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Full-Scale Deformation Field Measurements via Photogrammetric Remote Sensing



3D remote sensing technologies have improved dramatically over the past five years and methods such as laser scanning and photogrammetry are now capable of reliably resolving geometric details on the order of one millimeter or less. This has significant impacts for the structural health monitoring community, as it has expanded the range of mechanics-driven problems that these methods can be employed on. In this work, we explore how 3D geometric measurements extracted from photogrammetric point clouds can be leveraged for structural analysis and measurement of structural deformations without physically contacting the target structure. Here we present a non-destructive evaluation technique for extracting and quantifying structural deformations as applied to a load test on a highway bridge in Delaware. The challenging nature of 3D point cloud data means that statistical methods must be employed to adequately evaluate the deformation field of the bridge. Overall, the results show a direct pathway from 3D imaging to fundamental mechanical analysis with measurements that capture the true deformation values typically within one standard deviation. These results are promising given that the mid-span deformation of the bridge for the given load test is on the scale of only a few millimeters. Future work for this method will also investigate using these results for updating finite element models.


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