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Friday | 11 December, 2009 | 3:54 am

Spanning Sweden

By John Loos

December 2009- Starting in Trelleborg in southern Sweden and winding north all the way to the Norwegian-Russian border, the E6 is the main north-south road in Norway and one of the major highways of Scandinavia.

Approximately 1,950 miles long, traversing some wild topography and enduring the extremely cold Scandinavian winters, the E6 is an important transit artery requiring dutiful and continual upkeep. According to the Swedish Road Administration, the Swedish stretch of the two-lane E6 sees 12,000 vehicles a day, 20 percent of which are heavy trucks.

Part of the Swedish Road Administration's comprehensive initiative to expand the E6 and improve its safety includes the building of three road bridges and a railway bridge on a section of the E6 between the Swedish towns of Skee and Ejgst. These bridges require large steel structures, which are being provided by Rautaruukki Corp. (Ruukki), Helsinki, Finland.

"The steel bridge solution will shorten construction time and minimize disruption to traffic on the busy E6 road," said Goran Hannrup, contracts manager for Peab AB, a company specializing in construction and civil engineering, in a press release. Peab AB is the main contractor on the E6 project. "We chose Ruukki as the steel structure contractor because we wanted a reliable partner that manages the entire process from raw materials and fabrication to installation."

Building bridges
Providing steel structures for such substantial infrastructure projects requires an acute focus on quality and accuracy. Fortunately, Ruukki has extensive experience in fabricating steel structures for bridges and has been involved in multiple E6 bridge projects.

The current bridges being built will have a combined length of 600 meters and Ruukki's order worth roughly 2.5 million euros.

Ruukki will begin fabricating the steel structures in late 2009, with the final installations expected to be completed in the spring of 2011. The company is using S460M and S420M thermomechanical high-strength steel, as well as S355N normalized steel. Mainly SAW and MAG welding methods will be used in the manufacturing processes.

According to Ruukki, some standout qualities of the E6 project include the fact that all the steel bridges are composite structures with concrete decks, the joints of the main girders will be welded together on-site and the heavy structures will be installed using specialized Teflon glides.

Beyond E6
The E6 road isn't the only bridge project Ruukki is undertaking. The company is also working on a 600-meter-long bridge spanning the Hudalven River near Gothenburg, Sweden, as well as the Partihallsforbindelsen link bridge project. The Partihallsforbindelsen bridge will be in the heart of Gothenburg and connect the E45 and E20 motorways.

The Partihallsforbindelsen project will consist of Ruukki's fabrication and installation of 3,000-metric-ton steel structures in a high-traffic environment. The bridge will be 1.2 kilometers long with Ruukki's contract value of 12 million euros. MM

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