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Coordinating, Developing, and Delivering Highway Transportation Innovations

Overview

 

Research and Development (R&D) Project Sites

 
Project Information
Project ID:   FHWA-PROJ-13-0046
Project Name:   Development of Structural Carbon Nanotube-Based Sensing Composites for Rehabilitation of Deteriorating and Fatigue-Damaged Steel Bridges
Project Status:   Programmed
Start Date:  September 30, 2013
End Date:  September 30, 2018
Contact Information
Last Name:  Munley
First Name:  Eric P
Telephone:  202-493-3046
E-mail:  eric.munley@dot.gov
Office:   Office of Infrastructure Research and Development
Team:   Hazard Mitigation Team [HRDI-50]
Program:   Exploratory Advanced Research
Project detail
Project Description:   Structural Health Monitoring has become a viable solution to continuously monitor critical infrastructure components that show distress or are unable to pass current load rating procedures. This research focuses on the development of a structural sensing composite layer for concrete structures that is capable of providing distributed monitoring capability. The layer consists of carbon nanotubes that are deposited on a carrier, which form a continuous conductive skin that is extremely sensitive to changes in strain and the formation and propagation of microdamage and macrodamage. It can be either loadbearing, i.e. the layer represents the reinforcement as well as the sensor, or nonloadbearing, i.e. the layer acts as a sensing skin alone. Distributed sensing allows for increased detectability of forming or growing defects that cannot necessarily be captured with conventional point-type sensors, such as strain gauges or accelerometers.
Goals:  
Develop a structural sensing composite layer for concrete structures that is capable of providing distributed monitoring capability.
Product Type:   Hardware
Research report
Test Methodology:   Test phase 1 (small test specimens): Evaluate material combination and develop best practices for manufacturing. Components of concrete structures will be tested for application of the new sensing skin: • Concrete surfaces -- Detection of development and propagation of tensile and shear cracks. • Reinforcing steel bars -- Strain, yield, and corrosion monitoring. • Prestressing steel wires -- Strain, including loss of prestress, and corrosion monitoring. • Composite-based reinforcing -- Strain, microdamage and macrodamage monitoring. Test phase 2 (reinforced, prestressed, and composite-repaired concrete beams): Equipped with carbon nanotube-based sensors. Test to Failure: • Reinforced concrete beams: Flexural, shear, and deep beam specimens. • Reinforced concrete specimens with embedded corroding steel rebar. • Small-scale prestressed concrete beams: flexural, shear, with corroding wires.
Expected Benefits:   For Structural Health Monitoring: Real-time feedback on changes in strain, temperature, forming of defects, and potentially corrosion on reinforcing steel and prestressing wires.
Deliverables: Name: Structural Carbon Nanotube-Based Sensing Composites for Rehabilitation of Deteriorating and Fatigue-Damaged Steel Bridges
Product Type(s): Research report, Hardware
Description: Structural Carbon Nanotube-Based Sensing Composites for Rehabilitation of Deteriorating and Fatigue-Damaged Steel Bridges
FHWA Topics:   Research/Technologies--Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center (TFHRC)
TRT Terms:   Structural Health Monitoring
Infrastructure
Structures
Research
Bridges
Corrosion
FHWA Disciplines:   Structures
Subject Areas:   Bridges and other structures

 

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Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center | 6300 Georgetown Pike | McLean, VA | 22101