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Engineers need to take a few things into consideration when constructing a bridge in order for it to be safe, efficient, economical and elegant. Bridges are fairly important in a person’s everyday life in order to travel over rivers, canyons etc.. there is about 500,000 bridges in the United States some are small and others are long and wide. Engineers have a very complex job when constructing a bridge the need to think of the distance they need to cover as well as the weight that it needs to hold.
They’re are some key things you’ll need in order to build a bridge such as BATS (beams, arches, trusses, and suspensions) “…The key differences between these four bridge types comes down to the lengths they can cross in a single span, which is the distance between two bridge supports, the physical braces that connect the bridge to the surface below..”-(How Bridges work by Robert Lamb and Michael Morrissey). Beam bridges are one of the simplest structures that generally consists of one or more spans, spans are the support in order to hold a structure. Arch bridges are the most popular due to its design, truss bridges is a structure in which it is connected with elements that have triangular units and finally suspension bridges is a type of bridge which has cables between two towers, suspension cables are anchored on each end of the bridge and they carry the majority of the load.
Engineers also need to worry about the materials they need to use in order for the bridge to be stable in the environment it’s in, one of the most popular materials used in building a bridge is steel and concrete before those materials were available they used wood, rope, or stone. Before they could use the more modern materials they use now the bridges used to be weak and collapse easily, and now bridges can be built stronger than it is but it will increase the cost of the materials “..All buildings and bridges could be built stronger than they are, but an increase in cost..”-(Failures in Engineering). These are the different types of bridges and their average height of each of them and the distance they can cover. “a beam bridge can span up to 200 feet, if trusses are added it can span as far as 1200 feet. The arch bridge can span up to 1800 feet, whereas a suspension bridge can span up to 7,000 feet”-( Building Model Bridges Following the Engineering process – Joe Lewis). In conclusion engineers have to consider many factors when they are trying to construct bridge. They have a very complex job determining the distance and the weight it can hold aslo weather can contribute can contribute to destruction. Therefore they need to use the correct materials to create a strong bridge.
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