Planning Concrete Bridge Deck Repairs Using Rapid Vertical Electrical Impedance and Acoustic Impact-Echo Scanning

The objective of this work was to demonstrate the utility of new vertical electrical impedance and acoustic impact-echo scanning devices recently developed at Brigham Young University for rapidly assessing the condition of concrete bridge decks and planning repairs. While impedance testing provides an evaluation of the protection against chlorides provided by any deck surface treatments, the full depth of the concrete cover, and any rebar coatings, impact-echo testing detects damage in the form of delamination in concrete bridge deck surfaces. Both devices permit data collection from a continuously moving platform with speeds up to 3600 lineal ft per hour and 7200 lineal ft per hour, respectively, as demonstrated on a concrete bridge deck in northern Utah with 11 spans, a length of 1425 ft, and a deck surface area of about 40,600 ft2. In this research, spatial variations in impedance and impact-echo data were substantially similar to spatial variations in half-cell potential and chaining data, respectively, and were also consistent with the results of coring and chloride concentration sampling, which enabled a high level of confidence in the data interpretation. Recommendations for deck repair were based on the collected data.


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