Development and application of a relative displacement sensor for structural health monitoring of composite bridges
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This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Li, J. and Hao, H. and Fan, K. and Brownjohn, J. 2015. Development and application of a relative displacement sensor for structural health monitoring of composite bridges. Structural Control and Health Monitoring. 22 (4): pp. 726-742, which has been published in final form at http://doi.org/10.1002/stc.1714. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving at http://olabout.wiley.com/WileyCDA/Section/id-820227.html#terms
This paper proposes a relative displacement sensor developed to measure directly the relative slip between slab and girder in composite bridges for assessing the health condition of shear connections. The structure, design principle, features, and calibration of the developed relative displacement sensor are presented. The design of the sensor ensures that there are no voltage outputs for the tension, compression, bending, and torsion effects, but only for the relative displacement between the two connecting pads of the sensor. The accuracy of the developed sensor in measuring the relative displacement response and using it for monitoring the conditions of shear connectors was tested on a composite bridge model in the laboratory. Shear connection condition was monitored under ambient vibrations, then static load tests were conducted to introduce cracks into the composite bridge. Both the vertical deflections and relative displacements were used for the crack detection. Experimental studies demonstrate that the developed sensor is very sensitive to the relative displacement and has a decent performance for the structural health monitoring of composite bridges.
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