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3D Model of Chaotianmen Bridge, Chongqing, China
Introduction to the CAD MODEL
This is a 3D scaled-down model of the Chaotianmen Bridge which spans the Yangtze River in the Chinese industrial city of Chongqing.
This prototype was created by CAD FM, a social enterprise based in Glasgow, and is available for 3D printing free of charge for educational purposes.
The 3D model was created using CAD software and will prove beneficial for adults or children interested in the construction or features of the Chaotianmen Bridge or in understanding the uses and benefits of CAD modelling.
The CAD modelling software used depicts the features of the bridge in an authentic way and with maximum realism.
Please note that this model is available for educational purposes and for any technical details of the bridge you should contact the relevant authorities.
3D Model Designed
This 3D model of the Chaotianmen Bridge China was made using CAD modelling software and neutral files are provided for 3D printing.
Features covered in model
This 3D CAD model of the Chaotianmen Bridge displays the famous lower and upper arches and clearly shows the principal structure of the road.
The internal lattice, another feature of what has become a landmark of Chongqing is also shown along with the two bases and the guy wires.
In designing this CAD model of the Chaotianmen Bridge, the most difficult aspect was the lower arch which, by its nature, is concealed and therefore tricky to represent in model form.
For the same reason the transition and upper arch also required some serious thought before a solution on how best to model them could be agreed upon. The internal lattice also posed problems as the lattice is relatively thin in model form.
In reality, it is the strength of the materials used combined with the design which gives the lattice its strength but when designing the CAD model we were reliant on the structure alone to take the weight.
Both bases and the guy wires were simpler aspects which posed no real design problems.
Available file formats
Here are available file formats
Tips for 3D printing
The smallest feature of the model measures 2 mm, which can easily be printed with any commercially available 3D printer. The complete model can be printed with very low infills.
The model is a single piece, it can be scaled and sliced to create a larger version. If you want to print at a larger scale then you should divide the model up into small individual pieces and print each piece separately.
In this way, the multiple pieces of the model are printed separately and then joined together with glue.
About the Chaotianmen Bridge
The Chaotianmen Bridge is a through arch bridge used by pedestrians as well as road and rail traffic to cross the Yangtze River. It is 552 metres long with tie girders which are 142m high, and it connects the Wulidian subdistrict in the Jiangbei district with the Danzishi subdistrict in Nan’an district.
It was made using steel and the arch of the structure is below deck while the top is above it. The arched shape of the bridge helps to transfer the weight of the bridge into a horizontal thrust which is restrained by abutments on either side.
The upper deck of the bridge encompasses six lanes of traffic with a pedestrian walkway on either side. Each traffic lane on the upper deck is 3.75 metres wide and the pedestrian walkways on either side are 2.5 metres in width.
The lower deck has 2 lanes of traffic on each side with the Chongqing Metro Loop (a two-way mono-rail track) running down the centre.
The two main piers of the bridge were designed to represent the People’s Liberation Monument, a prominent structure in the centre of Chongqing which was built in 1945 to commemorate the victory over Japan.
The piers have viewing platforms which offer spectacular views of the confluence of the Yangtze River and the Jialing River, and the mountains beyond which are a breathtaking backdrop to the city.
History and Construction
The natural landscape of the area where Chongqing grew up includes many hills, mountains and rivers.
Throughout the history of the city, more than 8000 bridges have been built to enable people and traffic to pass from one area to another and to ensure goods can be transferred as efficiently as possible.
The Chaotianmnen Bridge was designed to cope with the increased amount of traffic that needed to traverse the Yangtze River as the city continued to grow.
Built by the China Harbour Engineering Company, construction began in December 2004 and the bridge was officially opened on 30th April 2009.
The total cost of construction was 3.2b Yuan (approx. $360M). The bridge was jointly designed by the design institute of the China Railway Major Bridge Engineering Group and Chongqing Communications Research & Design Institute.