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Special Issue "Sensors, Big Data Analytics and Modeling for Infrastructure Monitoring and Maintenance"

A special issue of Sensors (ISSN 1424-8220). This special issue belongs to the section "Physical Sensors".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 March 2021) | Viewed by 31073

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Saeed Eftekhar Azam
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of New Hampshire, Durham, NH 03824, USA
Interests: online Bayesian system identification; Kalman filtering; particle filtering; Machine Learning; Big Data Analytics; infrastructure monitoring and maintenance
Dr. Stefano Mariani
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Dipartimento di Ingegneria Civile e Ambientale, Politecnico di Milano, Piazza L. da Vinci 32, 20133 Milano, Italy
Interests: MEMS; smart materials; micromechanics; machine learning-driven materials modeling
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Structural health monitoring (SHM) of civil structures and infrastructure aims at detecting any potential damage, which might lead to an irreversible reduction of their stiffness and strength characteristics and, possibly, to catastrophic events. Since changes in the mechanical properties cannot be directly and explicitly sensed, SHM systems must perform data analytics on measurements in order to indirectly identify damage. In this regard, SHM is the process of autonomous analysis of sensor data from operating structures and infrastructure systems to extract information used for the decision-making process. While in other fields SHM has already transitioned to industrial applications, when dealing with civil infrastructures its application to operating systems is somehow still pending. Several obstacles impede commercialization of SHM in structural systems, including the state-of-the-art and practice in sensing and the various sources of uncertainties.

The goal of the present Special Issue is to collect contributions in the disciplines of physical sensors, computer science, and engineering, to serve as a forum for researchers in the field of sensor technologies and sensing strategies and to foster the development of real-time SHM of real-life structures. Experimental and theoretical works are both welcome, with the aim of providing a fresh account of methods to move towards the design of robust and resilient smart sensing strategies, and to extract information from the raw data acquired by pervasive sensor networks. Critical reviews and surveys of the state of the art and practice are also encouraged.

In this regard, the following category of contributions are welcome:

  1. Sensor-oriented contributions, including wireless sensor networks, multi-functional materials, energy harvesting for SHM, MEMS sensors, and Internet of Things approaches;
  2. Big Data analytics, including machine learning and statistical approaches, emerging strategies for sensor fusion, AI-based data mining, and cloud/edge/fog computing for infrastructure maintenance;
  3. Model-based Big Data analytics methods, such as Kalman filtering, particle filtering, and similar time-series analysis for online and real-time damage detection;
  4. Computational modeling approaches for infrastructure simulation, stochastic, and deterministic optimization, response prediction, force prediction;
  5. High-performance computing frameworks, including parallel processing and reduced order modeling.

The editors hope that the multidisciplinary nature of this Special Issue could provide readers with a grasp of cutting-edge research in all vital spokes of SHM.

Dr. Saeed Eftekhar Azam
Prof. Dr. Stefano Mariani
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • SHM, structural health monitoring
  • damage detection
  • sensor networks
  • data mining
  • Big Data Analytics
  • Machine Learning

Published Papers (21 papers)

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Research

Article
Two-Step Approach to Processing Raw Strain Monitoring Data for Damage Detection of Structures under Operational Conditions
Sensors 2021, 21(20), 6887; https://doi.org/10.3390/s21206887 - 17 Oct 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 568
Abstract
Strain data of structural health monitoring is a prospective to be made full use of, because it reflects the stress peak and fatigue, especially sensitive to local stress redistribution, which is the probably damage in the vicinity of the sensor. For decoupling structural [...] Read more.
Strain data of structural health monitoring is a prospective to be made full use of, because it reflects the stress peak and fatigue, especially sensitive to local stress redistribution, which is the probably damage in the vicinity of the sensor. For decoupling structural damage and masking effects caused by operational conditions to eliminate the adverse impacts on strain-based damage detection, small time-scale structural events, i.e., the short-term dynamic strain responses, are analyzed in this paper by employing unsupervised modeling. A two-step approach to successively processing the raw strain monitoring data in the sliding time window is presented, consisting of the wavelet-based initial feature extraction step and the decoupling step to draw damage indicators. The principal component analysis and a low-rank property-based subspace projection method are adopted as two alternative decoupling methodologies. The approach’s feasibility and robustness are substantiated by analyzing the strain monitoring data from a customized truss experiment to successfully remove the masking effects of operating loads and identify local damages even concerning accommodating situations of missing data and limited measuring points. This work also sheds light on the merit of a low-rank property to separate structural damages from masking effects by comparing the performances of the two optional decoupling methods of the distinct rationales. Full article
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Article
An Autoencoder-Based Deep Learning Approach for Load Identification in Structural Dynamics
Sensors 2021, 21(12), 4207; https://doi.org/10.3390/s21124207 - 19 Jun 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1181
Abstract
In civil engineering, different machine learning algorithms have been adopted to process the huge amount of data continuously acquired through sensor networks and solve inverse problems. Challenging issues linked to structural health monitoring or load identification are currently related to big data, consisting [...] Read more.
