Building concrete ideas for the future

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"The important research enabled by the Moving Load Simulator will save lives and reduce costs. Aging infrastructure in bridges across North America can be a serious issue of safety and security. The ability to study simultaneously both load and motion will be key to building better bridges in the future and to knowing today which bridges should require load limits.”

Roseann O’Reilly Runte, President and CEO, Canadian Foundation for Innovation

Building concrete ideas for the future

A Queen’s University research team of civil engineers led by Amir Fam has developed new technology to test the structural integrity of bridge materials and design. In partnership with government and industry partners including Dymech, Canadian Precast Prestressed Concrete Institute and Forterra Engineering, the cutting-edge Moving Load Simulator is the first of its kind in Canada and will contribute to more bridge design efficiencies.

The simulator works by driving over test material to recreate forces bridges undergo every day due to large and small vehicles driving across them. While bridge material has traditionally been tested using a pulsating technique that repeatedly pounds the same spot, Fam’s new technology offers a more realistic way to test a bridge’s structural integrity.

The simulator also collects data for the engineers to assess the performance of all aspects of the bridge structure.

For more information, visit the Queen’s Gazette.