OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY

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Using drones to inspect highway bridges and improve safety

Published Date: 
Thursday, March 24, 2016

Master’s student Matthew Gillins from Utah is looking into the use of drones to inspect highway bridges as a way to save time and resources, improve safety for both inspectors and bridge users, and help with earthquake preparedness.

The Federal Highway Administration requires a close visual inspection of most bridges every two years. “My research will determine whether drones can manage this function and obtain the high-resolution imagery we need,” said Gillins, who hopes to operate his own inspection and surveying business. “I see a future where drones will be used for routine inspections to identify problems, followed by in-depth inspections and repairs.”