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Topic: Cable structure

A cable is a flexible structural component that offers no resistance
when compressed or bent in a curved shape. Technically we can say
cable has zero bending rigidity.
It can only support tensile loading.
Cables are often used in engineering structures for support and to
transmit load from one point to another when used to support
suspension roofs, bridges and trolley wheels, cables form the main
load carrying element in the structure.
In analysis of cables the weight of itself cable is rejected . We assume
that cable is flexible and inextensible. Due to its flexibility cables
offers no resistance to shear or bending.
A cable is the main component of cable supported bridge or
suspended roof structures that are classified as follows.
Steel Cables : The high tensile strength of steel combined
with the efficiency of simple tension, makes a steel cable the
ideal structural element to span large distances.
Nylon and plastics are suitable only
for temporary structures,
spanning small distances.
Cables are encased in a plastic or steel
covering that is filled with grout , a fine
grained form of concrete, for protection
against corrosion.
The selection of cable configuration and number of
cables is dependent mainly on length of the span, type of
loadings, number of roadway lanes, height of towers, and
the designers individual sense of proportion and
Cost also plays important role in deciding the selection.
Using less number of cables increases concentrated load
at a single point thereby requiring additional
reinforcement for the deck slab as well as pylon .

Cables Tension


Pile cap



Radiating - cables connect evenly

throughout the deck, but all converge on
the top of the pier.

Harp - cables are parallel, and evenly

spaced along the deck and the pier.

Fan - a combination of radial and harp


Star - cables are connected to two opposite

points on the pier.
Based on the shape of pylon A-type, H-type, Y-type
Types of cable structures

Single cable

Double cable
Initially tightened they reach large
stiffness. Hence, they exhibit smaller
displacements than single cables. There are also
less frequently used double cable girders with
compressive hangers.

Hybrid structures consisting of bars and cables or trusses and cables

Multi-span (may have spans of several kilometers):
There are generally two types of cables structures.
Suspension type Cables.
Stayed type Cables.

suspension bridge: [single span]


Main elements are a pair of main suspension cables
stretching over two towers and attached at each end to an anchor buried
deep in the ground. Smaller vertical suspender cables are attached to the
main cables to support the deck below.

Forces: any load applied to the bridge is transformed into a tension in the
main cables which have to be firmly anchored to resist it.

Advantages: Strong and can span long distances such as across rivers.

Disadvantages: Expensive and complex to build

CABLE-STAINED BRIDGE may appear to be similar to suspension bridges, but in fact
they are quite different in principle and in their construction. There are two major classes
of cable-stayed bridges: Fan type, which are the most efficient, and Harp or parallel
type, which allow more space for the fixings.

Forces: As traffic pushes down on the roadway,

the cables, to which the roadway is attached,
transfer the load to the towers, putting them in
compression: Tension is constantly acting on the
cables, which are stretched because they are
attached to the roadway.
Suspension Bridge Cable Stayed Bridge
Suspension bridges is normally limited to Cable-stayed bridges lies in the fact that it can
two towers. be built with any number of towers
Cable Stayed Bridges require less cables
Suspension bridges require more cables
Construction time is less for cable stayed
Construction time is longer for suspension bridges.
bridges. cable-stayed bridges possess higher stiffness
Suspension Bridges possess less stiffness and display smaller deflections when
compared with suspension bridges
and display larger deflections when
compared with cable stayed bridges
The greater inherent rigidity of the
The deck of a suspension bridge is usually triangulated cable-stayed bridges, compared
suspended by vertical hangers, with the suspension type, makes life easier for
though But the structure is essentially their designers and builders.
flexible, and great effort must be made to
withstand the effects of traffic and wind
A great advantage of the cable-stayed bridge
Suspension Bridge is not made of is that it is essentially made of cantilevers, and
cantilevers can be constructed by building out from the
Advantages Of Suspension Bridges:
Suspension bridges have a high strength to weight ratio.
They are flexible (can also be disadvantage) and can span long
distances with no piers therefore good on very high places, across water
etc. and they require little access from below aiding construction.
They can be very thin and therefore less visible.
They have an elegant look.
The area spanned by a suspension bridge is very long in proportion to
the amount of materials required to construct bridges.
Disadvantages of Suspension Bridges:
Flexibility Disadvantages
Suspension bridges are flexible, which is an advantage until conditions become
severe. Instability in extremely turbulent conditions or during strong earthquakes
may require temporary closure. In 1940, high winds caused the Tacoma Narrows
bridge, near Seattle, Washington, to collapse.
Foundation Disadvantages
When built in soft ground, suspension bridges require extensive and expensive
foundation work to combat the effects of the heavy load on foundation towers.
Heavy Loads
Flexibility also becomes a disadvantage when heavy, concentrated loads are
involved. Suspension bridges are not generally used for regional rail crossings
that carry maximum weight loads, which adds dangerous stress to the structure.
Advantages of Cable-Stayed Bridge:

The cable-stayed deck is in compression, pulled towards the

towers, and has to be stiff at all stages of construction and use.
A great advantage of the cable-stayed bridge is that it is
essentially made of cantilevers, and can be constructed by
building out from the towers.
cable-stayed bridges possess higher stiffness and display smaller
deflections when compared with suspension bridges
Construction time is less for cable stayed bridges.
Cable Stayed Bridges require less cables

Maracana Stadium Roof Structure

Architects - schlaich bergermann und
Location - Maracan Stadium - Maracan,
Rio de Janeiro
Area - 45700.0 sqm
Project Year - 2013