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Volume 5, September

Infrastructures, Volume 5, Issue 10 (October 2020) – 10 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Operational modal analysis (OMA) and structural health monitoring (SHM) are currently well-established technologies for the structural assessment of bridges and are increasingly applied to full-scale bridges. Basics of OMA and modal-based SHM, and explanatory applications are illustrated. In particular, the application of OMA to a set of reinforced concrete arch bridges for the development of predictive correlations of the fundamental frequency is presented; moreover, validation of a numerical model of a bridge and vibration serviceability assessment of a footbridge by means of OMA tests are illustrated. Finally, applications of modal-based SHM are presented to remark on the effectiveness of the technology and discuss the influence of non-stationarities and environmental and operational variables on monitoring results. View this paper.
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Article
On BRT Spread around the World: Analysis of Some Particular Cities
Infrastructures 2020, 5(10), 88; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5100088 - 20 Oct 2020
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1055
Abstract
The goal of civil engineering has always been the research and implementation of methods, technologies, and infrastructures to improve the community’s quality of life. One of the branches of civil engineering that has the strongest effect on progress is transport. The quality of [...] Read more.
The goal of civil engineering has always been the research and implementation of methods, technologies, and infrastructures to improve the community’s quality of life. One of the branches of civil engineering that has the strongest effect on progress is transport. The quality of transport has a profound economic and social impact on our communities regarding trade (freight transport) and city livability (public transport systems). However, innovation is not the only way to improve the features above-mentioned, especially public transport, considering that it is usually beneficial to enhance and repurpose vehicles with appropriate adjustments to offer more efficient services. Other perspectives that influence public transport systems are the costs and times of design and construction, maintenance, operating costs, and environmental impact, especially concerning CO2 emissions. Considering these issues, among the various types of existing public transport systems, those of the so-called Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) offer worthwhile results. The BRT system is a type of public road transport operated by bus on reserved lanes, and it is significantly profitable, especially from an economic point of view, in areas where there are existing bus routes. Nonetheless, for the construction of works minimization, it is closely linked to other features that improve its usefulness, depending on the vehicles’ quality such as capacity, but above all, the propulsion or driving autonomy that would guarantee high efficiency. This paper introduces an analysis of some BRT systems operating worldwide, presenting the background, general technical features, and the correlation with autonomous vehicles. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Transport Systems: Safety Modeling, Visions and Strategies)
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Article
Discrete and Distributed Error Assessment of UAS-SfM Point Clouds of Roadways
Infrastructures 2020, 5(10), 87; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5100087 - 18 Oct 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 883
Abstract
Perishable surveying, mapping, and post-disaster damage data typically require efficient and rapid field collection techniques. Such datasets permit highly detailed site investigation and characterization of civil infrastructure systems. One of the more common methods to collect, preserve, and reconstruct three-dimensional scenes digitally, is [...] Read more.
Perishable surveying, mapping, and post-disaster damage data typically require efficient and rapid field collection techniques. Such datasets permit highly detailed site investigation and characterization of civil infrastructure systems. One of the more common methods to collect, preserve, and reconstruct three-dimensional scenes digitally, is the use of an unpiloted aerial system (UAS), commonly known as a drone. Onboard photographic payloads permit scene reconstruction via structure-from-motion (SfM); however, such approaches often require direct site access and survey points for accurate and verified results, which may limit its efficiency. In this paper, the impact of the number and distribution of ground control points within a UAS SfM point cloud is evaluated in terms of error. This study is primarily motivated by the need to understand how the accuracy would vary if site access is not possible or limited. In this paper, the focus is on two remote sensing case studies, including a 0.75 by 0.50-km region of interest that contains a bridge structure, paved and gravel roadways, vegetation with a moderate elevation range of 24 m, and a low-volume gravel road of 1.0 km in length with a modest elevation range of 9 m, which represent two different site geometries. While other studies have focused primarily on the accuracy at discrete locations via checkpoints, this study examines the distributed errors throughout the region of interest via complementary light detection and ranging (lidar) datasets collected at the same time. Moreover, the international roughness index (IRI), a professional roadway surface standard, is quantified to demonstrate the impact of errors on roadway quality parameters. Via quantification and comparison of the differences, guidance is provided on the optimal number of ground control points required for a time-efficient remote UAS survey. Full article
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Article
Experiences of Dynamic Identification and Monitoring of Bridges in Serviceability Conditions and after Hazardous Events
Infrastructures 2020, 5(10), 86; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5100086 - 16 Oct 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 884
Abstract
Operational Modal Analysis (OMA) currently represents an appealing technique for the non-destructive assessment and health monitoring of civil structures and infrastructures. Many applications have appeared in the literature in the last decade, demonstrating how this technique can support the observation and understanding of [...] Read more.
