The problem of managing the ageing bridge infrastructure is widespread around the globe, impacting not only our transportation network, but also water systems, communications networks and the energy grid.
Bridges are subject to continuous degradation due to the unremitting increase in the traffic volume and, the effects of environmental, and hazardous events. In Australia, there are currently approximately 33,000 bridges, with only 18% of those built after 1976. In the United States, there are over 66,400 structurally defective bridges in the transportation network. Furthermore, it is projected that the freight volume will be nearly double between 2020 and 2030 and triple by 2050. As a result, many of the present bridges may not meet the safety requirements as evidenced by recent catastrophic collapse of bridges around the world, i.e. Morandi Bridge in Italy on 14th of August 2018, Mississippi River Bridge in Minneapolis, USA, on 1st August 2007, and Florida International University Bridge (FIU) in Florida, USA, on 30th March 2018. This current status
raises the importance of monitoring the structural health condition for bridges, as indeed reported by Roads and Traffic Authority of NSW.
This project aims at investigating the capability of a piezoelectric energy harvester to act as a sensor for damage identification in the structure of the bridge.
This research will be conducted at Centre for Infrastructure Engineering and Safety at School of Civil and Environmental Engineering.