Tuesday, February 17, 2015

News: Macalloy spans the globe

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Super strength tension rods manufactured by Macalloy in Rotherham have made the pioneering ideas of engineers and designers a reality, as the innovative Troja Bridge opens in the Czech Republic, a structure believed to be the world's largest "network arch."

Based in Dinnington, Macalloy are world leaders in design, manufacture and supply of threaded bar and cable systems to engineering and construction projects across the globe.

The £30m Troja Bridge spans the River Vltava using an innovative network arch method that is dramatically stronger than more traditional bridge designs. The 200m long, 34m wide bridge is now in full operation, carrying a four lane dual carriageway and twin tram tracks along with pedestrian and cycle paths, on what is a key crossing for the important Prague ring road.

Conventional bowstring arch designs use vertical hangers to stiffen the structure but on the Troja Bridge the hangers are arranged diagonally, creating a criss-cross "network." It was built with a welded box section steel arch, prestressed concrete deck, cantilevered steel side platforms and criss-crossed steel hangers that brace the bridge like a steel web.

Macalloy supplied its 520 tension rods system to be used as the bridge hangers. Macalloy also designed a unique fatigue resistant thread form for the project which was tested in accordance with high standards for fatigue connections in bridges. The steel tension rods were tensioned using Macalloy's Techno-Tensioner device – a device that enables on-site stressing of tension rods using a turnbuckle connection.
Mott MacDonald's innovative design has reduced the height of the bridge by 60% – from 50m to 20m at its highest point, and the lower, shorter arch and shorter hangers offered potential materials savings of 40%.

Radko Bucek, managing director for the Czech Republic at Mott MacDonald, said: "Troja Bridge represents a major step forward in structural efficiency. By reconfiguring the hangers of the classic bowstring arch from a conventional vertical arrangement to a diagonal one, we have dramatically improved the bridge's performance."

Macalloy products are exported around the world and used in a wide variety of construction projects including the Burj Al Arab Hotel in Dubai, the $5.5bn Marina Bay Sands development in Singapore and the Soccer City Stadium in Johannesburg and the Olympia Stadion in Berlin, both of which have hosted the World Cup final.

Macalloy website

Images: Mott MacDonald

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