American roads are on the decline. Many of them, particularly highways and freeways, are suffering from degradation, potholes and, at times, being closed off for repairs that never come. What technology do we turn to in times like these? The biggest civil engineering companies in the world rely on a combination of photography, environmental awareness and geotechnical design firms to bring better roads to our reality.
Roads And Highways
Fixing roads is an arduous process for a few major reasons. One is the rampant degradation faced by many frequented highways and freeways. Another is the frustration many everyday drivers have with construction, causing them to need detours to get to work or school. More than half of America’s interstate miles are at 70% traffic capacity, with another 25% heavily strained and needing a break before they accumulate more damage. GPR pavement is one of many resources that can be utilized as a solution.
Bridges And Dams
The majority of America’s bridges are in poor condition. It’s estimated as many as 25% need immediate repairs or are handling more traffic than they can handle, with the rest closing that gap at an alarmingly high rate. Similarly, over 4,000 dams in America were deemed unsafe by the American Society Of Civil Engineers. Unless serious action is taken to reverse the damage taken by these bridges on a minute-by-minute basis, such as using GPR pavement or finite element analysis consulting, these could become even more difficult to repair in the future.
Sewers And Pipes
Many sewers and pipes are old and in need of replacing. America’s aging sewer systems, for starters, spill an average of one trillion gallons of untreated sewage every year without fail. One of the biggest threats to a sewer system is the influence of tree roots, though old age and poor maintenance follow close behind. Not only does this affect sewage, this affects drinking and bathing water. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has estimated that drinking water utilities will have to invest hundreds of billions of dollars over the next 20 years to address these needs.
Photogrammetry And Design
How do we create repairs that are accurate and consistent despite the sheer variety of problems at the table? Photogrammetry is one of many answers. The majority of applications using this form of technology will use two or more 2D images to create a 3D measurement or models. This involves extensive analysis and comparison of different photographs to provide the fullest picture possible.
The Future Of Civil Engineering
Civil engineering firms are the most valuable resource when it comes to creating a safer country to travel in. The Federal Aid Highway Act of 1956 was created by Dwight D. Eisenhower as a result of the high-speed roads he saw in Germany during World War II. The law would proceed to fund the very first 41,000 miles of paved glory that made up America’s first interstate system. As of now it’s 46,800 miles long and runs throughout the entire country. With GPR pavement and structural design resources, the future is looking better than ever for our neglected bridges, dams and roads.