FHWA Resource Center
SCEF Meeting Minutes – Atlantic City, NJ
February 6, 2007 – 8:00 am to Noon
Meeting convened at 8:00 AM with introductions.
I. Approval of Minutes
A. Luc Saroufim from FHWA-NJ moved to accept and Jamie Hilton of KTA-Tator seconded the motion.
II. Update on AISC Component Certification Program~Lou Triandafilou, FHWA
A. Task group working on a 20+ page certification program modeled after the formal AISC building standard. Lessons learned from applying the building standard over the past few years can be applied to the bridge component standard.
B. Transitions from checklist format to quality management format. Over 130 comments have been made by the group on a 10th draft; the major ones discussed during an August teleconference call.
C. The document will undergo a 45-day public comment period this summer. By the fall of this year, the AISC Certification Committee will be able to recommend approval of the document to the Board of Directors. The Board will meet in October to provide final approval, and the document will be rolled out to the public by the end of the year at the World Steel Bridge Symposium.
D. Lou will check on any component manufacturer interest thus far in this program.
III. Structural Coatings Subcommittee Report -- All
A. PACE meeting starts in Texas in mid-February.
B. Eric Kline looking for candidates to participate in a pooled fund study for a single coat system to be used on new steel.
1. 3 different systems were tested under Phase A of the study: polysiloxylate, polyasphaltic, and water based epoxy. There were 15 submittals for the initial study, and only 3 were 3-coat systems. No single coat system performed as well as current 3-coat systems.
2. Phase B is a pooled fund study to test performance of the 3 different systems mentioned above. Texas, Alabama, and Connecticut have contributed to this study.
D. A bridge in VA was painted at the ends with two different coatings and will be monitored, but it was not part of the original study. One variable that was not considered was painting over chlorides.
E. Of the States DOT reps present today, WV DOT volunteered 2 bridges for the study. Eric can supply copies of the study proposal and/or interim results.
IV. High Mast Lighting Inspections ~ Bill Via, VDOT
A. In the past, VDOT was accustomed to looking at weld failures (fatigue).
B. It’s important to keep in mind that many 25-year old weathering steel poles are
still in service, so corrosion from constant internal wetness at the base of poles is
a major concern.
1. One failure that occurred was from internal corrosion, which was impossible to
determine by visual inspection. Water was trapped between a backup bar and
inside of the pole.
2. Failure was completely unexpected.
C. VA has gone from 5-year inspection frequency to 2-year on these structures.
Bill will try to gather data to distribute and contribute to a presentation at the
next SCEF meeting.
D. Overhead sign vibrations can be exacerbated by the catwalks, therefore,
catwalks are not recommended on these structures.
E. There will be a call for papers on this subject for the 2008 annual TRB meeting.
F. WV noted that size, location, relation to traffic, and type of loading can be the
criteria used for analyzing deterioration on high mast light poles.
1. Frequency of inspection is 5 years for these structures.
G. Minimizing hole diameters in the base plate, or maximizing anchor diameter,
will increase stiffness. A challenge is draining the galvanizing and the water.
H. MD found similar problems with weathering steel poles 12 years ago, and
developed a 2-year inspection program. They were finding vegetation at bottom
of poles, so deleted grout pads and raised drilled shaft elevations. They will be
going to 3rd -party inspection of overhead sign supports, light poles and traffic
signal supports; similar to 3rd party contracts for construction inspection duties
(e.g., tightening anchor bolts).
I. PA also presented information on a failed pole.
1. Installer used base of pole as the formwork, then the clamped nuts put too
much stress on the base.
2. A task force was created and will generate a summary.
3. PA uses 5-year inspection frequency for these structures
J. PA notes that if nuts are tack welded to the anchor bolts, they can not be
readjusted in the future. They have yet to determine whether or not to stop this
K. Ronnie Medlock noted a study completed by TxDOT that recommended
tightening nuts on anchor rods to 1/6th past snug-tight.
L. Joe Bracken agreed to review a bolt-tightening study completed by Jerry
Schroeder, formerly of FHWA.
V. Standardization of Design & Fabrication of Overhead Sign Supports Subcommittee - Brandon Motuk, PennDOT
A. A report (attached) from the newly-formed TRB Subcommittee on traffic
structures was presented by Hannah Cheng of the NJDOT. Hannah will be a
liaison between the TRB and SCEF subcommittees. Ronnie Medlock chairs the
1. Identifies all types of traffic structures (VMS, CMS, DMS, etc.).
2. Proposes proprietary technologies as a solution, and AASHTO Bridge
Subcommittee to develop the design code.
3. TRB subcommittee is also involved in proposing solutions.
4. Karl Frank from the University of Texas shared lessons learned on a fatigue
study and sign vibrations, as well as high mast light pole towers.
5. Thicker base plates create a stiffer connection, and don’t create local punching,
B. Brandon agreed to convene his group in the next couple of months in order to
establish goals and objectives.
