Special Issue "SMARTI - Sustainable Multi-functional Automated Resilient Transport Infrastructure"

A special issue of Infrastructures (ISSN 2412-3811).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 February 2020) | Viewed by 31393

Printed Edition Available!
A printed edition of this Special Issue is available here.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Davide Lo Presti
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Nottingham Transportation Engineering Centre, University of Nottingham, Room C11, Pavement Research Building, University Park, Nottingham NG7 2RD, UK
Interests: sustainability; life cycle assessment; recycling; bitumen; asphalt; smart infrastructure; road pavements; railway trackbeds
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Emmanuel Chailleux
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
IFSTTAR - Institut Français des Sciences et Technologies des Transports, de l’Aménagement et des Réseaux, Laboratoire Matériaux pour Infrastructures de Transport (MIT), Marne-la-Vallee, France
Interests: material characterization; materials; mechanical properties; polymers; construction; materials engineering; civil engineering; materials chemistry; DSC; green chemistry technology; biobinder
Prof. Dr. Mayca Rubio-Gámez
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Construction Engineering Lab, LabIC.UGR, Construction Engineering Department, University of Granada, 18001 Granada, Spain
Interests: asphalt pavements; design and mechanical characterization; sustainable and smart materials and technologies for transportation infrastructure; fatigue behavior; long lasting asphalt materials; environmental assessment; LCA
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The world’s surface transport network has developed over thousands of years, emerging from the need of providing more comfortable trips to Roman soldiers to the modern infrastructure enabling modern vehicles to travel at high speed. However, in the past two decades, the world has changed very quickly in terms of population growth, mobility, and business trades, creating greater traffic volumes and demand for minimal disruption to users, but also challenges such as climate change and more extreme weather events. At the same time, developments in digitalisation, vehicle design, mobile and wireless communications, and sensor technologies continue apace. It is within this environment and in close consultation with key stakeholders that this Special Issue will focus on providing an opportunity for scientific dissemination towards the paradigm shift to SMARTI, transport infrastructures conceived with the following features:

  • SUSTAINABLE: Designed by using improved decision frameworks aimed at improving durability, maximising recycling, and minimising environmental, economic, and social impacts;
  • MULTI-FUNCTIONAL: Conceived not only for transport purposes and works towards the optimisation of land use by adding energy harvesting capabilities;
  • AUTOMATED: Equipped with low-cost wireless sensors to allow pro-active communication towards more intuitive use and simplified management;
  • RESILIENT: Conceived to self-repair and be adaptable to changes due to natural and anthropogenic hazards.

Dr. Davide Lo Presti
Dr. Emannuel Chailleux
Dr. Mayca Rubio
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Infrastructures is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • smart infrastructure
  • sustainability
  • resilience
  • land use optimisation
  • transport

Published Papers (10 papers)

