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Title: A cost-effective, mobile platform-based, photogrammetric approach for continuous structural deformation monitoring
Author: Wang, Chih-Heng
Awarding Body: University of Newcastle Upon Tyne
Current Institution: University of Newcastle upon Tyne
Date of Award: 2013
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With the evolution of construction techniques and materials technology, the design of modern civil engineering infrastructure has become increasingly advanced and complex. In parallel to this, the development and application of appropriate and efficient monitoring technologies has become essential. Improvement in the performance of structural monitoring systems, reduction of labour and total implementation costs have therefore become important issues that scientists and engineers are committed to solving. In this research, a non-intrusive structural monitoring system was developed based on close-range photogrammetric principles. This research aimed to combine the merits of photogrammetry and latest mobile phone technology to propose a cost-effective, compact (portable) and precise solution for structural monitoring applications. By combining the use of low-cost imaging devices (two or more mobile phone handsets) with in-house control software, a monitoring project can be undertaken within a relatively low budget when compared to conventional methods. The system uses programmable smart phones (Google Android v.2.2 OS) to replace conventional in-situ photogrammetric imaging stations. The developed software suite is able to control multiple handsets to continuously capture high-quality, synchronized image sequences for short or long-term structural monitoring purposes. The operations are fully automatic and the system can be remotely controlled, exempting the operator from having to attend the site, and thus saving considerable labour expense in long-term monitoring tasks. In order to prevent the system from crashing during a long-term monitoring scheme, an automatic system state monitoring program and a system recovery module were developed to enhance the stability. In considering that the image resolution for current mobile phone cameras is relatively low (in comparison to contemporary digital SLR cameras), a target detection algorithm was developed for the mobile platform that, when combined with dedicated target patterns, was found to improve the quality of photogrammetric target measurement. Comparing the photogrammetric results with physical measurements, which were measured using a Zeiss P3 analytical plotter, the returned accuracy achieved was 1/67,000. The feasibility of the system has been proven through the implementation of an indoor simulation test and an outdoor experiment. In terms of using this system for actual structural monitoring applications, the optimal relative accuracy of distance measurement was determined to be approximately 1/28,000 under laboratory conditions, and the outdoor experiment returned a relative accuracy of approximately 1/16,400.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available