Development of a Self-sustained Wireless Integrated Structural Health Monitoring System for Highway Bridges

A joint research team by the University of Maryland (UMD) and North Carolina State University (NCSU) with URS Corporation will develop a scalable Integrated Structural Health Monitoring (ISHM) system with remote sensing capability, particularly suited for fatigue condition assessment of highway steel bridges with a potential to extend to evaluate other types of bridge damages, such as breaks and corrosion of steel strands of pre-stressed concrete bridges. The ISHM system based on wireless sensor networks with self-sustained power supplies holds promise of system scalability and autonomousness in remote monitoring large complex highway infrastructures. The proposed system will integrate recent advancements in civil, aerospace, and electrical disciplines to develop a transformational system that will have high-rewards in reducing the operating and maintenance costs by providing an accurate quantification of damage and degradation at an early stage. The novelty of the proposed ISHM system resides in the following aspects: (1) (Sensor technology) Reconfigurable piezo paint sensor dots; (2) (Acoustic emission [AE] diagnostics) Passive interrogation of evolving damage; (3) (Energy scavenging) Hybrid-mode energy scavenger; (4) (Wireless sensing) Multi-media wireless smart sensor; and (5) (Prognostics) Prognostics using Bayesian nets and remote sensing data. The ISHM will be implemented on bridges at North Carolina and Maryland for field demonstration. If successful, this system will be used in other states. By advancing the state-of-the-art technology in remote infrastructure sensing, condition diagnosis and prognosis, the proposed ISHM system will reduce life cycle costs while significantly maintaining the sustainability of civil infrastructures. Under the terms of this agreement, the University of Maryland will assist Research and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA) with the following tasks: Task 1: Establishing weak point identification maps and conducting baseline field tests. Task 2: Fabrication and characterization of piezo paint AE sensor with reconfigurable sensing dots. Task 3: Development of a time-reversal (T-R) method for AE source identification. Task 4: Development of a wireless smart sensor with a hybrid-mode energy harvester and embedded T-R algorithms. Task 5: Developing ISHM in both laboratory and field environments and implementation with Bridge Management System. Task 6: Project Website, Report and Project Assessment

  • Record URL:
  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Program Information: Advanced Research, Commercial Remote Sensing


  • English


  • Status: Active
  • Contract Numbers:


  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Research and Innovative Technology Administration

    Office of Research, Development, and Technology
    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC    20590
  • Project Managers:

    Singh, Caesar

  • Performing Organizations:

    URS Corporation

    561 Cedar Lane
    Florence, NJ  United States  08518-0000

    North Carolina State University

    Department of Civil Engineering, Campus Box 7908
    Raleigh, NC  United States  27695-7908

    University of Maryland, College Park

    3112 Lee Building
    College Park, MD  United States  20742
  • Principal Investigators:

    Fu, C

  • Start Date: 20100301
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 20130714
  • Source Data: RiP Project 28815

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01557635
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Research and Innovative Technology Administration
  • Contract Numbers: RITARS-11-H-UMD
  • Files: RiP
  • Created Date: Mar 24 2015 1:02AM