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Quality specifications for roadway bridges, standardization at a European level


Quality specifications for roadway bridges, standardization at a European level

Background & policy context: 

During the implementation of asset management strategies, maintenance actions are required in order to keep assets at a desired performance level. In case of roadway bridges, specific performance indicators are established for their components. These indicators can be qualitative or quantitative based, and they can be obtained during principal inspections, through a visual examination, a non-destructive test or a temporary or permanent monitoring system.


The main objective of the Action is to develop a guideline for the establishment of QC plans in roadway bridges, by integrating the most recent knowledge on performance assessment procedures with the adoption of specific goals. This guideline will focus on bridge maintenance and life-cycle performance at two levels: (i) performance indicators, (ii) performance goals. By developing new approaches to quantify and assess the bridge performance, as well as quality specifications to assure an expected performance level, bridge management strategies will be significantly improved, enhancing asset management of ageing structures in Europe.

In order to reach the main general aim stated above, the following more specific objectives/deliverables have been considered:

  1. to systematize knowledge on QC plans for bridges, which will help to achieve a state-of-art report that includes performance indicators and respective goals;
  2. to collect and contribute to up-to-date knowledge on performance indicators, including not only technical indicators but also environmental, economic and social ones;
  3. to establish a wide set of quality specifications through the definition of performance goals, aiming to assure an expected performance level;
  4. to develop detailed examples for practicing engineers on the assessment of performance indicators as well as in the establishment of performance goals, to be integrated in the developed guideline;
  5. to create a data basis from COST countries with performance indicator values and respective goals, that can be useful for future purposes;
  6. to develop a webpage with information about the Action and its participants, as well as, video streaming from presentations at training schools, workshops and conferences, e-lectures, written material (e.g. technical reports),etc.;
  7. to support the development of technical/scientific committees;
  8. to disseminate activities, such as Short-Term Scientific Missions (STSM), training schools and other teaching activities (e.g. e-lectures), for practicing engineers and researchers, regular workshops, a conference and special sessions at international conferences.
Institution Type:
Institution Name: 
Technical secretariat set in the European Commission
Type of funding:
Funding Source(s): 
COST Action TU 1406
Lead Organisation: 

Universidade Do Minho

The Rectory, Largo do Paco
4704553 BRAGA
Development phase: