Following a successful non-destructive testing of three bridges in Pennsylvania, The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation has prepared an on-call contract with Material Technologies for the entire state.
The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation had engaged Material Technologies (MaTech) to use its Electrochemical Fatigue Sensor (EFS) for special inspections of the three bridges, each of which were part of interstate highways in diverse areas of the state.
At a meeting to discuss the results of these inspections, the officials were so impressed with the work and the cost-effectiveness of the results that they ordered an on-call contract with MaTech for the entire state.
With only inspecting three bridges in the state, they believe that MaTech has already saved them around $50,000, and most likely avoided the closure of one of their main bridges.
MaTech’s EFS technology can find growing cracks in bridges, including cracks below the surface, as small as 0.01 inches. This critical information will allow the state’s bridge engineers to fix the specific bridges in most need of repair. Using EFS, the engineers will also be able to verify that repairs are effective in halting further fatigue crack growth, by determining that previously repaired fatigue cracks are no longer growing.
Being able to prioritize needed repairs, the state should be able to realize significant cost savings. It can also repair the most critical bridges sooner, eliminating the need to restrict the weights of some trucks and minimizing adverse economic impacts.
MaTech has received a great deal of interest from federal and state agencies recently, following the passage of the $286 billion Federal Transportation Bill, which included funds to help states evaluate nondestructive methods such as EFS to detect growing fatigue cracks in steel bridges.
We are extremely pleased that 10 years of diligent research has finally allowed us to take the company to the next level, and we are confident that this should be the first of many revenue streams to come, commented MaTech CEO Robert Bernstein. The State of Pennsylvania alone has 3500 steel bridges, of which 1/2 must be inspected every year. This could lead to a very substantial annual contract in Pennsylvania.