Robotic Cable Stay Bridge Inspection To Locate Loss Of Metallic Area Using Magnetic Flux Leakage, MFL.
Infrastructure Preservation Corporation, IPC is an Engineering company that specializes in developing robotic technology for the inspection of transportation infrastructures.
IPC developed the first of its kind robotic infrastructure inspection service called CableScan. CableScan consists of two services;
The first is a robotic visual inspection.
This service was built to replace the current NBI inspection. CableScan® exceeds all FHWA and AASHTO guidelines for the inspection of Cable Stays on Cable Stayed bridges. CableScan® inspects 360 degrees of the cablestay with no required lane closures or bucket trucks. CableScan® provides much more quantitative data, is safer for the inspectors and traveling public. CableScan® visual provides more data than ever seen before for the same tax payer dollar as current visual and manual inspection methods.
CableScan® visual is the safest cablestay bridge inspection providing more quantitative data then ever seen before.
Providing more quantitative data can help asset owners better and more effectively budget for repairs.
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MAGNETIC FLUX LEAKAGE FOR CABLE INSPECTIONS
The second Cable Stay inspection is a newer inspection using MFL (Magnetic Flux Leakage) a tried and true nondestructive testing technology that has been around for 25 odd years. Combined with a robotic transportation crawler and specialized software CableScan® provides an unprecedented level of information, loss of metallic area, corrosion and deterioration progression over time.
MFL is an advance NDT method that locates broken wires and loss of metallic area (Corrosion) in ferrous materials.
A sensor head with rare-earth magnets magnetizes the material and sensors within the test head is used to measure the flux generated by broken wires or loss of metallic area.
The CableScan MFL robot saturates the internal cables with a magnetic field.
The custom software interprets the percentage of loss in metallic area.
CableScan® MFL robot saturates the internal cables with a magnetic field.
The custom software interprets the percentage of loss in metallic area and it is wirelessly beamed back to the base station for back office processing into a report that is provided to the client.
The footprint for both the equipment and the inspection itself is very small. The equipment ships in 3 small boxes.
A truck was parked in the shoulder with the ground control station and 2 inspectors.
The portable base station can be placed on the bridge depending on space.
The real-time results locates where in the stay the fault is located.
As well as the distance traveled along the Stay and the distance along the deck.
It is the responsibility of those tasked with maintaining our infrastructure to utilize the latest in available inspection methods and services to provide for the public’s safety. Updating outdated 50 year old manual and subjective inspection with modern technologies and methods for the same taxpayer dollar is the easiest and most cost effective solution.
Imagine a bridge collapse and the Department of Transportation or district head was still conducting a manual inspection. What if a loved one was killed on their way to work thinking that the bridge is safe because it was inspected manually with your taxpayer dollars and yet that manual inspection does not and cannot inspect the wires that actually hold up the bridge, but only inspects the HDPE casing that is supposed to protect the steel.
According to a Federal Highways, FHWA report “The MFL method can be used to detect the location and extent of corrosion in post-tensioned and precast prestressed strands in concrete girders, and breakage of wires and strands in post-tensioning tendons and prestressing strands. MFL is also commonly used to test the cables of suspension or cable stayed bridges. MFL units can be clamped onto a cable as part of a climbing module or rolled across a surface.”
Infrastructure Preservation Corporation has taken this to the next level with their introduction of CableScan® MFL. CableScan® MFL can inspect the cables of cable stay bridges without lane closures or bucket trucks. The MFL unit is drawn by a robotic casing and its software interpretation provides the department of transportation with quantitative date to determine loss of metallic area in cable stays. IPC has also developed a unit for wire ropes, and to inspect external post tension tendons.
For more information or to submit a scope of work;
Robotic Bridge Inspection Blog
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