The West Point Bridge Designer 2013 will introduce you to engineering through an authentic, hands-on design experience. This software provides you with the tools to model, test, and optimize a steel highway bridge, based on realistic specifications, constraints, and performance criteria. The West Point Bridge Designer 2013 is a special edition of the WPBD software, developed for the 2013 West Point Bridge Design Contest.
How the West Point Bridge Designer 2013 Works
When you use the West Point Bridge Designer 2013, you will experience the engineering design process in simplified form. You will design a highway bridge in much the same way that practicing civil engineers design real highway bridges.
- You will be presented with a requirement to design a steel truss bridge to carry a two-lane highway across a river.
- You may choose from a wide variety of different site configurations for your bridge. Each will cause your bridge to carry in a different way, and each has a different.
- You will develop a design for your bridge by drawing a picture of it on your computer screen.
- Once your first design attempt is complete, the West Point Bridge Designer 2013 will test your bridge, to see if it is strong enough to carry the specified highway loads. This test includes a full-color animation showing a truck crossing your bridge. If your design is strong enough, the truck will be able to cross it successfully; if not, the structure will collapse.
- If your bridge collapses, you can strengthen it by changing the properties of the structural components that make up the bridge, or by changing the configuration of the bridge itself.
- Once your bridge can successfully carry the highway loading without collapsing, you can continue to refine your design, with the objective of minimizing its cost while still ensuring that it is strong enough to carry the specified loads.
The West Point Bridge Designer 2013 gives you complete flexibility to create designs using any shape or configuration you want. Creating the design is fast and easy, so you can experiment with many different alternative configurations as you work toward the best possible solution. The process you will use is quite similar to the process used by practicing civil engineers as they design real structures. Indeed, the West Point Bridge Designer 2013 itself is quite similar to the computer-aided design (CAD) software used by practicing engineers, and it will help you in the same way that CAD software helps them--by taking care of the heavy-duty mathematical calculations, so that you can concentrate on the creative part of the design process.
What's New in the West Point Bridge Designer 2013
The user interface and functions of the West Point Bridge Designer 2013 are essentially identical to those of the West Point Bridge Designer 2012, which preceded it. The only significant changes in WPBD 2013 are as follows:
- In WPBD 2013, one of the two truck loading configurations has changed. The two-lane loading is still a pair of AASHTO H25 trucks weighing 225 kN each; however, the single-lane permit loading now weighs 480 kN. The AASHTO truck loading has a heavy axle and a lighter axle, while the permit loading uses equal axle loads. Both loadings use a dynamic load allowance of 1. 33. As a result of this change, it is not clear which of the two load configurations is more severe.
- WPBD 2013 uses new cost factors to calculate the cost of your design. Thus the costs of bridges designed with WPBD 2013 have no comparability with the costs of bridges designed with earlier versions.
- WPBD 2013 allows for both four-character and six-character Local Contest Codes, to be used in conjunction with the West Point Bridge Design Contest (WPBDC).
WPBD 2013 is available for both Windows and Macintosh:
- WPBD 2013 for Windows: Requires Windows XP or newer and 256 megabytes of RAM. WPBD has received only limited testing on Windows 8.
- WPBD 2013 for Macintosh: Requires Mac OS 10. 7 (Lion) or newer.
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