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Determination of Material Properties and Deflection Behavior for Contemporary Prestressed Beam Design

Started: September, 2011 Ended: March, 2014 Project ID #4W3708 Status: Completed


The primary goal of this project is to provide guidance specific to Montana design and construction practices that will result in more efficient prestress concrete bridge structures.


Prestress concrete beams have been commonly used in bridges since the late 1950s. They have proven to be cost effective, offering good structural performance and generally requiring low maintenance. With improved design procedures and materials, the range of spans for which they can be used and the economy they offer have increased. That being said, prestress concrete beams have always presented some added challenges in bridge design and construction, as their behavior is both time and stress level dependent. Often, several assumptions need to be made in predicting this behavior, and thus obtaining the desired roadway profile in the finished product can be uncertain. Nonetheless, a proper profile is important for the ride of a bridge and also can impact its long-term performance. This research will specifically be conducted for materials and construction and design practices used in Montana. The results of this project will also be of interest to other State DOTs that have or are considering investigating the specific properties of their prestress concrete materials and structures to improve their efficiency.


Sponsors & Partners

  • Montana Department of Transportation (MDT) Sponsor
  • Research and Innovation Technology Administration (RITA) Co-Sponsor

Part of: Infrastructure Maintenance and Materials, Infrastructure Longevity and Sustainability

Project Tagged In: Bridges, concrete materials, prestressed concrete

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