Finite element modelling of lightened bridge slabs

MEFLAP, Finite element modelling of lightened bridge slabs The MEFLAP program (Finite element modelling of the lightened bridge slabs) involves a fast and easy way to create a non-linear finite element model of orthotropic lightened bridge slabs with pre-stressed tendons. It has a graphical interface that allows a user to input all the bridge data and post-process the obtained results to calculate and represent graphically the forces in the laminar elements from stresses that the finite element program generates. For COSMOS/M™ (Structural Research & Analysis Corporation) users, the calculation of the bridge is done in a clear way and it can be controlled from the MEFLAP without special knowledge of finite element methods.

The MEFLAP program has the following key characteristics:

  • Data input graphical interface allows users to define the geometrical characteristics and mechanics of the model rapidly and easily as well as applying the loads in various combinations.
  • It meets the specifications of the Spanish Standards, EHE and UNE 36094:97 according to the materials and their characteristics.
  • It calculates the geometric parameters and the orthotropic slab mechanics automatically with the data provided by users.
  • It allows users to define the longitudinal pre-stressed cable geometry precisely by specifying the maximum and minimum eccentricities and the null eccentricity points throughout the bridge.
  • It generates a finite element model of the entire bridge in COSMOS/M™ program (Structural Research & Analysis Corporation) in a clear way according to the input data including the pre-stressed cable geometry and the combinations of service overloads.
  • It implements the necessary commands for post-processing the results in COSMOS/M™ in a simple and integrated manner.
  • It provides a list of all the values as well as the extreme values of displacements, stresses, forces, and reaction forces of the area that a user selects.
  • It displays the result maps of displacements, stresses and forces.
  • Due to its modularity, the program can adapt easily to other finite element programs.
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