Programmetric techniques in civil engineering material testing and structure monitoring

Research output: Contribution to journalResearch articleContributedpeer-review



Civil engineering material testing includes a wide range of applications requiring the determination of the three-dimensional shape of an object and changes thereof. Large structure monitoring will often include the necessity of determining object deformations at a large number of points. Photogrammetric techniques offer a large potential for the solution of a wide range of measurement tasks in this field. A modular toolbox consisting of digital cameras, computer interfaces, illumination systems, calibration devices, combined with subpixel accuracy image measurement operators, multi-image matching techniques, and self-calibrating bundle adjustment in a suitable user interface, depicts a very powerful tool for tailoring custom-made solutions for material testing labs. Due to the wide range and the repetitive nature of measurements tasks in civil engineering, these applications could depict a significant future market for photogrammetry. This paper will briefly discuss the major hardware and software modules of a toolbox for civil engineering material testing and large structure monitoring. Based on several sample applications covering object dimensions from 10 cm to 500 meters, the potential of photogrammetric deformation measurement techniques will be shown. The major advantage of photogrammetric techniques can often be seen in the fact that they allow for highly automated measurements at a large number of points simultaneously. In many cases, object deformations can be determined at a precision in the order of 1:100,000 of the object dimension, based on off-the-shelf hardware components.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-45
Number of pages7
JournalPhotogrammetric engineering & remote sensing
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2006


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