NPCA Staff Report
A smart phone is a mobile device that combines cellular and mobile technologies into one unit. The device functions as a phone, but connection to the internet via cellular technology allows users to access much more than verbal communication.
In the same manner, smart pavement refers to roadways that have been specifically engineered to support a wide range of 21st century IT-related features. Smart pavement functions as a roadway, but technologies incorporated into it allow it to be much more than merely a means of transportation.
Early research on smart pavement focused on monitoring the health of the roadway itself. The Federal Highway Administration conducted a study in 2013 on a “self-powered sensor system for continuous structural health monitoring.” The sensors continuously monitored and stored data about the strain levels in the pavement with the data uploaded wirelessly to a central database.
The addition of self-powered technologies directly into pavements has led the way for offering other features as well, including enhanced broadband service to vehicles and adjoining residences or businesses; charging electric cars as they drive along; and supporting self-driving cars.
Integrating smart pavement technology into precast concrete pavements could be a major opportunity for precasters – even if paving slabs are not part of your current production.
For more information on smart pavement technology, visit:
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