The primary objective of the NJDOT Bridge Resource Program (BRP) is to utilize the extensive laboratory and field testing equipment and staff expertise in Bridge Engineering to assist the New Jersey Department of Transportation’s Bridge Engineering and Infrastructure Management Unit (NJDOT) in developing bridge management system strategies, innovative materials, improved bridge design tools, advanced laboratory and field data collection, bridge monitoring strategies, bridge inspection, non-destructive evaluation and innovative technologies/equipment aimed at enhancing the state’s bridge inventory condition by appropriating available capital resources to those assets in a targeted and efficient manner.
To assist the NJDOT with the prioritization of bridge structures, a risk-based prioritization (RBP) framework was developed and applied to a sample of structurally deficient bridges. The framework used is qualitative in nature, but it explicitly recognizes key performance limit states, directly addresses bridge hazards, vulnerabilities, and exposures, incorporates the uncertainty associated with various assessment techniques and provides flexibility for implementation and refinement.
Load Capacity Evaluation
NJDOT along with many DOTs face an ever aging population of bridges, and are faced with the question as to whether these bridges can support legal loads. To assist NJDOT with evaluating several older reinforced concrete structures, Finite Element (FE) modeling, load testing, and model-experimental correlation were used to determine if additional load carrying capacity exists in the selected bridges and to demonstrate the value of such advanced analytical approaches.
To aid NJDOT with evaluating sources of early age cracking in HPC bridge decks, personnel captured and tracked deck temperature profiles, thermal strains (uniform and gradients), and shrinkage strains that occurred during the curing process of two HPC decks. The collected data was subsequently used to draw conclusions regarding the in-situ curing of HPC.
NJDOT expressed specific interest in the evaluation and monitoring of highly skewed steel bridges. The monitoring and analysis performed focused on predicting and measuring the intrinsic forces and deformations that develop during the construction and deck pouring procedures. A correlation of the model predictions and measured forces/deformations was used to assist NJDOT in providing support for the development of state specific guidelines on the construction of skewed bridges.