The orthotropic deck is a bridge deck system which has been used since the mid 19th century and utilized by many modern bridges. It employs a stiffened steel deck instead of the conventional reinforced concrete slab as the structural base for the distribution of traffic loads for the bridge system. The Pelikan-Esslinger method (P-E method) is developed to calculate the response of such bridge deck configuration. This method considers the bridge to be divided into three systems whose individual actions are superimposed to yield the final bridge responses. This study is conducted to compare the stresses on open ribs of an orthotropic deck by considering floor beam flexibility using the P-E method and the Finite Element Method (FEM) using ABAQUS. Generally, the result shows that the longitudinal stresses on the ribs by considering the influence of the floor beam flexibility are higher than the analitycal method. For design purpose, the longitudinal stress at the top of the ribs of the support section obtained from the P-E method could be reduced. The FEM with Spring elements to represent the floor beam flexibility more accurately models the bridge deck system than the FEM neglecting the flexibility of floor beam.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)133-139
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Engineering and Applied Sciences
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • FEM
  • Floor beam flexibility
  • Ohotropic deck
  • Open type ribs
  • P-E method


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