Expansion Joint Systems are the key connections made to move, resist weather

Above: D.S. Brown provided expansion joint systems for the Lesner Bridge in Virginia Beach, winner of a 2019 ASBI award. The Lesner Bridge was also chosen as a 2019 Top Bridge by Roads & Bridges.

For more than 50 years, the D.S. Brown Company has provided expansion joint systems for bridges worldwide. Bridge expansion joint systems are directly exposed to heavy vehicular wheel loads and therefore, must resist the dynamic forces causing fatigue and wear.

Expansion joint systems must also remain watertight to protect the bridge superstructure from corrosion. Weather and temperature affect everything, and when temperature causes changes in structure, such as thermal expansion or thermal contraction, expansion joint systems help structures maintain form.

D.S. Brown is committed to product research and development to satisfy the demanding needs of bridge expansion joint systems. Each expansion joint systems product is supported by world-renowned, independent testing laboratories. D.S. Brown pioneered processing improvements of its Steelflex® rail profiles from the traditional extrusion method to the innovative hot-rolled/machined and hot-rolled/non-machined technology.

In-house neoprene sealing element extrusion capabilities have even further enhanced the quality of these products. D.S. Brown’s stringent quality control measures have both improved the watertight integrity of its expansion joint systems while reducing the cost of these expansion joint assemblies to owners and contractors. D.S. Brown’s design guide includes six key products that meet the specifications of your bridge projects.

Delastic® Preformed Polychloroprene Compression Seals

In 1960, D.S. Brown began designing and extruding the first generation of Delastic® Preformed Polychloroprene Compression Seals, a versatile and cost-effective joint sealing solution. To withstand the demanding requirements of bridge/highway installations, all Delastic® Preformed Polychloroprene Compression Seals are extruded from polychloroprene compounds which satisfy the ASTM standard specification D3542 for Preformed Polychloroprene Elastomeric Joint Seals for Bridges.

J & JP-Series Sealing Systems

The J & JP-Series Sealing Systems include an extruded elastomeric profile and a high-strength, two-part epoxy-based structural adhesive. When bonded in the expansion joint, the product will seal the opening from the intrusion of water and debris. The J-Series is specifically designed for applications requiring +/-50% movement to accommodate thermal change and 25% longitudinal movement in skewed conditions. The JP-Series is designed for applications that are required to meet ADA guidelines and provide a smooth walking surface for pedestrians.

Steelflex® Strip Seal Expansion Joint Systems

Steelflex® Strip Seal Expansion Joint Systems have become the overwhelming choice of owners and specifying engineers around the world for accommodating up to 4 inches (102mm) of total structural movement in the direction of travel per AASHTO guidelines.

Delcrete® Elastomeric Concrete/Strip Seal Expansion Joint

The Delcrete® Elastomeric Concrete/Steelflex® Strip Seal Expansion Joint has been utilized as an alternative to more labor intensive, cast-in-place expansion joint rehabilitation solutions. This expansion joint system also offers superior long-term performance when compared to various pourable joint solutions.

Steelflex® Modular Expansion Joint Systems

Steelflex® Modular Expansion Joint Systems are highly engineered assemblies which consist of Steelflex® centerbeams and edge beams and have gained overwhelming worldwide acceptance for accommodating and sealing large joint movements on bridges. Each joint system is designed to provide watertight, fatigue-resistant, long-term maintenance-free performance.

Maurer System™ Swivel Expansion Joint Assembly

Conventional large movement expansion joint devices, such as D.S. Brown’s Steelflex® Modular Expansion Joint System, are limited to primarily longitudinal movements and/or less than ±0.79 inches (20mm) transverse displacement. For joint locations which produce more demanding structural movements, the Maurer System™ Swivel Expansion Joint Assembly by The D.S. Brown Company is provided in the United States through an exclusive license agreement with Maurer Söhne in Munich, Germany.

Above: Maurer System™ Swivel Expansion Joint Assemblies were used in the Hernando Desoto Bridge connecting Memphis via I-40 over the Mississippi River.

Expansion Joint System Signature Projects

D.S. Brown’s expansion joint systems support big projects like PENNDOT’s I-95 South Reconstruction, the Roosevelt Expressway and State Route 3-Chesnut Street in Philadelphia, the I-75 Widening in Toledo, Ohio, the I-294 Reconstruction for Illinois Tollway, the Witt Penn Bridge for the New Jersey Department of Transportation, I-80 Bridges for the New Jersey Tollway, the I-70 Bridge Project for the West Virginia Department of Transportation, the Washington Street Bridge in Boston (MADOT) and the South Capitol Street Corridor for the District of Columbia Department of Transportation.

Maurer System™ Swivel Expansion Joint Assemblies were used in the Hernando Desoto Bridge connecting Memphis via I-40 over the Mississippi River. The bridge has been retrofitted by the Tennessee Department of Transportation to withstand a magnitude 7.5 event, as Memphis is located close to the southwestern segment of the New Madrid seismic zone.

Steelflex® Strip Seal Expansion Joint Systems, J & JP Series Sealing Systems and Steelflex® Modular Expansion Joint Systems were used extensively in the New Jersey Turnpike, one of the busiest highways in the United States, connecting New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Delaware.

Expansion Joint System Installation

D.S. Brown expansion joint systems tools, kits and adhesives are key to installation. Find details on our Trough and Tapper Tool, Strip Sealer Tool, Strip Seal Removal Kit, Strip Seal Repair Kit, DSB 1521 Adhesive (Aron Alpha 202F), and DSB 1520 Lubricant Adhesive.

About the D.S. Brown Company

D.S. Brown was founded in 1890 and designs, supplies, and manufactures engineered rubber, steel and concrete products for the transportation and infrastructure sector. D.S. Brown’s proprietary product line includes expansion joints, structural bearings, elastomeric concrete and waterproofing systems for constructing and rehabilitating highways and bridges. D.S. Brown’s home office and manufacturing facilities are based in North Baltimore, Ohio.

D.S. Brown, a Gibraltar Industries company, is fully integrated, performing and controlling all manufacturing processes internally including Research and Development, Engineering Design/CAD Detailing, Extruding, Molding and Testing and Custom Steel Fabrication and Machining.

Connecting with D.S. Brown

Connect with our D.S. Brown bridge products representatives – Ben Jacobus, Brent Toller, Mark Francis, Ralph Kleinman and Stephen Borgmann – for more detail.

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