Postprint version. Published in Journal of Structural Engineering, Volume 123, Issue 3, March 1, 1997, pages 286-297.
NOTE: At the time of publication, the author Allen Estes was affiliated with the University of Colorado - Boulder. Currently, August 2008, he is Head and Professor of Architectural Engineering at California Polytechnic State University - San Luis Obispo.
The definitive version is available at https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)0733-9445(1997)123:3(286).
Corrosion of reinforcement is a major problem affecting a large number of reinforced concrete structures. At present, most reliability-based design studies of reinforced concrete structures do not consider the effects of corrosion. In this paper, we present a reliability-based approach to the design of reinforced concrete bridge girders that are under corrosion attack. Both reserve and residual reliability constraints are satisfied. The approach is based on the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) standard specifications for highway bridges and on data of chloride corrosion of steel in concrete. First, the effects of corrosion on both moment and shear reliabilities are investigated. Second, a reliability-based time-dependent design approach based on minimization of total material cost is proposed. This approach is demonstrated on several design examples. Finally, we suggest and illustrate a reliability-based design approach based on minimization of expected lifetime cost including corrosion effects and cost of failure consequences.