair and rehabilitation


[1]       Sharifi, Y. and Paik, J.K., “Ultimate Strength Reliability Analysis of Corroded Steel-box Girder Bridges”, Thin-Walled Structures, 2011, Vol. 49, No. 1, pp. 157-166.

[2]       Sharifi, Y. and Paik, J.K., “Environmental Effects on Ultimate Strength Reliability of Corroded Steel Box Girder Bridges”, Structural Longevity, 2010, Vol. 18, No. 1, pp. 1-20.

[3]       Sharifi, Y. and Rahgozar, R., “Evaluation of the Remaining Shear Capacity in Corroded Steel I-Beams”, International Journal of advanced Steel Construction, 2010, Vol. 6, No. 2, pp. 803-816.

[4]       Sharifi, Y. and Rahgozar, R., “Remaining Moment Capacity of Corroded Steel Beams”, International Journal of Steel Structures, 2010, Vol. 10, No. 2, pp. 165-176.

[5]       Sharifi, Y. and Rahgozar, R., “Fatigue Notch Factor in Steel Bridges Due to Corrosion”, Archives of Civil and Mechanical Engineering, 2009, Vol. IX, No. 4, pp. 75-83.

[6]       Kayser, J.R. and Nowak, A.S., “Reliability of Corroded Steel Girder Bridges”, Structural Safety, 1989, Vol. 6, pp. 53-63.

[7]       Czarnecki, A.A. and Nowak, A.S., “Time-Variant Reliability Profiles for Steel Girder Bridges”, Structural Safety, 2008, Vol. 30, No. 49-64.

[8]       Cheung, M.S. and Li, W.C., “Serviceability Reliability of Corroded Steel Bridges”. Canadian Journal of Civil Engineering, 2001, Vol. 28, pp. 419-424.

[9]       Kong, J.S. and Frangopol, D.M., “Cost–Reliability Interaction in Life-Cycle Cost Optimization of Deteriorating Structures”, Journal of Structural Engineering, 2004, Vol. 130, No. 11, pp. 1704-1712.

[10]     Melchers, R.E. and Jeffrey, R.J., “Probabilistic Models for Steel Corrosion Loss and Pitting of Marine Infrastructure”, Reliability Engineering and System Safety, 2008, Vol. 93, pp. 423-432.

[11]     Melchers, R.E., “The Effect of Corrosion on the Structural Reliability of Steel Offshore Structures”, Corrosion Science, 2005, Vol. 47, No. 10, pp. 2391-410.

[12]     Thoft-Christensen, P., “Estimation of bridge reliability distributions.” Current and future trends in bridge design, construction, and maintenance, P. C. Das, D. M. Frangopol, and A. S. Nowak, eds., Thomas Telford, London, 1999, pp. 15–25.

[13]    Paik, J.K., Lee, J.M. and Ko, M.J., “Ultimate Compressive Strength of Plate Elements with Pit Corrosion Wastage”, Journal of Engineering Maritime Environnent, 2003, Vol. 217, No. M4, pp. 185-200.

[14]    Paik, J.K., Lee, J.M. and Ko, M.J., “Ultimate Shear Strength of Plate Elements with Pit Corrosion Wastage”, Thin-Walled Structures, 2004, Vol. 42, No. 8, pp. 1161-76.

[15]     Nakai, T., Matsushita, H. and Yamamoto, N., “Effect of Pitting Corrosion on the Ultimate Strength of Steel Plates Subjected to In-Plane Compression and Bending”. Journal of Marine Science and Technology, 2006, Vol. 11, No. 1, pp. 52-64.

[16]     Daidola, J.C., Parente, J., Orisamolu, I.R. and Ma, K.T., “Residual Strength Assessment of Pitted Plate Panels”, SSC-394, Ship Structure Committee, Washington, DC, 1997.

[17]     Kayser, J.R., “The Effects of Corrosion on the Reliability of Steel Girder Bridges”. PhD thesis, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Mich., USA, 1988.

[18]     Sommer, A.M., Nowak, A.S. and Thoft-Christensen, P., “Probability-Based Bridge Inspection Strategy”, Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE, 1993, Vol. 119, pp. 35203536.

[19]     Komp, M.E., “Atmospheric Corrosion Ratings of Weathering Steels-Calculation and Significance”, Material Performance, 1987, Vol. 26, No. 42-44.

[20]     Paik, J.K. and Thayamballi, A.K., “Ultimate Limit State Design of Steel-Plated Structures”, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., Hoboken, New Jersey, USA, 2003.

[21]     Paik, J.K., Thayamballi, A.K. and Lee, J.M., “Effect of Initial Deflection Shape on the Ultimate Strength Behavior of Welded Steel Plates under Biaxial Compressive Loads”. Journal of Ship Research, 2004, Vol. 48, pp. 45-60.

[22]    Nowak, A.S. and Collins, K.R., “Reliability of Structures”, McGraw-Hill, Thomas Casson, Boston, USA, 2000.

[23]    Nowak, A.S., “Live Load Model for Highway Bridges”, Journal of Structural Safety, 1993, Vol. 13, pp. 53-66.

[24]    Nowak, A.S., “Calibration of LRFD Bridge Code”, Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE, 1995, Vol. 121, pp. 1245-1251.

[25]    Nowak, A.S. and Szerszen, M.M., “Bridge Load and Resistance Models”, Engineering Structures, 1998, Vol. 20, pp. 985-990.

[26]    Nowak, A.S. and Szerszen, M.M., “Structural Reliability as Applied to Highway Bridges”, Progress in Structural Engineering Materials, 2000, Vol. 2, pp. 218-224.

[27]    AASHTO LRFD, “Bridge Design Specifications, American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials”, Washington, D.C., 2004.

[28]    Barker, R.M. and Puckett, J.A., “Design of Highway Bridges and LRFD Approach”, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, New Jersey, USA, 2007.

[29]    Mansour, A.E., “An Introduction to Structural Reliability Theory”, Ship Structure Committee, Report No. SSC-351, 1990.

[30]    Achintya, H. and Mahadevan, S., “Probability, Reliability and Statistical Methods in Engineering Design”, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, New Jersey, USA, 2000.

[31]    Lemarie, M., “Structural Reliability”, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, New Jersey, USA, 2009.

[32]    Melchers, R.E., “Structural Reliability Analysis and Prediction”, Wiley, Chichester, UK, 1999.

[33]    Sarveswaran, V. and Roberts, M.B., “Reliability Analysis of Deteriorating Structures-The Experience and Needs of Practicing Engineers”, Structural Safety, 1999, Vol. 21, pp. 357372.

[34]    Nowak, A.S. and Lind, N.C., “Practical Bridge Code Calibration”, Journal of Structural Division, ASCE, 1979, Vol. 105, pp. 497-510.

[35] Flint, A.R., Smith, B.W., Baker, M.J. and Manners, W., “The Derivation of Safety Factors for Design of Highway Bridges”, Proceeding of Conference on the New Code for the Design of Steel Bridges, Cardiff, March 1980.

[36] Chryssanthopoulos, M.K. and Micic, T.V., “Reliability Evaluation of Short Span Bridges”, Proceeding of International Symposium on the Safety of Bridges, ICE/HA, London, July 1996.