Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources


Civil and Environmental Engineering

Committee Chair

Karl E. Barth.


The primary goal of this effort is to identify and assess various methods of computing live load distribution factors and to use the results of laboratory and field tests to compare these methods. It is further a goal of this work to use these methods to perform a parametric study over a wide range of typical slab on steel I-girder bridges to assess the accuracy of both the AASHTO Standard and AASHTO LRFD specifications and to propose an empirical model that correlates better with the analytical results within the range of parameters that are to be studied.;These studies include: (1) a verification study into the FEA techniques used in modeling bridge geometry, (2) selection of procedure of calculating load distribution factors from FEA data, (3) a verification study of the selected procedure, (4) a parametric study to assess the influence of bridge parameters on the contribution to load distribution factors, (5) the development, using regression techniques, of a new equation for live load distribution factors, and (6) a comparison of proposed distribution factors against FEA, AASHTO LRFD, and AASHTO Standard Specifications. (Abstract shortened by UMI.).