The joint venture (JV) company of HDR Engineering and Alta Vista Solutions has won a contract to provide technical services and research support for US Federal Highway Administration’s (FHWA) Long-Term Bridge Performance (LTBP) programme.

The 20-year research programme aims to collect field data throughout the US to better understand bridge performance and enhance deterioration prediction modelling and capital expenditure decision-making.

Under the $50m contract, the JV company HDR/AVS Group will collect field data collection using a combination of the FHWA Robotics-Assisted Bridge Inspection Tool (RABIT), modern non-destructive evaluation and testing techniques as well as conduct conventional bridge inspection.

HDR’s Duncan Paterson will serve as project manager, while Alta Vista’s Mazen Wahbeh will be the principal investigator.

“This programme is bringing us to a new level in data collection and analysis.”

Paterson said: “This extensive, dedicated programme focused on providing high-quality performance data will help create new ways of thinking about how we evaluate our nation’s bridges and apply that information to reduce long-term asset lifecycle costs.”

Wahbeh said: “This programme is bringing us to a new level in data collection and analysis. It aligns with our commitment to integrate aerial and ground-based sensor platforms into our infrastructure inspection programmes.”

Both companies intend to exploit their experience in building and maintaining bridges.

HDR is currently serving as lead designer on the Pennsylvania Rapid Bridge Replacement Program, Bayonne Bridge navigational clearance project and Governor Mario Cuomo Bridge.

Alta Vista provided engineering and source inspection services on the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge for ten years and also monitored orthotropic steel deck fabrication on the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge in New York.