Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


New UC bridge construction techniques will speed up repairs

New UC bridge construction techniques will speed up repairs

September 16, 2013

New bridge construction techniques tested by University of Canterbury (UC) experts could improve the performance of bridges during earthquakes while speeding up the construction and repair processes.

UC civil engineering students are testing new ways of building bridge piers using prefabricated concrete components rather than bridge components that are poured on site.

The construction method is known as Accelerated Bridge Construction and greatly speeds up the bridge construction process while offering other advantages such as better construction quality and safety.

Research supervisor Dr Alessandro Palermo says it is particularly important and useful when it comes to repairing and rebuilding bridge structures following a significant earthquake.

``A number of bridge structures throughout Christchurch, such as the Ferrymead and Colombo Street bridges, have been affected by traffic restrictions for over a year due to structural damage. With these new bridge construction technologies, these bridges could have been rebuilt in a matter of weeks rather than months. 

``Our recent testing has focused on innovative new connections between footing and column components. These connections limit and constrain damage to small regions of the bridge structure that acts as fuses while protecting the rest of the structure from damage.

``Following an earthquake, these fuse regions of the structure can be easily repaired meaning the bridge can be back in service a short time after the earthquake event.

``Post tensioned steel bars or tendons act as a kind of elastic band which spring the structure back to its original position, meaning the structure is not left on a lean following an earthquake. This is particularly important as it means the bridge is likely to be safe for use immediately after an earthquake event by rescue vehicles.’’

One type of connection that is being tested uses mechanical couplers in the fuse region of the structure.

Masters student Sam White says use of couplers allows for replacement of only the damaged components of the bridge with no need for deconstruction or repair of the non-damaged components outside of the fuse region. This speeds up repairs and can also offer significant savings.

A video of the testing and repair process for the coupled bar connection can be seen at: http://youtu.be/lcH1SGyCetQ.

Testing of the new connection types continues this week at UC’s Structures Extension Laboratory.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Must Sell 20 Petrol Stations: Z Cleared To Buy Caltex Assets

Z Energy is allowed to buy the Caltex and Challenge! petrol station chains but must sell 19 of its retail sites and one truck-stop, the Commerce Commission has ruled in a split decision that acknowledges possible retail price coordination between fuel retailers occurs in some regions. More>>

ALSO:

Huntly: Genesis Extends Life Of Coal-Fuelled Power Station To 2022

Genesis Energy will keep its two coal and gas-fired units at Huntly Power Station operating until 2022, having previously said they'd be closed by 2018, after wringing a high price from other electricity generators who wanted to keep them as back-up. More>>

ALSO:

Dammed If You Do: Ruataniwha Irrigation Scheme Hits Farmer Uptake Targets

Enough Hawke's Bay farmers have signed up for water from the proposed Ruataniwha Water Storage Scheme for it to go ahead as long as a cornerstone institutional capital investor can be found to back it, its regional council promoter announced. More>>

ALSO:

Reserve Bank: OCR Stays At 2.25%

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler kept the official cash rate at 2.25 percent, in a decision traders had said could go either way, while predicting inflation will pick up as the slump in oil prices washes out of the data and capacity pressures start to build in the economy. More>>

ALSO:

Export Values Down: NZ Posts Biggest Annual Trade Deficit In 7 Years

New Zealand has recorded its biggest annual trade deficit since April 2009, reflecting weaker prices of agricultural commodities such as dairy products, beef and lamb, and increased imports of vehicles and machinery. More>>

ALSO:

Currency Events: NZ's New $5 Note Wins International Banknote Award

New Zealand’s new Brighter Money $5 note has been named Banknote of the Year in a prestigious international competition. The $5 note was awarded the IBNS Banknote of the Year title at the International Bank Note Society’s annual meeting. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news