Bridge Retrofit Laser Measurement System

This paper discusses a laser measurement system designed to aid in the bridge retrofit process that reduces the time between identification of a problem to resumption of service for a bridge. Here a non-contact laser system measures sections of a bridge structure involved in a retrofit process. Measurements will automatically produce CAD design drawings of retrofit parts that will be automatically sent to a fabricator. The laser-based system can make measurements that are not possible with other laser systems and with manual measurements. In practice, the system is driven to a bridge site in a vehicle, quickly setup, and used to make measurements. No special targets are needed and the system can make highly accurate measurements over very large distances. The structure being measured does not need to be accessed, eliminating ladders, bucket trucks and lane closures. The system saves time by eliminating currently used manual measurements with string lines and conventional survey equipment. Measurements can be made with greater accuracy than with conventional methods. Minimizing the time a bridge is out-of-service, or requires lane closures, can save state DOTs substantial amounts of money and is in the best interest of the travelling public. This paper discusses applications of this bridge retrofit system to illustrate how the system is used in practice.

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