Implementation of High-Performance Concrete Bridge Technology in the USA


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Title: Implementation of High-Performance Concrete Bridge Technology in the USA

Author(s): S.N. Vanikar and L.N. Triandafilou

Publication: Special Publication

Volume: 228


Appears on pages(s): 1-12

Keywords: bridges; construction; design; durability; high-performance concrete; implementation; mechanical properties; prestressed concrete; self-consolidating concrete; silica fume

Date: 6/1/2005

The utilization of high performance concrete (HPC) has increased substantially in the last decade. HPC can provide enhanced mechanical and durability properties and at the same time allow efficient placement and finishing. HPC has been utilized for cost-effective construction of bridges, buildings and pavements in most countries. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has played a key role in the HPC technology transfer from research and development to routine practice for bridge and pavement design and construction. FHWA’s HPC implementation activities began in 1991. HPC implementation for highway bridges in the USA has been a success story. The success has been largely due to a long-term continuing partnership between FHWA, State Departments of Transportation, American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), local agencies, industry and academia. This paper provides an historic perspective on the HPC implementation activities since the Strategic Highway Research Program (SHRP) in late 1980’s and the subsequent programs and activities. Forty-four State Departments of Transportation have utilized HPC. HPC implementation has contributed significantly to improvements in highway infrastructure. Implementation of the long-term strategic plan developed by the industry will further contribute toward meeting the goals which include reduced congestion and improved safety, trained workforce, reduced life cycle costs and improved quality as well as reliability.