The National Academies

NCHRP IDEA 20-30/IDEA 123 [Completed (IDEA)]

Long-Term Remote Sensing System for Bridge Piers
[ NCHRP 20-30 (NCHRP-IDEA) ]

  Project Data
Staff Responsibility: Dr. Inam Jawed

This project developed a prototype tilt and displacement sensor (TDS) system for long-term remote monitoring of bridge piers. The system utilizes arrays of tilt sensors located on the pier and superstructure of a bridge to monitor long-term movements including tilt and vertical displacements.  During Stage 1 of the project, a system utilizing arrays of low-cost tilt sensors was developed that enabled measurement of the tilt and vertical displacement of a model test-bridge in the laboratory.  A series of algorithms were developed for signal processing of the unique array-based design and calculating reliable, quantitative engineering values for tilt in three dimensions and vertical displacement. Based on successful testing of this innovative system design, a fieldable system was developed and installed on an in-service bridge in the state of New York. Low-cost sensor arrays were installed on a central pier and on the superstructure of the bridge to evaluate tilt and vertical displacement of the pier over time.  The on-line system is monitoring long-term motions of the pier and providing summarized, processed data over the web.  The system will continue to be monitored to evaluate its performance and to assess the long-term displacements at the bridge. The contractor's final report is available.

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