Built Environment Sensing

Print or save page as PDF
Permanent Wireless Monitoring System on the New Carquinez Suspension Bridge
Yilan Zhang, Masahiro Kurata, Ph.D., and Prof. Jerome P. Lynch
Wireless Monitoring System on the New Carquinez Suspension Bridge
Wireless Monitoring System on the New Carquinez Suspension Bridge

A dense network of wireless sensors installed in a bridge can continuously generate response data from which the health and condition of the bridge can be analyzed. This approach to structural health monitoring can reduce the effort associated with periodic bridge inspections and can provide timely insight to regions of the bridge suspected of degradation. This WIMS project is focused on the advancement of wireless sensor networks as a viable sensor technology for bridge monitoring. Wireless monitoring systems for bridges are significantly lower in cost than wired counterparts, often one order of magnitude cheaper. In addition, wireless monitoring systems are easier to install due to their modular installations. A key feature of this project is the deployment of wireless sensors on the New Carquinez Suspension Bridge in Vallejo, California. To date, 28 Narada wireless sensor nodes collecting over 70 channels of data are now installed in the bridge including the acceleration response of the bridge, displacements between the bridge girder and towers, temperature, wind speeds, and wind direction. Current efforts of the project team include: 1) long-term assessment of a dense wireless sensor network; 2) implementation of a sustainable power management solution using solar power and vibration-based harvesters; 3) performance evaluation of a cellular internet connection to the wireless monitoring system; 4) system identification of the bridge properties; and 5) the development of data mining tools to extract information from a wealth of data now generated at the bridge site.

Updated 05/01/2012