In civil engineering, different machine learning algorithms have been adopted to process the huge amount of data continuously acquired through sensor networks and solve inverse problems. Challenging issues linked to structural health monitoring or load identification are currently related to big data, consisting of structural vibration recordings shaped as a multivariate time series. Any algorithm should therefore allow an effective dimensionality reduction, retaining the informative content of data and inferring correlations within and across the time series. Within this framework, we propose a time series AutoEncoder (AE) employing inception modules and residual learning for the encoding and the decoding parts, and an extremely reduced latent representation specifically tailored to tackle load identification tasks. We discuss the choice of the dimensionality of this latent representation, considering the sources of variability in the recordings and the inverse-forward nature of the AE. To help setting the aforementioned dimensionality, the false nearest neighbor heuristics is also exploited. The reported numerical results, related to shear buildings excited by dynamic loadings, highlight the signal reconstruction capacity of the proposed AE, and the capability to accomplish the load identification task. Full article
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Article
Optimal Sensor Placement for Reliable Virtual Sensing Using Modal Expansion and Information Theory
Sensors 2021, 21(10), 3400; https://doi.org/10.3390/s21103400 - 13 May 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1159
Abstract
A framework for optimal sensor placement (OSP) for virtual sensing using the modal expansion technique and taking into account uncertainties is presented based on information and utility theory. The framework is developed to handle virtual sensing under output-only vibration measurements. The OSP maximizes [...] Read more.
A framework for optimal sensor placement (OSP) for virtual sensing using the modal expansion technique and taking into account uncertainties is presented based on information and utility theory. The framework is developed to handle virtual sensing under output-only vibration measurements. The OSP maximizes a utility function that quantifies the expected information gained from the data for reducing the uncertainty of quantities of interest (QoI) predicted at the virtual sensing locations. The utility function is extended to make the OSP design robust to uncertainties in structural model and modeling error parameters, resulting in a multidimensional integral of the expected information gain over all possible values of the uncertain parameters and weighted by their assigned probability distributions. Approximate methods are used to compute the multidimensional integral and solve the optimization problem that arises. The Gaussian nature of the response QoI is exploited to derive useful and informative analytical expressions for the utility function. A thorough study of the effect of model, prediction and measurement errors and their uncertainties, as well as the prior uncertainties in the modal coordinates on the selection of the optimal sensor configuration is presented, highlighting the importance of accounting for robustness to errors and other uncertainties. Full article
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Article
UAV-Driven Structural Crack Detection and Location Determination Using Convolutional Neural Networks
Sensors 2021, 21(8), 2650; https://doi.org/10.3390/s21082650 - 09 Apr 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1253
Abstract
Structural cracks are a vital feature in evaluating the health of aging structures. Inspectors regularly monitor structures’ health using visual information because early detection of cracks on highly trafficked structures is critical for maintaining the public’s safety. In this work, a framework for [...] Read more.
Structural cracks are a vital feature in evaluating the health of aging structures. Inspectors regularly monitor structures’ health using visual information because early detection of cracks on highly trafficked structures is critical for maintaining the public’s safety. In this work, a framework for detecting cracks along with their locations is proposed. Image data provided by an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) is stitched using image processing techniques to overcome limitations in the resolution of cameras. This stitched image is analyzed to identify cracks using a deep learning model that makes judgements regarding the presence of cracks in the image. Moreover, cracks’ locations are determined using data from UAV sensors. To validate the system, cracks forming on an actual building are captured by a UAV, and these images are analyzed to detect and locate cracks. The proposed framework is proven as an effective way to detect cracks and to represent the cracks’ locations. Full article
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Article
Accurate Correlation Modeling between Wind Speed and Bridge Girder Displacement Based on a Multi-Rate Fusion Method
Sensors 2021, 21(6), 1967; https://doi.org/10.3390/s21061967 - 11 Mar 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 751
Abstract
Wind action is one of the environmental actions that has significant static and dynamic effects on long-span bridges. The lateral wind speed is the main factor affecting the lateral displacement of the main girder of the bridge. The main objective of the paper [...] Read more.
