The October 2022 inauguration of the Fontana Drive Bridge in the Sydney suburb of Box Hill, Australia, added a key element to the rapidly expanding community’s need for improved infrastructure. The Penetron System was specified to help meet the parameters of the bridge’s 100-year design life.
Box Hill is a rapidly growing New South Wales suburb of Sydney, located 42 km (30 miles) northwest of downtown Sydney. Located in an area that is undergoing a long-term transition from a rural to residential area, the construction of the Fontana Drive Bridge, which spans the Bunyarra Creek, is part of an ongoing program to rapidly improve the local road infrastructure. The new bridge now allows a direct access from Fontana Drive to the new (and developing) town center.
“Remarkably, the completed Fontana Drive Bridge boasts a 100-year design life,” adds Steve Hodkinson, Penetron Australia General Manager. “This is a significant achievement in bridge engineering, as it ensures the safety and longevity of the structure for future generations.”
The bridge's retaining walls, which consist of prestressed beams spanning the creek, are heavily reinforced. However, due to issues with vibration and compaction during the construction phase, the concrete developed voids and honeycombing throughout the matrix. This raised concerns with the contractor and project engineers regarding the structural integrity of the bridge.
The Penetron team carried out a comprehensive inspection of the site and submitted a specification proposal on how to remediate the walls, both deep inside the concrete and on the surface. The proposal recommended the use of the Penetron System, including PENETRON, a crystalline waterproofing material, PENESEAL PRO, a liquid sealer, and PENEGUARD, a surface liquid sealer.
Once applied to prepared concrete surfaces, PENETRON penetrates deeply into the concrete matrix to provide waterproofing and significantly increase the durability of the bridge's concrete structures. The active ingredients in Penetron crystalline products generate a non-soluble crystalline formation throughout the pores and capillary tracts of the concrete. These crystals permanently seal micro-cracks, pores, and capillaries against the penetration of water or liquids from any direction – making the concrete impermeable.
The voids in the concrete were treated with PENESEAL PRO, a spray-on liquid sealer that forms a sub-surface gel barrier to seal hairline cracks and protect concrete against water penetration by sealing pores, capillaries, and cracks. The bridge’s top surface area was treated with PENEGUARD, a specially formulated copolymer that forms a sealed protective water-resistant finish, which eliminates the need for polymer-based coatings and constant maintenance.
“Because the Penetron System provides consistent protection during the service life of the concrete, the final results of the Fontana Drive Bridge were outstanding,” adds Steve Hodkinson. “The bridge was approved for the intended 100-year design life.”