Composite Bridge Decking: Phase I Design Report
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Composite Bridge Decking: Phase I Design Report

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      This report provides information about the materials, subcomponent shapes, and processes used to fabricate a lightweight decking system. It describes the design criteria and presents the results of physical testing done to validate the finite element analysis. Attention has been given to the structural panels used for decking, as well as to the design details that are critical to the successful deployment of the technology, such as field joint construction, and wearing surface installation. The proposed design is a versatile hollow section that can be deployed in a variety of ways, depending on the design objectives and existing site conditions for a deck replacement project. The composite material provides sufficient strength to carry the factored American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) design load and, in cases where the supports are close together, is adequate for deflection control as well. Where steel stringers are spaced more than 3 feet on center, additional material is needed to increase the section’s stiffness. Testing has shown that fabrication with epoxy grout in selected cells of the hollow section will increase stiffness by 45 percent, although the grout adds 50 percent or more to the weight of the deck. In cases where it is very important to have a lightweight deck, deflection control can be achieved with additional fiber in the outer wrap. In this instance, the deck weighs approximately 16 psf prior to the application of a 4-psf wearing surface. This report documents Phase I of the project. It is provided as an after-test review to get input from the project’s Technical Advisory Panel and other potential stakeholders.
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