Absolute scoop at CRH Structural Concrete Belgium
Absolute scoop soon to be rolled out from Ergon’s plant in Lier. CRH has, in fact, succeeded in producing a 36m long UHPC (Ultra-High Performance Concrete) element. The element is a bicycle/pedestrian bridge that will replace one of Belgium’s first prestressed concrete bridges. Symbolic? The old bridge dates from 1956 and no longer meets today’s requirements. In 2014 railway operator Infrabel decided to replace it, asking Ergon for support in examining the various options that could be applied.
Ergon, a CRH Structural Concrete Belgium brand, proposed to replace the bridge with a completely new prefab concrete element made of UHPC. It is symbolic in that one of Belgium’s first prestressed concrete bridges, which bridge railway line L26 (Schaarbeek-Halle), will be replaced by the very first bridge made of UHPC.
The use of UHPC allows for a slimmer bridge design. Without traditional reinforcement in the slab, the bridge is only 10cm thick, yet stronger than any conventional prestressed concrete bridge.
The bridge consists of a thin slab, 30m long and 4m wide, supported by 2 slender ribs no thicker than 10cm.