oa Civil Engineering = Siviele Ingenieurswese - Where composite meets the road



Composites got a real test of their use as an infrastructure material last June, when beams of fibreglass, carbon and resin were used to replace the steel in a bridge in Blacksburg, Virginia, in the USA that carries 1 000 cars each day. The Tom's Creek Bridge was one of the first composite structures in the US to carry regular automobile traffic. The old steel-framed bridge, which had corroded to the point where load limits had to. be lowered, was due to be replaced when the town of Blacksburg was approached by researchers from Virginia Tech, the Virginia Department of Transport and the Virginia Transportation Research Council, who proposed replacing the bridge with an HS-20 strength design featuring composites.


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