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Infrastructures, Volume 5, Issue 3 (March 2020) – 9 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Most British railway embankments are aged around 150 years old and responsible for a high percentage of system disruption. Although remarkable works have been done to understand embankment deterioration, they do not represent a thorough way to manage assets in detail. Track geometry data are routinely collected to identify track defects and thus plan track maintenance interventions. 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 instability in railway embankments is clearly visible in track geometry data, and the metric gives an indication of the worsening of track geometry, which is likely due to embankment instability.View this paper.
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Article
Competing Risks Models for the Assessment of Intelligent Transportation Systems Devices: A Case Study for Connected and Autonomous Vehicle Applications
Infrastructures 2020, 5(3), 30; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5030030 - 15 Mar 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2289
Abstract
Intelligent transportation system (ITS) has become a crucial section of transportation and traffic management systems in the past decades. As a result, transportation agencies keep improving the quality of transportation infrastructure management information for accessibility and security of transportation networks. The goal of [...] Read more.
Intelligent transportation system (ITS) has become a crucial section of transportation and traffic management systems in the past decades. As a result, transportation agencies keep improving the quality of transportation infrastructure management information for accessibility and security of transportation networks. The goal of this paper is to evaluate the impact of two competing risks: “natural deterioration” of ITS devices and hurricane-induced failure of the same components. The major devices employed in the architecture of this paper include closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras, automatic vehicle identification (AVI) systems, dynamic message signals (DMS), wireless communication systems and DMS towers. From the findings, it was evident that as ITS infrastructure devices age, the contribution of Hurricane Category 3 as a competing failure risk is higher and significant compared to the natural deterioration of devices. Hurricane Category 3 failure vs. natural deterioration indicated an average hazard ratio of 1.5 for CCTV, AVI and wireless communications systems and an average hazard ratio of 2.3 for DMS, DMS towers and portable DMS. The proportional hazard ratios of the Hurricane Category 1 compared to the devices was estimated as <0.001 and that of Hurricane Category 2 < 0.5, demonstrating the lesser impact of the Hurricane Categories 1 and 2. It is expedient to envisage and forecast the impact of hurricanes on the failure of wireless communication networks, vehicle detection systems and other message signals, in order to prevent vehicle to infrastructure connection disruption, especially for autonomous and connected vehicle systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Mobility)
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Article
Detecting Embankment Instability Using Measurable Track Geometry Data
Infrastructures 2020, 5(3), 29; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5030029 - 12 Mar 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2551
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
Progressive Failure Analysis of a Concrete Dam Anchored with Passive Rock Bolts
Infrastructures 2020, 5(3), 28; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5030028 - 10 Mar 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2133
Abstract
Passive rock bolts are commonly used to anchor concrete dams, and they may have a significant impact on stability-evaluations. However, these bolts are often omitted from dam safety analysis due to uncertainties regarding their condition and the size of displacements required in the [...] Read more.
Passive rock bolts are commonly used to anchor concrete dams, and they may have a significant impact on stability-evaluations. However, these bolts are often omitted from dam safety analysis due to uncertainties regarding their condition and the size of displacements required in the dam-rock interface to mobilize significant bearing forces in the passive rock bolts. This paper address the latter question by studying the failure process of a small concrete dam anchored with rock bolts. Failure simulations were performed with the increased density method in a finite element model consisting of a dam, the corresponding part of the rock and rock bolts. Two types of approaches are used to simulate the anchorage of the rock bolts; a method where the anchorage to the rock is simulated using a fixed boundary condition; and a method where the anchoring of the bolts are modelled using springs. Depending on the method of analysis, the rock bolts contribute with 40–75% of the load-carrying capacity of the dam. The rock bolts increase the load-bearing capacity of the dam, partly through anchorage forces, but also by keeping the contact surface between rock and concrete together and thereby increase the shear capacity of the interface. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Dam Engineering)
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Article
Roadworks Warning—Closure of a Lane, the Impact of C-ITS Messages
Infrastructures 2020, 5(3), 27; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5030027 - 06 Mar 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2281
Abstract
By now, it is widely acknowledged among stakeholders and academia that infrastructures will have to be composed both by a physical component and a digital one. The deployment of technologies exploiting dedicated short-range communications is viewed as the most cost-effective solution to face [...] Read more.
