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Composite Bridge Deck speeds Replacement, extends Service Life, lowers Carbon Footprint

SpecialChem / Jan 9, 2009

Repairing or replacing deteriorating bridges is a major expense and concern in many countries. With the rapid increase in motorized traffic over the past five decades, many bridges built in the post-World War II construction boom are now being used beyond their life expectancy under conditions that exceed their design limits. Given the high cost of having bridges out of commission-traffic control on congested highways can eat up 30-50% of total bridge construction costs-it's not surprising that there is considerable interest in the use of prefabricated bridge elements (like decks) to help accelerate new construction or repair. Prefabricated bridge decks reduce installation-labor costs, facilitate construction on difficult sites, improve quality control and component consistency, minimize traffic shutdowns/slowdowns, increase worker safety and reduce the environmental impact of operating large equipment near waterways. Most prefabricated bridge decks have either been pre-stressed concrete, open-steel-grid systems, or composites.

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