Bridges, Tunnels and other Transportation Structures
Full Session with Abstracts
Full-depth, precast concrete (FDPC) deck panels have been heavily used in bridge construction since the 1970’s. The use of these panels has traditionally been thought to both accelerate construction and improve the long-term durability performance of the bridge deck. While many engineers and academia are intrinsically aware that confined precast can perform equally or better than non-confined, cast-in-place concrete, evaluation between the two has never been studied holistically. The main objective of this project was to determine the actual in-service performance of full-depth, precast deck panels compared to conventional cast-in-place (CIP) decks. The secondary objective is to determine successful and problematic details for these members.
These objectives were accomplished through a survey of bridge owners, assembly of a full-depth precast deck panel database, evaluation of bridge performance using available NBI data, and a possible series of bridge inspections utilizing NDT techniques. The survey was sent out to all State DOTs and focused on gathering information related to FDPC deck panels including a list of successfully completed bridge projects utilizing the panels. The result of this effort was a database with over 260 bridges in the US which have used FDPC deck panels. States also provided information on one or more comparison projects (two similar projects one utilizing FDPC deck panels and the other CIP decks). These comparison projects and the database were used to evaluate the long-term performance of FDPC deck panels through the National Bridge Inventory (NBI), collected inspection reports, and the Long-Term Bridge Performance (LTBP) Portal. This presentation will summarize the results of this research effort.