Floating bridges are one of the most unique and oldest ways of traveling on water. It has a lightweight design, yet it can survive under tremendous pressure. It’s these properties because of which, in many parts of the world, floating bridges are specially constructed. With the change and growth in the production of the floating bridge, it’s now available even for regular use.
A small floating bridge could even be used by soldiers when camping on the riverside or near a beach. While it has a very simple structure and working, it is astonishing how it can take on a heavy load. In comparison to other bridges, you can build floating bridges for both permanent and temporary purposes. That is, people can build temporary floating bridges if needed for short time transportation or any one-time purpose. In comparison to other bridges, it takes less time and can take more load.
How Does A Floating Bridge Work?
The working of a floating bridge isn’t complicated. Its water-blocking technology is similar to a ball valve that you can find at a classic car parts wholesale shop. In the case of a temporary floating bridge, the inside of the boxes-like structure is filled with a heavy load. After being filled with air pressure and connecting these boxes, they use this water-blocking technology. It ensures that no water gets inside, due to which it floats.
Floating bridges work on the buoyancy principle meaning they can take as much load as the air pressure present inside. Due to buoyancy, they float on the water, which also limits their load limit. Thus, whether permanent or temporary floating bridges, they cannot take load above a point no matter what. Most of the temporary floating bridges were used in military and emergency services, as the weight limit was not an issue for them.
Permanent floating bridges have the same principle and technology as temporary ones. These are built, keeping the maximum permissible weight limit very high compared to the daily pressure. They differ in their material; for permanent ones, while connecting to solidify the bridge, people use concrete. While people use different types of wood to make the bridge, carbon fiber-reinforced plastic and nanocrystalline steel are the best material.
Benefits Of A Floating Bridge
Though floating bridges have been present throughout history, their construction was not good until recent years. The technology of the surface of the bridge for water blocking was similar to the one in various types of ball valves. The reason for it is that they both control the flow of water through them.
For a long time, the maximum use of floating bridges has been for emergencies and the military. Only recently did the purpose of floating bridges come to light, and people built various floating bridges. The purpose of these bridges was to connect two pieces of land and successfully take both human and vehicle loads. These simple points highlighted the benefits of floating bridges mentioned below
- Cost Effective
To build these bridges, you don’t need to put in large sums of money for the frames and base of the bridge. The man forces needed are also lesser compared to other types of bridges. You also don’t need to buy costly or lesser available materials. These factors contribute to an overall less need for money and thus make floating bridges cost-effective.
- Easily Available Material
Floating bridges in the past used local boats for support and joined them together with concrete. Nowadays, these bridges use special plastic and steel, which are readily available in the market. If needed, concrete is used for joining to add extra support and sturdiness. Its materials are readily available compared to other bridges, which require a super strong base and a combination of materials.
- Ergonomic Design
The construction of floating bridges does not need geometrical calculations like normal bridges. You don’t need large steel boulders or tonnes of concrete to create a base for floating bridges. To build a floating bridge, you only need the primary building box-like structures, preferably filled with a good amount of load. After this, you have to join them all together and join the ends to a sturdy support.
- Low Maintenance
Usually, bridges need regular cleaning and maintenance. Since cleaning is necessary, all bridges require that, but that’s not the case for maintenance. In floating bridges, no wood or steel needs to be regularly checked or painted, thus lowering the maintenance. In floating bridges, the connecting units need repairing if there is any damage. Otherwise, little to no care is required.
Floating bridges have very impressive fundamentals and simple working. They don’t need heavy materials and a large amount of workforce to complete the bridge. Temporary floating bridges have been beneficially used in military and emergencies, Whereas permanent floating bridges have successfully made transportation easier in various parts of the world.