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Cable-stayed bridge facts for kids

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Cable-stayed bridge, looking East - - 412520
Cable-stayed bridge, of the "harp" type, over the River Severn

A cable-stayed bridge is a bridge that has one or more columns (called towers or pylons), with cables directly supporting the bridge deck.

There are two main types of cable-stayed bridges. In the harp design, the cables are nearly parallel. This is done by attaching them to various points on the tower(s). The height of attachment of each cable on the tower is similar to the distance from the tower along the roadway to its lower attachment. In a fan design, the cables all connect to or pass over the top of the tower(s).

Compared to other bridge types, the cable-stayed is best for longer spans than used for cantilever bridges, and shorter than those needing a suspension bridge. Cantilever spans become too heavy if they were made longer. A cable-stay bridge is cheaper to build than a suspension bridge over a short distance.

Disadvantages of a Cable Stayed Bridge

  • Sways in the wind
  • Support is in water rather than sides

Advantages of a Cable Stayed Bridge

  • Good stiffness
  • Large ground anchorages are not required
  • It is a modern looking bridge
  • Economical for construction
  • Well-balanced

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