Operational Modal Analysis (OMA) currently represents an appealing technique for the non-destructive assessment and health monitoring of civil structures and infrastructures. Many applications have appeared in the literature in the last decade, demonstrating how this technique can support the observation and understanding of the structural behavior of bridges at different stages of their lifecycle and the remote detection of structural damage. The present paper describes some explanatory applications of OMA and modal-based Structural Health Monitoring (SHM) referring to bridges that have been carried out by the authors over the years. Some aspects related to the evolution of OMA in the last decade are summarized by means of the presentation and discussion of a number of case studies; they cover the fields of the non-destructive assessment and monitoring of bridges in serviceability conditions as well after hazardous events and remark the potential and the opportunities of OMA in the modern management of road infrastructures. Full article
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Article
A Discussion Regarding the Measurement of Ventilation Rates Using Tracer Gas and Decay Technique
Infrastructures 2020, 5(10), 85; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5100085 - 12 Oct 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 717
Abstract
The measurement of ventilation rates is crucial in understanding buildings’ performances, but can be a rather complex task due to the time-dependency of wind and buoyancy forces, which are responsible for the pressure differences that induce air movement across the envelope. Thus, assessing [...] Read more.
The measurement of ventilation rates is crucial in understanding buildings’ performances, but can be a rather complex task due to the time-dependency of wind and buoyancy forces, which are responsible for the pressure differences that induce air movement across the envelope. Thus, assessing air change rate through one-time measurements during brief periods of time may not be a reliable indicator. In this paper, the variability in the measurement of ventilation rates using the decay technique was evaluated. To that end, two compartments of a typical single-family detached dwelling were selected as a case study and 132 tests were performed, considering two different boundary conditions (door closed and door open). This work allowed the large variability of the results to be highlighted, as the coefficient of variation ranged from 20% to 64%. Wind speed had a key effect on the results, especially because during the measurements indoor–outdoor temperature differences were not so significant. The possibility of using occupant-generated carbon dioxide as tracer gas was also analyzed, but problems of cross-contamination were identified. Full article
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Article
A Study on Causes of Delay in Road Construction Projects across 25 Developing Countries
Infrastructures 2020, 5(10), 84; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5100084 - 12 Oct 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1621
Abstract
Delays in road construction projects due to various reasons are a major problem facing construction professionals. The incapability of finishing projects punctually and within a given budget is a persistent issue worldwide. This study aims to determine the ten principal causes of delay [...] Read more.
Delays in road construction projects due to various reasons are a major problem facing construction professionals. The incapability of finishing projects punctually and within a given budget is a persistent issue worldwide. This study aims to determine the ten principal causes of delay in road construction projects in 25 developing countries across the globe. The study involves two steps. First, the authors compiled information regarding the most frequent delays in a road construction project. Second, they analyzed the intensity of each cause of delay in these projects. Being more accurate in the methodology, given the nature of the information, the researchers used a quasi-meta-analysis for processing the data. Half (50%) of the countries have similar causes of delay, and likewise, 50% of the countries identified the top ten primary causes of delay in road construction projects based on the intensity results. This study uses the results of the intensity. According to the results of the homologation, the lack of experience of the construction manager, inadequate planning/scheduling, and influence on people’s land alongside the road construction project (expropriation for the construction of the project) have more significant impacts than frequent changes in the design (which was listed as the most frequent cause of delay). Full article
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Article
Advanced Progress Control of Infrastructure Construction Projects Using Terrestrial Laser Scanning Technology
Infrastructures 2020, 5(10), 83; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5100083 - 12 Oct 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1119
Abstract
Effective progress control is vital for steering infrastructure construction to completion with minimum delay. Walking through the infrastructure project site to record progress in different activities is time-consuming, requiring information extracted from construction drawings, schedules, and budgets, as well as data collected from [...] Read more.
