Durability Assessment and Structural Health Monitoring

Structural health monitoring (SHM) is an emerging technology leading to the development of systems capable of continuously monitoring structures for damage to improve safety and reduce life-cycle costs. SHM involves integration of one or more non- destructive test methods into a vehicle in order to facilitate quick and accurate damage detection with minimal human intervention. Aerospace structures have one of the highest payoffs for SHM systems since damage can lead to catastrophic and expensive failures, and the vehicles involved undergo regular costly inspections.

SHM is used for rapid condition screening and aims to provide, in near real time, reliable information regarding the integrity of the structure. Infrastructure inspection, such as road network and bridges plays a key role in public safety in regards to both long-term damage accumulation and post extreme event scenarios. As part of the rapid developments in data-driven technologies that are transforming many fields in engineering and science, machine learning and computer vision techniques are increasingly capable of reliably diagnosing and classifying patterns in image data, which has clear applications in inspection contexts.

The field of SHM has progressed significantly in recent years, and it will become critical to address these topics explicitly before SHM systems can be successfully utilized in prognostic applications.