Let’s see examples of Structural Health in the world.
Structural health monitoring (SHM) is poised to revolutionize the management of the built environment, covering a wide range of structures such as schools, hospitals, office buildings, and tunnels. Proper maintenance of these structures is crucial for ensuring safety and minimizing costs. By leveraging the potential of the Internet of Things (IoT), SHM offers a groundbreaking solution to achieve these objectives.
The implementation of SHM involves integrating dynamic wireless sensors into the structures, enabling engineers to monitor their health status in real time. As a result, city authorities and private companies gain unprecedented awareness of the structural conditions, empowering them to proactively allocate resources and prevent potential damage. This proactive approach is vital in mitigating both financial and human costs that could arise from structural failures.
Seeing the immense potential of SHM, it is crucial to delve into its applications in real-world scenarios. By utilizing SHM, cities and organizations can effectively transform their operations and decision-making processes. Rather than relying on reactive measures, SHM allows for a proactive mindset in managing the built environment.
SHM with its incorporation of sensors and real-time monitoring, is truly changing the way cities are run. By embracing SHM, these cities and organizations gain a comprehensive understanding of their structures’ health, enabling them to optimize resource allocation and prevent costly damages. As the implementation of SHM continues to evolve, it has the potential to reshape the landscape of urban management and ensure the safety and efficiency of our built environment.
Using SHM to Ensure Health Bridges.
River crossings are inherently vulnerable structures. As recent incidents like the Genoa bridge collapse have shown weaknesses within these structures can cause concrete to crack, leading over time to catastrophic consequences. However, structural health monitoring offers a viable solution. For instance, the Sandia National Laboratories and Structural Monitoring Systems partnered in the US Midwest to implant eight separate IoT sensors in the metalwork of a bridge identified as at risk.
These sensors are absolutely tiny, and take the form of Teflon vacuum pumps. If a crack appears in the metal underneath them, this prevents the sensor from establishing a vacuum, causing the alarm to trigger. This informs engineers that the structure of the bridge may be at risk well before cracks become visible to the naked eye.
Moreover, the sensors are placed in locations 100 feet above the road deck – the kind of place that engineers often struggle to access. With lithium-ion battery-powered sensors in place, they can obtain even better analytical results without needing to ascend to assess the bridge’s metalwork.
This is just one among many examples of how bridge maintenance is being enhanced by structural health monitoring. Many more projects are operating or under construction, such as the Queensferry Crossing in Scotland, which will include more than 2,000 wireless sensors.
From pylons and foundation stability to how elevated decks perform under high traffic loads or high winds, IoT sensing is set to transform how we manage bridge safety, but it also has many other potential applications.
Making Smart Cities safer.
As the Internet of Things technology develops and becomes mainstream, cities all across the world are becoming “smarter”. Sensors are being deployed to monitor crime, traffic, economic factors, water, and energy consumption. But they are also being used in sophisticated building monitoring systems.
Portland offers a great example of how this works in practice. The Oregon city has embraced smart technology and is working with AT&T to implement potentially revolutionary new monitoring tools. This includes an array of LTE (Long-Term Evolution) sensors that use wireless tech to monitor the structural integrity of key buildings. These sensors should allow city engineers to measure the tilt of high-rise buildings, and to detect cracks as they develop. Thanks to trigger alerts, they can also set events to allocate resources when maintenance is urgent.
Portland’s experiment is at an early stage, but its initiative is being emulated by forward-thinking urban governments and companies across the world. The reasons are easy to understand. Aside from promoting safer cities and preventing accidents, smart sensors make it possible to manage precious public funds more efficiently. Instead of routine maintenance which may not be required, work can be targeted at vulnerabilities as they occur. And there may also be productivity improvements for city engineers.
Find an SHM solution for your needs.
At NEXT Industries, we specialize in maximizing the capabilities of the Internet of Things. If you are involved in constructing or managing critical structures and are interested in exploring the advantages of structural health monitoring (SHM), we cordially invite you to learn more about this technology. Simply visit the application pages on our website and reach out to us to uncover the potential benefits of smart structural management. Our SHM expertise spans various areas, including structural monitoring on buildings, bridges, and other infrastructures. Discover the power of sensors and their applications in enhancing structural health monitoring.