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A comparison of nondestructive evaluation methods for bridge deck assessment

Elsevier Ltd
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1016/s0963-8695(02)00061-0
  • Nondestructive Evaluation
  • Radar
  • Bridge Decks
  • Concrete
  • Corrosion-Induced Delamination
  • Chemistry
  • Design
  • Musicology
  • Physics
  • Political Science


Abstract Concrete bridge deck deterioration is a significant problem that must be addressed to preserve highway infrastructure investments in bridges around the world. Reducing the cost of bridge deck maintenance is critical to government and private agencies responsible for maintenance of bridges. Maintenance challenges increase as many bridges begin to approach the end of their design life and traffic loads continue to increase. One means of reducing the cost of bridge deck maintenance is to accurately evaluate the condition of the structure and its constituent materials. Current methods used to evaluate deterioration of bridge decks include acoustic, electrochemical, electromagnetic, and visual inspection techniques. The purpose of this study was to assess the advantages and limitations of three available evaluation methods. The evaluation techniques included in this study were ground penetrating radar, the chain drag method, and IE. These techniques represent an important group of inspection methods currently used to evaluate in-service bridge decks. The bridge deck used in the study contains significant delaminations but exhibits virtually no outwardly visible signs of these deficiencies, so a detailed visual inspection survey of the deck was not included. Cores were taken from the bridge deck at selected locations to confirm the accuracy of the results obtained through each evaluation method. This paper presents the findings from each method and describes their respective advantages and limitations.

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