Arup and Mabey have introduced a new bridge system made from post-tensioned polymer modules that can be assembled rapidly without the need for heavy equipment. The Pedesta bridge system is claimed to be the world’s first modular glass-fibre, reinforced polymer bridge. It is based on a concept by Arup and was launched by Mabey at the Bridges 2017 conference in Coventry, UK, where a model was put on display. Development of modular bridge has been part-funded by the UK’s Rail Safety & Standards Board (RSSB) and the system is expected to be of particular interest to the rail industry, providing a safer alternative to level crossings where traditional pedestrian bridges cannot be installed. The bridge modules were light enough to be transported by an articulated lorry and then assembled on site and lifted from a distance. Pedesta is pre-engineered, modular, and fully customizable in its form, material, colour and finish. Identical modules, 1m in length, are fixed together with bolted shear connectors and then post-tensioned. The system allows spans of up to 30m, so it can be adapted to suit the application. In addition, being 70% lighter than steel, the modules only require a pallet truck or forklift to move. The material is said to provide additional resistance to fire, graffiti, vandalism, and ultra-violet radiation.
Image source: ADS Advance