A bridge is required to span a gorge in New Guinea. The goal of this project is to design a bridge that meets the requirements for that bridge and then construct and test that bridge on a 1:20 scale. The requirements for the bridge are that it has to span across the 600mm (12m to scale) wide gorge which has two square flat areas on either side of the bridge which are 100mm (2m to scale) wide. The bridge must be able to hold the maximum possible weight while remaining as light as possible. The model bridge will be constructed using 14 sicks of balsa wood measuring 915mm and cardboard that can be cut from a manila folder but the gusset can only extend 20mm along each member. The model bridge will be tested by applying weights to the bridge until the bridge is no longer able to support the weights, when the bridge fails to support the weight the weight that the model held before failing will be recorded as the maximum weight held. The design that will be used for this project is a basic truss bridge that aims to be lightweight to achieve a greater performance index. The design will be reinforced along the bottom beam by adding a second beam to each side of the design. Using the truss bridge design the mass of the weight that will be applied to the bridge will be distributed along the bridge to reduce the amount of stress that the bottom beam will experience.
Structural analysis and design principles
The key design principles for bridge construction are the span of the bridge, the placement of the travel surface, the distribution of weights, the bridges ability to prevent twisting and bending and the compressive strength and tensile strength.
The span (shown in 2.1) of the bridge is how many pieces the main...
... middle of paper ...
...er beam at the approximate breaking point came closest to the compressive strength the upper beam of the bridge can be predicted as the breaking point of the structure. The upper beam of the bridge also seems to be the more likely point of failure as there is extra support on the lower beam that is not shown in the mathematical analysis.
A flaw in the design of this bridge is that it offers little methods to prevent twisting of the structure, the bridge does not have any diagonal beams to ensure that twisting cannot occur. The bridge does have support to prevent from twisting, however, for majority of these supports they are alone which means that as the bridge begins to fall apart twisting can occur. Despite this flaw it does have few methods to prevent twisting in the directions where it is most required which should not make twisting a major problem in the design.
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