Wind action is one of the environmental actions that has significant static and dynamic effects on long-span bridges. The lateral wind speed is the main factor affecting the lateral displacement of the main girder of the bridge. The main objective of the paper is to use the improved multi-rate fusion method to correct the monitoring data so that accurate correlation modeling of wind speed-displacement can be achieved. Two Kalman gain coefficients are introduced to improve the traditional multi-rate fusion method. The fusion method is verified by the results of simulated data analysis in time domain and frequency domain. Then, the improved multi-rate fusion method is used to fuse the monitoring lateral displacement and acceleration data of a bridge under strong wind action. The corrected lateral wind speed and displacement data is further applied to establish the correlation model through the linear regression. The improved multi-rate fusion method can overcome the inaccuracy of the high frequency stage of a Global Positioning System (GPS) sensor and the low frequency stage of acceleration sensor. The correlation coefficient of wind speed-displacement after fusion increases and the confidence interval width of regression model decreases, which indicates that the accuracy of the correlation model between wind speed and displacement is improved. Full article
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Article
SHM System and a FEM Model-Based Force Analysis Assessment in Stay Cables
Sensors 2021, 21(6), 1927; https://doi.org/10.3390/s21061927 - 10 Mar 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 950
Abstract
The Rędziński Bridge in Wrocław is the biggest Polish concrete cable-stayed bridge. It is equipped with a large structural health monitoring (SHM) system which has been collecting the measured data since the bridge opening in the year 2011. This paper presents a comparison [...] Read more.
The Rędziński Bridge in Wrocław is the biggest Polish concrete cable-stayed bridge. It is equipped with a large structural health monitoring (SHM) system which has been collecting the measured data since the bridge opening in the year 2011. This paper presents a comparison between the measured data and the finite element method (FEM) calculations, while taking into account 7 years of data collection and analyses. The first part of this paper concerns the SHM application. In the next part, which contains comparisons between forces in cables and temperature changes throughout the structure, the measured data are presented. The third part includes SHM-based calculations and simulations with a complex FEM model to check the measured data and to estimate future measurements. The last part contains a durability assessment calculation for the cable stays. Full article
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Article
Identification of Bridge Key Performance Indicators Using Survival Analysis for Future Network-Wide Structural Health Monitoring
Sensors 2020, 20(23), 6894; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20236894 - 02 Dec 2020
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1212
Abstract
Machine learning and statistical approaches have transformed the management of infrastructure systems such as water, energy and modern transport networks. Artificial Intelligence-based solutions allow asset owners to predict future performance and optimize maintenance routines through the use of historic performance and real-time sensor [...] Read more.
Machine learning and statistical approaches have transformed the management of infrastructure systems such as water, energy and modern transport networks. Artificial Intelligence-based solutions allow asset owners to predict future performance and optimize maintenance routines through the use of historic performance and real-time sensor data. The industrial adoption of such methods has been limited in the management of bridges within aging transport networks. Predictive maintenance at bridge network level is particularly complex due to the considerable level of heterogeneity encompassed across various bridge types and functions. This paper reviews some of the main approaches in bridge predictive maintenance modeling and outlines the challenges in their adaptation to the future network-wide management of bridges. Survival analysis techniques have been successfully applied to predict outcomes from a homogenous data set, such as bridge deck condition. This paper considers the complexities of European road networks in terms of bridge type, function and age to present a novel application of survival analysis based on sparse data obtained from visual inspections. This research is focused on analyzing existing inspection information to establish data foundations, which will pave the way for big data utilization, and inform on key performance indicators for future network-wide structural health monitoring. Full article
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Article
Vision and Deep Learning-Based Algorithms to Detect and Quantify Cracks on Concrete Surfaces from UAV Videos
Sensors 2020, 20(21), 6299; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20216299 - 05 Nov 2020
Cited by 27 | Viewed by 2009
Abstract
Immediate assessment of structural integrity of important civil infrastructures, like bridges, hospitals, or dams, is of utmost importance after natural disasters. Currently, inspection is performed manually by engineers who look for local damages and their extent on significant locations of the structure to [...] Read more.
