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Sensing Technology for Damage Assessment of Sign Support Structures

Zhu, Xuan (2011) Sensing Technology for Damage Assessment of Sign Support Structures. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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In the last few years the use of guided ultrasonic waves (GUWs) for the health monitoring of engineering structures increased rapidly, with the most recent studies focusing on the application of GUWs to complex structures or under varying environmental conditions. In fact, the health monitoring of complex structures is complicated because of reflections, scattering, and mode conversion. In addition, sensitivity to temperature and surface wetting can degrade the performance of a GUW-based structural health monitoring system.This thesis presents the results of an experimental investigation where GUWs and the Electro-mechanical Impedance (EMI) method were used for the health monitoring of a truss, which was part of a highway variable message structure removed from service and tested in laboratory. The monitoring strategy proposed here combines the advantages of GUWs and EMI with the extraction of defect-sensitive features to perform a multivariate diagnosis of damage. The effectiveness of the presented approach is tested by monitoring the propagation of waves along one of the main chords of the truss and by observing the onset and growth of two artificial cracks. The ability to diagnose the presence of these defects located around the welds that join two diagonal angular members to the chord is discussed.In the last portion of the thesis, the results from field application are presented. Two overhead sign support structures deployed along I-279 were monitored by using the proposed SHM methodology developed in laboratory.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairRizzo,
Committee MemberTo, Albert Chi
Committee MemberHarries, Kent
Date: 26 January 2011
Date Type: Completion
Defense Date: 20 August 2010
Approval Date: 26 January 2011
Submission Date: 9 November 2010
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Swanson School of Engineering > Civil and Environmental Engineering
Degree: MSCE - Master of Science in Civil Engineering
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: EMI; Sign Support Structure; Structural Health Monitoring; Ultrasonic Guided Wave
Other ID:, etd-11092010-112835
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 20:04
Last Modified: 11 May 2012 14:34


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