Numerical study of deformation behavior for a geosynthetic-reinforced soil bridge abutment under static loading

Yewei Zheng, Patrick J. Fox, P. Benson Shing

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

6 Scopus citations


The geosynthetic-reinforced soil (GRS) bridge abutment is a new technology that has many advantages over traditional abutment designs, including cost savings, relatively easy and fast construction, and good performance with regard to differential settlements. The GRS bridge abutment is a complex system that includes a lower GRS wall, bridge seat, and upper GRS wall, with the bridge superstructure load applied directly to the backfill for the lower GRS wall. This paper presents numerical simulations of the static response of a typical GRS bridge abutment during construction and service. The numerical simulations include soil-reinforcement, soil-block, block-block, and soil-bridge seat interactions. Analyses were performed in stages to simulate the abutment construction process. A uniform surcharge load was applied on the bridge deck and approach roadway to simulate traffic loads during service. Results for construction and in-service conditions are presented and discussed, with particular focus on wall facing lateral displacements and bridge seat settlements. The effect of bridge load on the deformation behavior of the GRS bridge abutment was also investigated. Numerical results indicate that the abutment has good performance under static loading conditions with relatively small lateral deflection and settlement, and relatively large load bearing capacity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationIFCEE 2015 - Proceedings of the International Foundations Congress and Equipment Expo 2015
EditorsJ. Brian Anderson, Magued Iskander, Muhannad T. Suleiman, Debra F. Laefer
PublisherAmerican Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9780784479087
StatePublished - 2015
EventInternational Foundations Congress and Equipment Expo 2015, IFCEE 2015 - San Antonio, United States
Duration: Mar 17 2015Mar 21 2015

Publication series

NameGeotechnical Special Publication
VolumeGSP 256
ISSN (Print)0895-0563


OtherInternational Foundations Congress and Equipment Expo 2015, IFCEE 2015
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Antonio

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Architecture
  • Building and Construction
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology


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