July 16, 2014
Orthotropic steel deck is being used more and more in Canada, and the reasons for choosing this solution are many. While professionals opt for this method mainly because of its cost-saving advantages, the benefits extend even further.
Orthotropic deck is composed of a steel plate that’s covered by a shop-installed roadway surface. The bottom of the plate is simply stiffened using components that are sized primarily according to the traffic loads and the number of load cycles produced by the heavy transport vehicles that will travel over the structure during its useful life. Orthotropic steel deck can easily satisfy a designated service life of 75 years or longer.
The primary advantages of using orthotropic steel deck are:
A major advantage of orthotropic steel deck is its very low deadweight, which represents just 30% of that of conventional concrete deck. The sizing of steel superstructure components allows for a further reduction of up to 10% in the overall weight of these members, thereby decreasing construction costs for foundations and seismic isolation elements.
In the case of rehabilitation projects, this significant reduction in deadweight can allow for increased traffic loads and the construction of wider lanes with the possibility of reusing the existing superstructure, piers and abutments. This reuse of the existing structure acts to decrease the project’s overall environmental footprint.
Finally, the resulting time and cost savings are certainly important decision-making considerations for owners and builders. Users, for their part, appreciate the shorter construction schedule and the reduced impact on traffic. In a context of sustainable development, orthotropic deck is an optimal solution that has to be considered right from the early phases of a bridge project.
View the 3D animation
For any questions regarding this article, contact us.
Discover our new webseries!
Watch our videoclips and learn more about the fabrication of steel box girders for the new Champlain Bridge.