Cantilever Bridge | Cantilever Bridge Advantages and Disadvantages | Cantilever Bridge Facts

Cantilever Bridge Cantilever Bridge Advantages and Disadvantages Cantilever Bridge Facts

Introduction of Cantilever Bridge

Cantilever Bridge is a special type of bridge which is constructed by using Cantilever members or the structures that project horizontally.

In this article, you will get to know about cantilever bridges, type of cantilever bridge, and the Advantages and Disadvantages of cantilever bridges.

What Does Cantilever Means?

The cantilever is a type of support or a long projecting beam or girder which is generally fixed at only one end and free at another end.

What Is Cantilever Support?

Cantilever support is a rigid structural element which is extended towards the horizontal direction and supported only at one end. In general cases, the cantilever supports extend from a vertical flat surface such as a wall or other element which is firmly attached.

Also Read: How to Build a Suspension Bridge | Suspension Bridge Facts | Suspension Bridge-Strength & Weaknesses | Advantages and Disadvantages of a Suspension Bridge

Cantilever Bridge

Cantilever Bridge

The Cantilever bridge is widely used all over the world for the construction of Major Bridges. The cantilever bridges come into existence because there is a need for construction of bridges without support. It is not possible to construct continuous Bridges with several supports.

There are some special conditions where the number of supports cannot be given, in that case, Cantilever Bridges are suitable.

With the help of proper construction material and perfect design of the bridge, a Steel Truss cantilever Bridge can span up to the length of 1500 feet. This type of bridges is generally used for pedestrians, vehicles and trains.

Cantilever bridges are best suitable for the construction of the bridges where spanning on a waterway is required without dividing it with the river piers.

It is very necessary that cantilever bridges should firmly be attached at one side so that it can carry the total superimposed load, which is coming from the free-standing side to avoid shear stress.

Cantilever bridges should be able to resist tensile stresses in the upper support of the cantilever bridge and the compression stresses in the lower support.

In some cases the length between two supports where Bridge has to be constructed it is very long which cannot be spanned by one cantilever on each side.

In such a situation, the special Beam Bridge or truss Bridge is placed between the arms of two cantilever which connects them into one Bridge. The type of bridge is known as Suspended Span Bridge.

The material which is used for the construction of the cantilever Bridge is Iron, Structural Steel and Prestressed concrete.

Cantilever structure has a maximum bending moment at the support and zero bending moment it at the free end So that the section at the Support should be Maximum to withstand the bending moment.

A Balance cantilever Bridges is another technique of spanning long distances between two points. In this case, engineer constructs the year in the middle side of the river or span.

In the first stage of the construction of the cantilever Bridge, the arms are connected to the shore.

The thin-walled circular Steel tubes are used as the piers for the construction of cantilever bridges. For the construction of long-span cantilever bridges, it is necessary that both strength and weight criteria should be satisfied.

To reduce the total weight of the long-span cantilever bridges, lightweight concrete is also sometimes used in the construction of the Cantilever Bridges.

The cantilever bridges also serve the purpose to provide the passage of pedestrians, Railways and vehicles through it from one end to another end.

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Type of Cantilever Bridges

Type of Cantilever Bridges

The cantilever bridges are mainly classified into two types.

  • Balance Cantilever Bridges
  • Continuous Cantilever Bridges

1. Balanced Cantilever Bridges

Balanced Cantilever Bridges

The Balanced Cantilever Bridge is one of the best Bridge without the need for falsework. Balanced cantilever bridges are constructed where the longer span is required.

Balance cantilever bridges are suitable were simply supported, or continuous frame type structures are not suitable. To construct continuous or simply supported bridges for the longer span required solid Foundation at greater than which is more expensive for the construction.

Balanced Cantilever Bridges are the combination of both simply supported structure and continuous structure.

The construction of the cantilever structure with only one cantilever the length should be made small otherwise there may be chances of uplift at another end.

Cantilever balance Bridge has advantages of both simply supported as well as the continuous structures. Cantilever balance Bridge required one line of bearings over the piers, which is similar to the continuous bridges.

This method of Balanced Cantilever Bridges is more helpful as compared to other construction where the temporary showing can disrupt the traffic.

