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  • Eugène Freyssinet was a French structural and civil engineer. He was the major pioneer of prestressed concrete. Freyssinet was born in at Objat, Corrèze, France. He worked in the École Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées in Paris, France where he designed several bridges until the First World War intervened. His tutors included Charles Rabut. He served in the French Army from 1904–1907 and again from 1914-1918 as a road engineer. His most significant early bridge was the three span Pont le Veurdre near Vichy, built in 1911. At the time, the 72.5 metre spans were the longest so far constructed. Freyssinet's proposal was for three reinforced concrete truss spans, and was significantly less expensive than the standard masonry arch design. The design used jacks to raise and connect the arches, effectively introducing an element of prestress. The bridge also enabled Freyssinet to discover the phenomenon of creep in concrete, whereby the concrete deforms with time when placed under stress. Regarding this bridge, Freyssinet wrote: "I have always loved it more than any other of my bridges, and of all that the War has destroyed, it is the only one whose ruin has caused me real grief".

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