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Research

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Article
A Novel Solution to Find the Dynamic Response of an Euler–Bernoulli Beam Fitted with Intraspan TMDs under Poisson Type Loading
Infrastructures 2020, 5(5), 40; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures5050040 - 07 May 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1788
Abstract
This contribution considers a virtual experiment on the vibrational response of rail and road bridges equipped with smart devices in the form of damping elements to mitigate vibrations. The internal damping of the bridge is considered a discontinuity that contain a dashpot. Exact [...] Read more.
This contribution considers a virtual experiment on the vibrational response of rail and road bridges equipped with smart devices in the form of damping elements to mitigate vibrations. The internal damping of the bridge is considered a discontinuity that contain a dashpot. Exact complex eigenvalues and eigenfunctions are derived from a characteristic equation built as the determinant of a 4 × 4 matrix; this is accomplished through the use of the theory of generalized functions to find the response variables at the positions of the damping elements. To relate this to real world applications, the response of a bridge under Poisson type white noise is evaluated; this is similar to traffic loading that would be seen in a bridge’s service life. The contribution also discusses the importance of smart damping and dampers to sustainability efforts through the reduction of required materials, and it discusses the role played by robust mathematical modelling in the design phase. Full article
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Article
Detecting Embankment Instability Using Measurable Track Geometry Data
Infrastructures 2020, 5(3), 29; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures5030029 - 12 Mar 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2972
Abstract
The British railway system is the oldest in the world. Most railway embankments are aged around 150 years old and the percentage of disruption reports that feature them is frequently higher than other types of railway infrastructure. Remarkable works have been done to [...] Read more.
The British railway system is the oldest in the world. Most railway embankments are aged around 150 years old and the percentage of disruption reports that feature them is frequently higher than other types of railway infrastructure. Remarkable works have been done to understand embankment deterioration and develop asset modelling. Nevertheless, they do not represent a sufficient way of managing assets in detail. As a result, reactive approaches combined with proactive ones would improve the whole asset management scenario. To guarantee good system performance, geotechnical asset management (GAM) aims to reduce uncertainty through informed, data driven decisions and optimisation of resources. GAM approaches are cost sensitive. Thus, data driven approaches that utilize existing resources are highly prized. Track geometry data has been routinely collected by Network Rail, over many years, to identify track defects and subsequently plan track maintenance interventions. Additionally, in 2018 Network Rail commissioned AECOM to undertake a study, described in this paper, to investigate the use of track geometry data in the detection of embankment instabilities. In this study, track geometry data for over 1800 embankments were processed and parameters offering the best correlation with embankment movements were identified and used by an algorithm to generate an embankment instability metric. The study successfully demonstrated that the instability of railway embankments is clearly visible in track geometry data and the metric gives an indication of the worsening of track geometry, that is likely due to embankment instability. Full article
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Article
Alternate Method of Pavement Assessment Using Geophones and Accelerometers for Measuring the Pavement Response
Infrastructures 2020, 5(3), 25; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures5030025 - 01 Mar 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2513
Abstract
Pavement instrumentation with embeddable in-situ sensors has been a feasible approach to determine pavement deteriorations. Determining pavement deflections during the passage of the load is a promising strategy to determine the overall performance of the pavement. There are different devices that apply loads [...] Read more.
Pavement instrumentation with embeddable in-situ sensors has been a feasible approach to determine pavement deteriorations. Determining pavement deflections during the passage of the load is a promising strategy to determine the overall performance of the pavement. There are different devices that apply loads to the pavements and measure the deflection basin, these include static, vibratory, or impulse loadings. Most commonly used are the static loading like Benkelman beam and impulse loading like the Falling Weight Deflectometer (FWD). However, these techniques are costly and the measurements are recorded infrequently, i.e., once per year or two years. This study focuses on the use of geophones and accelerometers to measure the surface deflections under traffic loading. To develop a method to measure pavement deflections, the sensors were submitted first to laboratory tests, and then tested in situ, in a full scale accelerated pavement test. In the laboratory, the sensors were submitted to different types of loading using a vibrating table. These tests were used to determine the noise and sensitivity of the sensors, and then to evaluate their response to signals simulating pavement deflections under heavy vehicles. The sensor response was compared with measurements of a reference displacement sensor. Different processing techniques were proposed to correct the measurements from geophones and accelerometers, in order to obtain reliable deflection values. Then, the sensors were evaluated in a full scale accelerated test, under real heavy axle loads. Tests were performed at different loads and speeds, and the deflection measurements were compared with a reference anchored deflection sensor. The main advantage of using accelerometers or geophones embedded in the pavement is to enable continuous pavement monitoring, under real traffic. The sensor measurements could also be used to determine the type of vehicles and their corresponding speeds. The study describes in detail the signal analysis needed to measure the pavement deflections accurately. The measurements of pavement deflection can be then used to analyze the pavement behavior in the field, and its evolution with time, and to back-calculate pavement layer properties. Full article
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Article
Toward the Development of Load Transfer Efficiency Evaluation of Rigid Pavements by a Rolling Wheel Deflectometer
Infrastructures 2020, 5(1), 7; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures5010007 - 14 Jan 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2995
Abstract
The jointed rigid pavement is currently evaluated by the Falling weight deflectometer which is rather slow for the testing of the jointed pavements. Continuous nondestructive evaluation of rigid pavements with a rolling wheel deflectometer can be used to measure the load transfer and [...] Read more.
The jointed rigid pavement is currently evaluated by the Falling weight deflectometer which is rather slow for the testing of the jointed pavements. Continuous nondestructive evaluation of rigid pavements with a rolling wheel deflectometer can be used to measure the load transfer and is investigated. Load transfer is an important indicator of the rigid pavement’s condition and this is the primary factor which is studied. Continuous data from experimental measurements across a joint allows for the determination of not only the load transfer efficiency provided parameters characterizing the pavement is known. A three-dimensional semi-analytical model was implemented for simulating the pavement response near a joint and used for interpretation and verification of the experimental data. Results show that this development is promising for the use of a rolling wheel deflectometer for rapid evaluation of joints. Full article
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Article
