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Innovative Technology for Accelerated Construction of Bridge and Embankment Foundations in Europe

September 2003

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Office of International Programs FHWA/US DOT (HPIP)
400 Seventh Street, SW
Washington, DC 20590

Tel: 202-366-9636
Fax: 202-366-9626



The contents of this report reflect the views of the authors, who are responsible for the facts and accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do not necessarily reflect the official policy of the Department of Transportation.

The metric units reported are those used in common practice by the persons interviewed. They have not been converted to pure SI units because in some cases, the level of precision implied would have been changed.

The United States Government does not endorse products or manufacturers. Trademarks or manufacturers' names appear herein only because they are considered essential to the document.

The publication of this document was sponsored by the U.S. Federal Highway Administration under contract number DTFH61-99-C00005. awarded to American Trade Initiatives, Inc. Any opinions, options, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Government, the authors' parent institutions, or American Trade Initiatives, Inc.

This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation.

Technical Report Documentation Page
1. Report No.
2.Government Accession No. 3. Recipient's Catalog No.

4. Title and Subtitle
Innovative Technology for Accelerated Construction of Bridge and
Embankment Foundations in Europe

5. Report Date
September 2003
6. Performing Organization Code
7. Author(s) Richard D. Short, 8. Performing Organization Report No.

9. Performing Organization Name and Address
American Trade Initiatives
P.O. Box 8228
Alexandria, VA 22306-8228

10. Work Unit No.(TRAIS)
11. Contract or Grant No.
12. Sponsoring Agency Name and Address
Office of International Programs
Office of Policy
Federal Highway Administration
U.S. Department of Transportation
13. Type of Report and Period Covered
14. Sponsoring Agency Code
15. Supplementary Notes
FHWA COTR: Hana Maier, Office of International Programs

16. Abstract

In June 2002 the scan team met in Europe with technical and industry leaders representing Belgium, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Sweden, and the United Kingdom to identify and evaluate innovative European technologies in accelerated construction of bridge and embankment foundations. The scan team also explored opportunities for cooperative research and development and implementation of accelerated construction technology.

The scan team identified and evaluated 30 technologies and 15 processes with the potential for accelerating construction in the areas of bridge foundation systems, equipment, and ground improvement methods; embankment deep foundation systems, equipment, and ground improvement methods; embankment mat foundation systems and equipment; embankment construction equipment and methods; innovative earth-retention systems; and processes and implementation methods. The report provides tabular summaries of these technologies along with a relative ranking in terms of anticipated improvements in construction time, cost, and quality.

The overall goal of the scan trip is to implement technologies of best practice in the United States. With this objective clearly in mind, team members developed an implementation ranking. The technologies that were selected for immediate implementation action are:

  • Column-supported embankments
  • Continuous flight auger and cased secant pile bridge foundations
  • Automated computer installation control and installation documentation
  • Self-compacting concrete

17. Key Words

Construction, geotechnical, bridge, foundations,
embankments, continuous flight auger, self-compacting
concrete, geotextile, column-supported embankment

18. Distribution Statement

No restrictions. This document is available to the public from the
Office of International Programs
FHWA-HPIP, Room 3325
US Dept. of Transportation
Washington, DC 20590


19. Security Classif. (of this report)
20. Security Classif. (of this page)
21. No. of Pages

22. Price



Chris Dumas

Sam Mansukhani

Dr. Ali Porbaha

Richard D. Short
Kleinfelder, Inc.

Randy R. Cannon
South Carolina DOT

Kevin W. McLain
Missouri DOT

Dr. Sastry Putcha
Florida DOT

Alan Macnab
Condon-Johnson &
Assoc. Inc.

Maung Myint Lwin

Thomas W. Pelnik III
Virginia DOT

Dr. Dan A. Brown
Auburn University

Dr. Barry R. Christopher
Consulting Engineer


American Trade Initiatives, Inc.
LGB & Associates, Inc.

for the

Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)
U.S. Department of Transportation


The American Association of State Highway and
Transportation Officials


The National Cooperative Highway Research Program
(Panel 20-36)
of the Transportation Research Board

September 2003


The Federal Highway Administration's (FHWA) international programs focus on meeting the growing demands of its partners at the Federal, State, and local levels for access to information on state-of-the-art technology and the best practices used worldwide. While FHWA is considered a world leader in highway transportation, the domestic highway community is interested in the advanced technologies being developed by other countries, as well as innovative organizational and financing techniques used by FHWA's international counterparts.

