2015 CSCE Annual Conference Regina - Building on our Growth Opportunities

2015 CSCE Annual Conference Regina - Building on our Growth Opportunities Conference

Canada's First Hybrid-Composite Beam Bridge

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Mr. John Hillman, HCB, Inc. (Presenter)
Mr. John Unsworth, Canadian Pacific Railway
Dr. Duane Otter, Transportation Technology Center, Inc.

Long before Accelerated Bridge Construction (ABC) became ubiquitous in highway bridges, it was standard practice for the railroad industry.  Rapid installation and long service lives are not just desirable qualities, they are essential.  The Hybrid-Composite Beam (HCB) provides a lightweight, safety redundant and sustainable option for the next generation of railroad bridges with these essential qualities.  It is equally well suited for ABC of highway bridges.

The HCB is comprised of three main sub-components that are a shell, compression reinforcement and tension reinforcement.  Design, fabrication, endurance testing, constructibility, inspectabilty and maintainabilty will be addressed from several points of view resulting from a unique collaboration between TTCI, CP and HCB, Inc.  Although fourteen HCB bridges comprising twenty-nine spans have now been constructed, the evolution of this technology started with the first proof of concept on the HTL at TTCI in November 2007. This paper chronicles the seven year journey from proof of concept that culminated in the first HCB bridge in Canada and the first revenue service HCB railroad bridge anywhere in the world.  It will also demonstrate how a HCB unit damaged during transportation was efficiently repaired to restore its original integrity to safely carry heavy axle load traffic on a CP mainline through the Canadian Rockies. 

In addition, the paper presents what happens when the internal components of an HCB Bridge are exposed or damaged.  Examples will be provided showing current research related to impact testing and residual capacity of a damaged HCB.