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EPS Geofoam Applications: Bridge Abutments

Geofoam is a geotechnical material made of expanded polystyrene. It is cut into lightweight blocks that are surprisingly strong. One of the best uses for expanded polystyrene (EPS) geofoam is for the construction of approach fills for bridge abutments. With a naturally high compressive resistance, it makes a great, safe, secure, and cost-effective fill material that safely supports highway loading. Because it is lightweight, it does not stress underlying soils like other backfill materials. In turn, this typically reduces the differential movement at the bridge/approach fill interface, resulting in lower construction costs and a minimized long-term maintenance budget.

Benefits of EPS Geofoam for Bridge Abutment Construction

In addition to its compressive resistance benefits, EPS geofoam also imparts significantly reduced lateral forces on bridge abutment walls, bridge foundations, and other retaining structures. This reduced lateral force is due to the fact that the transmitted lateral force is directly proportional to the weight of the backfill used in abutment construction.

Since it is much lighter than other backfill material, it naturally results in savings for the design of bridge abutments and other walls, which are no longer required to resist large horizontal static and dynamic forces. Geofoam is actually 98% air, which is why it is so lightweight. It is not just lightweight, though. Compared to other building materials, it not only costs less, it is more environmentally friendly. EPS geofoam is 100% recyclable http://www.epspackaging.org and can be dug up and reused decades later.

EPS Geofoam and Bridge Abutment Construction

If you want to learn more about EPS geofoam (or expanded polystyrene geofoam) and its role in bridge abutment construction, take a look at our EPS geofoam brochure or contact one of our EPS product specialists today by calling 800-241-3634!

Learn more about EPS Geofoam applications!



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