The International Technology Scanning Program accesses and evaluates foreign technologies and innovations that could significantly benefit U.S. highway transportation systems. Access to foreign innovations is strengthened by U.S. participation in the technical committees of international highway organizations and through bilateral technical exchange agreements with selected nations. The program is undertaken cooperatively with the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials and its Select Committee on International Activities, and the Transportation Research Board's National Cooperative Highway Research Program (Panel 20-36), the private sector, and academia.

FHWA and its partners jointly determine priority topic areas. Teams of specialists in the specific areas of expertise being investigated are formed and sent to countries where significant advances and innovations have been made in technology, management practices, organizational structure, program delivery, and financing. Teams usually include Federal and State highway officials, private sector and industry association representatives, and members of the academic community.

FHWA has organized more than 50 of these reviews and disseminated results nationwide. Topics have included pavements, bridge construction and maintenance, contracting, intermodal transport, organizational management, winter road maintenance, safety, intelligent transportation systems, planning, and policy. Findings are recommended for follow-up with further research and pilot or demonstration projects to verify adaptability to the United States. Information about the scan findings and results of pilot programs are then disseminated nationally to State and local highway transportation officials and the private sector for implementation.

This program has resulted in significant improvements and savings in road program technologies and practices throughout the United States, particularly in the areas of structures, pavements, safety, and winter road maintenance. Joint research and technology-sharing projects have also been launched with international counterparts, further conserving resources and advancing the state of the art.

For a complete list of International Technology Scanning topics, and to order free copies of the reports, please see pages iii-iv.

Website: www.international.fhwa.dot.gov
Email: international@fhwa.dot.gov


International Technology Scanning Program: Bringing Global Innovations to U.S. Highways


Geotechnical Engineering Practices in Canada and Europe
Geotechnology-Soil Nailing
International Contract Administration Techniques for Quality Enhancement-CATQEST
Contract Administration: Technology and Practice in Europe


European Asphalt Technology
European Concrete Technology
South African Pavement Technology
Highway/Commercial Vehicle Interaction
Recycled Materials in European Highway Environments
Pavement Preservation Technology in France, South Africa, and Australia


European Bridge Structures
Asian Bridge Structures
Bridge Maintenance Coatings
European Practices for Bridge Scour and Stream Instability Countermeasures
Advanced Composites in Bridges in Europe and Japan
Steel Bridge Fabrication Technologies in Europe and Japan
Performance of Concrete Segmental and Cable-Stayed Bridges in Europe

Planning and Environment

European Intermodal Programs: Planning, Policy, and Technology
National Travel Surveys
Recycled Materials in European Highway Environments
Geometric Design Practices for European Roads
Sustainable Transportation Practices in Europe
Wildlife Habitat Connectivity Across European Highways
European Right-of-Way and Utilities Best Practices


Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety in England, Germany and the Netherlands
Speed Management and Enforcement Technology: Europe & Australia
Safety Management Practices in Japan, Australia, and New Zealand
Road Safety Audits-Final Report
Road Safety Audits-Case Studies
Innovative Traffic Control Technology & Practice in Europe
Commercial Vehicle Safety Technology & Practice in Europe
Methods and Procedures to Reduce Motorist Delays in European Work Zones
Managing and Organizing Comprehensive Highway Safety in Europe


Advanced Transportation Technology
European Traffic Monitoring
Traffic Management and Traveler Information Systems
European Winter Service Technology
Snowbreak Forest Book - Highway Snowstorm Countermeasure Manual (Translated from Japanese)
European Road Lighting Technologies
Freight Transportation: The European Market
Traveler Information Systems in Europe

Policy & Information

Emerging Models for Delivering Transportation Programs and Services
Acquiring Highway Transportation Information from Abroad-Handbook
Acquiring Highway Transportation Information from Abroad-Final Report
International Guide to Highway Transportation Information
European Practices in Transportation Workforce Development

All publications are available on the internet at www.international.fhwa.dot.gov


AASHTO American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials
ADECO Analysis of Controlled Deformation
ADSC International Association of Foundation Drilling
CDW Continuous diaphragm wall
CFA Continuous flight auger
CIP Cast-in-place
CPT Cone penetration test
CSP Cased secant pile
CSV Soil stabilization with vertical columns
DOT Department of transportation
EC European Commission
EU European Union
FHWA Federal Highway Administration
FWD Falling weight deflectometer
GEC Geotextile-encased columns
GRP Glass-reinforced plastic
IBRC Innovative Bridge Research and Construction
LRFD Load and resistant factor design
MSE Mechanically stabilized earth
NDM National Deep Mixing Cooperative Research program
QA Quality assurance
QC Quality control
RPUM Reinforced Protective Umbrella Method™
SASW Spectral analysis of surface waves
SCC Self-compacting cement
TRB Transportation Research Bureau
UK United Kingdom
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