Instead of building new bridges, Robert Hällmark wants to find ways to preserve the bridges that already exist and thus reduce both the economic burden on society, but also the environmental impact and road user disruptions. The research is about how the materials already in the bridges today can be used in a more efficient way. By bonding concrete and steel together, via the installation of simple connecting elements, a more efficient cross-section can be created. In the new cross-section, the concrete takes a larger proportion of compressive force and the steel a larger proportion of tensile force, which is generally favorable from a strength perspective.
One of the biggest challenges and driving forces is to refine ideas from paper sketches via computer models, lab tests and pilot objects into reality where they can finally generate real benefit. Once an idea becomes practically applicable, it is, the most fun of Robert Hällmark's job, and something that motivates him to continue. What otherwise drives him in research is his curiosity. He wants to find answers to the questions and try to understand the background to the problems, which means that there is always something to delve into.
Robert Hällmark, born in 1981 in Kalix, defended his dissertation from Luleå University of Technology in 2018 with a dissertation on innovative collaboration bridges. Also works at the Swedish Transport Administration as a senior bridge specialist with a focus on steel and collaboration bridges. He is especially proud of the collaborations his research subject has had at European level over the years, how they have collaborated across national borders and thus received more research for the money. In his spare time, he skis and likes to run as far as possible, and at least in his dreams as fast as possible.