Wireless Network and Embedded System for Autonomous Real-Time SHM


This paper describes the real-time monitoring, communication, and alerting capabilities of the SmartBrick, a low-cost, autonomous wireless device for SHM. It is a fully self-contained monitoring platform that requires no additional on-site equipment to collect data and generate alerts. The SmartBrick has several sensors for monitoring temperature, water level, tilt, vibration, and acoustic emissions, and can optionally be used with a digital camera, displacement sensors, load cells, strain gauges, or a wide range of other analog or digital sensors. It uses the widely-available GSM/GPRS network to send monitoring data and alerts to a number of users via FTP, SMS, and e-mail. Its rugged construction, completely wireless design, and extensive powersaving measures allow for a field life of 3-4 years powered only by alkaline batteries. Specifically, this paper presents a major enhancement to the Smart Brick: the addition of short-range wireless communication capability. This addition will allow several SmartBrick devices to coordinate data collection and aggregate data before uploading recorded measurements. This will improve system reliability and facilitate monitoring of larger or subdivided structures, e.g., a bridge with multiple spans.

Meeting Name

4th European Workshop on Structural Health Monitoring (2008: Jul. 2-4, Cracow, Poland)


Electrical and Computer Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Acoustic Emission Testing; Gages; Integrated Circuits; Sensors; Structural Health Monitoring; Structures (Built Objects); Water Levels; Wireless Networks; Wireless Telecommunication Systems; Alkaline Batteries; Data Collections; Digital Sensors; Displacement Sensors; GSM/GPRS; Load Cells; Monitoring Platforms; Power Savings; Real-Time Monitoring; Short-Range Wireless Communications; Strain Gauges; System Reliabilities; Wireless Designs; Wireless Devices; Monitoring; Acoustic Emission Testing; Data Collection; Displacement Sensor; Monitoring Platform; Power-Saving; System Reliability; Wireless Design

International Standard Book Number (ISBN)


Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version


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© 2008 DEStech Publications, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Jul 2008

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