Effective progress control is vital for steering infrastructure construction to completion with minimum delay. Walking through the infrastructure project site to record progress in different activities is time-consuming, requiring information extracted from construction drawings, schedules, and budgets, as well as data collected from the construction site. This process can be automated by using advanced remote sensing technologies. This study contributes to progress monitoring in large horizontal infrastructure projects. It presents a practical automated method using laser scanning technology that can track the project’s progress in a real construction environment with limited human input. It is robust and accurate and is currently operational. The system capitalizes on the success of laboratory experiments. This system deals with occlusions effectively, accelerates the registration process of multiple scans, reduces the noise in the data, recognizes the objects of irregular shape, and is economically feasible. It provides evidence that all current challenges encountered in using laser scanners in monitoring construction progress can be overcome. This method has been successfully tested in the Wacker Drive reconstruction project in Chicago, IL. Full article
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Article
Investigation into Recycled Rubber Aggregates and Steel Wire Fiber for Use in Concrete Subjected to Impact Loading
Infrastructures 2020, 5(10), 82; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5100082 - 10 Oct 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 730
Abstract
This study investigated the potential use of tire derived rubber aggregates, particularly powdered rubber, and recycled steel-wire fibers in concrete subjected to impact loading. The fibers are approximately 0.4 mm in average diameter and 25 mm in length on average. There are two [...] Read more.
This study investigated the potential use of tire derived rubber aggregates, particularly powdered rubber, and recycled steel-wire fibers in concrete subjected to impact loading. The fibers are approximately 0.4 mm in average diameter and 25 mm in length on average. There are two main portions to this study. The first phase of this study involved small-scale batching to investigate the fresh and hardened properties of concrete mixtures with powdered rubber up to 50% replacement of sand volume and recycled steel fibers up to 0.25% by mixture volume. Additional mixtures containing powdered rubber, crumb rubber, and tire chips were evaluated for their mechanical performance. Based on fresh concrete properties, compressive strength, modulus of rigidity, and impact resilience, mixtures were selected for a second investigative phase. In this phase, static and impact testing were performed on two sets of scaled beams. One beam set was produced with concrete containing 40% powdered rubber as a sand replacement and another beam set with a combination mixture incorporating rubber products of varying sizes (10% powdered rubber, 10% crumb rubber, and 10% tire chip) and 0.25% recycled steel fiber. Flexural performance improved initially with the inclusion of powdered rubber but decreased with increasing concentrations. Mixtures including recycled steel fibers at 0.25% outperformed industrial steel fiber mixtures in both flexural strength and impact resistance. For both the static and impact beams with the recycled powdered rubber and steel fibers in the combination demonstrated improved load distribution and load-carrying capacity, acting as a sufficient replacement for industrial steel fiber reinforcement. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Innovate, Research, and Maintain Transportation Infrastructure)
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Article
Investigating Daylight in the Apartment Buildings in Melbourne, Australia
Infrastructures 2020, 5(10), 81; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5100081 - 07 Oct 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1039
Abstract
Daylighting improves users’ experience in visual comfort, aesthetics, behaviour and perception of space and plays an important part in enhancing the health and wellbeing of occupants inside a dwelling. However, daylighting design is challenging for high rise living since configuration of multiple apartments [...] Read more.