Exploiting Low-Cost 3D Imagery for the Purposes of Detecting and Analyzing Pavement Distresses
Infrastructures 2020, 5(1), 6; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures5010006 - 14 Jan 2020
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 2788
Abstract
Road pavement conditions have significant impacts on safety, travel times, costs, and environmental effects. It is the responsibility of road agencies to ensure these conditions are kept in an acceptable state. To this end, agencies are tasked with implementing pavement management systems (PMSs) [...] Read more.
Road pavement conditions have significant impacts on safety, travel times, costs, and environmental effects. It is the responsibility of road agencies to ensure these conditions are kept in an acceptable state. To this end, agencies are tasked with implementing pavement management systems (PMSs) which effectively allocate resources towards maintenance and rehabilitation. These systems, however, require accurate data. Currently, most agencies rely on manual distress surveys and as a result, there is significant research into quick and low-cost pavement distress identification methods. Recent proposals have included the use of structure-from-motion techniques based on datasets from unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and cameras, producing accurate 3D models and associated point clouds. The challenge with these datasets is then identifying and describing distresses. This paper focuses on utilizing images of pavement distresses in the city of Palermo, Italy produced by mobile phone cameras. The work aims at assessing the accuracy of using mobile phones for these surveys and also identifying strategies to segment generated 3D imagery by considering the use of algorithms for 3D Image segmentation to detect shapes from point clouds to enable measurement of physical parameters and severity assessment. Case studies are considered for pavement distresses defined by the measurement of the area affected such as different types of cracking and depressions. The use of mobile phones and the identification of these patterns on the 3D models provide further steps towards low-cost data acquisition and analysis for a PMS. Full article
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Article
Fraction Factorial Design of a Novel Semi-Transparent Layer for Applications on Solar Roads
Infrastructures 2020, 5(1), 5; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures5010005 - 04 Jan 2020
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 3500
Abstract
Solar roads are transportation infrastructures able both to generate electricity thanks to solar cells placed under a semi-transparent layer and to ensure heavy traffic circulation. In this paper, a novel transparent top layer made of glass aggregates bonded together using a polyurethane glue [...] Read more.
Solar roads are transportation infrastructures able both to generate electricity thanks to solar cells placed under a semi-transparent layer and to ensure heavy traffic circulation. In this paper, a novel transparent top layer made of glass aggregates bonded together using a polyurethane glue is presented. The goal is to design a composite material able to support traffic load, guarantee vehicle skid-resistance, allow the passage of sunlight, and protect the solar cells. For this purpose, the authors investigated the effect of different variables (thickness, glue content, and glass aggregate distribution) on the mechanical and optical performances of the material applying the factorial design method. The semi-transparent layer was characterized by performing the three-point bending test and measuring the power loss. Regarding the vehicle friction, experimental tests with the British Pendulum were conducted in order to measure the skid resistance of the surface and compare it with the specifications of a typical road infrastructure. According to the fraction factorial design and the British Pendulum test, the following mixture was developed: 42.8% of 4/6 mm; 42.8% of 2/4 mm, 14.4% of glue in volume, and a thickness of 0.6 cm. The first results are encouraging, and they demonstrate the feasibility of a semi-transparent layer for future applications in full scale. Full article
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Article
Towards More Sustainable Pavement Management Practices Using Embedded Sensor Technologies
Infrastructures 2020, 5(1), 4; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures5010004 - 30 Dec 2019
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 3948
Abstract
Road agencies are constantly being placed in difficult situations when making road maintenance and rehabilitation decisions as a result of diminishing road budgets and mounting environmental concerns for any chosen strategies. This has led practitioners to seek out new alternative and innovative ways [...] Read more.
Road agencies are constantly being placed in difficult situations when making road maintenance and rehabilitation decisions as a result of diminishing road budgets and mounting environmental concerns for any chosen strategies. This has led practitioners to seek out new alternative and innovative ways of monitoring road conditions and planning maintenance routines. This paper considers the use of innovative piezo-floating gate (PFG) sensors and conventional strain gauges to continuously monitor the pavement condition and subsequently trigger maintenance activities. These technologies can help develop optimized maintenance strategies as opposed to traditional ad-hoc approaches, which often lead to poor decisions for road networks. To determine the environmental friendliness of these approaches, a case study was developed wherein a life cycle assessment (LCA) exercise was carried out. Observations from accelerated pavement testing over a period of three months were used to develop optimized maintenance plans. A base case is used as a guide for comparison to the optimized systems to establish the environmental impacts of changing the maintenance workflows with these approaches. On the basis of the results, the proposed methods have shown that they can, in fact, produce environmental benefits when integrated within the pavement management maintenance system. Full article
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Article
Data Compression Approach for Long-Term Monitoring of Pavement Structures
Infrastructures 2020, 5(1), 1; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures5010001 - 22 Dec 2019
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3962
Abstract
Pavement structures are designed to withstand continuous damage during their design life. Damage starts as soon as the pavement is open to traffic and increases with time. If maintenance activities are not considered in the initial design or considered but not applied during [...] Read more.
Pavement structures are designed to withstand continuous damage during their design life. Damage starts as soon as the pavement is open to traffic and increases with time. If maintenance activities are not considered in the initial design or considered but not applied during the service life, damage will grow to a point where rehabilitation may be the only and most expensive option left. In order to monitor the evolution of damage and its severity in pavement structures, a novel data compression approach based on cumulative measurements from a piezoelectric sensor is presented in this paper. Specifically, the piezoelectric sensor uses a thin film of polyvinylidene fluoride to sense the energy produced by the micro deformation generated due to the application of traffic loads. Epoxy solution has been used to encapsulate the membrane providing hardness and flexibility to withstand the high-loads and the high-temperatures during construction of the asphalt layer. The piezoelectric sensors have been exposed to three months of loading (approximately 1.0 million loads of 65 kN) at the French Institute of Science and Technology for Transport, Development and Networks (IFSTTAR) fatigue carrousel. Notably, the sensors survived the construction and testing. Reference measurements were made with a commercial conventional strain gauge specifically designed for measurements in hot mix asphalt layers. Results from the carrousel successfully demonstrate that the novel approach can be considered as a good indicator of damage progression, thus alleviating the need to measure strains in pavement for the purpose of damage tracking. Full article
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Review

