Thermal compatibility and durability of wearing surfaces on GFRP bridge decks

Prapun Wattanadechachan, Riyad Aboutaha, Osman Hag-Elsafi, Sreenivas Alampalli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


The paper investigates thermal compatibility between wearing surface (WS) materials and glass fiber reinforced polymer (GFRP) bridge decks, and proposes a more durable hybrid WS system for GFRP decks. Wearing surface delamination problems observed on many existing GFRP bridge decks motivated the investigation and the search for a durable WS material that could alleviate the problems. Several WS materials were bonded to GFRP panels, with and without surface preparation, and tested under various environmental conditions. In addition to the standard ASTM C884 method, the testing program included two new methods for thermal compatibility testing to reflect the in-service conditions of WSs on GFRP bridge decks. The proposed methods were developed to account for the influence of freeze-thaw-heat and submerge-freeze cycles on thermal compatibility and durability. The investigation concluded that a hybrid WS system, consisting of two-layered WS materials, has the best bond quality. Applied directly on top of a GFRP deck, the top layer of the hybrid WS system had the best tire resistance, forming a nonskid riding surface.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number003604QBE
Pages (from-to)465-473
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Bridge Engineering
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2006


  • Bridge decks
  • Bridges, composite
  • Fiber reinforced polymers
  • Thermal factors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction


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