Immediate assessment of structural integrity of important civil infrastructures, like bridges, hospitals, or dams, is of utmost importance after natural disasters. Currently, inspection is performed manually by engineers who look for local damages and their extent on significant locations of the structure to understand its implication on its global stability. However, the whole process is time-consuming and prone to human errors. Due to their size and extent, some regions of civil structures are hard to gain access for manual inspection. In such situations, a vision-based system of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) programmed with Artificial Intelligence algorithms may be an effective alternative to carry out a health assessment of civil infrastructures in a timely manner. This paper proposes a framework of achieving the above-mentioned goal using computer vision and deep learning algorithms for detection of cracks on the concrete surface from its image by carrying out image segmentation of pixels, i.e., classification of pixels in an image of the concrete surface and whether it belongs to cracks or not. The image segmentation or dense pixel level classification is carried out using a deep neural network architecture named U-Net. Further, morphological operations on the segmented images result in dense measurements of crack geometry, like length, width, area, and crack orientation for individual cracks present in the image. The efficacy and robustness of the proposed method as a viable real-life application was validated by carrying out a laboratory experiment of a four-point bending test on an 8-foot-long concrete beam of which the video is recorded using a camera mounted on a UAV-based, as well as a still ground-based, video camera. Detection, quantification, and localization of damage on a civil infrastructure using the proposed framework can directly be used in the prognosis of the structure’s ability to withstand service loads. Full article
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Article
Laboratory Evaluation of Railroad Crosslevel Tilt Sensing Using Electrical Time Domain Reflectometry
Sensors 2020, 20(16), 4470; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20164470 - 10 Aug 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 866
Abstract
Crosslevel is defined as the difference in elevation between the top surface of two railroad tracks. Severe changes in crosslevel, for example, due to earthquakes, ground settlement, or crushed ballasts, affect track geometry and can cause train derailment. Therefore, the objective of this [...] Read more.
Crosslevel is defined as the difference in elevation between the top surface of two railroad tracks. Severe changes in crosslevel, for example, due to earthquakes, ground settlement, or crushed ballasts, affect track geometry and can cause train derailment. Therefore, the objective of this study was to monitoring railroad crosslevel by using electrical time domain reflectometry (ETDR) to simultaneously interrogate multiple capacitive tilt sensor prototypes connected in a transmission line. ETDR works by propagating an electrical pulse signal from one end of the transmission line and then monitoring the characteristics of each reflected pulse, which is affected by the capacitance (or tilt) of the sensors. This study begins with a discussion of the capacitive tilt sensor’s design. These 3D-printed sensors were tested to characterize their tilt sensing performance. Then, multiple tilt sensors were connected in a transmission line and interrogated by ETDR. The ability to use ETDR to multiplex and interrogate sensors subjected to different angles of tilt was validated. Full article
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Article
TORNADO: Intermediate Results Orchestration Based Service-Oriented Data Curation Framework for Intelligent Video Big Data Analytics in the Cloud
Sensors 2020, 20(12), 3581; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20123581 - 24 Jun 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1609
Abstract
In the recent past, the number of surveillance cameras placed in the public has increased significantly, and an enormous amount of visual data is produced at an alarming rate. Resultantly, there is a demand for a distributed system for video analytics. However, a [...] Read more.
In the recent past, the number of surveillance cameras placed in the public has increased significantly, and an enormous amount of visual data is produced at an alarming rate. Resultantly, there is a demand for a distributed system for video analytics. However, a majority of existing research on video analytics focuses on improving video content management and rely on a traditional client/server framework. In this paper, we develop a scalable and flexible framework called TORNADO on top of general-purpose big data technologies for intelligent video big data analytics in the cloud. The proposed framework acquires video streams from device-independent data-sources utilizing distributed streams and file management systems. High-level abstractions are provided to allow the researcher to develop and deploy video analytics algorithms and services in the cloud under the as-a-service paradigm. Furthermore, a unified IR Middleware has been proposed to orchestrate the intermediate results being generated during video big data analytics in the cloud. We report results demonstrating the performance of the proposed framework and the viability of its usage in terms of better scalability, less fault-tolerance, and better performance. Full article
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Article
Big Data Analytics and Structural Health Monitoring: A Statistical Pattern Recognition-Based Approach
Sensors 2020, 20(8), 2328; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20082328 - 19 Apr 2020
Cited by 50 | Viewed by 2770
Abstract
Recent advances in sensor technologies and data acquisition systems opened up the era of big data in the field of structural health monitoring (SHM). Data-driven methods based on statistical pattern recognition provide outstanding opportunities to implement a long-term SHM strategy, by exploiting measured [...] Read more.
