Quantification of the value of monitoring information for deteriorated structures

An efficient structural integrity management of deteriorated structures is of high societal value. Monitoring can be very beneficial as it is well developed with diverse technologies, algorithms and systems. However, the value or the utility of monitoring is seldom quantified and infrastructure owners and operators may be reluctant to invest in large systems for which the benefit is not clearly specified. In order to overcome this issue, recent research efforts (such as e.g. the COST Action TU1402) focus on utilising the Bayesian pre-posterior decision theory (1) to quantify the value of monitoring information and (2) to perform the quantification before implementation of the monitoring system.

This PhD focusses on deteriorated structures such as bridges and wind turbines and the development of monitoring strategies to most efficiently plan the structural integrity management throughout and prolonging the service life. The expected results comprise the documentation of efficient monitoring strategies for deteriorated structures and the quantification of their utility in terms of risk reduction, expected cost reduction and service life benefits for industrial application and for the value of society.

Host institution

BAM Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing, Berlin, Germany

ESR12

Lijia Long

Local academic supervisor

Assoc. Prof. Sebastian Thöns
sebt(at)byg.dtu.dk
Tel: +45 4525 1714  

Industrial co-supervisor

Dr. Isaac Farreras Alcover (COWI)
ifal(at)cowi.dk

PhD enrolment

Engineering Risk and Decision Analysis Research Group (ERDA), Technical University of Denmark
PhD Director: Assoc. Prof. Sebastian Thöns

Start date: 1st December 2016
Duration: 36 months

Synopsis

Approaches, methods and tools are developed, applied and disseminated for the quantification of the value of monitoring information for highly deteriorated structures.

Objectives

The objective of this PhD is the identification of monitoring strategies to efficiently manage and to enlarge the service life of deteriorated structures.

Tasks and methodology

  • Extensive literature study on Value of Information (VoI), decision theory, Structural Health Monitoring (SHM), structural integrity management and deteriorated structures.
  • Further development of approaches and methods for the quantification of monitoring information on the basis of utility and decision theory.
  • Development of tools for the quantification of the value of monitoring information.
  • Application of the tools in case studies.
  • Dissemination of research results and thesis writing.

Results

The expected results comprise the documentation of efficient strategies for monitoring deteriorated structures and the quantification of their utility in terms of risk reduction, expected cost reduction and service life benefits.

Dissemination

The research results are to be disseminated at international conferences and in reviewed scientific journals.

Secondments

  • AAU (Aalborg, Denmark)
    April & May 2017
    The aim of this secondment is to obtain additional scientific input on risk and decision analysis and wind turbine modelling.
  • COWI (Kongens Lyngby, Denmark)
    November, December 2018, January & February 2019
    The aim of this secondment is the performance of case studies in the environment of the consulting company COWI.

Research field

Engineering Decision and Risk Analysis

Key publications

  • S. Thöns, R. Schneider, M.H. Faber, Quantification of the Value of Structural Health Monitoring Information for Fatigue Deteriorating Structural Systems, in: 12th International Conference on Applications of Statistics and Probability in Civil Engineering (ICASP12), Vancouver, Canada, 2015.
  • R. Schneider, J. Fischer, D. Straub, S. Thöns, M. Bügler, A. Borrmann, Intelligent Structures - Prototype for the Condition Assessment and Damage Development Prognosis for Elements of the Bridge Model. In German. Carl Schünemann Verlag GmbH, 2015. ISBN: 978-3-95606-190-5
  • S. Thöns, M.H. Faber, W. Rücker, Life Cycle Cost Optimized Monitoring Systems for Offshore Wind Turbine Structures, in: IRIS Industrial Safety and Life Cycle Engineering: Technologies / Standards / Applications, VCE Vienna Consulting Engineers Zt GmbH, Vienna,  Austria, 2013. ISBN: 978-3-200-03179-1