Monitoring Extreme Loading and Climate Impact on Infrastructure

Infrastructure must endure the aging effects of weather and loads throughout service life. Extreme temperature changes and overloading are known to cause micro-damage in concrete structures, which reduces the concrete material's ability to withstand design loads. As they commence and cumulate, the effect of these forces is difficult to detect and assess within the structure. Typical condition assessment efforts involve mobilizing personnel to conduct lengthy visual inspections and take multiple samples, which offer limited information about the overall condition of the structure. Moreover, by the time visual signs of material degradation appear, the problem is often systemic requiring costly rehabilitation measures to maintain serviceability. The objectives of this project are to evaluate climate and overload impact on transportation infrastructure, determine damage extent and monitor damage progression. First, the study will develop climatological profiles for strategic areas based upon freight transportation. Data will be obtained from Oklahoma Mesonet to identify local, relevant weathering conditions that are detrimental to concrete properties so that they can be evaluated. The experimental exposure conditions for testing concrete material will be based upon critical temperature and humidity ranges (freeze/thaw, wet/dry, high temperature variance), and the number of cycles per annum. Second, the study will seek to qualify and quantify damage accumulation in concrete material exposed to various loading conditions that will simulate material overload and fatigue deterioration at design loads. The residual structural performance of the concrete will be evaluated using sensing technologies, primarily acoustic emission (AE) and ultrasonic methods. Consequently, signature wave parameters will be developed to provide insight regarding temperature change, moisture change or microstructural changes (e.g. , microcracking). Last, evaluation and monitoring guidelines will be developed, including the use of sensing technologies, to assess deteriorative process due to serviceability loading conditions and climate conditions. The guidelines will be validated through evaluation of a field structure. Implementation will facilitate the development of an effective condition assessment system that will provide the transportation industry a monitoring tool so that infrastructure problems can be detected and corrected sooner, resulting in improved public safety and reduced maintenance costs.


    • English


    • Status: Active
    • Contract Numbers:


      SPTC 14.3-09

    • Sponsor Organizations:

      Research and Innovative Technology Administration

      University Transportation Centers Program
      1200 New Jersey Avenue
      Washington, DC  United States  20590

      Oklahoma Department of Transportation

      200 NE 21st Street
      Oklahoma City, OK  United States  73105
    • Performing Organizations:

      Oklahoma State University, Stillwater

      School of Civil & Environmental Engineering
      207 Engineering South
      Stillwater, OK  United States  74078
    • Principal Investigators:

      Ley, Tyler

      Shan, Yongwei

      Lewis, Phil

      Hartell, Julie

    • Start Date: 20141001
    • Expected Completion Date: 0
    • Actual Completion Date: 20160930
    • Source Data: RiP Project 37464

    Subject/Index Terms

    Filing Info

    • Accession Number: 01543141
    • Record Type: Research project
    • Source Agency: Southern Plains Transportation Center
    • Contract Numbers: DTRT13-G-UTC36, SPTC 14.3-09
    • Files: UTC, RiP
    • Created Date: Nov 8 2014 1:03AM