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Implementation Assistance Application for Nondestructive Testing for Concrete Bridge Decks (R06A)

Background

The number of concrete bridge decks in poor structural condition is one of the biggest problems affecting bridges in the United States. Evaluating bridge deck conditions becomes increasingly critical as highway agencies work to optimize the effective timing, scope, and approaches for preventive maintenance, repair, and replacement.

Normal chain dragging, hammer sounding, and visual methods of identifying concrete bridge deck deficiencies do not accurately and safely provide the needed information to adequately maintain concrete bridge decks. Nondestructive testing (NDT) techniques have the potential to quickly and reliably provide the needed information about under-the-surface conditions of bridge decks, but independent evaluations are needed to determine their best use and to validate their effectiveness under a variety of conditions.

The web-based, open-source NDToolbox helps identify and characterize testing technologies that are available to locate the primary deficiencies in concrete bridge decks. With the toolbox, users can explore different NDT technologies and examine their use in detecting deterioration for conditions relevant to the project. The NDToolbox describes the technology and the physical principle behind it, applications, performance, limitations, equipment, test procedures and protocols, and sample results. It also provides recommendations regarding the best technologies for a particular deterioration detection application.

The accompanying report identifies the four most common types of deterioration affecting concrete bridge decks, and the corresponding NDT techniques that are best suited to locating and identifying the deterioration. Based on their overall value in detecting and characterizing deterioration in concrete decks, the top technologies were ground-penetrating radar, impact echo, and ultrasonic surface waves. The report and web tool provide clear information about the advantages and limitations of each technology. However, the ultimate decision about which equipment to acquire and which technology to use is dependent on the type of deterioration that is of highest concern to the agency, and whether the evaluation is being done for network-level condition monitoring or for project-level maintenance or rehabilitation.

Leadership Endorsement

Each application submitted from an organization or agency must have the endorsement of the Chief Executive Officer or designee. The letter of endorsement is submitted as an attachment to the application. Guidance for creating an endorsement letter appears in the application below.

Priority Ranking

When multiple applications are submitted from an organization or agency, each application must have a designated priority ranking. Please rank all applications in one grouping including all product submissions from your agency. For purposes of ranking do not separate your organization’s applications into categories for individual products, or levels of incentives such as Lead Adopter or User Incentive.

For example, if your agency submits four applications; two applications for R06C, one for C03/C11, and one for R10, your agency must rank each application in priority order from 1 to 4, with 1 as the highest priority and 4 as the lowest priority. For your convenience, you will find a box later in this application to designate the priority ranking. FHWA and AASHTO will take into consideration the agency’s rankings when reviewing and evaluating the applications for implementation assistance. Your priority ranking should be expressed as “X of Y,” as in “1 of 4.”

Available Implementation Assistance

  • Lead Adopter Incentive
  • Up to 8
  • Up to $100,000 in the form of direct funding and/or technical assistance for implementation activities.
  • State Departments of Transportation (DOTs), Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs), resource agencies
  • June 27, 2014

Requirements

  1. Commitment of DOT leadership to embrace NDT methods for bridge deck inspection and incorporate condition assessment results within DOT bridge inspection, asset management, and maintenance programs.
  2. Participation in hands-on training on the use of various NDT technologies, development of application protocols for deploying NDT technologies on routine inspections, and development of the means to incorporate NDT data in asset management programs.
  3. Identification of one or more specific bridge locations to test/demonstrate the use of NDT technologies for concrete bridge deck condition assessment.
  4. Participation in product evaluation activities, including an organizational, before/after assessment conducted by an independent consultant for FHWA.
  5. Willingness to share knowledge with DOTs interested in implementing NDT technologies for bridge deck evaluations, including reporting on the lessons learned from the implementation study and efforts to use the data for asset management.
  6. Willingness to participate in regional or national knowledge sharing events to promote NDT technologies.

Application Form

Follow these steps to apply for implementation assistance:

  1. Review all background information
  2. Download the Nondestructive Testing for Concrete Bridge Decks (R06A) application form; and save it to your computer in order to iterate, revise, and secure approvals before uploading the final application and Leadership Endorsement Letter to this site
  3. Once you have completed the form and secured the required Leadership Endorsement Letter, return to this page and complete the contact information fields below
  4. Upload the completed application form and Leadership Endorsement Letter
  5. Click submit; you will receive an email confirmation that includes the uploaded endorsement letter and application form, be sure to only hit the submit button one time
The Round 3 application period has closed.

  • View Leadership Endorsement Guidance

  • Download the Nondestructive Testing for Concrete Bridge Decks (R06A) application form.

  • Contact Information

Be sure to click submit only one time.

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