Q. What is the intent of this project?
A. The intent of this multi-year research project is to develop and validate Commercial Remote Sensing (CRS) applications that can enhance current bridge management systems (BMS). As part of the research, a prototype Integrated Remote Sensing and Visualization (IRSV) system has been developed. IRSV can serve as a remote sensing data management and decision-making tool.

Q. What are the specific objectives of this project?
A. The specific objectives of the project are: 1) to enhance the National Bridge Inspection System, 2) to provide opportunities for state and local DOTs to develop the visualization and system requirements for their own BMS; 3) to provide temporal bridge condition tracking; 4) to enable agencies to make more precise damage assessments; and 5) to provide better and more systematic data interpretation through parallel data displays.

Q. What are the longer range objectives of this project?
A. A longer-range objective is to enable the IRSV components to be integrated into PONTIS and other state and local BMS applications.

Q. What is the ISRV system comprised of and what can it provide?
A. IRSV contains a high resolution visual database using, in part, on-site bridge inspection data. Additional data that is not included in semi-annual bridge inspections includes LiDAR imaging, sub-inch aerial photography, and Infrared images. IRSV can provide temporal data transformation and detailed bridge damage information to enhance our understanding and quantification of various types of bridge damage, both on bridge decks and in structural members.

Q. What organizations have partnered with you in this phase of research?
A. Partners in this first phase research project have included the City of Charlotte DOT and the North Carolina DOT. The multi-disciplinary research team includes the UNC Charlotte Center for Transportation Policy Studies (lead), the Charlotte Visualization Center, ImageCat, Inc., Boyle Consulting Engineers PLLC, and Dr. C. Michael Walton, P.E. This project is supported by a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Department of Transportation, Research and Innovative Technology Administration.

Q. What is the resolution of terrestrial LiDAR scan?
A. The scanning laser resolution is point cloud density and distance to target dependent. It is also depend on the reflectivity of the surface. In our study, our typical resolution is less than 3 mm.

Q. With the amount of traffic on a bridge, wouldn’t it interfere with aerial photography for bridge monitoring?
A. Yes cars and shadows can block view points. Hence, it is not advised to fly the bridges at heavy traffic hours.

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