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Distributed Expertise Network


Above, from left to right: I-465 fire damage; Cannelton Bridge flame cut repairs; Valmont pole fatigue evaluation; Sherman Minton Bridge "dog bone" retrofit

      To help DOTs with their specialized technical impasses, a unique team of experts has been assembled through the S-BRITE Center to create a Distributed Expertise Network (DEN). Some of these individuals are housed locally at the Center while others are located at their respective institution. The DEN serves the role that no longer exists in many individual state DOTs today, specifically the existence of a group of highly specialized technical experts that are “on-call” to assist as issues arise. Providing access to such individuals makes the S-BRITE Center the national "go-to" place for solutions to complex issues regarding steel bridges, from high-profile failure investigations to working with policy makers on setting the future paths for asset management of the existing steel bridge inventory. No other such entity  or resource exists in the United States.  In addition, a database is made available to partnering states archiving the questions posed to the DEN.  Thus, states with similar issues are quickly able to find answers to their tough questions.


Do you have a question for the DEN?  Please email or telephone Dr. Robert Connor, or 765-496-8272, with the details.


S-BRITE Center Partners can click here to access the question & answer database:  Q&A Database 


The following experts are currently partnering with S-BRITE as DEN Members:

Alphabetical By Last Name


Bowman, Mark D

Fatigue, Fracture, Repair & Retrofit of Steel Structures, Sign, Signal & Luminaire Structures

Connor, Robert J

Connections, Fabrication, Fatigue, Field Instrumentation & Monitoring, Fracture, Heat Straightening, Repair & Retrofit of Steel Structures, Sign, Signal & Luminaire Structures, Welding

Fish, Phil

High Strength Structural Bolting, Welding

Frank, Karl H.

Connections, Fabrication, Welding

Helwigg, Todd

Curved & Skewed Steel Bridges

Kogler, Robert

Coatings, Corrosion

Lloyd, Jason B.

Field Instrumentation & Monitoring, Repair & Retrofit of Steel Structures

Schroeder, Gerald

High Strength Structural Bolting

Varma, Amit H.

Fire Damage, Impact Damage, Heat Straightening, Repair & Retrofit of Steel Structures

Washer, Glen A.

Non-destructive Testing



Alphabetical By Topic


Coatings & Corrosion

Robert Kogler

Curved & Skewed Bridges

Todd Helwigg


Mark D. Bowman, Robert J. Connor

Field Instrumentation & Monitoring

Robert J. Connor, Jason B. Lloyd

Fire Damage

Amit H. Varma


Mark D. Bowman, Robert J. Connor

Heat Straightening

Robert J. Connor, Amit H. Varma

High Strength Structural Bolting

Phil Fish, Gerald Schroeder

Impact Damage

Robert J. Connor, Amit H. Varma

Non-destructive Testing

Glenn A. Washer

Repair & Retrofit of Steel Structures

Mark D. Bowman, Robert J. Connor, Amit H. Varma, Jason B. Lloyd

Sign, Signal, & Luminaire Structures

Mark D. Bowman, Robert J. Connor

Above: Repair of new Milton Madison Bridge following bearing failure


Above: Fracture of Diefenbaker Bridge fracture-critical girder