Development and Testing of Structurally Independent Foundations for High-Speed Containment Concrete Barrier Academic Article uri icon


  • This paper presents the development and testing of single slope barriers with independent foundations that can be installed at a wide range of site conditions. The researchers developed designs of barriers with foundation systems by conducting a series of finite element simulations and performing full-scale vehicle impact tests under the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) Manual for Assessing Safety Hardware ( MASH) Test Level 5 (TL-5) and Test Level 4 (TL-4) conditions. In this process, foundation designs were developed for site conditions that may require shallow foundations, or foundations that have a smaller footprint. Depending on the site conditions and the presence of underground structures, designers could select the most fitting option from these designs. Impact performance of the developed barrier and foundation systems was evaluated using full-scale finite element impact simulations under MASH TL-5 and TL-4 impact conditions. Two critical systems were selected for full-scale crash testing: a 54 in. tall single slope barrier with drilled shaft foundations, and a 36 in. tall single slope barrier with moment slab foundation. The barrier with the drilled shaft foundation system was tested to MASH Test 5-12 conditions, and the barrier with the moment slab foundation system was tested to MASH Test 4-12 conditions. Both systems performed acceptably with respect to the MASH criteria. This paper presents the various barrier and foundation designs that were developed, key results from the simulation analyses, and details of the crash testing performed on the two selected systems.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Kovar, J., Sheikh, N., Bligh, R., Cakalli, S., Retterer, T., & Ries, J.

citation count

  • 0

complete list of authors

  • Kovar, James||Sheikh, Nauman||Bligh, Roger||Cakalli, Sofokli||Retterer, Taya||Ries, Jon

publication date

  • April 2021