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Nondestructive Testing in Civil Engineering Requirements for the practical application and state of the art in Switzerland (Research Project AGB 2012/016 for the Federal Roads Office; FEDRO)

In the presented research project, the essentials for the most relevant field applications of NDT-CE were analyzed. This includes the assessment of the practical needs, typical inspection tasks as well as the limitations of the applied methods regarding their reliability and accuracy. Among others, the analysis of former field inspections in Switzerland was carried out in more than 40 different individual projects as well as the development of new theoretical approaches. Therefore, the research partners conducted an extensive study in collaboration with large construction companies to analyze the scope of NDT-CE methods applied in the past decades in Switzerland. The study focused on Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) and Ultrasonic Testing (UT) and investigated the challenges of inspecting structures in the field. As a result, the most relevant difficulties were identified depending on field conditions, such as reinforcement ratio, moisture content, tendon duct material or the size of a discontinuity of the component inspected. To predict the success of a field inspection, the methods of POD (Probability of Detection) and GUM (Guide to the Expression of Uncertainty in Measurement) were used to quantify the performance and the accuracy of Radar and Ultrasound for common practical inspection tasks under different field conditions. As one result, typical penetration depth values of GPR applied on concrete have been calculated. Furthermore, the estimated success of the respective methods is provided as a function of different field conditions.



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