Identification of Maintenance Practices to Impede Corrosion Impacts on Prestressed Concrete Box Beam Bridges

The prestressed concrete box beam bridge is one of the most utilized structures on Ohio's local transportation system. It has shown to be one of the more economical structures for spans of 40' to 100'. Over the years, bridge inspections have documented premature rust staining along the bottom, at joint lines, and outside fascia of beams. The rust staining is generated from the onset of prestressing strand corrosion. Many inspections document the staining and corrosion early within the life cycle of the bridge. Corrosion on these structures is expected due to a combination of water and winter salting, however the amount of corrosion and its subsequent impact to box beams is occurring at high rates. Some county engineers have reported bridges with significant corrosion 15-20 years after construction that, at times, has resulted in the bridge needing substantial repairs and in some cases replacement by age 35-40. There is little information available on how to manage or mitigate the crack and rust staining when it is first observed. The goal of this research is to extend the service life of prestressed concrete box beam bridges utilized on Ohio's local (e.g., counties) transportation system. This research will identify cost-effective and pro-active maintenance practices that can alleviate or significantly slow the corrosion process in these bridges. A matrix of possible repairs or maintenance practices for use by county engineers will be developed. The findings of this research will provide local transportation professionals with valuable tools for the management and care of these structures. By extending the service life of these structures through cost-effective maintenance practices, more substantial and expensive repairs could be delayed without impacting the safety of the traveling public. This would allow local officials more time to plan and budget for costly bridge rehabilitations or replacements.


  • English


  • Status: Active
  • Funding: $176453
  • Contract Numbers:




  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Managing Organizations:

    Ohio Department of Transportation

    Research Program
    1980 West Broad Street
    Columbus, OH  United States  43223
  • Project Managers:

    Fout, Vicky

  • Performing Organizations:

    University of Cincinnati

    Civil Engineering Department, P.O. Box 210071, 741 Baldwin Hall
    Cincinnati, OH  United States  45221-0071
  • Principal Investigators:

    Chicchi, Rachel

  • Start Date: 20210915
  • Expected Completion Date: 20250915
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01779919
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Ohio Department of Transportation
  • Contract Numbers: 36574, 136344, 114249
  • Files: RIP, STATEDOT
  • Created Date: Aug 27 2021 6:54AM