Engineers from Hiroshima University in Japan have created an easily transported bridge which extends like a concertina and can be set up ready for use by traffic within an hour.
The design is called Mobile Bridge version 4.0. It can be carried on a trailer and deployed without any foundations, helping it to be put in place in a short space of time. It also requires no crane, instead it can be extended from one side of a river to reach the other, and can be disassembled in a short time to be used elsewhere.
The bridge has been designed to help support areas hit by natural disasters such as earthquakes, tsunamis or flooding, where local bridges may have been damaged or destroyed. The emergency bridge could be used to help essential aid to reach those with the greatest need.
The assistant professor at the Institute of Engineering, Hiroshima University, Dr Ichiro Ario intends to continue to develop the Mobile Bridge to make it even stronger, lighter, more compact and quicker to deploy.