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Smart Structures and Systems
  Volume 6, Number 5, July-August 2010, pages 595-618
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.12989/sss.2010.6.5_6.595
 


Wireless sensor networks for permanent health monitoring of historic buildings
Daniele Zonta, Huayong Wu, Matteo Pozzi, Paolo Zanon, Matteo Ceriotti, Luca Mottola, Gian Pietro Picco, Amy L. Murphy, Stefan Guna and Michele Corra

 
Abstract
    This paper describes the application of a wireless sensor network to a 31 meter-tall medieval tower located in the city of Trento, Italy. The effort is motivated by preservation of the integrity of a set of frescoes decorating the room on the second floor, representing one of most important International Gothic artworks in Europe. The specific application demanded development of customized hardware and software. The wireless module selected as the core platform allows reliable wireless communication at low cost with a long service life. Sensors include accelerometers, deformation gauges, and thermometers. A multi-hop data collection protocol was applied in the software to improve the system flexibility and scalability. The system has been operating since September 2008, and in recent months the data loss ratio was estimated as less than 0.01%. The data acquired so far are in agreement with the prediction resulting a priori from the 3-dimensional FEM. Based on these data a Bayesian updating procedure is employed to real-time estimate the probability of abnormal condition states. This first period of operation demonstrated the stability and reliability of the system, and its ability to recognize any possible occurrence of abnormal conditions that could jeopardize the integrity of the frescos.
 
Key Words
    wireless sensor network; fiber optic sensors; structural health monitoring; Bayesian analysis; historic construction.
 
Address
Daniele Zonta, Huayong Wu, Matteo Pozzi and Paolo Zanon; Department of Mechanical and Structural Engineering, University of Trento, Via Mesiano 77, 38123 Trento, Italy
Matteo Ceriotti; IRST, Bruno Kessler Foundation, Via Sommarive 18, 38123 Trento, Italy
Luca Mottola; Swedish Institute of Computer Science, Isafjordsgatan 22/Kistagagen 16, 16440 Kista, Sweden
Gian Pietro Picco; DISI, University of Trento, Via Sommarive 14, 38123, Trento, Italy
Amy L. Murphy; IRST, Bruno Kessler Foundation, Via Sommarive 18, 38123 Trento, Italy
Stefan Guna; DISI, University of Trento, Via Sommarive 14, 38123, Trento, Italy
Michele Corra; Tretec S.r.l., Via Solteri 38, 38121 Trento, Italy
 

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