Testing and Screening Surfacing Materials for Alaska’s Yukon River Bridge

Abstract and project information last updated: 1 March 2011. Project updates are dated below.

AUTC
Project
Number
410008
Principal
Investigator
J. Leroy Hulsey (UAF)
jlhulsey@alaska.edu
Funding
Agency

US Department of Transportation (RITA)

Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities

Project
Budget
75590
Start
Date
1 July 2010
Estimated
End Date
31 December 2011

Abstract

The Yukon River Bridge, also known as the E.L. Patton Bridge, carries the twolane Dalton Highway and the trans-Alaska oil pipeline across the Yukon River at a 6% grade. It is 30 feet wide, with 6 spans; it was designed to withstand -60 degrees Fahrenheit temperatures, huge ice loads from the river, truck loads hauling supplies to the oil fields, the oil pipeline, and, in the future, a gas line. Over 30 years, the timber decking has been replaced several times — in 1981, 1992, 1999, and 2007. The trees that produced the original decking were massive old-growth firs, strong and close-grained. Subsequent decking has come from younger trees, which produce softer wood. As timber quality has decreased, time between replacements has also decreased, while material costs increase. Every time the Yukon River Bridge deck is resurfaced, it costs the public millions of dollars. Further, in the past only timber was used, and the quality of this material is decreasing as the cost is increasing. It is imperative that new materials for use as a wearing surface for this bridge be identified. This research seeks to identify a material suitable for bridge decking that will last more than 15 years. A longer-lasting material will mean future savings to the ADOT&PF in the millions of dollars.

Final Report

Wearing Surface Testing: Yukon River Bridge
24 Apr 2013

Wearing Surface Testing: Yukon River Bridge
J.L. Hulsey, Ph.D., P.E., S.E. Ty Wardell Patrick Brandon
Final-Yukon-River-BRfpjlh2.pdf
YRB-Final-Report-FINAL_fp-jlh.pdf

Related Project Activity

24 April 2013

Wearing Surface Testing: Yukon River Bridge

by billy.connor

YRB Final Report – FINAL_fp (jlh)

Final Yukon River BR(fp,jlh2)