What if We Could Make Infrastructure Smart?
Or bricks, steel, wood, asphalt, any construction material.
In a world where everything from cars to homes is being made ‘smart’, how do we infuse intelligence into concrete? Internet of Things (IoT) technology has placed sensors in our work, our home, and our environment to monitor an array of parameters from traffic density to energy consumption and air quality.
Our infrastructure is aging, experiencing increasing stress and facing threats of climatic change. Today, we need an infrastructure that is Safe, Sustainable and Resilient.
At Smart Structures, we’ve been innovating to embed sensors within the construction materials that form our environment. We call it ‘Embedded Intelligence’. It’s the intelligence that comes from sensors embedded in foundations, walls, dams, pavements, and pipelines. Embedded intelligence improves the quality and availability of information we have about the performance of these structures such as load-bearing capacity, identify internal degradation, predict structural instability, and assist lifecycle monitoring of structures.
Who We Are
Smart Structures is a unique digital transformation company applying the Internet of Things (IoT) technology to civil infrastructure.
We enable connected infrastructure that gives designers, contractors, owners, operators, users, and several other stakeholders vital insight into the health, structural integrity, capacity, and possible failure of infrastructure at the element as well as holistic level. Our technology adds value to infrastructure by improving safety to users, enabling better asset management that extends life and reduces total cost of ownership, and providing future readiness for keeping our infrastructure sustainable and resilient.
How We Do It: Our Technology
Embedded Intelligence for safer structures: Concrete structures are designed to deliver on several performance attributes. Resistance to carry load is one of the critical deliverables. When building a structure, our ability to be certain of its load carrying capacity is limited by the complexity of the environment and the practicality of accurate measurement. This is where embedded intelligence provides live data from sensors in the concrete to give us a sharper, more precise reading of the load bearing performance parameters. This ensures safety and peace of mind for the infrastructure users.
Embedded Intelligence for longer life of structures: When our concrete assets are managed with detailed knowledge about existing or developing weaknesses, it is potentially possible to direct maintenance and repair activity to the exact points where the need is greatest. And when the metrics are based on measured performance data and not just visual inspection, warning signs are received early. Maintenance becomes pre-emptive. Thus, structural health monitoring enables better asset management and extended asset life.
Embedded Intelligence for safer investments: A structural health report based on measured internal data rather than visual external inspection can reveal a lot. Loss of structural integrity, microcracking, settlement, corrosion to name a few. Whether you are a homeowner, the Department of Transportation, or an infrastructure financier, real measured data provides more certainty to mitigate risk. This way we help you reduce risk of any infrastructure failure.
Embedded Intelligence for emergency situations: Unexpected events, storms, earthquakes, vehicular collisions, and explosions are just some of the high impact situations that damage structures. After the first wave of damage, there are usually subsequent collapses. Knowing which structural parts are vulnerable in the minutes after the first wave of damage can help make better evacuation and rescue decisions. Embedded Intelligence can provide that knowledge within minutes. This facilitates quick decision making at various levels and thus saves lives.
Embedded Intelligence for efficient and cost control: A basic concept of design on civil engineering is to build in redundancy to compensate for the inherent uncertainty of design data and construction processes. Smart Structures sensors provide actual measured data that verify design assumptions, putting a definitive number on the load-bearing capacity of structural assets. Further, actual measured data optimizes the design and construction of the assets thus providing certainty and assurance that the structures will perform as designed
Smart Structures is a mature high-tech company started over a decade ago focused on using smart sensor technology to meet the structural data needs of owners, builders, operators, insurers, and financiers of civil infrastructure. The original research was developed by Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) and the University of Florida and licensed to Smart Structures. The sensor technology for deep foundations is well established and has been proven on more than 100 bridges.
In 2015, Smart Structures was acquired by RADISE International, a full-service geotechnical engineering firm. RADISE was uniquely positioned to help Design-Build Project Teams understand and apply SmartPile‘s full dynamic testing to their foundation design projects. With support from RADISE, Design-Build Teams leveraged higher design resistance factors allowed by the FDOT, allowing for fewer piles, shorter pile lengths, and the ability to drive those piles more efficiently using this new state of the art technology.
Smart Structures has developed various innovative applications and products with the recent additions of SmartHub, SmartPile® Inspector, SmartPile® Suite etc. Now in its sixth generation, Smart Structures is building an ecosystem with its sensors, software and supporting hardware supported by 8 patents in 32 countries and recognized by leading US Federal and State organizations.
Smart Structures has won countless accolades. But the most powerful evidence of what we are capable of – and what we are most proud of – is the success of our clients and partners.