Recent advances in sensor technologies and data acquisition systems opened up the era of big data in the field of structural health monitoring (SHM). Data-driven methods based on statistical pattern recognition provide outstanding opportunities to implement a long-term SHM strategy, by exploiting measured vibration data. However, their main limitation, due to big data or high-dimensional features, is linked to the complex and time-consuming procedures for feature extraction and/or statistical decision-making. To cope with this issue, in this article we propose a strategy based on autoregressive moving average (ARMA) modeling for feature extraction, and on an innovative hybrid divergence-based method for feature classification. Data relevant to a cable-stayed bridge are accounted for to assess the effectiveness and efficiency of the proposed method. The results show that the offered hybrid divergence-based method, in conjunction with ARMA modeling, succeeds in detecting damage in cases strongly characterized by big data. Full article
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Article
Automated Transverse Crack Mapping System with Optical Sensors and Big Data Analytics
Sensors 2020, 20(7), 1838; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20071838 - 26 Mar 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1560
Abstract
Transverse cracks on bridge decks provide the path for chloride penetration and are the major reason for deck deterioration. For such reasons, collecting information related to the crack widths and spacing of transverse cracks are important. In this study, we focused on developing [...] Read more.
Transverse cracks on bridge decks provide the path for chloride penetration and are the major reason for deck deterioration. For such reasons, collecting information related to the crack widths and spacing of transverse cracks are important. In this study, we focused on developing a data pipeline for automated crack detection using non-contact optical sensors. We developed a data acquisition system that is able to acquire data in a fast and simple way without obstructing traffic. Understanding that GPS is not always available and odometer sensor data can only provide relative positions along the direction of traffic, we focused on providing an alternative localization strategy only using optical sensors. In addition, to improve existing crack detection methods which mostly rely on the low-intensity and localized line-segment characteristics of cracks, we considered the direction and shape of the cracks to make our machine learning approach smarter. The proposed system may serve as a useful inspection tool for big data analytics because the system is easy to deploy and provides multiple properties of cracks. Progression of crack deterioration, if any, both in spatial and temporal scale, can be checked and compared if the system is deployed multiple times. Full article
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Article
Automated Indoor Image Localization to Support a Post-Event Building Assessment
Sensors 2020, 20(6), 1610; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20061610 - 13 Mar 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1337
Abstract
Image data remains an important tool for post-event building assessment and documentation. After each natural hazard event, significant efforts are made by teams of engineers to visit the affected regions and collect useful image data. In general, a global positioning system (GPS) can [...] Read more.
Image data remains an important tool for post-event building assessment and documentation. After each natural hazard event, significant efforts are made by teams of engineers to visit the affected regions and collect useful image data. In general, a global positioning system (GPS) can provide useful spatial information for localizing image data. However, it is challenging to collect such information when images are captured in places where GPS signals are weak or interrupted, such as the indoor spaces of buildings. The inability to document the images’ locations hinders the analysis, organization, and documentation of these images as they lack sufficient spatial context. In this work, we develop a methodology to localize images and link them to locations on a structural drawing. A stream of images can readily be gathered along the path taken through a building using a compact camera. These images may be used to compute a relative location of each image in a 3D point cloud model, which is reconstructed using a visual odometry algorithm. The images may also be used to create local 3D textured models for building-components-of-interest using a structure-from-motion algorithm. A parallel set of images that are collected for building assessment is linked to the image stream using time information. By projecting the point cloud model to the structural drawing, the images can be overlaid onto the drawing, providing clear context information necessary to make use of those images. Additionally, components- or damage-of-interest captured in these images can be reconstructed in 3D, enabling detailed assessments having sufficient geospatial context. The technique is demonstrated by emulating post-event building assessment and data collection in a real building. Full article
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Article
Training Convolutional Neural Networks with Multi-Size Images and Triplet Loss for Remote Sensing Scene Classification
Sensors 2020, 20(4), 1188; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20041188 - 21 Feb 2020
Cited by 32 | Viewed by 1827
Abstract
Many remote sensing scene classification algorithms improve their classification accuracy by additional modules, which increases the parameters and computing overhead of the model at the inference stage. In this paper, we explore how to improve the classification accuracy of the model without adding [...] Read more.
