A Mobile Profilometer For Road Surface Monitoring By Use Of Accelerometers
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Surface roughness of a pavement has been recognized to be an important parameter for determining maintenance and rehabilitation needs for road networks. To predict roughness condition reliably, an objective and repeatable profilometer must be used. However, most road agencies, especially for local governments, frequently monitor and determine the pavement condition through visual inspections. This study introduces a new mobile profilometer for more effective data collection and real-time monitoring of the pavement roughness. It consists of two small accelerometers attached to a vehicle suspension system enabling directly measurement of surface profiles using the back calculation of measured acceleration of a vehicle. The measured profile data in the proposed profilometer can be immediately converted to a summary roughness index such as the IRI. The roughness information is simultaneously displayed on an onboard computer in real time. This study also presents profile measurement experiments to verify the accuracy of the new profilometer for roughness data collection and demonstrates its benefits to pavement monitoring of local roads through an application case study.