Development and Construction of Low-Cracking High-Performance Concrete (LC-HPC) Bridge Decks: Free Shrinkage, Mixture Optimization and Concrete Production

The development and evaluation of low-cracking high-performance concrete (LC-HPC) for use in bridge decks is described based on laboratory test results and experience gained during the construction of 14 bridges. This report emphasizes the material aspects of the construction process; a companion report will provide a detailed discussion of the construction, design, and environmental factors affecting the performance of LC-HPC bridge decks. The KU Mix design methodology for determining an optimized combined gradation uses the percent retained chart and the Modified Coarseness Factor Chart. The process begins by developing an ideal gradation followed by the determination of an optimum blend of user-selected aggregates. A Microsoft® Excel workbook enhanced with Visual Basic for Applications is available to perform the optimization process at The second portion of the study involves evaluating the effect of paste content, water-cement (w/c) ratio, coarse aggregate type, mineral admixture type (silica fume, slag cement, and Class F fly ash each at two levels of replacement), cement type and fineness, a shrinkage reducing admixture, and the duration of curing on the free-shrinkage characteristics of concrete mixtures in the laboratory tested in accordance with ASTM C 157. The final portion of the study presents the specifications, construction experiences, and the preliminary evaluation of 14 LC-HPC bridge decks that have been built or are planned in Kansas. The techniques used to reduce cracking in these bridge decks are presented, and the field experiences for the 18 individual LC-HPC placements completed to date are presented. The results indicate that LC-HPC decks with an optimized aggregate gradation and design w/c ratios of 0.44 and 0.45 with cement contents of 317 and 320 kg/m³ (535 and 540 lb/yd³) have more than adequate workability, finishability, and pumpability, in addition to reduced cracking. A preliminary evaluation of these decks indicates that, on average, the LC-HPC decks are performing at a level approximately equal to or exceeding the best performing monolithic decks in Kansas surveyed over the past 15 years.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Web
  • Edition: Final Report
  • Features: Appendices; Figures; Photos; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 546p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01142619
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: FHWA-KS-09-5, SM Report No. 92
  • Contract Numbers: C1465
  • Created Date: Oct 27 2009 11:09AM