Sensing technology monitors the performance of infrastructure and systems that are otherwise difficult to observe, due to harsh operating conditions, difficulty of access or hazardous environments.
The role of sensing and monitoring systems ensures that the infrastructure and its inbuilt technology is performing to its optimum capability.
Remote monitoring gives operators a forewarning of a potential failure, allowing them to take actions such that the failure can be avoided, reducing risks and operating expenses.
Safety of workers
Sensing technology has been developed to protect workers on industrial, construction and demolition sites, allowing engineers to analyse problems from afar and assess what action is needed and how urgently.
Safety in rail infrastructure
Some rail networks are deploying sensing technology, in the form of ruggedised camera mounted under the train, to map the rail infrastructure. Mapping provides benefits such as giving the precise location of the train, or remotely identifying incidents i.e., landslides that might impact on the network.
Manufacturing robust sensors
It is essential that the quality of build is matched by rigorous environmental testing. Testing at high and low temperatures introduces several dynamics to the product, with rapid expansion and contraction of the solder and leads of the components severely testing the build integrity.
Looking to the future
Sensors bring many benefits to a wide range of sectors including energy, construction, transport infrastructure and social housing. However, a significant advantage lies in removing personnel from hazardous working environments and dangerous tasks.
Read the full article, written by Graeme Robertson, and published in Electronics & Engineering Magazine (p.22-23), here.