Pulaski Skyway Substructure - Service-Life Evaluation
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Panama Canal - 100-year service-life specification for the third set of locks
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STADIUM® - The only advanced predictive modeling tool of its kind in the industry
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Service-life and durability design engineering

Featured projects

  • Panama Canal – Third Set of Locks
  • Assist in the design of a series of durable concrete mixtures to meet the 100-year service-life specification set forth by the Panama Canal Authority (ACP)

  • Fehmarnbelt Fixed Link Tunnel
  • Concrete mixture optimization in accordance to durability requirements and for a service life of 120 years

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Service-Life & Durability Design Engineering

The challenge

Deterioration of concrete infrastructure has become increasingly challenging and a huge burden on the world’s economy; roads, bridges, airport facilities, marine structures, power plants, etc., deteriorate after just a few years in service. Billions of dollars have been spent across the globe in the last decade alone, for the repair and restoration of our aging structures. Unfortunately, most of these structures were built without a service-life consideration and now they are deteriorating much earlier than expected.

Without a structured service-life oriented approach, owners of civil infrastructure run a significant safety risk of rapid, unforeseen degradation or, worse yet, sudden collapse. It is therefore imperative to find cost-effective ways to ensure a maximum service life of civil engineering structures without the need for major interventions.

A change in design paradigm is needed if real improvements to service life are to be achieved

Traditional Model

Traditionally, material durability has been addressed by engineers on a qualitative basis. For instance, most specifications take important steps to limit the water-cement ratio and permeability of concrete. This approach, however, provides little indication of when a structural element will deteriorate to an unacceptable level of service. In order to design a structure to achieve a specific service life, it is also important to understand how local materials and environmental conditions can substantially influence the actual service life of a structure.

Given the growing concern for concrete degradation, numerous computer-assisted tools have been developed over the years to assist engineers in predicting the service life of their structures. Many of these models however, are based on simplified equations that significantly restrict the scope of their application as they do not simulate the complex nature of the chemical reactions and transport mechanisms that lead to the degradation of concrete structures.

The Solution – Concrete Durability Design

SIMCO has developed a unique understanding of the major parameters that govern the deterioration process and has developed innovative evaluation techniques for the efficient repair and rehabilitation of concrete infrastructure. With the use of sophisticated materials analysis techniques and leading-edge service-life predictive software, SIMCO’s service-life solutions lead to better business decisions and asset management practices for owners and managers of civil infrastructure.

The expert methodology and predictive analytical models developed by SIMCO provide owners and managers with a deeper understanding of the problems affecting their infrastructure and leads to more beneficial solutions where traditional methods are either inadequate, too costly, or overly time-consuming.

SIMCO’s unique technical approach is centered on the use of STADIUM®, the only advanced numerical modeling tool of its kind in the industry. STADIUM® software is used to simulate the deterioration of concrete by considering multiple deterioration mechanisms in saturated or unsaturated conditions. STADIUM® considers the influence of local materials, the geometry of structural elements and the specific environmental conditions to which they are exposed.

STADIUM® software is also used to predict future chloride contaminations, carbonation penetration and concrete degradation in order to evaluate different maintenance alternatives with regards to future deterioration.

SIMCO works with owners, engineers, architects, and contractors to enable design and decision-making for the achievement of specific service-life goals for new and existing structures.

A service-life Numerical modeling tool specified by the u.s. department of defense

After a worldwide review and an extensive market survey, NAVFAC Engineering Service Center (NAVFAC ESC) found that no other program besides STADIUM® adequately meets requirements for service-life modeling and therefore specifies the use of STADIUM® software on all Military Construction (MILCON) projects.

Our Services

  • Review of technical specifications and assistance in the preparation of tender documents
  • Analysis of concrete material properties for durability and performance requirements
  • Standard and specialized laboratory tests and analysis of results
  • Calculation of the condition and value of an asset at any given time in the future
  • Optimization of mixture designs in accordance to service-life requirements
  • Lifecycle cost analyses for different repair and rehabilitation options
  • Elaboration of durable concrete mixture specifications with the use of local materials for different environmental conditions