Many remote sensing scene classification algorithms improve their classification accuracy by additional modules, which increases the parameters and computing overhead of the model at the inference stage. In this paper, we explore how to improve the classification accuracy of the model without adding modules at the inference stage. First, we propose a network training strategy of training with multi-size images. Then, we introduce more supervision information by triplet loss and design a branch for the triplet loss. In addition, dropout is introduced between the feature extractor and the classifier to avoid over-fitting. These modules only work at the training stage and will not bring about the increase in model parameters at the inference stage. We use Resnet18 as the baseline and add the three modules to the baseline. We perform experiments on three datasets: AID, NWPU-RESISC45, and OPTIMAL. Experimental results show that our model combined with the three modules is more competitive than many existing classification algorithms. In addition, ablation experiments on OPTIMAL show that dropout, triplet loss, and training with multi-size images improve the overall accuracy of the model on the test set by 0.53%, 0.38%, and 0.7%, respectively. The combination of the three modules improves the overall accuracy of the model by 1.61%. It can be seen that the three modules can improve the classification accuracy of the model without increasing model parameters at the inference stage, and training with multi-size images brings a greater gain in accuracy than the other two modules, but the combination of the three modules will be better. Full article
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Article
Data-Driven Bias Correction and Defect Diagnosis Model for In-Service Vehicle Acceleration Measurements
Sensors 2020, 20(3), 872; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20030872 - 06 Feb 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1078
Abstract
Track quality instruments use low-cost accelerometers placed on or attached to the floors of operating trains, and these instruments collect substantial amounts of data over short inspection periods. The measurements collected by the instruments are the main data source for track irregularity evaluation. [...] Read more.
Track quality instruments use low-cost accelerometers placed on or attached to the floors of operating trains, and these instruments collect substantial amounts of data over short inspection periods. The measurements collected by the instruments are the main data source for track irregularity evaluation. However, considerable measurement bias exists in the vertical and lateral vibration data obtained from such instruments. False positive track vibration defects detected by track quality instruments occur frequently. This results in considerable time and effort being expended needlessly because maintenance workers have to visit the railway track sites to check and review the track vibration defects. Therefore, we propose a model for data-driven bias correction and defect diagnosis for in-service vehicle acceleration measurements based on track degradation characteristics. Substantial amounts of historical track measurement data from different inspection methods were mined extensively to eliminate the false positive detection of track vibration defects and diagnose the causes of track vibration defects. Actual measurement data from the Lanxin Railway were used to validate our proposed model. The success rate achieved in identifying false positive track vibration defects was 84.1%, and that in track vibration defect diagnosis was 75.8%. These high success rates suggest that the proposed model can be of practical use in improving railway track maintenance management. Full article
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Article
Requirement Assessment of the Relative Spatial Accuracy of a Motion-Constrained GNSS/INS in Shortwave Track Irregularity Measurement
Sensors 2019, 19(23), 5296; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19235296 - 01 Dec 2019
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 1406
Abstract
Modern railway track health monitoring requires high accuracy measurements to ensure comfort and safety. Although Global Navigation Satellite System/Inertial Navigation System (GNSS/INS) integration has been extended to track geometry measurements to improve the work efficiency, it has been questioned due to its positioning [...] Read more.
Modern railway track health monitoring requires high accuracy measurements to ensure comfort and safety. Although Global Navigation Satellite System/Inertial Navigation System (GNSS/INS) integration has been extended to track geometry measurements to improve the work efficiency, it has been questioned due to its positioning accuracy at the centimeter or millimeter level. We propose the relative spatial accuracy based on the accuracy requirement of track health monitoring. A requirement assessment of the spatial relative accuracy is conducted for shortwave track irregularity measurements based on evaluation indicators and relative accuracy calculations. The threshold values of the relative spatial accuracy that satisfy the constraints of shortwave track irregularity measurements are derived. Motion-constrained GNSS/INS integration is performed to improve the navigation accuracy considering the dynamic characteristics of the track geometry measurement trolley. The results of field tests show that the mean square error and the Allan deviation of the relative position errors of motion-constrained GNSS/INS integration are smaller than 0.67 mm and 0.16 mm, respectively, which indicates that this approach meets the accuracy requirements of shortwave track irregularities, especially vertical irregularities. This work can provide support for the application of GNSS/INS systems in track irregularity measurement. Full article
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Article
Evaluating Probabilistic Traffic Load Effects on Large Bridges Using Long-Term Traffic Monitoring Data
Sensors 2019, 19(22), 5056; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19225056 - 19 Nov 2019
Cited by 15 | Viewed by 1531
Abstract
With the steadily growing of global transportation market, the traffic load has increased dramatically over the past decades, which may develop into a risk source for existing bridges. The simultaneous presence of heavy trucks that are random in nature governs the serviceability limit [...] Read more.