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Review
In Situ Pavement Monitoring: A Review
Infrastructures 2020, 5(2), 18; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures5020018 - 07 Feb 2020
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 3258
Abstract
The assessment of pavement conditions and their evolution with time is a crucial component for the establishment of pavement quality management (QM) plans and the implementation of QM practices. An effective pavement management system (PMS) is based on pavement conditions data continuously collected [...] Read more.
The assessment of pavement conditions and their evolution with time is a crucial component for the establishment of pavement quality management (QM) plans and the implementation of QM practices. An effective pavement management system (PMS) is based on pavement conditions data continuously collected along the lifetime of a road. These data are used to model the pavement response, evaluate its performances, and trigger the necessary maintenance actions when they do not meet previously defined performance indicators. In the last decades, pavement monitoring via embedded sensing technologies has attracted more and more attention. Indeed, the integration of sensors in the road pavement allows the assessment of the complete history of pavement conditions, starting from sensor installation. Once the technologies are stabilized, collecting this information is expected to help road managers to define more effective asset management plans. This paper first proposes an overview of the most used devices for pavement instrumentation, categorized according to the measured parameters. Then a review of some prominent instrumented sections is presented by focusing on the methodology used for data interpretation. Full article
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Other

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Concept Paper
A Review of the Contribution of Mechanomutable Asphalt Materials Towards Addressing the Upcoming Challenges of Asphalt Pavements
Infrastructures 2020, 5(3), 23; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures5030023 - 28 Feb 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 3010
Abstract
In the coming years, asphalt materials will face significant challenges due to the demand for smart multifunctional materials in transportation infrastructures, designed under sustainability criteria. Asphalt pavements will not only have to contribute towards the provision of an adequate surface for the transportation [...] Read more.
In the coming years, asphalt materials will face significant challenges due to the demand for smart multifunctional materials in transportation infrastructures, designed under sustainability criteria. Asphalt pavements will not only have to contribute towards the provision of an adequate surface for the transportation of different types of vehicles, but will need to do so considering the increased loads that they will have to support, as well as the extreme weather conditions resulting from climate change. These pavements will also need the capacity to interact with autonomous vehicles and provide information to the users and maintenance agencies regarding traffic data or performance levels. This paper describes how mechanomutable asphalt materials (MAMs) could enhance the properties of asphalt materials, enabling their use as a solution for smart infrastructures. Full article
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