Guide to the Criteria Used for the Development, Improvement, and Selection of Expansion Joints


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Title: Guide to the Criteria Used for the Development, Improvement, and Selection of Expansion Joints

Author(s): G. Watiez

Publication: Special Publication

Volume: 94


Appears on pages(s): 643-654

Keywords: bridges (structures); control joints; costs; criteria; durability; expansion; maintenance; permeability; specifications; structural design; Construction

Date: 7/1/1987

The following points guide an engineer in the selection of expansion joints. First, one should take into consideration that there are two different approaches in the field of highway expansion joints--that of companies specializing in waterproof joints (generally elastomeric) and who have extrapolated their technique for applications under traffic conditions and that of construction engineers whose main concern is to protect this vulnerable section that constitutes an opening especially introduced to allow freedom of movement. Second, expansion joints should satisfy a list of criteria: stability, ride, low-noise level, waterproofness, low maintenance costs, and durability. Solutions that more or less satisfy the essential criteria can be considered either as the good qualities or the defects of an expansion joint system. The resolution of one requirement is often made to the detriment of another. The real needs must therefore be clearly defined. Third, a description of the principals selected among a solution presented and that constitute a joint system fitted by prestressing should be offered. In summary, an expansion joint must be both simple, robust, and installed absolutely correctly.