With the steadily growing of global transportation market, the traffic load has increased dramatically over the past decades, which may develop into a risk source for existing bridges. The simultaneous presence of heavy trucks that are random in nature governs the serviceability limit for large bridges. This study investigated probabilistic traffic load effects on large bridges under actual heavy traffic load. Initially, critical stochastic traffic loading scenarios were simulated based on millions of traffic monitoring data in a highway bridge in China. A methodology of extrapolating maximum traffic load effects was presented based on the level-crossing theory. The effectiveness of the proposed method was demonstrated by probabilistic deflection investigation of a suspension bridge. Influence of traffic density variation and overloading control on the maximum deflection was investigated as recommendations for designers and managers. The numerical results show that the congested traffic mostly governs the critical traffic load effects on large bridges. Traffic growth results in higher maximum deformations and probabilities of failure of the bridge in its lifetime. Since the critical loading scenario contains multi-types of overloaded trucks, an effective overloading control measure has a remarkable influence on the lifetime maximum deflection. The stochastic traffic model and corresponding computational framework is expected to be developed to more types of bridges. Full article
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Article
A Novel Data Reduction Approach for Structural Health Monitoring Systems
Sensors 2019, 19(22), 4823; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19224823 - 06 Nov 2019
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1337
Abstract
The massive amount of data generated by structural health monitoring (SHM) systems usually affects the system’s capacity for data transmission and analysis. This paper proposes a novel concept based on the probability theory for data reduction in SHM systems. The beauty salient feature [...] Read more.
The massive amount of data generated by structural health monitoring (SHM) systems usually affects the system’s capacity for data transmission and analysis. This paper proposes a novel concept based on the probability theory for data reduction in SHM systems. The beauty salient feature of the proposed method is that it alleviates the burden of collecting and analysis of the entire strain data via a relative damage approach. In this methodology, the rate of variation of strain distributions is related to the rate of damage. In order to verify the accuracy of the approach, experimental and numerical studies were conducted on a thin steel plate subjected to cyclic in-plane tension loading. Circular holes with various sizes were made on the plate to define damage states. Rather than measuring the entire strain response, the cumulative durations of strain events at different predefined strain levels were obtained for each damage scenario. Then, the distribution of the calculated cumulative times was used to detect the damage progression. The results show that the presented technique can efficiently detect the damage progression. The damage detection accuracy can be improved by increasing the predefined strain levels. The proposed concept can lead to over 2500% reduction in data storage requirement, which can be particularly important for data generation and data handling in on-line SHM systems. Full article
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Article
Prediction of Pullout Behavior of Belled Piles through Various Machine Learning Modelling Techniques
Sensors 2019, 19(17), 3678; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19173678 - 24 Aug 2019
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 1715
Abstract
The main goal of this study is to estimate the pullout forces by developing various modelling technique like feedforward neural network (FFNN), radial basis functions neural networks (RBNN), general regression neural network (GRNN) and adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system (ANFIS). A hybrid learning algorithm, [...] Read more.
