Axion To Build Two Additional Recycled Plastic Bridges For the U.S. Army

Axion To Build Two Additional Recycled Plastic Bridges For the U.S. Army

Axion International Holdings is increasing the performance of its recycled plastic bridges with a contact from the U.S. Army to build two railroad bridges that can support 130 tons.

Axion will be building the bridges, which will be made almost entirely of recycled post-consumer plastic, at Fort Eustis in Virginia, the home of the US Army Transportation Corps. The bridges will be used for locomotives and freight traffic as part of military movements and base exercises.

Axion makes what it calls recycled structural composites out of post-consumer plastic, mainly high-density polyethylene (HDPE) items like milk jugs, detergent bottles and industrial plastic like car bumpers. The only non-plastic parts will be nuts and bolts that hold the Axion materials together and metal drill templates.

The railroad crossties on the bridge will also be made of recycled plastic. Axion has already put about 200,000 plastic railroad ties into service, about 100 of which have been monitored for the past 12 years at the American Association of Railroads test track in Pueblo, Colo.

The $957,000 contract calls for two railroad bridges, one 40 feet and one 80 feet, each of which will be able to support 130 tons. Two recycled plastic bridges that Axion has already made for Fort Bragg, NC, (shown above) can support 73 tons for tracked vehicles and 88 tons for wheeled vehicles.

The new bridges are replacing two wooden bridges that were taken out of service, and are expected to be built in a shorter time than bridges made from other materials, and will be nearly maintenance-free.

Bridge - Courtesy Axion