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Journal of Sensors
Volume 2012, Article ID 156583, 17 pages
Research Article

Delamination Detection of Reinforced Concrete Decks Using Modal Identification

1DeepSea (US) Inc., Houston, TX 77042, USA
2Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Utah State University, Logan, UT 84322, USA

Received 9 June 2012; Accepted 3 August 2012

Academic Editor: Andrea Cusano

Copyright © 2012 Shutao Xing et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This study addressed delamination detection of concrete slabs by analyzing global dynamic responses of structures. Both numerical and experimental studies are presented. In the numerical examples, delaminations with different sizes and locations were introduced into a concrete slab; the effects of presence, sizes, and locations of delaminations on the modal frequencies and mode shapes of the concrete slab under various support conditions were studied. In the experimental study, four concrete deck specimens with different delamination sizes were constructed, and experimental tests were conducted. Traditional peak-picking, frequency domain decomposition, and stochastic subspace identification methods were applied to the modal identification from dynamic response measurements. The modal parameters identified by these three methods correlated well. The changes in modal frequencies, damping ratios, and mode shapes that were extracted from the dynamic measurements were investigated and correlated to the actual delaminations and can indicate presence and severity of delamination. Finite element (FE) models of reinforced concrete decks with different delamination sizes and locations were established. The modal parameters computed from the FE models were compared to those obtained from the laboratory specimens, and the FE models were validated. The delamination detection approach was proved to be effective for concrete decks on beams.