By now, it is widely acknowledged among stakeholders and academia that infrastructures will have to be composed both by a physical component and a digital one. The deployment of technologies exploiting dedicated short-range communications is viewed as the most cost-effective solution to face the foreseen growth of mobility. Still, little has been done to define the best implementation logic of DSRC. Aim of this paper is to frame the possible impacts arising by the implementation of a cooperative intelligent transport system (C-ITS)-use case: roadworks warning—closure of a lane, and, in order to achieve this result, microsimulations are exploited. The results are intended to support both road operators and car-makers in defining the best operational logics and the possible benefits achievable by presenting the cooperative message at a certain distance for certain market penetrations. Moreover, if the C-ITS message actually entails benefits or simply disrupts the upstream traffic should be assessed in advance, before implementing the system. The obtained results show that the risk of disruption and of reduction in traffic efficiency arises at lower market penetration levels. Nevertheless, a consistent trend in delay reduction is recorded upstream the roadworks, the highest reduction being equal to 8.66%. Moreover, the average speed at the roadworks entrance on the closing lane increases by a difference equal to around 10 km/h, while the average time in the queue at the highest market penetration reduces by 60 s on the open lane and 25 s on the closing one. These presented results reflect the way the traffic shifts from the slow to the fast lane thanks to the C-ITS system and effectively frames both the potentialities and the risks of the system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Mobility)
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Article
Instrumented Health Monitoring of an Earth Dam
Infrastructures 2020, 5(3), 26; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5030026 - 03 Mar 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2382
Abstract
This work evaluates the stability of the Boostan earth dam by investigating its long-term performance and interpreting the measured data. To measure the dam response, several sensitive locations are instrumented. This process includes measuring various quantities such as pore water pressure, water level, [...] Read more.
This work evaluates the stability of the Boostan earth dam by investigating its long-term performance and interpreting the measured data. To measure the dam response, several sensitive locations are instrumented. This process includes measuring various quantities such as pore water pressure, water level, and internal stress ratios using inspection devices such as ordinary and Casagrande piezometers, and total pressure cells. The recorded data shows that the pore pressure is in good agreement with the initial (stable) design condition. The installed piezometers show that the drainage is efficient, and the water table in the body is adequate. The instrument also shows a reasonable horizontal stress in the dam body. Overall, the condition of the case study dam is assessed to be normal. The results of this case report can be used as a guide in similar dams for instrumented health monitoring. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Dam Engineering)
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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://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5030025 - 01 Mar 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2187
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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Review
Finite State Machine Modelling to Facilitate the Resilience of Infrastructures: Reflections
Infrastructures 2020, 5(3), 24; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5030024 - 29 Feb 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2094
Abstract
The ability of an infrastructure to be resistant against hazards or to accommodate and recover from hazard-induced destructions and disturbances is characterized as resilience. Usually, infrastructures are engineered socio-technical systems or systems-of-systems. Jackson and Ferris consider the use of finite state machine (FSM) [...] Read more.
The ability of an infrastructure to be resistant against hazards or to accommodate and recover from hazard-induced destructions and disturbances is characterized as resilience. Usually, infrastructures are engineered socio-technical systems or systems-of-systems. Jackson and Ferris consider the use of finite state machine (FSM) modelling as a suitable means to depict and investigate the resilience of such engineered systems. This paper discusses the capabilities and limitations of the FSM model proposed by Jackson and Ferris and if it should be used for the representation and evaluation of the resilience of an infrastructure. The discussion is conducted on a more general level. However, special attention is paid to monitoring because, on the one hand, monitoring is one of the cornerstones of resilience and, on the other hand, Scott and Ferris define a state that is emphasized by an increased level of situational awareness as a result of happened and perceived events. Consequently, the question has to be answered of how the models are able to reflect the need for routine monitoring of the resilience of infrastructures in order to initiate, if necessary, adjustment procedures as an appropriate response to changes in internal and external conditions. The results of this theoretical study are a fundamental step towards the practical application of the FSM approach for the design of resilient infrastructures. Full article
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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://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5030023 - 28 Feb 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2684
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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Article
Shedding Light on the Effect of Uncertainties in the Seismic Fragility Analysis of Existing Concrete Dams
Infrastructures 2020, 5(3), 22; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/infrastructures5030022 - 25 Feb 2020
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 2604
Abstract
The seismic risk assessment of existing concrete gravity dams is of primary importance for our society because of the fundamental role of these infrastructures in the sustainability of a country. The seismic risk assessment of dams is a challenging task due to the [...] Read more.
The seismic risk assessment of existing concrete gravity dams is of primary importance for our society because of the fundamental role of these infrastructures in the sustainability of a country. The seismic risk assessment of dams is a challenging task due to the lack of case histories, such as gravity dams’ seismic collapses, which hinders the definition of limit states, thus making the application of any conventional safety assessment approach difficult. Numerical models are then fundamental to predict the seismic behaviour of the complex dam-soil-reservoir interacting system, even though uncertainties strongly affect the results. These uncertainties, mainly related to mechanical parameters and variability of the seismic motion, are among the reasons that, so far, prevented the performance-based earthquake engineering approach from being applied to concrete dams. This paper discusses the main issues behind the application of the performance-based earthquake engineering to existing concrete dams, with particular emphasis on the fragility analysis. After a critical review of the most relevant studies on this topic, the analysis of an Italian concrete gravity dam is presented to show the effect of epistemic uncertainties on the calculation of seismic fragility curves. Finally, practical conclusions are derived to guide professionals to the reduction of epistemic uncertainties, and to the definition of reliable numerical models. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Dam Engineering)
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