The bridge load testing of Budapest’s iconic Chain Bridge was successful today afternoon. The test was carried out with 24 trucks weighing 20 tonnes each. It aimed to discover the capacity of the overpass. Based on the first results, the test was successful, and its revamp will continue following the schedule and the budget allocated by the municipal council and the Hungarian government.
On 12 November, experts carried out a static and dynamic bridge load test. Experts measured what deformations trucks weighing 20 tonnes would cause in the overpass’s structure. Furthermore, they wanted to know how the bridge “behaves” if multiple heavy vehicles cross it with a speed of 5 km/h, 20 km/h, 30 km/h, and 50 km/h.
Professionals of the Department of Bridges and Structures at the Budapest University of Technology and Economics carried out the test. They used 24 trucks weighing 20 tonnes each placing them in 12 different positions on the bridge. For example, the drivers halted them in one then in two rows. Another time, 12 of them occupied the overpass. In the next phase, all of them did so.
Meanwhile, they measured the bridge structure’s shifts from the overpass and the Danube embankments with a 0.5 mm precise geodetic apparatus.
Here is the device and the experts:
They placed strain gauges on the chain coils, suspensions, old structures and the new steel elements of the bridge. Afterwards, they measured the deformations and tensions the trucks created in the overpass’s structure. Furthermore, they monitored the shifts in the so-called “koronasaru”, an element on the top of the Buda pillar of the bridge.
Experts did not yet finish the complex evaluation of the results. But based on the preliminary report, the test was successful. The measured figures equalled the previously calculated ones.
Here is a video about what exactly happened:
The revamp of the Chain Bridge started in 2021 spring and is carried out by A-Híd Ltd. 2023 spring will see the end of the project, the plans say. On 9 November, the asphalting of the Chain Bridge in Budapest was completed in one day. Furthermore, on 10 November, the limestone lions guarding the overpass returned.
Here are some additional photos about the bridge load testing: