Geotechnical monitoring or ground vibration monitoring is the detecting, recording and reporting of ground vibrations caused by construction, demolition and from other heavy industries. It is done to understand the intensity of the work and prevent damage to the surrounding structures.
The equipment utilized typically consists of a sensor unit linked to a recording device. The sensor unit records on three orthogonal axes (X, Y & Z axes) and the signal is processed and stored. Data recorded is either incident based when reading exceeds a threshold or real time where all readings are recorded.
Reasons for Geotechnical monitoring
Safety is the main reason for geotechnical monitoring. By monitoring ground vibrations, civil engineers can understand how much stress the surrounding is exposed to. Giving engineers data to discern if the work site and building around are “safe” for work. Excessive vibrations from construction sites and other activities may cause damage to buildings surrounding it or on-site equipment and structures. With geotechnical monitoring, work sites can do pre-activity and post-activity assessments on ground vibrations and stop work when building or human safety is compromised.
Another area geotechnical monitoring is deployed is in areas with sensitive equipment and historical buildings. Hospitals, research centres, wafer fabricating plants etc., where low-level ground vibrations can harmful and may damage expensive equipment. Similarly, historical structures may have low structural tolerances for ground vibrations and are expensive to repair. It is advisable for these buildings to have constant geotechnical monitoring to understand the surrounding and take action when required.
In the case that building or equipment damage happens, building owners will be able to use the data to prove that ground vibrations exceeded safety guidelines, Allowing for corrective action to be taken such as stopping construction work and compensation for the damage caused.
Event based vs real time recording
Most systems in the past have been event based. Where when the readings detected by the sensor unit exceed a threshold level, the recording device switches on and records the signals from each sensor. This is to save space on the recording device so it can last longer in the field till the data is extracted physically.
However with the rise of the Internet of Things (IOT), monitoring systems now can integrate 3/4g connectivity to send recorded data to FTP serves/Cloud Storage. Allowing readings to be transmitted and subsequently analyzed from the comfort of the office without the hassle of physical extraction. Vibration data is constantly pushed from site to a server where data is sorted and an engineer can read the data and make sense of it.
Without physical extraction, real time recording makes data accessible and decisions can be made faster. Furthermore, there is much more data to analyze to understand the situation. With this, real time monitoring is deemed as “safer” as the time taken to react is technically shorter.
To learn more about Real Time Ground Vibration Monitoring contact TME Systems today!