Experimental investigation of local scour around bridge pier groups

Özalp, Murat Can
It is an important task that design engineers in practice predict the local scour around bridge piers as accurately as possible because excessive local scour around bridge piers unbalance and demolish the bridges. Many equations have been proposed previously by various researchers, based on their experimental findings, but no general method has been developed so far due to the complexity of the topic. In the present study two new bridge pier groups were employed to investigate the inclination effect of the most upstream and downstream piers on the local scours around all piers. Total of 72 experiments have been conducted with 3 inclination angles, one of which representing the vertical case, each experiment lasting 6 hours, under uniform flow and clear-water conditions for a range of water depths and flow velocities on the uniform bed material. It is clearly observed and measured that the amount of local scour reduces substantially by the effect of inclination in the group piers, especially the reduction in the scour around the most upstream pier is found notable. Based on the experimental data, regression analyses are made and an empirical scour depth equation is developed for each individual pier in the pier groups studied. Comparisons with the similar studies performed by other researchers have been made and the results discussed.


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Many river bridges fail or are seriously damaged due to excessive local scouring around piers and abutments. To protect a bridge from scour-induced failure, it should be designed properly against excessive scouring and its scour criticality should be checked regularly throughout the service life to take prompt action. The Federal Highway Administration of United States (FHWA) developed a program, HYRISK, as a basis for evaluation of existing scour failure risk of a bridge. It provides implementation of a ri...
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Selamoğlu, Meriç; Yanmaz, Ali Melih; Köken, Mete; Department of Civil Engineering (2015)
Computation of temporal evolution of scour depth around bridge piers is essential for the efficient design of bridge pier footings. In this thesis, empirical scour-prediction equations and a semi-empirical model are developed to predict the temporal variation of maximum clear-water scour depth at dual cylindrical uniform piers with identical size in tandem arrangement. Experiments are conducted using different pier size, pier spacing, and flow intensities. The semi-empirical model is based on sediment conti...
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Yanmaz, Ali Melih (2001-03-01)
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Kayatürk, Şerife Yurdagül; Göğüş, Mustafa; Department of Civil Engineering (2005)
Bridge failures are mainly caused by scouring the bed material around bridge foundations during flood. In this study, scour phenomenon around bridge abutments is experimentally studied. Effect of abutment size, location and size of the collars placed around the abutments, time evaluation of scour hole around the abutment, scour characteristics of abutment and pier interaction were experimentally investigated. Scour measurements were conducted in a rectangular channel of 30 m long and 1.5 m wide filled with ...
Citation Formats
M. C. Özalp, “Experimental investigation of local scour around bridge pier groups,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2013.