Infrastructure Institute (UCII) Research

The University of Cincinnati Infrastructure Institute (UCII) has over twenty years of experience in the research of assessment technologies for structures, including:

  • Loads and natural hazards (service, fatigue, strength, and extreme-event limit states)
  • Nondestructive evaluation via controlled truckload and modal testing
  • Long-term monitoring and on-line prediction of needed maintenance
  • Advanced on-site instrumentation systems and smart materials
  • Destructive testing, damage process mechanisms and evaluation of remaining service life
  • Characterization of performance under extreme events and acceptable risk
  • Interdependence and collocation of infrastructure systems
  • Geographical information systems
  • Social and economic effects

Given the synergy of the on-going research and test specimens, the expressed objective for UCII research is the systematic and integrated development of an optimal field testing regimen and a long-term on-site health monitor for highway bridges with a major emphasis on steel-stringer bridges. While the concept of an intelligent structure is not new, many of the issues that need to be resolved are not all recognized. Further, real-life implementation of well-researched concepts is still a major challenge.

The final product is envisioned as an on-site continuous health monitor which:

  • Acquires sensor data at variable sampling speeds
  • Communicates with peripheral devices such as a video camera or traffic scale
  • Provides a graphical interface via Internet and phone line with a remote engineer
  • Performs simple range and other checks for sensor faults
  • Identifies parameters for a simple beam or grid model of the bridge
  • Detects any structural degradation or damage via thresholds
  • Has an open architecture for future expansion or connection.