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Wind and Structures
  Volume 17, Number 1, July 2013, pages 21-41
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.12989/was.2013.17.1.021
 


Full-scale experiments of cantilever traffic signal structures
Hector J. Cruzado and Chris Letchford

 
Abstract
    Wind-induced vibrations of mast arms of cantilever traffic signal structures can lead to fatigue failure. Two such structures were instrumented each with a sonic anemometer and a camera that records the motions of the tip of the arm. It was observed throughout this experiment that large amplitude vertical vibrations of mast arms with signals with backplates occur for the most part at low wind speed ranges, between 2 to 7 m/s, and as the wind speed increases the amplitude of the vertical vibrations decreases. The results of these experiments contradict the generally accepted belief that vortex shedding does not cause significant vibrations of mast arms that could lead to fatigue failure, which have been attributed to galloping in the past . Two damping devices were tested with mixed results.
 
Key Words
    cantilevered traffic signal structures; fatigue; wind-induced vibrations; galloping; vortex shedding; vented backplates; damping plate
 
Address
Hector J. Cruzado : Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Polytechnic University of Puerto Rico, San Juan, PR, USA
Chris Letchford : Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY, USA
 

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