Structural health monitoring of railroad bridges using wireless smart sensors (WSSs): Recent real-world experiences in North America

B F Spencer, Fernando Moreu, Robin E. Kim

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

This paper explores the potential of wireless smart sensors for structural health monitoring of railroad bridges. The Imote2 smart sensor, combined with sensor board hardware and application-oriented software developed at the University of Illinois, forms the heart of the system. To demonstrate the efficacy of this system, wireless acceleration and strain sensors are deployed on a railroad bridge near Chicago, which is the busiest railroad hub in North America. The bridge is traversed daily by both passenger and freight traffic. Experimental data is collected for this bridge subject to in-service loads. Acceleration data was used to develop a bridge model with predictive capabilities. Wireless strain sensors attached to the rail were able to estimate train carloads and speeds for revenue traffic. Wireless magnetic strain sensors collected structural responses under trains. A work train with known loads and geometries was run over the bridge at different speeds. These results demonstrated wireless smart sensors to be a portable, cost-effective, and practical means for monitoring railroad bridges.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationLife-Cycle of Structural Systems
Subtitle of host publicationDesign, Assessment, Maintenance and Management - Proceedings of the 4th International Symposium on Life-Cycle Civil Engineering, IALCCE 2014
EditorsMitsuyoshi Akiyama, Hitoshi Furuta, Dan M. Frangopol
PublisherCRC Press/Balkema
Pages396-403
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)9781138001206
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015
Event4th International Symposium on Life-Cycle Civil Engineering, IALCCE 2014 - Tokyo, Japan
Duration: Nov 16 2014Nov 19 2014

Publication series

NameLife-Cycle of Structural Systems: Design, Assessment, Maintenance and Management - Proceedings of the 4th International Symposium on Life-Cycle Civil Engineering, IALCCE 2014

Other

Other4th International Symposium on Life-Cycle Civil Engineering, IALCCE 2014
CountryJapan
CityTokyo
Period11/16/1411/19/14

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality

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  • Cite this

    Spencer, B. F., Moreu, F., & Kim, R. E. (2015). Structural health monitoring of railroad bridges using wireless smart sensors (WSSs): Recent real-world experiences in North America. In M. Akiyama, H. Furuta, & D. M. Frangopol (Eds.), Life-Cycle of Structural Systems: Design, Assessment, Maintenance and Management - Proceedings of the 4th International Symposium on Life-Cycle Civil Engineering, IALCCE 2014 (pp. 396-403). (Life-Cycle of Structural Systems: Design, Assessment, Maintenance and Management - Proceedings of the 4th International Symposium on Life-Cycle Civil Engineering, IALCCE 2014). CRC Press/Balkema.