Daylighting improves users’ experience in visual comfort, aesthetics, behaviour and perception of space and plays an important part in enhancing the health and wellbeing of occupants inside a dwelling. However, daylighting design is challenging for high rise living since configuration of multiple apartments together often results in deep plans and wrongly oriented apartments with poor daylighting. Melbourne considered as the most liveable city in the world has witnessed a boom in high rise apartments in recent years, where bedrooms were designed without windows or with one small opening. Previous studies indicated that one out of two apartments in Melbourne’s central business district (CBD) failed to provide daylighting in the bedrooms. This has led to amendments in planning policy with the aim of providing access to daylight in all habitable rooms. This paper investigates the daylighting conditions in apartment buildings using field measurement and daylight simulations. Daylight levels in 12 apartment units in Melbourne CBD were measured. Additionally, daylight simulations were conducted to identify ways for optimizing light levels in standard layouts. The field measurements showed that daylighting levels were insufficient in one third the apartments due to the presence of deep floor plates and external obstructions. The results from the daylight simulations showed that window to floor area ratio (WFR) of approximately 30% is required for achieving acceptable daylighting levels in bedrooms that have south orientation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Infrastructures)
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Article
Structural Evaluation of Variable Gauge Railway
Infrastructures 2020, 5(10), 80; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5100080 - 01 Oct 2020
Viewed by 1032
Abstract
In the Eurasian railway network, a different gauge length is used across several countries. A railroad variable gauge allows railway vehicles in rail transport to travel across a gauge break caused by two railway networks with differing track gauges. The variable gauge railway [...] Read more.
In the Eurasian railway network, a different gauge length is used across several countries. A railroad variable gauge allows railway vehicles in rail transport to travel across a gauge break caused by two railway networks with differing track gauges. The variable gauge railway consists of the bogie system to change the length of the wheel shaft and the gauge changing railroad track. Thus, it is important to assess the structural performance of the variable gauge system. In this study, as a performance improvement subject of the variable gauge bogie and railroad, a structural analysis using dynamic finite element calculation was performed to evaluate the reliability and life cycle of the release system and the variable gauge railway. First, the contact pressure and structural stress of the release disk and the release rail were calculated, which provided the wear condition and fatigue life prediction of variable gauge components. Second, a structural analysis of the gauge stabilization rail after the gauge release was executed. The maximum principal stress was evaluated to guarantee the required service life of the stabilization rail section. For the operational safety of the variable gauge system, the operation conditions and maintenance requirements of the variable gauge railway were proposed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Infrastructures and Structural Engineering)
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Article
A Strategic Move for Long-Term Bridge Performance within a Game Theory Framework by a Data-Driven Co-Active Mechanism
Infrastructures 2020, 5(10), 79; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5100079 - 29 Sep 2020
Viewed by 755
Abstract
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) requires that states have less than 10% of the total deck area that is structurally deficient. It is a minimum risk benchmark for sustaining the National Highway System bridges. Yet, a decision-making framework is needed for obtaining the [...] Read more.
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) requires that states have less than 10% of the total deck area that is structurally deficient. It is a minimum risk benchmark for sustaining the National Highway System bridges. Yet, a decision-making framework is needed for obtaining the highest possible long-term return from investments on bridge maintenance, rehabilitation, and replacement (MRR). This study employs a data-driven coactive mechanism within a proposed game theory framework, which accounts for a strategic interaction between two players, the FHWA and a state Department of Transportation (DOT). The payoffs for the two players are quantified in terms of a change in service life. The proposed framework is used to investigate the element-level bridge inspection data from four US states (Georgia, Virginia, Pennsylvania, and New York). By reallocating 0.5% (from 10% to 10.5%) of the deck resources to expansion joints and joint seals, both federal and state transportation agencies (e.g., FHWA and state DOTs in the U.S.) will be able to improve the overall bridge performance. This strategic move in turn improves the deck condition by means of a co-active mechanism and yields a higher payoff for both players. It is concluded that the proposed game theory framework with a strategic move, which leverages element interactions for MRR, is most effective in New York where the average bridge service life is extended by 15 years. It is also concluded that the strategic move can lead to vastly different outcomes. Pennsylvania’s concrete bridge management strategy currently appears to leverage a co-active mechanism in its bridge MRR strategies. This is noteworthy because its bridges are exposed to similar environmental conditions to what is obtainable in Virginia and New York and are subjected to more aggressive weather conditions than those in Georgia. This study illustrates how a strategic move affects the payoffs of different players by numerically quantifying changes in service life from bridge time-dependent bridge performance relationships. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Innovate, Research, and Maintain Transportation Infrastructure)
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