The post-tensioning technique involves installing and tensioning tendons in a concrete element, thereby applying compressive stress to the material. This compensates for the tensile stress that the concrete may undergo as a result of external loads and reduces or eliminates deformation and cracking.

  • Applications
    Water infrastructures
    Energy infrastructures

A revolution in the art of construction

Post-tensioning has revolutionised the design and construction of concrete structures, allowing thinner concrete sections, longer spans and more durable concrete structures. It also paved the way for the development of new construction methods, making bridge construction simpler, faster and more cost-effective.

The technique was patented by Eugène Freyssinet in 1928. It was developed on thousands of structures across the world by the STUP (Société Technique pour l’Utilisation de la Précontrainte), the company created by Eugène Freyssinet in 1943 – that became Freyssinet in 1976. Post-tensioning is now universally known and widely used.

The use of post-tensioning opens up a wide range of geometric and architectural possibilities. In particular, it allows complex curves, variable elevations and long free spans without support.

Post-tensioning significantly reduces the amount of concrete and steel required for the structure and the foundation work. It allows for the rapid assembly of precast elements using industrialized methods, allowing the site to progress quickly and efficiently.

A post-tensioning solution reduces the need for joints, which in turn reduces joint maintenance. For tanks, silos and reservoirs, post-tensioning results in concrete that is virtually free of cracks and therefore less prone to corrosion problems.

Post-tensioned structures require less construction materials – such as steel reinforcement and concrete – and therefore generate fewer greenhouse gas emissions for their production and transportation. The carbon savings are usually between 20 and 30%.

A solution optimised for every application

Bridge deck and piers, silos, tunnels, reservoirs, parking structures, buildings, stadiums, wastewater treatment plants, marine structures, dams, nuclear reactor containment vessels, cryogenic liquefied natural gas tanks, offshore platforms -and any other structure you can think of!
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Find out more in our case studies


Arsenal sports center connected post-tensioning

A project to install connected post-tensioning in the roof beams of a new sports centre in France was chosen as the test-bed for a system of monitored site operations which established the technology for wide-ranging data collection.
United Kingdom

Library of Birmingham, PT slabs rather than steel frame

Construction of the library of Birmingham was originally conceived as a structural steel frame. During the tender period, and in order to realise the full value engineering benefits, the frame was changed to reinforced concrete with post-tensioned slabs and beams
Hong Kong

TMCLK Link in Hong-Kong: balanced cantilever erection

As part of the design-build project for a set of precast segmental bridges, choice of the erection method was key to its achievement. Opting for the balanced cantilever erection with launching gantry made the difference.

New coastal highway prestressed road in La Reunion

On the Reunion Island, Freyssinet teams carried out the prestressing of the viaduct of the new coastal highway, the longest viaduct in France at 5,400 metres.

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