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CANDE Newsletter #8

Jan 12, 2018

CANDE Tool Box - Program.

A new program called CANDE Tool Box (CTB) is now freely available for Beta testing. The new CTB program greatly enhances the user friendliness of the CANDE-2017 finite element program for computing load rating factors (RF) for all culvert-soil models with live loads. CTB is a CANDE-companion computer program being developed under the auspices of NCHRP Project 15-54, "Proposed Modifications to AASHTO Culvert Load Rating Specifications."

CANDE Tool Box – Options.

Currently CTB offers five options to automatically enhance CANDE input and/or output files for load rating of culvert installations. The options are briefly described below and explained in greater detail in the down-loadable user manual.

1.   Convert any Level-2 input file with half-mesh symmetry into an equivalent Level-3 file with full mesh topology. Useful for applying non-symmetric loading, alternate layering, and void zones.

2.   Modify any Level-3 input file to include a pavement layer over the soil surface using elastic beam elements. Useful for Load Rating existing culverts to include the load-spreading benefits that are inherent in pavements.

3.   Extend any Level-3 input file to include boundary conditions to simulate live loads moving over the mesh surface. Useful to determine the truck’s location that causes maximum structural distress.

4.   Permanently revise the node numbering of any Level-3 input file to minimize the bandwidth of mesh topology. Useful for circumventing the time-consuming need to employ CANDE’s built-in bandwidth minimizer that must be activated every time the input file is executed.

5.   Automatically compute load-ratings factors “RF” for each of the culvert’s strength design criteria along with all supporting information. Results are printed at end of the CANDE Output Report.


The executable CANDE Tool Box program and user manual may be downloaded directly from the CANDE website on the “CANDE Download” page. Two simple steps:
1.   Click the bottom link “CANDE Tool Box Download Link”
2.   Then, follow directions on the CANDE Tool Box page.


There is no formal reporting obligation for beta testers; however, your feedback would be greatly appreciated. Your comments on problems encountered and/or suggestions for improvement are most welcomed. Send feedback to

Eventually the CANDE Tool Box will be integrated into the CANDE program so that all features are operable from one location. Until that time, CTB operates as a stand-alone program.