The main goal of this study is to estimate the pullout forces by developing various modelling technique like feedforward neural network (FFNN), radial basis functions neural networks (RBNN), general regression neural network (GRNN) and adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system (ANFIS). A hybrid learning algorithm, including a back-propagation and least square estimation, is utilized to train ANFIS in MATLAB (software). Accordingly, 432 samples have been applied, through which 300 samples have been considered as training dataset with 132 ones for testing dataset. All results have been analyzed by ANFIS, in which the reliability has been confirmed through the comparing of the results. Consequently, regarding FFNN, RBNN, GRNN, and ANFIS, statistical indexes of coefficient of determination (R2), variance account for (VAF) and root mean square error (RMSE) in the values of (0.957, 0.968, 0.939, 0.902, 0.998), (95.677, 96.814, 93.884, 90.131, 97.442) and (2.176, 1.608, 3.001, 4.39, 0.058) have been achieved for training datasets and the values of (0.951, 0.913, 0.729, 0.685 and 0.995), (95.04, 91.13, 72.745, 66.228, 96.247) and (2.433, 4.032, 8.005, 10.188 and 1.252) are for testing datasets indicating a satisfied reliability of ANFIS in estimating of pullout behavior of belled piles. Full article
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Article
Evaluation of Soil Moisture and Shear Deformation Based on Compression Wave Velocities in a Shallow Slope Surface Layer
Sensors 2019, 19(15), 3406; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19153406 - 03 Aug 2019
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1497
Abstract
Rainfall-induced landslides occur commonly in mountainous areas around the world and cause severe human and infrastructural damage. An early warning system can help people safely escape from a dangerous area and is an economical and effective method to prevent and mitigate rainfall-induced landslides. [...] Read more.
Rainfall-induced landslides occur commonly in mountainous areas around the world and cause severe human and infrastructural damage. An early warning system can help people safely escape from a dangerous area and is an economical and effective method to prevent and mitigate rainfall-induced landslides. This paper proposes a method to evaluate soil moisture and shear deformation by compression wave velocities in a shallow slope surface layer. A new type of exciter and new receivers have been developed using a combination of micro electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) accelerometers and the Akaike’s information criterion (AIC) algorithm, which can automatically calculate the elastic wave travel time with accuracy and reliability. Laboratory experiments using a multi-layer shear model were conducted to reproduce the slope failure. The relationships between wave velocities and soil moisture were found to be dependent on the saturation path (rain or drain); in other words, hysteresis was observed. The wave velocity ratio reduced by 0.1–0.2 when the volumetric water content (VWC) increased from 0.1 to 0.27 m3/m3. When loading the shear stress corresponding to slope angles of 24, 27, 29, or 31 degrees, a drop of 0.2–0.3 in wave velocity ratio was observed at the middle layer, and near 0.5 at the bottom layer. After setting the shear stress to correspond to a slope angle of 33 degrees, the displacement started increasing and finally, slope failure occurred. With increasing displacement, the wave velocities also decreased rapidly. The wave velocity ratio dropped by 0.2 after a displacement of 3 mm. Monitoring long-term elastic wave velocities in a slope surface layer allows one to observe the behavior of the slope, understand its stability, and then apply an early warning system to predict slope failure. Full article
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Article
Investigation of Weigh-in-Motion Measurement Accuracy on the Basis of Steering Axle Load Spectra
Sensors 2019, 19(15), 3272; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19153272 - 25 Jul 2019
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 1602
Abstract
Weigh-in-motion systems are installed in pavements or on bridges to identify and reduce the number of overloaded vehicles and minimise their adverse effect on road infrastructure. Moreover, the collected traffic data are used to obtain axle load characteristics, which are very useful in [...] Read more.
Weigh-in-motion systems are installed in pavements or on bridges to identify and reduce the number of overloaded vehicles and minimise their adverse effect on road infrastructure. Moreover, the collected traffic data are used to obtain axle load characteristics, which are very useful in road infrastructure design. Practical application of data from weigh-in-motion has become more common recently, which calls for adequate attention to data quality. This issue is addressed in the presented paper. The aim of the article is to investigate the accuracy of 77 operative weigh-in-motion stations by analysing steering axle load spectra. The proposed methodology and analysis enabled the identification of scale and source of errors that occur in measurements delivered from weigh-in-motion systems. For this purpose, selected factors were investigated, including the type of axle load sensor, air temperature and vehicle speed. The results of the analysis indicated the obvious effect of the axle load sensor type on the measurement results. It was noted that systematic error increases during winter, causing underestimation of axle loads by 5% to 10% for quartz piezoelectric and bending beam load sensors, respectively. A deterioration of system accuracy is also visible when vehicle speed decreases to 30 km/h. For 25% to 35% of cases, depending on the type of sensor, random error increases for lower speeds, while it remains at a constant level at higher speeds. The analysis also delivered a standard steering axle load distribution, which can have practical meaning in the improvement of weigh-in-motion accuracy and traffic data quality. Full article
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