Leave Nothing Up in the Air: Bridge Inspections in the Age of Drones
Drones make bridge inspections safer and easier to document. A complementary 3-D bridge app developed by the Michigan Tech Research Institute also streamlines defect records.
Bridging basic and applied research is more than a metaphor. There are 612,677 bridges in the U.S. and the annual Federal Highway Administration 2018 bridge deficiency report finds that more than 54,000 of them have at least one key element that is in poor or worse condition. The state of Michigan ranks 16 nationally with 1,175 structurally deficient bridges, about 10.5 percent, which sits above the national average.
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