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New SPS “sandwich” decking extends life of older bridges

April 22, 2014

As is the White Bridge Road story, older bridges were not usually designed to carry today’s live loads and have restrictive weight limits placed on them. One strategy that is helping preserve both older bridges and shrinking infrastructure budgets, is to avoid complete replacement by just replacing their heavy, deteriorated decking with the lightweight Sandwich Plate System (SPS) decking panels.

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70% lighter than concrete

SPS is a structural composite material made up of two metal plates bonded with a polyurethane elastomer core. The elastomer provides continuous support to the steel plates and precludes local plate buckling and the need for added stiffeners. This unique design results in a bridge deck that is 70% lighter than concrete, which can extend the service life of a deficient bridge while using existing beams. 

Faster replacements and heavier live loads

These prefabricated components eliminate concrete curing delays and result in less disruption to traffic during rehabs. SPS bridge deck panels offer a new way of extending the life of deficient bridges by reducing the dead load by 70% – allowing the superstructure to carry significantly greater live loads without additional strengthening.

Other notable benefits include:

  • Works compositely with the bridge superstructure
  • Compatible with conventional wearing surfaces
  • Roadway crowns, super-elevations, skews and curves are easily accommodated
  • Polyurethane elastomer core formulated by BASF, the leading developer of polyurethane technology
  • Proven history in numerous applications

Hand Sample Web SPS-Image4-Web-grey

In partnership with Intelligent Engineering and SPS North America

Known internationally for its applications in the heavy civil, maritime and stadium markets, SPS Bridge Decks will save time and money on deck replacements. Through our partnership with Intelligent Engineering and SPS North America, Big R Bridge is making this technology available to Federal Highways, DOT’s, local governments and consultants in North America.

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