Altair SmartWorks™ enables real-time foundation monitoring for Omnifor
For local governments, housing corporations, and building owners or managers knowing the condition of their assets and being informed of any structural changes is key to ensure safety, schedule preventive maintenance, and plan adequately for future investments. Unfortunately, visual inspections of buildings and structures are often not conducted frequently enough, as they tend to be time-consuming and costly. Based in the Netherlands, Omnifor provides monitoring solutions for building management professionals and governments with operational intelligence through innovative sensor network solutions.
In the western part of the Netherlands, the soil has insufficient bearing capacity to allow for the construction of buildings and houses. To overcome this issue, buildings in this area have been built on timber pile foundations. These foundations have to be fully submerged in water to avoid pile deterioration from rotting and fungi.
Using Altair SmartWorks, Omnifor has developed a Structural Health Monitoring solution (SHM) based on wireless sensor networks that enables owners to predict damage and plan repairs. This solution allows real-time monitoring of buildings through a comprehensive dashboard, which displays structure shifts such as changes in settlement, crack width over time, and other indicators of deterioration or shifts.
Omnifor used Altair SmartWorks's IoT platform for all core functions of its Omnifor Service Bus. For this specific SHM solution, all sensor nodes are grouped by building or street for each client. This enables Omnifor to control and manage the massive amounts of data produced by the sensor nodes. The portal environment, which is provided by Omnifor to its clients, uses Altair SmartWorks's RESTful API to display the data via comprehensive and interactive charts for further analysis.
Since operating the wireless sensor network does not require human intervention, structural health assessments can be performed more frequently and cost-effectively. With multiple automatic measurements performed each day over long periods of time, trends become visible. The information provided facilitates decision-making and prioritization, and allows foundation renewal projects to be executed before the damage becomes serious.