INSPIRE Archived Webinars


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Source Publication Title

INSPIRE-University Transportation Center Webinars

Webinar Date

13 Dec 2017, 11:00 am


Unmanned aerial systems (UAS or “drones”) are a rapidly developing technology that can help meet the needs of transportation agencies for reliable, repeatable data that can save money and increase safety for the data collection process. By taking advantage of flexible platforms that can deploy a variety of sensors, transportation agencies and their information suppliers can help meet these data needs for operations, asset management, and other areas. Location-specific data on infrastructure condition and distresses can help with improved management of assets.

In this presentation, recent applied research led by a Michigan Technological University team is reviewed, with a focus on bridge condition assessment and corridor monitoring. Examples of 3D optical, thermal, and LiDAR data are shown and how analysis methods result in usable information to meet pressing data needs. Finding spalls and delaminations, characterizing cracking, inventory of roadway assets, and related applications will be shown. Achievable resolutions and accuracies will be reviewed and how these data are transformed into asset condition data.


Colin Brooks, MEM
Senior Research Scientist
Environmental, Transportation, and Decision Support Lab
Michigan Tech Research Institute (MTRI)
Michigan Technological University

Mr. Brooks has been leading transportation and environmental remote sensing application studies for MTRI in bridge condition assessment, unpaved road condition, mapping of invasive aquatic plants, freight flow monitoring, bridge scour, wetland assessment, unmanned aerial vehicle applications, slope stability assessment, bridge inspection tools, asset management, decision support systems, and rail network modeling. Projects have assessed environmental areas of concern and transportation infrastructure in Alaska, Michigan, Ohio, Alaska, Nebraska, Iowa, South Dakota, and elsewhere. He has led software development projects to help find new wetlands mitigation sites and to create tablet-based data entry systems for bridge inspections. He is currently completing a PhD with a focus on using drones to map and monitor Eurasian watermilfoil while also developing drone applications for road and bridge condition assessment.


Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

Research Center/Lab(s)

INSPIRE - University Transportation Center

Document Type

Video - Presentation

Document Version

Final Version

File Type





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