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An introduction to structural health monitoring

Infrastructure is a complex system which provides energy, transport, water and other essentials that are the basis of a society and economic well-being. It has a significant positive effect on output, productivity, and growth rates, and is a key driver of jobs throughout the economy. As such, it is a key element that needs to be well developed and maintained. According to the national infrastructure plan in 2014, £460 billion needs to be invested in the UK's infrastructure if the country wants to remain competitive in a global market. At the same time, a gap is gradually widening in the ability to finance infrastructure projects. Structural Health Monitoring (SHM) has much potential to address this issue as it can improve maintenance (i.e. save money) through early detection and replacement avoidance. However, the main hurdle in SHM is data interpretation and this is highly affected by environmental variations (e.g. temperature, wind, humidity and traffic loading). This talk will introduce SHM and present some of Irwanda and his team’s work in the field.