VI. SCEF Welder Qualification Program – Robert Wiswesser, AWS
Mr. Wiswesser attended the meeting to represent AWS’ views on the SCEF regional welder certification programs. Thus far, the Mid-Atlantic States have adopted a procedure for SMAW, and are currently balloting 2 procedures for FCAW. AWS Committee B2 was interested in SCEF’s program, and would like to work with us in the development. Comments by AWS on SCEF WPS’ for welder qualification included the following:
A. Referenced electrode for FCAW-S is no longer commonly available.
B. Filler metal classification needs to be revised to account for CO2 gas usage.
C. A review of current SWPS may find room for the 2 proposed SCEF FCAW
D. When new AWS QC7 requirements to use SWPS are implemented, the QC4
accredited test facilities (ATF) will be able to use these to test welders.
E. Either the ATF or the user would own the SWPS, and the SCEF could require
the SWPS to be used for the test. There are accredited test facilities that do not
F. Range for welding parameters used by SCEF is based on manufacturers’
recommendations, which are broad. D1.5 has narrow ranges for amperage.
G. No reference to qualification testing that was performed to generate the WPSs.
H. Latest D1.5 overall dimensions for test specimens are different than what SCEF
listed ~ 5 ¼” vs. 5”. For accuracy, overall dimension should match D1.5.
I. SCEF has also added fillet weld break test to qualify tack welders.
J. SCEF might have difficulty getting revisions into a nationally recognized
procedure, or have new QC-4-07 adopt SCEF procedures as an alternative.
After much lengthy discussion on the issue, it was decided that Mr. Wiswesser would meet with a task group of State DOT representatives, led by Bruce Abernathy of MDSHA. Bruce will initiate a teleconference call among the group, for the purpose of more detailed discussions, and resolution of issues. A report will be made at the next SCEF meeting.
VII. Expansion Joint Subcommittee Report - Dan Beck, MDSHA
Dan was substituting for Marv Blimline, who is back with MDSHA on a part-time basis after retiring last fall. Patty Kiehl from PA noted that her CAD people will prepare final standard details that will be distributed to the membership for review prior to the Fall meeting. A vote for adoption will be anticipated at the next meeting.
VIII. Presentation on Computerized Radiography (NDT) – Stephen Pflanz, Eastman Kodak Company, Rochester, VA (presentation based on attached article)
Steve was substituting for Stephen Mazur, who had been killed in a recent automobile accident.
A. Goal is to make economic fabrication safe and structurally sound; incorporate the technique into AWS code. Currently covered by ASTM E2445.
B. Format can be on DVD, so it’s easy to email pictures and inspection reports.
C. Looks like an x-ray; metal loss can be seen in dark areas for metal pipes.
D. For aluminum castings, it eliminates the need for separate speed films.
E. Moisture and liquids can be observed in equipment and materials.
F. The phosphorized plate is more economical because you can use it repeatedly, which also makes it environmentally friendly. 30% savings anticipated in the shops.
G. Kodak involved with the Leonardo project to radiograph the world’s oldest mummified dinosaur.
IX. Design Detailing Subcommittee Report~ Ahmed Mongi, WVDOH
A. This group is reviewing differences between SCEF adopted detail drawings and
AASHTO/NSBA Steel Bridge Collaboration detailed drawings adopted by the
AASHTO Subcommittee on Bridges & Structures. Any differences will be
resolved by the full SCEF.
B. So far only DE has submitted comments.
C. PennDOT, VDOT, and NJDOT will submit comments.
IX. Presentation on Paperless Project Delivery ~ Scott Krause and Ronnie Medlock, High Steel Structures, Inc.
A. AASHTO approved documents to be used as a guide.
B. Shop drawing preparation in steel bridge industry:
1. Very little transfer of data: drawing delivery can be expedited using email and
2. Trends show increased number of drawings and higher speed of transfer.
3. New York is at the forefront of electronic transfer because everything channels
through one office. They intend to use Primavera Expedition.
C. Design Intent Drawings:
1. Condensing details to the fabricator’s interpretation.
2. Utilized on 2 PA and 2 NJ jobs.
D. Future Vision:
1. Similar to 3D modeling.
2. Aids visualization and calculations, especially weight and center of gravity.
3. Significantly more useful for clearance checks and fabrication planning.
X. Status of Standard Diaphragm Details for Curved Girders
A. VDOT switching to LRFD has slowed the process but it will be fully
implemented in the near future. Will merge with PA DOT details.
B. VDOT looking to circulate drafts of details and receive comments.
XI. Other Issues
A. AASHTO/NSBA Steel Bridge Collaboration document G1.4 on design details
was approved by the AASHTO Subcommittee on Bridges & Structures last
B. The next Collaboration meeting will be held May 8th and 9th in Atlantic City,
NJ, with a workshop scheduled for May 10th at Rutgers University in
Meeting was adjourned at noon.