Smart Infrastructure Seminar Series

January 18, 2022

bannerThe Smart Infrastructure Seminar Series explores the ideas around Engineering Resilient, Sustainable and Equitable Infrastructure. Sponsored by the Center for Smart Infrastructure, College of Engineering and the Institute of Transportation Studies.

Jerry LynchFebruary 4, 2022 4 pm

Transforming Decisions on the Performance and Health of Transportation Structures using Cyber-Physical Systems: Lessons Learned and Future Outlook

Jerome Lynch

Vinik Dean of Engineering

Duke University

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Abstract: The field of civil engineering is radically changing based on the emergence of sensing, data and modes of automation previously unimaginable. One of the most successful advancements has been wireless sensors that can be used to collect structural response data with high nodal density and low installation costs. As wireless sensors proliferate across our industry, the ability to collect data related to the performance of infrastructure is shedding new light on how infrastructure systems perform including how they deteriorate over time. A secondary benefit of wireless telemetry is their seamless integration with Internet-based computing resources which is rapidly transforming monitored civil infrastructure into cyber-physical systems (CPS) capable of automating their data collection in response to their operation. This presentation describes the development of wireless sensors for structural health monitoring (SHM) including an overview of experiences with long-term field deployment of wireless SHM systems on highway bridges. The presentation also describes expansion of SHM system functionality by integrating them into a broader CPS architecture. The presentation describes the deployment of a CPS architecture along a 20-mile segment of I-275 in southeast Michigan that has been designed to track heavy trucks loading a network of monitored bridges.  An emphasis is placed on the use of long-term response data generated by the CPS architecture to transform the decision making of the bridge owner, leading to more efficient asset management.  

Bio: Dr. Jerome Lynch is the Vinik Dean of Engineering of the Pratt School of Engineering at Duke University; he also holds the titles of Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering and Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Prior to joining Duke, he was a tenured faculty member of the University of Michigan from 2003 to 2021. Dr. Lynch completed his graduate studies at Stanford University where he received his Ph.D. in Civil and Environmental Engineering, M.S. in Civil and Environmental Engineering, and M.S. in Electrical Engineering. Dr. Lynch also received his B.E. in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the Cooper Union in New York City. His research interests are in the field of advanced sensing and information technologies for the monitoring and control of civil infrastructure systems. Dr. Lynch’s research and teaching accomplishments have been recognized by several honors including the 2005 ONR Young Investigator Award, 2009 NSF CAREER Award, 2009 Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, 2012 American Society of Civil Engineering (ASCE) Leonardo da Vinci Award, and 2014 ASCE Huber Award.  He was elected Fellow of the Engineering Mechanics Institute in 2021.  

O'RourkeFebruary 25, 2022 1 pm

Infrastructure Resilience and Innovation

Thomas O’Rourke

Thomas R. Briggs Professor in Engineering Emeritus

Cornell University

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Abstract: The effects of natural hazards with respect to infrastructure resilience are reviewed with examples related to earthquakes, hurricanes, and fire. Infrastructure resilience with respect to natural hazards vs climate change is discussed. Innovation with respect to increasing the resilience of pipelines and tunnels is examined.  A case history of the restoration of the Canarsie Tunnel, which was flooded by Hurricane Sandy, is given. The agents of change that lead to improved policies and approaches are explored, including the technical, institutional, and social challenges of introducing new technologies and engaging community support.  

Bio: Tom O’Rourke is the Thomas R. Briggs Professor of Engineering Emeritus in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Cornell University. He is a member of the US National Academy of Engineering, Distinguished Member of ASCE, International Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, Member of the Mexican Academy of Engineering, and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He authored or co-authored over 420 technical publications, and has received numerous awards for his research. His research interests cover geotechnical engineering, earthquake engineering, underground construction technologies, engineering for large, geographically distributed systems, and geographic information technologies and database management.

Jennifer SchoolingMarch 18, 2022, 12 pm

Developments in Smart Infrastructure and Construction in the UK

Jennifer Schooling

Director of Cambridge Center for Smart Infrastructure and Construction

University of Cambridge

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Abstract: The increasing ability of data means that we are now in a position to monitor and understand our infrastructure and cities as never before. But what data should we collect? How should we manage and analyse it? How do we decide where to invest limited resources into sensing systems, novel technologies and data analytics? These questions and others like them have been at the heart of research at the Cambridge Centre from Smart Infrastructure and Construction (CSIC) for the last decade. Jennifer will present some of the projects CSIC has delivered with industry partners which demonstrate the potential that data has to transform the way we plan, design, deliver, manage and operate our infrastructure systems.

