NIST Roadmapping Workshop Report Addresses Barriers to Adoption of Composites in Infrastructure

February 05 2018

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has published a Roadmapping Workshop Report that suggests ways to facilitate wider adoption of composites in a variety of infrastructure applications, including dams, bridges, highways, railroads, harbors and waterfront structures, utility poles and buildings.

During the workshop, designers, engineers, ACMA member manufacturers, researchers, owners and end-users identified barriers that must be overcome to enable the adoption of composite technology. The attendees developed a preliminary roadmap with three proposed solutions to those barriers. If carried out, they could lead to the adoption of Fiber Reinforced Polymers (FRPs) that are more reliable, durable and cost-effective than current infrastructure material options. The proposals included:

1. Improved durability testing: The development of a five-year program to establish reliable design tools based on new durability standards. The tools would be available to all stakeholders through an online data portal.

2. Design Data Clearinghouse: A desire for a way to gather, curate and disseminate design data to engineers.

3. Education and Training: The need to create a constant stream of education and training materials for universities and industrial schools that have composite training and certification programs.

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