Internal Erosion Prize Challenge Competition Next Steps: Evaluating Distributed Acoustic Sensing (DAS) for Large Critical Infrastructure Imaging and Monitoring

Project ID: 20098
Principal Investigator: Justin Rittgers
Research Topic: Improving Geotechnical Infrastructure Reliability
Funded Fiscal Years: 2020
Keywords: None

Research Question

The goal of this project is to determine if Distributed Acoustic Sensing (DAS) can detect and image internal erosion and other complex structural issues within or below earthen embankments? While inspection and condition assessment programs are effective, current methods are resource intensive and cannot reliably detect internal erosion early in the process. Internal erosion can take place over a long period of time, but often remains invisible until serious damage occurs. The ability to reliably detect internal erosion would help Reclamation assess and reduce risks by allowing intervention against internal erosion early in the process.

Need and Benefit

One of the main failure modes and safety concerns for earthen embankments is concentrated seepage and internal erosion. Plans to manage and remediate structural problems within large infrastructure cannot be fully established until we have knowledge of the extent and severity of the issue. DAS promises to be an effective way to gain this knowledge a priori.

Contributing Partners

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Research Products

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Last Updated: 6/22/20