Bio: Dr Jennifer Schooling is Director of the Centre for Smart Infrastructure and Construction (CSIC), at the University of Cambridge. She works with colleagues in industry and academia to demonstrate how better data and information from a range of sensing systems can be used to improve our understanding of infrastructure, leading to better design, construction and asset management practices, and to improve our understanding of how our infrastructure serves our communities. This has included projects in structural health monitoring, whole-life value-based asset management and development of digital twins to support decision making. She has contributed to a range of industry guidance, policy documents and wider industry publications to raise awareness of the need for digitalisation. Jennifer serves on BSI and ISO committees developing standards for digitalisation in the built environment, and is a member of the UK’s Digital Framework Task Group (DFTG) and the Infrastructure Client Group’s Digital Transformation Task group (DTTG). Jennifer was lead author for the Carbon Reduction Code for the Built Environment. In 2019 Jennifer was awarded the OBE and the ICE President’s Medal for services to engineering and digital construction.

haeyoung NohApril 8, 2022 4 pm

Structures as Sensors: Physics-guided Learning for Indirectly Monitoring Humans and Surroundings

Haeyoung Noh

Associate Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering

Stanford University

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Abstract: ‘Smart structures’ sense, understand, and respond to structure itself, the humans within, and the surrounding environment. Traditional monitoring approaches using dedicated sensors often result in dense sensing systems that are difficult to install and maintain in large-scale structures. In this talk, I introduce “Structures as Sensors” approach that utilizes the structure itself as a sensing medium to indirectly infer multiple types of information (e.g., occupant activity, surrounding infrastructure states) through their influence on the physical response of the structure. Challenges lie in creating robust inference models for analyzing noisy structural response data. To this end, we developed physics-guided data analytics approaches combining statistical signal processing and machine learning with physical principles. I will present two projects as examples of this approach: 1) Vehicles as Sensors: indirect infrastructure health monitoring through vehicle responses; and 2) Buildings as Sensors: occupant tracking and characterization through footstep-induced building vibrations. We developed new learning methods incorporating structural dynamics, wave propagation, and human activity models; and we evaluated our methods with real-world experiments, including our 6-year railway and eldercare center deployments.

Bio: Hae Young Noh is an Associate Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Stanford University. Her research focuses on indirect sensing and physics-guided data analytics to enable low-cost non-intrusive monitoring of cyber-physical-human systems. She is particularly interested in developing structures to be self-, user-, and surrounding-aware to improve users’ quality of life and provide safe and sustainable built environment. The results of her work have been deployed in a number of real-world applications from trains, to the Amish community, to eldercare centers, to pig farms. Before joining Stanford, she was a faculty member at Carnegie Mellon University. She received her Ph.D. and M.S. degrees in Civil and Environmental Engineering and the second M.S. degree in Electrical Engineering at Stanford University. She earned her B.S. degree in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Cornell University. She received several awards, including the Google Faculty Research Awards (2013, 2016), the Dean’s Early Career Fellowship (2018), the NSF CAREER Award (2017), and various Best Paper Awards from ASCE, ASME, ACM, IEEE, and SEM conferences.

Bill SPenser

April 22, 2022 4 pm

Advances in Computer Vision–based Civil Infrastructure Inspection and Monitoring

Bill Spencer

Nathan M. & Anne M. Newmark Endowed Chair in Civil Engineering

University of Illinois Urbana Champaign

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Abstract: Computer vision techniques, in conjunction with acquisition through remote cameras and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), offer non-contact solutions to civil infrastructure condition assessment. The ultimate goal of such a system is to automatically and robustly convert the image or video data into actionable information. This presentation provides an overview of recent advances in computer vision techniques as they apply to the problem of civil infrastructure inspection and monitoring. In particular, relevant work in the fields of computer vision, machine learning, and structural engineering are presented. The applications reviewed are classified into two types: inspection applications and monitoring applications. The inspection applications reviewed include identifying context such as structural components, characterizing local and global visible damage, and detecting changes from a reference image, with focus on rapid structural condition assessment of bridges and buildings after disasters. The monitoring applications discussed include static measurement of strain and displacement, as well as dynamic measurements of displacement and modal analysis, with application to inland waterway networks. The paper concludes with a discussion of promising areas of growth for research in the field of computer vision-based civil infrastructure inspection and monitoring, which will ultimately lead to smarter civil infrastructure.

Bio: B.F. Spencer, Jr. is the Nathan M. and Anne M. Newmark Endowed Chair of Civil Engineering, UIUC. His research has been primarily in the areas of structural health monitoring, structural control, cyberinfrastructure applications, stochastic fatigue, stochastic computational mechanics, and natural hazard mitigation. Professor Spencer has directed more than $50M in funded research and published more than 700 technical papers/reports, including two books. He has been selected as “Global Highly Cited Scholar in Civil Engineering” by Shanghai Ranking Consultancy and Elsevier. He led NSF's George E. Brown Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation (NEES) system integration project. He was the PI on the NEES MUST-SIM facility at the University of Illinois focusing on hybrid simulation. Professor Spencer has received numerous awards, including the ASCE Outstanding Instructor Award, the ASCE Norman Medal, the ASCE Housner Structural Control and Monitoring Medal, the ASCE Newmark Medal, the Zhu Kezhen International Lectureship Award, the ANCRiSST Outstanding Senior Investigator Award, the Structural Health Monitoring Person of the Year Award, the J.M. Ko Medal of Advances in Structural Engineering, IASCM Takuji Kobori Prize, and the Raymond & Sidney Epstein Structural Engineering Faculty Award.  Professor Spencer is a Fellow of ASCE, a Foreign Member of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, a Foreign Member of the Polish Academy of Sciences, the North American Editor in Chief of Smart Structures and Systems, the Executive Managing Editor of the journal of Earthquake Engineering and Engineering Vibration, and the past president of the Asia-Pacific Network of Centers for Research in Smart Structures Technology.