An independent distortional analysis method of thin-walled multicell box girders

Nam Hoi Park, Young Jong Kang, Hee Joong Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


When a thin-walled multicell box girder is subjected to an eccentric load, the distortion becomes an important global response in addition to flexure and torsion. The three global responses appear in a combined form when a conventional shell element is used thus it is not an easy task to examine the three global responses separately. This study is to propose an analysis method using conventional shell element in which the three global responses can be separately decomposed. The force decomposition method which was designed for a single-cell box girder by Nakai and Yoo is expanded herein to multicell box girders. The eccentric load is decomposed in the expanded method into flexural, torsional, and multimode distortional forces by using the force equilibrium. From the force decomposition, the combined global responses of multicell box girders can be resolved into separate responses and the distortional response which is of primary concern herein can be obtained separately. It is shown from a series of extensive comparative studies using three box girder bridge models that the expanded method produces accurate decomposed results. Noting that the separate consideration of individual global response is of paramount importance for optimized multicell box girder design, it can be said that the proposed expanded method is extremely useful for practicing engineers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)275-293
Number of pages19
JournalStructural Engineering and Mechanics
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2005 Oct 20


  • Expanded method
  • Force decomposition
  • Independent distortional analysis
  • Multicell box girders
  • Shell analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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