Bridge Analysis, Design and Repair
Full Session with Abstracts
337101-1 - Timber Bridge Inspection using UAV
Friday, April 20
11:00 AM - 12:30 PM
UAV-enabled bridge inspection has gained more interest over recent years among bridge owners, researchers, and stakeholders due to inefficiency and high cost of conventional access inspection techniques. A large number of bridges under structurally deficient conditions can be efficiently inspected using UAVs equipped with various sensors. In fact, some Departments of Transportation (DOTs) (e.g., Minnesota, Florida, and Alaska DOTs) in cooperation with research institutions have investigated the effectiveness of UAVs as a cost-efficient bridge inspection alternative. Based on the findings from the projects done by the DOTs in their states, this paper is intended to demonstrate the effectiveness of a UAV by inspecting a timber arch bridge in the State of South Dakota. The bridge inspection using UAV was completed based on multiple analyses of high-resolution images and videos recorded from the UAV. Additional virtual image processing was performed using PhotoScan, a photogrammetric software, to recreate bridge components in a 3D point cloud, allowing for their damage identification and damage level classification according to the recommendations specified in a standard state bridge inspection manual. It is expected that this emerging technology will provide a variety of applications for visual damage detection in different types of bridges and other structures.