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Mathematical Problems in Engineering
Volume 2015, Article ID 129787, 12 pages
Research Article

A Novel Approach to Evaluate the Time-Variant System Reliability of Deteriorating Concrete Bridges

1Zhejiang Scientific Research Institute of Transport, Hangzhou 310006, China
2State Key Laboratory Breeding Base of Mountain Bridge and Tunnel Engineering, Chongqing Jiaotong University, Chongqing 400074, China
3Zhejiang Institute of Communications, Hangzhou 311112, China
4Department of Bridge Engineering, College of Civil Engineering, Tongji University, Shanghai 200092, China

Received 8 October 2015; Revised 6 December 2015; Accepted 9 December 2015

Academic Editor: Egidijus R. Vaidogas

Copyright © 2015 Hao Tian et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Bridge time-variant system reliability is a useful measure to evaluate the lifetime performance of deteriorating bridge structures under uncertainty and is an influential performance indicator in bridge maintenance management programs. This paper proposes a computational methodology based on the Monte Carlo simulations for evaluating the time-variant system reliability of concrete bridges under environmental attacks. Methods related to the reduction of concrete sections and the variation of the load effects acting on the components are investigated using a finite element-based computational program, CBDAS (Concrete Bridge Durability Analysis System), to perform the assessment of lifetime structural performance. With regard to system reliability, a practical technique for searching the structural failure mode is also presented and a program, SRMCS (System Reliability by Monte Carlo Simulations), based on the Monte Carlo simulations is written to calculate and evaluate the structural system reliability of deteriorating concrete bridges. Finally, three numerical examples are presented to display the CBDAS and SRMCS functions.