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Federal Highway Administration Long-Term Bridge Performance Program

Project Information

Project ID: 
FHWA-PROJ-08-0004
Project Status: 
Active
Start Date: 
Tuesday, April 1, 2008
End Date: 
Monday, April 1, 2013
FHWA Program: 
Infrastructure
FHWA Subprogram: 
Long-Term Infrastructure Performance
FHWA Activity: 
Long-Term Bridge Performance
FHWA Topics: 
Research/Technologies--FHWA Research and Technology; Research/Technologies--Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center (TFHRC); Roads and Bridges--Asset Management; Roads and Bridges--Construction and Project Management; Roads and Bridges--Design; Roads and Bridges--Geotechnical; Roads and Bridges--Hydraulics; Roads and Bridges--National Highway System; Roads and Bridges--Structures
TRT Terms: 
Bridges; Infrastructure; Research; Bridge Construction; Ground Transportation; Testing; Detection and Identification Devices
FHWA Discipline: 
Design, Structures, Construction and Project Management
TRB Subject Area: 
Bridges and other structures, Data and Information Technology, Maintenance and Preservation

Contact Information

First Name: 
Jean
Last Name: 
Nehme
Telephone: 
(202) 493-3042
Email Address: 
Team: 
Long-Term Infrastructure Performance Team
Office:
Office of Infrastructure Research and Development
Office Code: 
HRDI-30

Project Details

Project Description: 

In the United States, the stewardship and management of more than 590,000 bridges present many ongoing planning, operational, maintenance, and economic challenges for Federal, State, and local transportation agencies. To help overcome these challenges and foster the next generation of bridge and bridge management systems, in April 2008, the Federal Highway Administration's Office of Infrastructure Research and Development launched the Long-Term Bridge Performance (LTBP) Program, a major new strategic initiative designated as a flagship research program. The authorization of the LTBP Program was included in legislation for surface transportation programs enacted by the United States Congress in 2005: The Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users. The Long-Term Bridge Performance Program is intended to be a 20-year undertaking with both short- and long-term goals. It includes detailed inspection, periodic evaluation and testing, monitoring, and forensic investigation of representative samples of bridges nationwide by taking advantage of proven sensor technology.

Goals

The objective of the Long-Term Bridge Performance Program is to compile a comprehensive database of quantitative information from a representative sample of bridges nationwide, looking at every element of a bridge. The data and information collected in this program will provide a more detailed and timely picture of bridge health; improve knowledge of bridge performance; and ultimately promote the safety, mobility, longevity, and reliability of the Nation's highway transportation assets.

Deliverables

Deliverable Name: 
Bridge Performance Primer
Deliverable Type: 
Research report or guidelines
Deliverable Description: 
This report provides a clear and complete perspective on the concept of bridge performance and presents the path to a better and deeper understanding of what bridge performance means and how to reliably measure it to improve the performance of the transportation system.
Deliverable Name: 
Bridge Portal
Deliverable Type: 
Software/App
Deliverable Description: 
Bridge Portal is a Web-based bridge management system for storing, describing, updating, and accessing multiple datasets (i.e., National Bridge Inventory data, Long-Term Bridge Performance Program data, weather data, traffic data) with appropriate conside
Deliverable Name: 
Protocols For Condition Assessment of Bridge Elements
Deliverable Type: 
Research report or guidelines
Deliverable Description: 
Various protocols are designed to accommodate visual inspection, a variety of sensors and associated instrumentation, and nondestructive evaluation (NDE) and destructive test methods.
Deliverable Name: 
Decision Support Tools
Deliverable Type: 
Software/App
Deliverable Description: 
The Bridge Assessment Decision Tool (BDT) is a software tool that houses data-collection protocols. It makes a connection between the specific measurement and evaluation techniques, general types of techniques (visual inspection, nondestructive evaluation, monitoring, etc.), data types, types of deterioration, and bridge components. A Web-based application then allows users to run queries using these connections as search criteria. A query returns the protocol sheet for a given measurement technique, including a detailed description, equipment required, technique procedure, suggested frequency of use, and output data. The BDT will lead to data collection that is uniform and consistent in the duration of the Long-Term Bridge Performance Program.
Deliverable Name: 
Long-Term Bridge Performance Pilot Study Phase
Deliverable Type: 
Research report or guidelines
Deliverable Description: 
The primary objective of the Long-Term Bridge Performance (LTBP) pilot study is to validate the methods and protocols developed for data collection under the developmental phase of the LTBP Program. In addition, it provides critical knowledge on key factors for coordination with bridge owners, difficulties in accessing components of the bridge, maintaining safe and satisfactory traffic flow during onsite activities, realistic costs associated with all aspects of the field testing, issues related to durability and reliability of instrumentation and data transmission methods, and mobilizing data collection technology from one region to another.
Deliverable Name: 
Long-Term Bridge Performance Bridge Sampling Methodology
Deliverable Type: 
Research report or guidelines
Deliverable Description: 
A methodology based on Correspondence Analysis is developed for selecting a representative sample of bridges that would be subjected to detailed inspection and periodic monitoring for the duration of the Program.
Deliverable Name: 
Long-Term Bridge Performance Long-Term Data Collection Methodology
Deliverable Type: 
Research report or guidelines
Deliverable Description: 
The sampling methodology developed in the developmental phase of the Long-Term Bridge Performance (LTBP) Program is used to select an appropriate sample of bridges from each subpopulation. The sampled bridges from each subpopulation will then undergo two different evaluations. A smaller sample will undergo detailed inspection and periodic monitoring by visual inspection as well as more advanced methods that utilize sensor, nondestructive evaluation, and simulation technology. To establish baseline characteristics of these bridges reliably, detailed finite element models will be constructed and calibrated through comparison with field data using comprehensive structural identification approaches. At the same time, a larger sample will only undergo detailed visual inspection by using methodology established in the developmental phase. The smaller sample size from each population will be identified as “Reference Bridges” (RefBrgs) and will represent a key focal point of the LTBP Program. The large sample size will be identified as "Cluster Bridges."
Deliverable Name: 
Long-Term Bridge Performance Outreach Activities
Deliverable Type: 
Research report or guidelines
Deliverable Description: 
Summary and technical reports from outreach activities in support of the Long-Term Bridge Performance Program will be available.