Investigation of Ground-Penetrating Radar (GPR) Technology for the Health of Bridge Decks

The Nation's bridges are aging, and inspection and maintenance are critical to the safe and effective operation of this vital element of the transportation system. Pro-active health-monitoring of bridge decks, including internal health, is essential. Existing methods, e.g. chain-dragging, cannot provide the level of information needed for optimal quantitative data-driven maintenance. Effective bridge inspection using ground penetrating radar ( GP)R is also important to clearly understand the state of bridge decks before issuing contracts for bridge maintenance; otherwise, projects can be at risk due to unforeseen conditions arising during the execution of the maintenance. GPR shows great promise for bridge deck health evaluation, and should be investigated for application within California.