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RJ Watson Bearing Replacement on Zilwaukee Bridge featured in Aspire Magazine

AspireBook_Spring 2014_Zilwaukee

The Zilwaukee Bridge, a 1.5-mile-long twin concrete segmental structure, carries I-75 traffic over the Saginaw River. All Photos: Michigan Department of Transportation.

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ZILWAUKEE BRIDGE / ZILWAUKEE, MICHIGAN BRIDGE REPLACEMENT CONSULTANT: T.Y. Lin International, San Francisco, Calif. QUALITY ASSURANCE ENGINEER: Janssen and Spaans Engineer Inc., Chicago, Ill. CONSTRUCTION ENGINEER: Corven Engineering Inc., Tallahassee, Fla. PRIME CONTRACTOR: PCL Construction, Tampa, Fla. POST-TENSIONING CONTRACTORS: PCL Construction, Tampa, Fla., and Walter Toebe Construction, Wixom, Mich.
12 | ASPIRE, Spring 2014

Bearing Replacement

The challenges associated with the bearing replacement were clear. Loads approaching 17 million pounds would have to be jacked from piers with heights up to 130 ft. Then, new, higher capacity bearings would have to be installed into the existing openings with little to no allowable modifications to the structure. Loads approaching 17 million pounds would have to be jacked from piers with heights up to 130 ft. The old expansion joint bearings rested on reinforced, cantilevered concrete corbels containing the anchorages for the post-tensioning. Therefore, any modifications to the concrete corbel to gain additional space was limited to the 2 in. of concrete cover above the reinforcing steel. The existing opening housing the expansion joint bearings provided approximately 4 in. of space from corbel to top plate. The top plates were salvaged because they were cast into the upper segment and were in sound condition. This lack of space also meant a higher-capacity and taller pot- style bearing would not be able to be used. The pier bearings rested directly on top of each pier with a cast-in- place concrete plinth between the top of bearing and bottom of the superstructure. Plinth modifications were made to accommodate various bearing depths. Jacking stresses and load path redistribution were addressed by application of additional external post-tensioning forces via post-tensioning bars and walers to the elements affected. Some of the affected elements required an additional 2.5 million pounds of compression to prevent excess principal tensile stresses during jacking. read the rest of the article here

Acoustiblok Press Release

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6900 Interbay Blvd. Tampa, FL 33616 (p) 813.980,1400 (F) 813.549.2653 www.acoustiblok.com

Press Release

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION Anne D. Knight Director of Public Relations Acoustiblok Corporation 813‐980‐1400 Ext. 210 [email protected]

RJ Watson Named Exclusive Distributor of New Acoustiblok Bridge Joint Noise Isolation Material

TAMPA, Fla., February 24, 2014 – Acoustiblok Inc. and RJ Watson Inc. today announced the signing of an agreement providing RJ Watson Inc. of Buffalo, NY the exclusive rights to market and distribute a new bridge joint noise reduction product called Acoustiblok Bridge Joint Isolation Material®  in North America. This agreement represents the first successful efforts of Acoustiblok Inc. and RJ Watson Inc. Bridge expansion joints are designed to permit the longitudinal expansion and contractions on bridge decks due to changes in environmental conditions. It is commonly known that an environmental noise nuisance occurs as motor vehicle wheels pass over the joint. It has until now never been resolved because no material could be put in the joint which would stop sound and still allow the joint to expand and contract. Traveling over a bridge expansion joint with a vehicle creates a short noise impulse that can range from 70‐105 decibels on a sound meter. Every 10 decibels of sound represents a doubling in the amount of sound heard by the human ear. How loud is 70‐105 decibels? To put that in context, a garbage disposal emits about 80 decibels of sound, a lawnmower about 90 decibels, and a bulldozer about 100‐105 decibels. “RJ Watson is the ideal partner for Acoustiblok Joint Isolation Material. As a worldwide designer, manufacturer and supplier of bridge joint systems and a leading bridge joint repair specialist, they have established relationships with transportation departments and engineering personnel all over the world,” said Lahnie Johnson, President and Founder of Acoustiblok Inc. Acoustiblok Bridge Joint Isolation Material utilizes a specially formulated modification of the company’s proprietary Acoustiblok sound reduction membrane. It’s a heavy, yet very flexible viscoelastic polymer material that provides sound reduction through a unique adiabatic process. Rather than attempting to block or absorb sound, Acoustiblok transforms sound energy into inaudible friction energy as the material flexes from sound waves. A 1/8″ (3 mm) thick layer add to a standard stud wall can provide more sound reduction than 12″ (305 mm) of poured concrete. “We look forward to working together with RJ Watson on this exciting new product. I believe this product has great potential,” said Johnson. RJ Watson and Acoustiblok performed product testing at a vehicular bridge in Hillsborough County, FL. The test focused on a bridge joint at the western abutment. Without Acoustiblok material, bridge joint noise reached as high as 105 decibels during vehicular impact with the bridge joint. With Acoustiblok, that noise was reduced to 83 decibels, which is a 99 percent reduction in pressure and a 73 percent perceived reduction in sound to the human ear. “Results clearly demonstrated that Acoustiblok Joint Isolation Material is very effective at reducing bridge joint noise while still permitting the expansion and contraction of the joint.” said Johnson. “We’re excited to get this new product out there and demonstrate what an effective system it is for reducing bridge joint noise and for reducing noise pollution,” said Ron Watson, President of RJ Watson Inc.
About Acoustiblok – “Quieting the World”
Acoustiblok Inc., a NASA Spin‐off listed company headquartered in Tampa, FL, provides acoustical soundproofing solutions for noise related issues. The company develops, manufactures, and markets acoustical products around the world, earning the industry’s highest ratings from architects, builders, and consumers. Primary products include Acoustiblok® viscoelastic polymer based soundproofing material, Acoustifence® outdoor noise barrier, All Weather Sound Panels®, QuietFiber® insulating material, Quiet‐ Cloud® industrial sound absorption panels, Acoustiblok WALLCOVER®, and Thermablok® aerogel nanotechnology insulation. Acoustiblok products are used in industrial, residential, commercial, and marine sectors worldwide. The company’s products are made and sourced in the United States. Acoustiblok Inc. ships products to more than 60 countries through a network of stocking distributors in the United States and on five continents across the globe. The company operates a subsidiary, Acoustiblok Mideast, in Saudi Arabia to augment our distributor network. www.acoustiblok.com

About RJ Watson

RJ Watson is a worldwide designer, manufacturer and supplier of bridge bearings, seismic isolation disk bearings, multi‐rotational disk bearings, uplift bearings, bridge expansion joints, spray applied waterproofing membranes and FRP structural systems for the bridge & highway Industry.  www.rjwatson.com