Coaxial Cable Sensors for Crack Detection in Bridge Structures

The short-term practical solution for an effective inspection and assessment of bridge structures is to develop and implement a sensor and sensing instruments system that allow engineers to rate typical bridges whenever required. Such a system must be capable of detecting the location and severity of the damage contributing to the overall bridge rating. Equally importantly, the system must be cost effective for large-scale structures, rugged in harsh environment, reliable in measurement, and easy to use and interpret the collected data. The goals of this Phase I study are to pretest analyze a New York State reinforced concrete (RC) bridge that will be selected in consultation with the Department, and design and plan the field tests of the bridge for the performance qualification and validation of distributed crack sensors and a fast Electrical Time-Domain Reflectometry (ETDR) instrument to their full potential. It is to be expected that the safety of the traveling public will be enhanced if these tests are successful.