A New Non-Metallic Bridge Expansion Joint System


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Title: A New Non-Metallic Bridge Expansion Joint System

Author(s): Ronald J. Watson, Kurt K. Baron and A. Joseph Siccardi

Publication: Special Publication

Volume: 164


Appears on pages(s): 719-738

Keywords: Joints (junctions); silicone resins; stresses; stress relaxation.

Date: 11/1/1996

It is no secret that many of our existing highway bridges that have been constructed after World War II have become maintenance problems. Flawed assumptions regarding the true performance life of many bridge deck components such as decks, piers, substructures, superstructure, etc. are now very much in evidence. The entry point for much of the deleterious water borne chemical runoff is through the expansion joints. Many of these older structures have deck lengths starting at 20 feet and upwards but the great enemy of bridge deck edges and sub-structural components is the leaking expansion joint. In addition to this many well designed expansion joints just do not have the adequate fastening strength to remain in place under the high speed repetitive truck loadings to which they are now exposed. These jointing systems were conceived and produced in previous years where no real performance data existed for making proper judgements with respect to service life. The fairly recent development of non-metallic expansion jointing systems takes into account knowledge learned regarding true service life of formally popular devices and materials.