2. Continuous Cantilever Bridges

Continuous Cantilever Bridges

The continuous cantilever bridges are the special types of bridges which are constructed by using two gantries from the opposite end of the abutments, which will be made in the centre to complete the structure.

To compensate for the absence of balanced cantilever, the Abutments should be made heavy. Continuous Cantilever bridges work as continuous beam feet span between two support with maintaining its Bending moment and Shear Strength throughout the beam.

Advantages of Cantilever Bridges

Advantages of Cantilever Bridges

  1. In the construction of the Cantilever bridges, the falsework is not required.
  2. Cantilever bridges can higher withstand the effects of Thermal Expansion.
  3. Cantilever bridges are suitable for the longest span.
  4. Cantilever bridges have multiple cantilever spans and can be immediately started from all the columns.
  5. Due to lack of supporting piers in the Cantilever Bridges, it gives extra flexibility to the style and geometry of the highway supported by this Bridge.
  6. The cantilever bridges are suitable for deep Rocky valleys and flood-prone areas where falsework is not possible.
  7. In the construction of cantilever bridges, support is required on only one side of its cantilever.

Disadvantages of Cantilever Bridges

Disadvantages of Cantilever Bridges

  1. Cantilever Bridges experience a high amount of tension during the construction, which is known as a Negative moment.
  2. Cantilever bridges have to take care of its stability by balancing between compressive as well as tensile forces acting on it.
  3. Cantilever bridges are heavy, so it required larger and stronger support.
  4. Cantilever bridges are not suitable for Earthquake-prone areas.
  5. Construction of cantilever bridges is not suitable for excessive climate conditions.
  6. Construction and the Maintenance of the Cantilever bridges are complex.

Also Read: 15 Difference Between Bridge and Culvert | What Is Bridge | What Is Culvert

Cantilever Bridge Facts

Cantilever Bridge Facts

  1. The first cantilever bridge in the world was 38 metres long, which is also known as modern cantilever This Bridge was constructed by the engineer Heinrich Gerber in the year 1867.
  2. The most famous cantilever bridge in the world is the Forth Bridge. This Bridge held the world record of the longest pen in all over the world for the 29 years.
  3. Quebec Bridge is the longest span cantilever Bridge in all over the world which is 549 by length. It is the longest cantilever structure.


What Is a Cantilever Truss?

A horizontal truss supported at the middle and sustaining a load at one end or both ends (as in a cantilever bridge)

Cantilever Bridge Examples

List by length

  • Quebec Bridge (Quebec, Canada, 1919) 1,800 feet (549 m)
  • Forth Bridge (Firth of Forth, Scotland, 1890) 2 x 1,710 feet (521 m)
  • Minato Bridge (Osaka, Japan, 1973) 1,673 feet (510 m)
  • Commodore Barry Bridge (Chester, Pennsylvania, USA, 1974) 1,644 feet (501 m)

Cantilever Bridge Meaning

A bridge in which each span is constructed from cantilevers built out sideways from piers.

Cantilever Bridge Features

A cantilever bridge is generally made with three spans, of which the outer spans are both anchored down at the shore and cantilever out over the channel to be crossed. The central span rests on the cantilevered arms extending from the outer spans; it carries vertical.

Cantilever Bridge Materials

Usually, cantilever bridge materials will be metals, like steel or iron. The Forth Bridge in Scotland was built out of 58,000 tonnes of steel. The bridge also uses iron to weigh down the ends of the cantilevers, making sure that they won’t tip or tilt under the bridge’s weight.

What Does Cantilever Mean?

A long projecting beam or girder fixed at only one end, used in bridge construction.

Advantages of Cantilever Bridges

The Pros of Cantilever Bridges

  • They are less invasive. Because they only require impacting one other tooth, less natural tooth surface is disturbed.
  • They look natural.
  • A cheaper alternative.
  • Their longevity makes them attractive.
  • The healthier alternative.
  • They are easy to place.

Disadvantages of Cantilever Bridges

Although cantilever bridges typically last for years, there is a higher chance of failure when bridges are not attached to the sturdier teeth found at the back of the mouth. Damage may occur. Because they are only anchored on one side, there is a slightly higher risk of cracking or debonding than with other bridges.

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