CONTROL OF CRACKING IN BRIDGE DECKS: OBSERVATIONS FROM THE FIELD

This article reports on crack surveys of bridge decks, that were performed over a 10-year period in northeast Kansas as part of three studies. These surveys provide strong guidance in identifying the parameters that control cracking in these steel girder bridges (bridges that are generally agreed to exhibit the greatest amount of cracking in the concrete decks). The surveys include monolithic decks and decks with silica fume and conventional concrete overlays. The results show that crack density increases as a function of cement and water content, and concrete strength. Crack density is higher in the end spans of decks that are integral with the abutments than in decks with pin-ended supports. Most cracking occurs early in the life of a bridge deck, but continues to increase over time. This pattern is true for bridges cast in the 1980s and in the 1990s. However, bridge decks cast in the 1980s exhibit less cracking than those in the 1990s, even with the increase in crack density over time. The authors discuss changes in materials, primarily cement fineness, and construction procedures over the past 20 years. The authors comment on the positive effect of efforts to limit early evaporation, suggesting that the early initiation of curing procedures will help reduce cracking in bridge decks.

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  • Corporate Authors:

    ASTM International

    100 Barr Harbor Drive
    West Conshohocken, PA  United States  19428-2959
  • Authors:
    • Darwin, D
    • Browning, J
    • Lindquist, W D
  • Publication Date: 2003-12

Language

  • English

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00986567
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Feb 22 2005 12:00AM