Leeds based Met Consultancy Group has developed an early-warning system for monitoring road defects across Europe for RPB Healtec that could save EUR millions.
The surveying and engineering services specialist is a key partner in a two-year project to improve the management and performance of European road networks, one of the most important land infrastructures in Europe.
Funded by the European Commission, the Road Pavements & Bridge Deck Health Monitoring Technologies (RPB HealTec) consortium is now reaching a critical stage in the development of a new early-warning system that will enable highways engineers to detect road defects in advance of serious decline and provide information in real time without causing traffic disturbances.
To see the system in motion, click on the video below:
Geophysicists from Met Consultancy Group have been consulting on the development of ground penetrating radar (GPR) element of the new system and have recently returned from road testing a prototype on highways across Italy and Greece.
“Early results are extremely promising”, says Director of Operations, Geophysics and Utility Mapping, Sam Roberts. “The system is capable of locating road surface and sub-surface defects at speeds of up to 40 mph using non-intrusive, non-destructive technology and that has significant implications for the enhanced inspection and maintenance of Europe’s roads as well as reducing costs and delays and increasing traffic safety.”
The RPB HealTec system combines three integrated, vehicle mounted, technologies; Ground Penetrating Radiography, InfraRed Thermography and Air Coupled Ultrasonic testing. Together they represent a 100% coverage measurement tool capable of conducting highway inspections at high speed and delivering real-time data transfer and analysis.
“The economic and safety benefits from this for both goods and passenger traffic across Europe are potentially enormous,” says Sam Roberts”.
It is estimated that if the RPB HealTec system could reduce future road-pavement construction and maintenance costs by just 0.1%, this would translate to savings of EUR 60 million within the first six years of operation.
For further details about the project visit www.fp7-rpbhealtec.org
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